DEAR ABBY: My wife and I have been married just over a year. It's the second marriage for both of us. Since our wedding, my father-in-law continually "reminds" us that he helped my wife financially after her divorce. He does it because he wants us to continually acknowledge that fact.
I have offered to write a check and pay him back for all he did for her during that time, but he refused because he doesn't want the money; he wants the appreciation. To him what that means is when he calls on the phone, we answer. When he and his wife drop by, we are home, etc. I feel that since I have offered to pay him back and he refused the money, the slate is wiped clean. Your thoughts?
- Not Son-In-Law Of The Year
DEAR SON-IN-LAW: Your father-in-law regards his generosity as a means to control your wife - and you by extension. You are not required to answer your phone if you prefer not to talk at a particular time, and you certainly do not have to entertain him and his wife at the drop of a hat. The next time the subject comes up, explain that to him, hand him a check and let the chips fall where they may.
Can't support friend with nasty husband
DEAR ABBY: My best friend is pregnant. Her husband is a lazy jerk who, during her last pregnancy, caused her to miscarry. It happened after he informed her he was filing for divorce and marrying a mail-order bride.
I can't bring myself to be happy for her. What do I do? How can I be happy for the person who means the most to me, but will probably lean on me for more support than I can or want to give?
- Best Friend Blues in Kentucky
DEAR B.F.B.: Friends do lean on each other for support, but you can only do what you can do. Frankly, I am surprised that she's still with the husband who treated her so shabbily. Help her in those areas that you can, but ultimately understand that she is responsible for her own choices. If she needs more help than you can give her, encourage her to reach out to a professional.
Never too late for wedding news
DEAR ABBY: I am the editor of a local newspaper and manage two others. Your message (March 27) about it being "too late" to run a wedding announcement is nonsense. We regularly receive announcements six to seven months after weddings. Also, the announcement does not have to be submitted by the couple. Grandparents or parents in the community can send them, too.
Young people today think that once something is on social media it is "official," forgetting that not everyone is on social media, and not everyone is connected to their profiles. So please tell the person who wrote that letter to send in that wedding announcement and enjoy having the hard copy memento of a happy occasion. I wouldn't be surprised if someday those newlyweds will be very happy to have a physical copy of their announcement.
- Newspaper Lady in Kansas
DEAR NEWSPAPER LADY: I'm glad you wrote because I'm sure many readers will benefit. However, the writer of that letter stated that her daughter-in-law said she didn't want the announcement in the newspaper and her son agreed. I cannot "bless" the writer going against their wishes, which were made clear.