Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Girl Wants to Date Younger Boy but Fears What Others May Say

DEAR ABBY: After five years of marriage, I find myself in the middle of divorce proceedings. I'll spare you the gory details, but suffice it to say that my wife left me for a co-worker. Luckily there are no children involved, so other than the emotional pain, the process is primarily financial at this point.

As part of the proposed settlement, I am responsible for returning the personal effects she left behind when she abandoned our home. Most items are easy to deal with, such as clothing, shoes, etc. However, other things are causing a dilemma for me. These are the items that have a connection with our marriage. In particular, I'm troubled by what to do with our wedding album.

In one sense it represents a part of my life and my family history, even though it's been painful. On the other hand, the album is a reminder of the failure of our marriage and the promises that we made to each other. Its financial value is virtually nil, and she has not explicitly requested its return. I want to do the right thing, but not at the expense of my own well-being.

Abby, can you please offer your thoughts on how to deal with this while still remaining a gentleman? -- FEELING TORN IN PITTSBURGH

DEAR FEELING TORN: With pleasure. If you want the album, keep it. Your (almost) former wife can order copies from the photographer who took the pictures.