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by Abigail Van Buren

Counseling Saves Self-Esteem as Well as Woman's Marriage

DEAR ABBY: Some people seem to think that just because we have a large family, our yard is a public playground.

At this moment I have 16 kids playing ball in my back yard, and only seven of them are mine. My problem is that the kids aren't allowed to play in other yards because they ruin the grass and fall in the flowers. I really don't mind, but it wouldn't hurt some of the other parents to let the kids play in their yard once in a while.

At night, the kids ask me to turn on my yard lights so they can play after supper. The yelling and the screaming can be heard for blocks.

When, oh when, will I have peace and quiet again? -- MOM WITH PUBLIC PLAYGROUND

DEAR MOM: Too soon. Count your blessings, Mom. You're lucky your children are occupied in a healthy, wholesome sport. You don't have to worry about where they are, what they're doing and with whom. Anybody can raise grass. It takes special people to raise children.