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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: My wife passed away, and I have fallen in love with her best friend. She feels she would be disrespecting my wife's name if she went out with me. How can I let her know my wife would not object to us dating?

I don't know how to get her to understand my vows to my wife have been fulfilled with her passing. I will never forget her, and she will always be in my heart. But I feel I have room in my heart for this woman. She is a great person, and at some point I would like to have her as my wife. Advice, please? -- GOING FORWARD IN TEXAS

DEAR GOING: You have stated your points both succinctly and pragmatically. It's understandable that you would be drawn to her, considering the close relationship you already had, I assume for many years. If you have told this lady what you have written to me as plainly as you stated it in your letter, and her feelings remain unchanged, it is possible that she is not as attracted to you as you are to her. And, if that's the case, she should say so in plain English so you can look elsewhere.

Read more in: Love & Dating | Death

DEAR ABBY: My fiance and I got engaged a few months ago and have been getting mixed messages from our parents about our wedding next year. Overall, they seem happy for us, but they don't show much interest in our relationship, or the wedding either.

Since we are gay, we are unsure whose, if any, parents we should ask to help us pay for the wedding. My fiance's parents are very conservative and most likely wouldn't volunteer to contribute. My parents are likely the only ones who would help, but they haven't made any offers.

We both have full-time jobs, but they are middle to low income, so help would be appreciated. Part of me resents them for not offering any help since their parents pitched in for their festivities and because they will undoubtedly expect invitations. Any advice you can give would be appreciated. -- MARRYING IN THE WEST

DEAR MARRYING: Welcome to the world of gay weddings, a subject that has cropped up since 2015, when it was legalized in all 50 states. There are no hard and fast rules covering this. Modern couples, both straight and gay, often pay for their own weddings to the extent their budgets allow.

While you and your fiance might raise the subject of pitching in with your parents, in the interest of family harmony, please try not to do it with prior resentments or expectations. Whether they agree or decline, you will be fine, and your day will be special.

Read more in: Family & Parenting | Money | Holidays & Celebrations

DEAR ABBY: I was invited to a baby shower. Because of the virus that's going around, many people weren't planning on going, so they canceled the party. Should I still take them the gift I bought for their baby? Or should I just forget it because they canceled the baby shower? -- BEARING A GIFT IN NEW MEXICO

DEAR BEARING A GIFT: Do not "just forget it." The kind -- and generous -- way to handle it would be to give the mother-to-be the gift, remembering that, in spite of the shower being canceled, she will need things for her baby.

Read more in: Holidays & Celebrations | Etiquette & Ethics

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