DEAR ABBY: My teenaged daughter will be giving birth soon, and she has decided to place her baby for adoption. I have told her that whatever she decides, I will support her decision.
Here is the difficult part: This will still be my biological grandchild. When this beautiful child is lovingly handed over to the adoptive parents, I will be losing a grandchild. I am already in mourning.
Are there other grandparents out there who are going -- or have gone -- through this, and how are they coping? I already see a therapist, but I would still like to know how others are coping. -- UN-GRANDPARENT IN OHIO
DEAR UN-GRANDPARENT: I wish you had told me more about the kind of adoption your daughter has chosen for her baby. If it is an open adoption in which she will be kept informed about the child's milestones and progress, ask the adoptive couple if they would welcome you as an "extra" grandparent for the child. If I hear from others who have gone through this process, I will let you know, because I'm sure they will write to help you through your heartache.Read more in: Family & Parenting | Teens
DEAR ABBY: I am being married to the man of my dreams next month. "Jon" and I love each other and are excited to celebrate our life as husband and wife together with our families and friends.
I have a 6-year-old daughter from a previous relationship, and after talking to her, she told me she would like to walk me down the aisle instead of being our flower girl. I love the idea, and so does Jon.
I will have to talk to my dad about it, because I know he was looking forward to it although we do not have a close relationship. I have lived on my own since I was 17. How do I communicate to him in an appropriate way that my daughter, who has been my family for the past six years, will walk me down the aisle and not him? -- CONFUSED BRIDE-TO-BE
DEAR CONFUSED: Because you aren't close to your father, this may not come as a shock to him. However, if he was asked to walk you down the aisle, he may be very hurt and it could cause a rift.
Be as diplomatic as possible when you break the news. Start by saying, "I was talking about the wedding with little 'Jennifer,' and she came up with an idea Jon and I think is adorable. Instead of being our flower girl, she wants to walk me down the aisle. We feel it would bring our little family even closer together. I hope you don't mind...."Read more in: Holidays & Celebrations | Family & Parenting | Marriage & Divorce
DEAR ABBY: My husband has a low-paying job and I am trying to see that he gets a better one, but each step I take he regards as pestering him. This has driven us apart from each other. It really hurts me because we are now like strangers living together. What do I do? -- SAD WIFE IN ABUJA, NIGERIA
DEAR SAD WIFE: Change tactics. What you consider helpful encouragement may be regarded by your husband as constant nagging about a sore subject. Tell him you love him, didn't mean to pressure him -- and if you see some ads seeking men with his skills that offer a higher salary, let him know about them. That's what I would do.Read more in: Marriage & Divorce | Work & School | Money
To order "How to Write Letters for All Occasions," send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Letter Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. Shipping and handling are included in the price.