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by Abigail Van Buren

Fact That's Fiction Fails to Nullify Young Marriage

DEAR ABBY: My father died when I was 4, and my mother remarried.

When I was 13, my mother died, leaving my brother and me to live with our alcoholic stepfather. This is a man for whom I have no love or respect -- only sympathy. He abused me mentally and also physically, so I moved out when I was 18.

Now I am making out my wedding invitation list. Do I have to invite him? I don't want to hurt his feelings, but I am afraid of how he will act and what he may say to other guests. My stepfather and I haven't spoken in years. He makes no effort, and the farther I stay away from him, the happier I am.

Please help me out. I want to do the right thing, but I don't want him to spoil my wedding day. -- WHAT TO DO

DEAR WHAT TO DO: You answered your own question when you wrote: "The farther I stay away from him, the happier I am," and signed off with, "I don't want him to spoil my wedding day."

Now, give yourself a wedding gift and don't risk inviting anyone who may spoil your wedding day.