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by Abigail Van Buren

Woman Needs an Hour Alone Between Work and Husband

DEAR ABBY: I was able to retire while I was in my mid-50s, after teaching for 33 years. Since then, I have been traveling as often as possible and volunteering on a regular basis.

Sometimes in these situations I find myself with a group of people older than I am. When I am asked my age, which I don't mind, the response I get is, "Oh, you're just a pup!" Because I am chronologically younger than most of the group shouldn't automatically discount or invalidate me.

How can I respond to these comments nicely, yet make the point that I also have something to offer regardless of my age? -- AGELESS PUP IN ARVADA, COLO.

DEAR AGELESS PUP: First of all, stop being so defensive. When someone calls you a "young pup," just laugh and say, "If you think I'm a young pup, you're barking up the wrong tree!"