DEAR ABBY: Something has been bothering me for a long time. When I attend family functions, I become extremely bored. Whether they are birthday parties or Christmas Eve celebrations, they bore me to tears. To be honest, I would prefer not to attend, but I don't want to offend anyone. Must I continue to be polite, or can I just stop attending? If I had more money I would move farther away. Please offer an opinion. -- BORED IN NEW YORK
DEAR BORED: Gladly. You don't have more money, and moving away is not an option. I'm sure this has been less of an issue recently because of the pandemic. Family celebrations are more about support and solidarity than scintillation. While it would be understandable that you might not be available for each and every event, if you skip more than you go to, there will be hurt feelings. So, in my opinion, once the pandemic is behind us, you should go. Rather than dwell on being "entertained," concentrate on making the occasion enjoyable for others. You might also consider doing what I have observed politicians doing, which is making an appearance at these gatherings and leaving early.