DEAR ABBY: I have a beautiful 20-year-old daughter. She's currently home from college for a break. She spends a great deal of time in our back yard sunning by the pool and swimming. This is fine, but my concern is that she's doing it in the nude.
Now I am far from a prude, Abby, and do most of my own sunning and swimming in the nude as well. My concern is that I am recently remarried, and my daughter doesn't bother to cover up when my new husband is home. She seems just as comfortable nude in front of him as she is in front of me. This seems odd, because this is only the third or fourth time my daughter has met him.
I am further conflicted because my husband obviously enjoys looking at my daughter while she's naked. She has a great body. My husband has been constantly aroused, and this has been leading to some of the best sex I have ever had. When I thought we were falling into a rut, all of a sudden we're making love twice a day. I love it!
My daughter is home for one more week. I'm not sure whether to say anything to her or not. I'm certainly enjoying the side benefit of her exhibitionism. Should I just enjoy this week knowing that she'll be back at summer school soon? -- CONFUSED BUT ENJOYING
DEAR CONFUSED: Speak up now. By allowing this to continue, you are playing with dynamite. While your daughter has probably learned the habit of swimming and sunbathing in the nude from you, the fact that she is doing this in front of your new husband -- whom she has only recently met -- is extremely inappropriate.
Consider the future. What if your daughter decides to spend other vacations with you? You won't be able to let your husband out of your sight. And if he surprises you, and turns out to be capable of making love three times a day, it could mean the end of your marriage.
DEAR ABBY: My husband and I brought his mom to live with us two years ago. She's almost 88 and could no longer take care of herself. This has totally changed our life. She had been living in another state where her other son is. He comes up to see her every month or so -- that's all he does for her.
She went to stay at his home last summer for one week so we could get away. We want to go away again this summer and would like for him to take her. He and his wife are giving us excuse after excuse why they can't. We are upset and feel this is unfair.
Abby, they should work it out. We do everything for Mom and brought her back to better health. What do you suggest we do? -- UPSET IN PENNSYLVANIA
DEAR UPSET: I agree that taking Mom for one week in the summer so that you and your husband can have a week of respite should not be too much to ask. However, since your brother-in-law and his wife have made it plain that they are not prepared to do so, your only other option is to find someone who's willing to come in and be a companion for Mom while you're away.
Consider contacting the National Federation of Interfaith Volunteer Caregivers. Founded in 1987, through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, NFIVC helps organize human compassion into caring acts of service for anyone who is chronically ill, frail or alone.
The address is: 1 W. Armour Blvd., Suite 202, Kansas City, MO 64111. The phone number is: (816) 931-5442, and the Web site is: www.nfivc.org.
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