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by Abigail Van Buren

Cheating Dad Continues To Harass Mom Who's Moved On

DEAR ABBY: My parents divorced four years ago. Mom currently lives with my husband and me. We have a great relationship with her, and she never speaks ill of my father. She has moved on, found a new direction in life and a new boyfriend we all like very much.

Dad moved in with the woman he cheated on Mom with, but their relationship fell apart. He has never stopped speaking ill of Mom. When things aren't going well for him, he causes trouble by showing up at Mom's workplace and making a scene. He'll also come over to our house unannounced to talk badly about her.

He was a great father until a few years ago when all this trouble started. I feel torn between trying to continue a relationship with him or cutting him out of my life like a bad daughter. What should I do? -- CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE IN CALIFORNIA

DEAR CAUGHT: Your father's behavior is sick. Depending upon how disruptive he is when he shows up at your mother's workplace, suggest she consider getting a restraining order preventing him from acting out that way. She must have a very understanding employer to have tolerated it, because that kind of disruption has been known to cost people their jobs.

And when your dad shows up at your home unannounced, speak up. Tell him you and your husband don't like it. Make clear that his nasty comments about your mother aren't welcome, and neither will he be, unless he calls first to see if a visit is all right with everyone. His misbehavior continues because you have allowed it.

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