DEAR ABBY: My husband and I are divorcing after 16 years of marriage. We have many mutual friends, neighbors and church friends. I am moving out of the house and am wondering how to tell my neighbors "goodbye" without revealing the details of the divorce. I would like to explain to them that we can all remain friends, etc.
Would a simple, handwritten note be acceptable? Also, how should we inform the members of our church? -- SOON TO BE SINGLE IN ALABAMA
DEAR SOON TO BE SINGLE: Your idea of writing a short, handwritten note to your neighbors is a good one. Ideally, it should be signed by both of you. It will allow you to spread the news without being subjected to unwanted questions at this time. (Of course, once the news is out you can expect to be deluged with questions -- but they can always be deflected with, "We'd rather not discuss it.")
As to making the announcement to your fellow church members, the answer is simple: Just confide the news in three or four of them -- and the information is sure to spread faster than the flu.