DEAR ABBY: Do you know why people nowadays feel the need to announce their pregnancies via ultrasound pictures? I'm sorry, but I really don't want to see all that. I guess some folks think the image of a blurry, black-and-white fetus is "darling." But to me, all I see is an up-close-and-personal snapshot of a stranger's uterus. Even if we're best friends, I don't need all that detail. TMI, right?
I really wish people would deliver this kind of news face-to-face. Or call me, text me, whatever. It serves the same purpose and isn't nearly as graphic. -- NOT READY FOR A CLOSE-UP
DEAR NOT READY: If seeing a sonogram is "TMI" for your sensibilities, all you need to do is scroll past it. It's not as if you're being forced to view the fetus. Being able to see the product they're manufacturing pre-delivery helps many couples to bond with their babies, and when people are happy, they often want to share their joy. So loosen up and let them.
DEAR ABBY: I have been married to my husband for 10 years. Prior to that, we dated for seven. (We met when we were teenagers.) My problem is, my mother-in-law still misspells my name, which is Sara. After all these years, she still adds an "h" to the end of my name, regardless of how many times my husband has pointed out the correct spelling.
I don't know why this is an issue, because we send her cards on all the holidays, her birthday, etc., with my name spelled correctly. How should I approach this with her? -- SIMPLY SARA IN ARIZONA
DEAR SIMPLY SARA: If the two of you get along well, just smile and ask her why she can't get the spelling of your name right. Then listen. However, if there is tension in your relationship, recognize that this may be a form of passive aggression, that confronting her will make her defensive, and she will find some other way to needle you.
P.S. Another thought. Tell her you've changed the spelling of your name to "Sarah" and she may drop the "h"!
DEAR ABBY: My best friend is dying from lung cancer, which I think has traveled to her brain. I am heartbroken over this. My question is, she seems different now -- angry. She jumped on me when we were talking about her disease. Should I just leave her be? Or what should I do? -- STANDING BY IN TEXAS
DEAR STANDING BY: Your friend may indeed be angry, and she has a right to be. She may also be very scared. Continue to stand by her because she will need your support and understanding in the months to come.
A diagnosis of metastasized cancer can make someone feel alone and isolated. If she wants to talk about her prognosis, be prepared to listen. If she is too ill to get out of the house, bring the news about what is going on in her circle of friends to her. (Gossip can be distracting.) Do not offer advice unless you are asked for it. And if she has a bad day, try to be understanding and forgiving.