DEAR ABBY: I have been employed at a fine dining restaurant for 30 years. I love my job.
New owners bought it eight years ago, and the restaurant was booming. Our owner had an affair with another employee, and her schedule and treatment became insane. She didn't have to work as hard as the rest of us, treated everyone she worked with horribly and nothing was done about it. She and her family suddenly moved out of state a short while ago, and nothing was ever said about her again.
Recently, we found out that he's having an affair with another co-worker, and the entire staff is discouraged and angry. Both of our bosses, husband and wife, seem OK with these affairs and act like nothing is wrong! Morale is at an all-time low, and the anger and frustration are at an all-time high.
I'm trying to ride this out, but I'm very frustrated and just want to quit. My heart is heavy because I love my job and my customers. Do you have any suggestions? -- CONFOUNDED IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR CONFOUNDED: The new proprietors appear to have "an arrangement," which is why the wife is willing to look the other way while her husband carries on. If the new "girlfriend" is receiving the same favoritism in her work assignments that the last one enjoyed, you and the rest of the staff have a right to complain about the unequal treatment. It might be most effective if you do it as a group.
Change jobs if the atmosphere isn't healthy for you, and some of your favorite customers may follow. That goes for every other person who works there. If enough of you quit, it may have a negative effect on the business.
DEAR ABBY: I have been seeing a man for the last few months. His brother and my cousin have been dating for four years. He's 35, and I'm 23.
He is about to be divorced and has a record, but the last crime he committed was 10 years ago. If not for the fact that his brother is dating my cousin, I'd be much more skeptical. But my cousin has never had anything bad to say about him, and I'm confident if there were, she would tell me.
My family is adamantly against the relationship. They say he's too old for me, I should be more concerned about his criminal history, and no one they know has anything good to say about him. I'm conflicted about moving forward because I'm afraid of the rifts it would cause with my relatives.
I have had a lot of anxiety over this. I am also hurt that we weren't given the chance to reveal his past so he could be as transparent with my parents as he has been with me about it. Any advice? -- ANXIOUS IN ARKANSAS
DEAR ANXIOUS: Because you have been seeing this man for several months, long enough to develop serious feelings for him, you should have talked to your parents about his history before they heard it from others. Because they love you, their feelings are understandable. If there is any hope of changing their minds, you and your boyfriend should speak to them together so he can address their concerns.
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