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DEAR ABBY: During my grandson's third birthday party last weekend, he became agitated and cranky. Some of the adult guests called him "monster," "brat" and "Satan."

I have heard him called these names before under similar circumstances, but this time I lost it! I'm afraid I made a scene -- partly because I feel that name-calling is verbal abuse, and it can have long-lasting effects on someone so young.

Abby, was I wrong? I should add that 99 percent of the time, my grandson is extremely well-behaved and a happy, polite and well-adjusted child. -- WISCONSIN GRANDMA

DEAR WISCONSIN GRANDMA: You were not wrong to defend your grandson. However, you were wrong to have allowed yourself to have "lost it." There is now no doubt who the little boy takes after.

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