DEAR ABBY: Three years ago, "Donna," our youngest daughter, married "Bill." We were not happy with her choice, but she was 23 and it was her decision, so we gave her a beautiful wedding and kept quiet.
While they were dating, Bill broke dates, was very late and sometimes didn't show up at all. He hated all her friends, so eventually she gave them up -- even her longtime girlfriends. Now he wants to have nothing to do with us.
We live 1,000 miles away and feel lucky to get to see her twice a year (Christmas and her birthday).
We had a family reunion -- Donna did not attend. Bill's family had a reunion -- they attended.
I know Donna should be more aggressive, but it is not her nature. Should we stop calling, writing and sending her gifts? If we don't stay in touch, it will be exactly what Bill wants to happen.
We had Donna when we were 40, and I have a terminal illness, which makes matters worse. Abby, what would you do? -- CAN'T CRY ANYMORE
DEAR CAN'T: I would do whatever pleases ME.
It is obvious that your daughter is being totally controlled by her husband. You do not say whether she is happy with this arrangement. Coupled with the estrangement from family and friends that you describe, this can be a warning sign of impending mental or physical abuse. If she is happy, don't try to "rescue" her. But if she's not, let her know you're there for her and will help her in any way you can -- should she ask.