DEAR ABBY: I am a freshman in college and live in a dorm with one roommate, "Mary." Mary has had a boyfriend for two years. I'll call him "John." John goes to school a couple of hours away and visits Mary on weekends once or twice a month. This usually isn't a problem for me, as I can plan ahead to go home for the weekend, or go out with friends so Mary and John can have the room to themselves for a few hours.
Yesterday, on short notice, Mary told me that John was spending the night. I frantically tried to make plans to be "elsewhere," but nothing worked out. I told Mary I'd camp out in our dorm lounge, but she said not to worry because John was dead-tired and wanted to go to sleep right away. After he arrived, I sat at my desk doing homework on my computer and listening to music with headphones while Mary and John watched TV in bed.
When I glanced over at them a half-hour later, they were having sex! I didn't know what to do. I tried to ignore them and continue "studying," but it was very distracting to have my roommate and her boyfriend "going at it" 5 feet away. When I woke up this morning, they were doing it again! I pretended to be asleep until they went to breakfast.
Mary has never done anything to embarrass me before. Talking about the incident would make me extremely uncomfortable, but I know something needs to be said before John visits again. Should I talk to Mary -- or just pretend this nightmare didn't happen? -- ANONYMOUS ROOMIE IN A WELL-KNOWN COLLEGE TOWN
DEAR ROOMIE: Take the bull by the horns. Tell Mary that although you are open-minded, you're not a voyeur -- so in the future, she should take that X-rated show elsewhere. It may be embarrassing, but if you don't speak up, the situation will become even more embarrassing. It's your room, too, and what your roommate did was inappropriate and disrespectful.
DEAR ABBY: I am a 17-year-old boy, and I have finally found the girl of my dreams. "Lisa" is sweet, kind and very cute. She's my first love. I always want to make her happy and I never want to be without her.
There is only one problem. I'll be 18 in a few months. Lisa is only 15 and won't be 16 until next year. I'm afraid people will make us separate because I will soon be an "adult." This just hit me and I'm out on a limb. I love her so much. Is there anything I can do? -- SHOT IN THE HEART
DEAR SHOT IN THE HEART: Since Lisa's parents have not yet objected to the age difference, the chances are they will not do a "180" when your birthday arrives. However, if you are concerned about this, the wisest thing to do would be to talk to her parents about it. Sometimes when you confront a problem head-on, it's not as insurmountable as you fear.
DEAR ABBY: I have been married to my husband for 30 years. He's been a wonderful stepfather to my three children -- always a good "dad" and a loving and generous grandfather to their kids.
My husband's older sister died last summer, and four months after that his brother passed away. I felt strongly that my children should have shown their sympathy and respect by sending their stepdad flowers, or at least a card in his time of grief. None of them did anything -- not even a phone call.
Abby, am I wrong, or were they? What is the proper action for adult stepchildren to take under these circumstances? -- FEELING HURT IN GEORGIA
DEAR FEELING HURT: Your children should have telephoned their stepfather and extended their condolences. If they live close by, they should have come to you and offered assistance. If travel was a problem, they should have written a condolence letter or sent a card. To have ignored their stepfather's loss was insensitive.
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