DEAR ABBY: I'm a woman who has always had trouble with women friends who like to call and chat. It has never really been my thing.
One of them never asks if I'm busy; she just plunges into a conversation that usually lasts an hour. I never call her. If she asks me to return her call, I'll wait a day or two. I'm afraid to tell her I don't like spending that kind of time on the phone because I know it will hurt her feelings.
I have lost friends in the past because of this. I think instead of avoiding her calls and feeling guilty, I'd rather not have her as a friend. I'd be happier reading a book or working on my hobbies. Am I being silly? -- AMBUSHED IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
DEAR AMBUSHED: It's time to be honest with this woman -- to a point. To tell her you would rather not have her as a friend because she's long-winded on the phone would be unkind. However, it would not be inappropriate to level with her about how uncomfortable long telephone calls are for you, and give her a chance to amend her behavior. She's not a mind reader and she may not be aware that her calls are intrusive.