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by Abigail Van Buren

Hookup With Friend's Husband Leaves Woman Full of Guilt

DEAR ABBY: I recently sent an expensive flower arrangement to a dear friend in the hospital to let her know how much she means to me.

When I went to visit, the flowers were not in her room. When I asked about them, she said she had given them to her nurse to display at the nurses' station. I'm assuming the gesture was to show her appreciation for the service they have given her.

I am disappointed and hurt because they were meant to bring her some joy. I understand that when you give someone a present the person has every right to do whatever he or she wants with it, but I wish she would have waited until she was discharged to give the flowers away. Am I wrong to feel hurt? -- DISAPPOINTED IN CLEVELAND

DEAR DISAPPOINTED: The problem with nursing a hurt in silence is that it may be based on an incorrect assumption, so clear the air with your friend. If you ask her why she gave her flowers to the nurses, she may tell you she thought they were so lovely she wanted to share them with everyone who came to the floor. And that would mean your bouquet has brought joy many times over, which is what I would consider getting a big bang for your buck.