DEAR ABBY: My fifth-grade son, "Mikey," is considered the best soccer player on our community team. My problem is the mother of another player on the team. I'll call her Phyllis. At least three other moms have told me that Phyllis has been criticizing me at the games to anyone who'll listen.
I have never done anything to her, and I'm beginning to wonder if she's bad-mouthing me because my Mikey is a better soccer player than her boy. (Everyone knows the only reason her son is on the team is because his dad is the coach.)
Last Saturday, I was standing on the sidelines talking with another mother about the team's treats schedule, when Phyllis marched up and told me the treats I've been bringing to the games are junk food. How insulting! I made them myself.
Abby, I've had it with her. I try to stay as far away from this crazy-maker as I can. Is there a law against slandering someone like she's been doing to me? No way am I going to put up with her nonsense until our sons graduate from high school. Please help. -- SOCCER MOM READY TO SOCK-IT-TO-HER
DEAR SOCCER MOM: There are laws against slander, but in order to win a lawsuit you have to prove damages. Obviously, Phyllis is the community loudmouth. (Three people have told you so.) Continue to take the high road and ignore her comments. If you don't allow yourself to react to them, she'll look like a combative fool.