DEAR ABBY: I have a question about how to handle a situation with one of my grandsons. "Rory" came to me recently to talk about religion. His mother is Christian; I am not. He asked what I thought about his mother forcing him to go to church. He has many doubts about Christianity.
I tried to understand Christianity for more than 50 years, and about 20 years ago I found peace with the faith I now practice. My daughter doesn't want me to talk to her children about my path.
My question is, how do I address this issue with my grandson without confusing him even more? Any help would be appreciated because I don't want to go against his mother's wishes. -- FOUND MY PEACE
DEAR FOUND YOUR PEACE: Answer your grandson's question honestly. He asked you what you thought about his being forced to go to church. He did not ask you how you found your peace -- or if you did. Sooner or later, he will find his own peace, and probably the same way you did -- by searching for it. Do not push him -- or pull him -- in any direction and keep the peace with his mother.Read more in: Family & Parenting
DEAR ABBY: My sister and her husband are well-to-do, but cheap. They recently invited themselves to stay three nights in our snowbird condo on their way to a vacation in the Caribbean. My wife and I hosted them, and during their stay we went out twice for dinner. Both times my sister was quick to request separate bills. In the meantime, we had provided lodging and all their other meals for them.
I am offended that they didn't show appreciation for our hospitality by at least taking us to dinner once. I have wanted to confront my sister about my feelings, but my wife has vehemently told me I shouldn't. What would you suggest? -- UNEQUAL IN PENNSYLVANIA
DEAR UNEQUAL: I see two ways of dealing with this. Keep your mouth shut, avoid confrontation and the next time your sister tells you she's coming for a visit, roll up the welcome mat saying you already have other plans. Or, tell your sister how you feel.
Personally, I think it would be healthier to express your feelings, because your sister's and her husband's behavior was rude. It shows that because people have money doesn't necessarily mean they have class.Read more in: Family & Parenting | Money
DEAR ABBY: For many years I have been depressed about my father's opinion of me. Dad died 30 years ago thinking I was a screwup who would never amount to anything, and at the time it was true.
Since his death I have turned my life around. I have been married for 38 years, raised a fine son and I am successful in my career.
Still, I can't get past his feeling of disappointment in me at the time of his death. It haunts me daily that I was a loser while he was alive. Any advice to stop feeling guilty? -- REGRETFUL SON
DEAR SON: Not everyone matures at the same rate, and you may have been a late bloomer. Try telling yourself that you are sorry for whatever your sin of omission was, and then give yourself a dose of forgiveness.
If that doesn't do the trick, then instead of torturing yourself, discuss this with a licensed mental health professional. Remember, no one can change the past. We can, however, change the present, and by doing so, positively affect our future.Read more in: Family & Parenting | Death | Mental Health