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by Abigail Van Buren

Woman Preparing to Wed Is Fearful of Growing Apart

DEAR ABBY: I have a friend, "Amanda," I met last year at school. I consider her my best friend, and people comment on how we're always together.

Amanda's family doesn't have much money, so when she tells me she's broke I don't hesitate to give her money. I have bought her meals and movie tickets, too. It wouldn't bother me if she ever said a simple "thank you" or "please" to me.

My parents have noticed it, too. They are annoyed that Amanda has never thanked them for letting her spend the night. My dad recently commented that it's rude that she never says "hello" to him when he comes home and she is there.

What can I do about Amanda's manners? Am I wrong to be bothered by her lack of them? I don't want to lose her as a friend, but it's something I can't seem to let go.

-- LITTLE MISS MANNERS

DEAR L.M.M.: More is lacking in Amanda's household than money. Think about it. Where did you learn the basic social graces? From your parents, of course. The reason for Amanda's poor manners is that she was never taught otherwise.

Have a talk with your friend and explain what the rules are in your household. You don't have to be mean when you do -- and you'll be doing her a favor.