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by Abigail Van Buren

Romance Is Cooled by Torch Woman Carries for 'Friend'

DEAR ABBY: My wife, "Audrey," was molested by her step-grandfather when she was a little girl. She told her mother about it, but because of her age she wasn't taken seriously.

Audrey and I are now talking about starting a family. Abby, I am uncomfortable about bringing children into this family unless everyone understands the reason I will not allow this man to touch our children. The problem is, the information will be devastating to Audrey's grandmother. A child's innocence is worth whatever hard feelings I might create, but how do we handle this without destroying a family? -- TAKING CARE OF MY OWN IN HUNTSVILLE, ALA.

DEAR TAKING CARE: Was your wife the only child in the family her step-grandfather had access to? Will the baby you're planning be the first in the family -- or has this man had unsupervised contact with others? Keep in mind that if he would molest Audrey, he may also have done it to others -- neighbors, etc.

Not only should the family be informed about what happened by you and Audrey now that she is "old enough to be believed," but also ask if anyone else may have been victimized because other children may have been afraid to speak up.