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by Abigail Van Buren

Man Plans to Give Girlfriend a Ring Without a Proposal

DEAR ABBY: My husband's parents forgot his birthday -- again. Last year, he laughed it off. This year, it wasn't so funny. It's especially hurtful because they not only remember his other adult siblings' birthdays, but throw parties or dinners for them to which we are invited.

Would I be out of line to send them a reminder next year? I don't want them to think I'm fishing for a party; I just would like them to call their son on his birthday. -- CALENDAR GIRL IN ILLINOIS

DEAR CALENDAR GIRL: Why do I think there is more to this story than you have mentioned? Your husband may have done -- or not done -- something that upset his parents, and this may be their passive-aggressive way of punishing him.

Do not "remind" them of the birthday. They are well aware of when it is. Instead, plan a celebration for him with some of his friends, and make the occasion a happy one with no mention of his parents.