DEAR ABBY: My divorced 38-year-old brother is addicted to opiates. My wealthy, enabling mother constantly bails him out financially. My brother is engaged to a very kind woman – a mother of three he met four months ago. She’s not aware of his lies, manipulations, debt and pill addiction.
My brother has already destroyed a previous marriage with his actions, and I’m finding it difficult to sit back and let this happen to yet another innocent woman. I am tired of lying for him, and I know that eventually this will come to a head. Do I come forward with the truth now and possibly harm their relationship, or watch them go through with this marriage and hope for the best? – Unsure in Nashville, Tenn.
DEAR UNSURE: Be prepared for the eruption that is sure to follow, but for the sake of those children, let the woman know what she will be dealing with if she goes through with the marriage. Whether she heeds your warning will be up to her, but at least she will know what she’s in for.
DEAR ABBY: My teenage son and daughter confided to me that their younger cousin (15) has been posting on social media that she’s hanging out with men who are five years older and taking her mother’s car without her knowledge. My teens have both warned her that she’s making poor choices, but she won’t listen.
It doesn’t help that there is no father around, and her mother doesn’t know how to say “no.” My teens are very concerned. As the girl’s uncle, I need advice on how to intervene. – Privy to a Bad Situation
DEAR PRIVY: It’s definitely time for some adult intervention. If you are at all close with your niece, talk with her about how dangerous what she’s doing is – not only to herself, but also the men she’s been seeing because they could land in jail. While you’re at it, tell her mother what you know so she can hide her car keys before her daughter gets into a serious accident and hurts herself or someone else.
DEAR ABBY: When my wife introduces me at a company event and/or party, she says, “This is my husband, ‘Philip’; he’s a teacher.” I am uncomfortable being introduced that way because people have the preconceived notion that being a teacher defines who I am (which it does not).
I have pointed out that people are not usually introduced with their careers, unless they are doctors. My wife says I’m “overreacting.” I have asked her to stop doing it, but she thinks I’m just being silly. Your thoughts/comments on our discussion would be greatly appreciated. – More than a Teacher in Arizona
DEAR MORE: You and your wife have a bigger problem than how she introduces you. You are married to someone who dismisses and belittles your feelings. Whether you are overreacting is beside the point. If you prefer not to be introduced the way she is doing it, she should have enough respect for you to comply with your request.