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

by Abigail Van Buren

Gaming the System Is Not Acceptable in Any Country

DEAR ABBY: I have developed a weird habit. I'll remember something that happened in the past, think of what I should have said and then burst out loud with a remark. Other times I'll chuckle or say something like, "Oh, no!"

Sometimes my husband hears me and asks if something is wrong. How can I explain this without seeming like I'm totally losing it? Or am I? I'm only 50, and I'm afraid I'm turning into a dotty old lady. -- CRAZY? LADY IN CALIFORNIA

DEAR LADY: What you're doing isn't that unusual, so try to be less hard on yourself. You're not crazy, and you're no dottier than the rest of us. Explain to your husband that when you do this, it is an attempt to "repair" the past.

P.S. If you train yourself to stay in the moment rather than dwelling on things in the past, you will find yourself talking to yourself less often.