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DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend cheated on me the whole time I was pregnant last year. He lived in Florida, and I lived in Missouri. He didn't make it back for our son's birth like he promised.

Now that he's back, he stays out all night. He won't get a job to help support our family. He lies in bed all day, gets so drunk he can't drive and doesn't help out around the house, either. It's obvious that I should let him go. I'm 11 years older than he is, and he obviously isn't ready to grow up, even though he's 30.

I love him, but I'm tired of being treated this way. How can I get over this? -- CAN'T LET GO IN KANSAS CITY

DEAR CAN'T LET GO: You say you are tired of being treated that way? Congratulations on your burst of clarity. It has finally dawned on you that you have been enabling a lazy, ungrateful, irresponsible freeloader who has no respect for you or his child.

This isn't "love." You should have realized you would be raising two children when he didn't care enough to show up for the birth of the baby. Do what you know you must: Kick him out and move on.


DEAR ABBY: Last year was my son's first year in kindergarten. A child who was allergic to peanuts and soy, among other things, was in his class. Therefore, as a working mom, quick-fix peanut butter sandwiches were out of the question. The school is very cautious. They actually had a separate table in the cafeteria for children with allergies.

What started to bother me was the fact that because one child had allergies, treats for the other 20 kids were prohibited -- birthday cakes, candies, cookies, anything with eggs, etc. This has continued into Boy Scouts. Again, all the children have to go without because of this one child.

What is appropriate? Must all 20 kids accommodate one so he doesn't feel left out, or does his mom start teaching her child that he has allergies and there are foods he can't have? They aren't going to make a college dorm free of peanut butter. Shouldn't he start to understand that now, or must everyone adapt to his strict diet to make him comfortable?

I want to be able to make gingerbread houses during the holiday season and have eggnog with the kids. I understand I should be grateful my child doesn't suffer from these allergies, but what are the boundaries? -- JUST NEED TO KNOW IN CONNECTICUT

DEAR JUST: This precaution is not meant to be an inconvenience for you. It is meant to save lives. If you wish to create gingerbread houses and make special treats for your children and their playmates, nothing is stopping you. But they should not be taken to school if there is any chance the classmate with allergies could somehow get ahold of one of them. It's common for children to trade lunches or share the components with a friend, and one mistake could result in a trip to the hospital or worse.

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