DEAR ABBY: My husband, children and I were visiting our friend "Rosemary" and her husband. Our boys were playing with water guns in the front yard. One of them opened Rosemary's car door to block himself from his brother's line of fire. Rosemary, understandably, became upset and went to shut the door before the interior of her vehicle got soaked. As she did so, our son slammed the door and caught her hand in it, breaking two fingers.
We apologized profusely, thought all was forgiven and returned home. A week ago, we received a letter from Rosemary stating that we owe her money for several weeks of lost wages due to the mishap. (She's a massage therapist.) I feel that accidents happen and it just as easily could have happened to her if our children weren't present. My husband says we should give her the money because it was our child who injured her and it's a way to save our friendship. What should we do? -- "HAND"-ED A CHALLENGE
DEAR "HAND"-ED: What your son did was unfortunate, but your attitude about it is appalling. You should not only reimburse Rosemary for the work she lost, you should also offer to pay for her medical expense.
P.S. Your son should also take responsibility and offer to do errands for her for a specific period of time.
DEAR ABBY: Over the weekend, I visited my best friend out of state. On Saturday, we'd finished touring the state capitol building and exited opposite from where we'd entered. Outside, halfway down the steps, we saw a wedding was about to start. I love weddings and wanted to watch the ceremony. The idea made my friend a little uncomfortable, but I saw no problem with it. We were about 100 feet away from the event and didn't interfere or mingle with any of the people involved. We left as soon as the ceremony finished. Of course, I wouldn't think of inviting ourselves to the reception.
My friend and I didn't argue. I'm just curious about whether watching the wedding was inappropriate under those circumstances. -- LOVES THE POMP IN DAYTON, OHIO
DEAR LOVES THE POMP: Because the wedding was held in a public place and you kept your distance, there was no reason why pausing to watch the ceremony was inappropriate. Nor was there any reason for the wedding party to expect complete privacy.
DEAR ABBY: I have a wonderful husband who is loving, a good friend to me, and a loving father to our children. Due to back problems and other contributing factors, he is unable to work.
I know he would rather be working and that he's unhappy his injuries keep him from doing so. Our problem comes when people we know or meet ask him the inevitable, "So, what do you do for a living?"
Abby, neither of us has a job outside the home. What can we politely tell these people that will satisfy their curiosity without embarrassing my husband? -- TONGUE-TIED IN WASHINGTON STATE
DEAR TONGUE-TIED: I see nothing embarrassing about your husband replying, "I was working as a ( ), but injured my back and can't work, so I'm on disability." It's the truth.
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