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by Abigail Van Buren

Trash Talking Creates a Stink After Warring Couple Reconciles

DEAR ABBY: When my son "Lyle" told my husband and me that his wife, "Becky," was leaving him and taking their kids where he would not be able to see them, we were shocked. Lyle consulted an attorney, filed for divorce that day, and got a restraining order to keep Becky from running off with the kids.

We begged them to go to counseling. As things progressed, Lyle learned about several of Becky's affairs, her drug use and her chronic lying, and told us every awful, shocking detail. He also made sure our entire family knew about his lying, cheating, conniving wife. As talk began to circulate around our family, my husband told Lyle he knew from the beginning that all the things he had been told about Becky were true.

Well, today my son announced to us that he and Becky are back together! We are stunned. Abby, please warn people who are considering divorce to keep their mouths shut, because spreading dirt helps no one and can cause real problems later. Any advice on how to deal with this mess now? -- WISH WE WERE NEVER TOLD

DEAR WISH: While I'm not a doctor, I am prescribing a healthy dose of collective amnesia for your family. It's the only way you'll be able to look Becky in the eye. Your son was lining up allies when he trashed her. Whether or not what he said about her was true or exaggerated, no one will regard her -- or him -- quite the way they did. What a shame.