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by Abigail Van Buren

Wife Wants to Wash Her Man Right Out of Holiday Kitchen

DEAR ABBY: What is a wife to do? My husband occasionally pitches in to help me prepare holiday meals. He prides himself on his dishwashing skills, but when he's done I have to rewash most of the pots and pans because he doesn't check his work. If I ask him to redo them, he reacts as though it's a criticism and has an over-the-top fit.

At times like Thanksgiving I'm stressed out cooking for the family and would love his help, but it's more trouble than it's worth. Discussing it with him hasn't been successful, and friends have told me they have the same problem. Can you provide a strategy that can keep us humming along happily with our husbands in the kitchen? -- DREADING THANKSGIVING IN L.A.

DEAR DREADING: Perhaps you should soak the pots and pans immediately after you're done cooking, so when the meal is done your husband will have an easier job of washing them. If any food is still hard to remove, offer to help him by filling the utensils with water and placing them on the stove; let them boil a while, and then wash them again with detergent and a brush. That should solve your problem.