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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I am unsure how to handle a co-worker who is constantly on their cellphone (hidden between their legs) during their four-hour work shift. I have reminded them to leave their phone in their car since they have a hard time not checking it or texting during work hours. We have spoken several times about this unacceptable behavior, which improves for two days and then reverts back to using their cellphone as usual.

Is this generational acceptable behavior that I am missing? I'm in my mid-50s, and I can live without texting friends and family while I'm supposed to be working, but they seem to need to have their phone in their hands all the time. The manager ignores this behavior, so that's not an avenue I can pursue. Please help. -- PEEVED IN PENNSYLVANIA

DEAR PEEVED: Is there a policy in your employee handbook that forbids the use of cellphones during business hours? If there isn't, this may be the reason your manager is ignoring your co-worker's behavior. Because your manager refuses to discourage what the person is doing, you have no choice but to ignore it and concentrate on your own tasks at hand. I only hope that your jobs aren't collaborative, which would impede your productivity.

Read more in: Work & School

Man Is Jealous of Girlfriend's Male Friends

DEAR ABBY: I need your help. I've been dating a guy for a while now, and our relationship is good except for his extreme jealousy. I told him at the beginning of our relationship that I have guy friends, and he was OK with that. Well, I thought he was. It feels like he's trying to control me. I have let friends go because he would assume the worst.

He doesn't want me to have any male friends, but I don't think I should have to give up people I care about to make him happy. He always suspects that I'm cheating. He looks through my phone. He doesn't want me to delete any of my messages. It's like he wants to find something to prove himself right. -- LOST GIRL IN THE SOUTH

DEAR LOST GIRL: This "guy's" jealousy is not rooted in love for you. It is a symptom of his own insecurity and not something you can fix for him. You could delete every single male friend from your life, and he would still look for signs that you are cheating.

Your relationship is very unhealthy, both for him and for you. Men like this become increasingly controlling and then move on to become abusers. Please end the relationship before he harms you emotionally or physically.

Read more in: Love & Dating | Friends & Neighbors

Daughter-in-Law Opts Out of Most Family Dinners

DEAR ABBY: I live in a triplex. I'm on the second floor, and my son and his wife and three children live on the ground floor. Every Sunday, I have a family dinner with my sons, their children, etc. My daughter-in-law does not come unless her best friend, who is my other daughter-in-law, comes. So three times out of four, her children come with her husband for dinner but not her. I think it sends a bad message to the kids. What do I do? -- INCOMPLETE IN CANADA

DEAR INCOMPLETE: First you ask this daughter-in-law why she does this. Does she feel she needs a buffer? Then tell her -- and your son -- what you wrote to me. After that, if nothing changes, drop the subject.

Read more in: Family & Parenting

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