DEAR ABBY: My son and daughter-in-law asked me to baby-sit my new grandson when she returned to work three days a week. They also told me they wouldn't "let me" unless I agreed to accept $10 an hour. My son is very successful and makes more than $100,000 a year. They know I have few opportunities to earn spending money.
My son returned from work at the end of my first day of baby sitting and didn't pay me, so I went home. Later, I ran into my daughter-in-law at the market, and she asked if my son had paid me. I said, "No," but since they were coming over for dinner on Saturday night, I told her they could pay me then. We had dinner Saturday night and neither one of them paid me. (They are very forgetful people.)
Should I ask them for my money? My husband says if they aren't going to pay me, I will have to find other part-time work if I want my own spending money. -- GEORGIA GRANDMA
DEAR GRANDMA: There's no harm in reminding your son and daughter-in-law if they forget to pay you. Raise the subject of the money by asking them whether you should submit a weekly invoice for their tax purposes. Then agree on a payment schedule so all three of you have a clear understanding about how often you should expect to be paid.
DEAR ABBY: Both my husband and our 12-year-old daughter are stutterers. We recently discovered an organization that has helped them enormously, and I would like to share it with your readers: The National Stuttering Association (NSA), a self-help organization for people who stutter, provides literature for parents of children who stutter and, in addition, a video for children.
After years of difficult times at school, our daughter had poor self-esteem. Through NSA, we were able to learn about the various speech therapies that are available, and our daughter is in an excellent therapy program near our home. Her self-esteem has now improved.
My husband has also gained confidence by attending NSA meetings (there are chapters all across the country). NSA has helped him realize that there are other people out there just like him, so he is not alone.
Please tell your readers about NSA so other families like mine can be helped. -- GRATEFUL WIFE AND MOTHER
DEAR GRATEFUL: With pleasure. Thank you for sharing your family's success story. The National Stuttering Association can be reached at (800) 364-1677. The address is 5100 E. LaPalma Ave., Suite 208, Anaheim Hills, CA 92807. The Web site is: www.nsastutter.org. The e-mail is: nsastutter(at)aol.com.
DEAR ABBY: I would like to add this "tragic" experience to your "You know you're getting old when ..." collection. (Yes, it happened to me!)
You know you're getting old when your son greets you by saying, "Hi, Mom. I just joined AARP!" -- FEELING OLD IN ARKANSAS
DEAR FEELING OLD: Don't let it get to you. I hear they're taking 'em younger and younger.
Good advice for everyone -- teens to seniors -- is in "The Anger in All of Us and How to Deal With It." To order, send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)
4520 Main St., Kansas City, Mo. 64111; (816) 932-6600