DEAR ABBY: In 2004, my husband and I were contacted by a friend who had gotten into an abusive relationship and lost custody of her daughter. She asked us to go through social services and adopt her little girl, so at least she would know her baby was loved and well taken care of.
Long story short, we did everything we could, but in the end we lost our battle. The grandparents were involved and took over. It was heartbreaking after a year and a half of loving the girl to have to let her go.
My niece works at an ice cream shop and saw our precious one recently. Would it be wrong to contact her and her grandparents now that we know they are in town? I'd love to visit and form a relationship, but don't know if it would be appropriate. -- HURTING IN COLORADO
DEAR HURTING: Not knowing how bitter the "battle" to keep your friend's child was, it's hard to say how the grandparents will react if you reach out. I suppose it couldn't hurt to try -- but do it via a letter so they have the option of contacting you or not. Do NOT contact the girl without their permission, because they could perceive it as threatening.