No ear-snuggling in public places
DEAR ABBY: I'm 21 and a college student. My mother recently came to visit me and took my boyfriend and me out to dinner. After we were through eating, we sat across the table from my mother and engaged in post-dinner chatter. I draped my arm around his neck and began playing with his ear. It was absent-minded, and I thought nothing of it, but my mother stared from across the table shocked.
She later told me that ear fondling is not appropriate in public. I was taken aback. Isn't it OK to play with my boyfriend's ear in public? Does it make people around us uncomfortable?
- Ear Snuggles in Vermont
DEAR EAR SNUGGLES: Playing with someone's ear could be considered foreplay, and seeing it certainly made your mother uncomfortable. Perhaps among your contemporaries it would be acceptable, but as a general rule, it's better to keep intimate gestures of affection private.
DEAR ABBY: I am wondering why pregnant women these days don't wear smocks like we all wore years ago. While I do think pregnant women are attractive, I really don't want to see their swollen bellies. Wouldn't it be better to just "imagine" what is under that smock or long skirt? Does anyone agree with me?
- Dorothy in Washington
DEAR DOROTHY: Some readers may agree, but I'm pretty sure most of them won't. You are harking back to the days when people were embarrassed about the subject of sex, and used euphemisms like "in a family way" or "a bun in the oven" to describe pregnancy.
Women today are proud to show off their silhouettes. In fact, I saw a woman recently sporting a T-shirt with an arrow pointing downward and the words "Baby on Board." While this may seem to be somewhat "in your face," I think it's healthier than pretending there's nothing going on when the expectant mother is in her seventh month and it's obvious there is.