DEAR ABBY: About six months ago, my husband and I asked my 19-year-old cousin, "Danny," to live with us. He had hit a rough spot in his life, and had been doing drugs, drinking and feeling suicidal. Since living with us, Danny no longer has these feelings and is no longer drinking or doing drugs. We are trying to help him find his direction in life.
Recently, my grandmother, who adopted Danny when he was 10 after his mother died, went to my mother's house where my husband and I were visiting for the weekend, and began yelling at us.
First she accused us of not loving Danny and claimed we are trying to ruin his life. Then it escalated, and she was screaming at us because we didn't ask her permission before inviting Danny to come live with us. (He was already out of her house and living with my uncle at the time.)
She also claimed Danny was "better off doing drugs and drinking" and being "home" than he is with us because she wasn't "mean" to him like we are!
Feelings were hurt and a lot of tears were shed. When we told Danny what happened, he was confused and asked: "Where did all this come from? You aren't bad people. I'm much happier here than anywhere else."
Abby, where do you think all my grandmother's hostility and anger came from? It's the first time I've ever had a confrontation with her. -- CONFUSED IN WISCONSIN
DEAR CONFUSED: Assuming that your grandmother is in her right mind and not a substance abuser herself, I can only conclude that her motive was jealousy. Your achievement turns a spotlight on her failure.