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by Abigail Van Buren

Serial Job Changer Has No Business in the Military

DEAR ABBY: I'm a 19-year-old woman, hardworking and married to my best friend. Life is amazing!

So what's my problem? I burn out of jobs quickly. I'll start a job and absolutely love it, but within six months the things that I once loved about the job start to drive me crazy. Within a year, I hate my job and put in my two-week notice. It's not that I have problems finding jobs -- I'm well-groomed, speak well and I'm enthusiastic.

I have recently considered enlisting in the Air Force. (My husband is on active duty.) I am absolutely thrilled about it, but I'm afraid I'll eventually start hating my job and it's something I'll be stuck with. How do I overcome this? -- WANTS TO ENLIST

DEAR WANTS TO ENLIST: Please stop and re-read your letter. Are you aware that you're talking about work the way a schoolgirl talks about romance -- blind, grand passion until reality sets in, then on to the next one?

A job isn't like that. While it can be rewarding on many levels, when the novelty fades it is still work. There are good days and ones that are less so, co-workers who are a pleasure and some who are a challenge. Sometimes it's stimulating and sometimes it's an effort.

Years ago there was a letter in this column that read: "Dear Abby: I joined the Navy to see the world. I've seen it. Now how do I get out?" I don't want a letter like that from you.

Military life is rewarding, but it can also be demanding, frustrating and dangerous. It requires making a commitment and sticking with it even after the going gets tough. With your short attention span and low tolerance for frustration, I don't recommend you take any job that requires a signed contract guaranteeing you won't leave.

DEAR ABBY: My friend and I have a massage therapist, "Shelby," whom we hire on a regular basis because she does an excellent job. However, it's hard to get a completely relaxing massage because she likes to talk the whole time.

What's the nicest and most polite way to inform Shelby that we prefer peace and quiet so we can enjoy the massage? -- RUBBED THE WRONG WAY IN COLORADO

DEAR RUBBED THE WRONG WAY: Shelby is not your buddy; she's a professional who has been hired to perform a service. When you make your next appointment and she starts talking, say, "Shelby, when you talk during the massage, it makes it difficult for me to relax. Right now, I need to completely relax, and conversation is distracting." If that doesn't clearly -- and politely -- convey your message, then you need to find a massage therapist who is less verbal.

DEAR ABBY: I hired a pet sitter to stay in my home for two days to care for my dog. (I have used him in the past.) After 24 hours of no response to my texts or phone calls, I asked a neighbor to check on my dog. The sitter never showed up. My dog had been left alone with no food or walks.

Should I alert his other clients about what happened? I have this person's client email list. It's possible that other pets were also neglected. -- ANGRY PET OWNER IN HOUSTON

DEAR ANGRY: Pet sitting is a sacred obligation, and if the sitter is for some reason unable to fulfill that responsibility, there should be a backup plan in place in case of emergency. Unless your sitter had a life-threatening emergency, by all means warn the other clients.

Abby shares more than 100 of her favorite recipes in two booklets: "Abby's Favorite Recipes" and "More Favorite Recipes by Dear Abby." Send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $12 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Cookbooklet Set, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in price.)