DEAR ABBY: I am 26 years old, and my mother still walks around naked in front of me with no warning. I've told her several times that it makes me uncomfortable, but she seems not to take me seriously. In her culture (she's not from the U.S.), walking around naked is no problem. But I'm tired of seeing her breasts unexpectedly.
I'm all about positive body image, but it's strange to me to see a 62-year-old woman's breasts. Am I the one who has an issue? I'm open to any advice or recommendations. -- 'NUDIE'S' DAUGHTER IN HOUSTON
DEAR DAUGHTER: It appears you are, indeed, the one who has the issue. If you're seeing your mother walk around in a state of undress, I'm guessing that, although you are an adult, you are still living under her roof. In her house, she has the privilege of making the rules, not you. If she is comfortable walking around au naturel, you will either have to accept it or move out. The choice is yours.
DEAR ABBY: A while ago I noticed that my fiance had been hiding empty cans of beer from me. After I go to sleep (he is a night owl and I usually end up going to sleep first), he goes to the store and buys a can or two of beer. But instead of throwing the empty cans out, he hides them. When I accidentally discovered his hiding place, I told him he didn't have to hide them from me. Now, every once in a while I check the same spot, and I have noticed that he has been hiding them again.
A beer or two is OK with me, Abby, considering the stresses he deals with at work. What worries me is that he feels the need to hide the cans from me after I told him he doesn't have to. Does this mean he has a bigger problem that needs to be addressed? Please help! -- UNSURE IN VIRGINIA
DEAR UNSURE: Yes, he does. Your fiance apparently feels guilty about his nightly beer drinking, which is why he hides the evidence. The two of you need to have a serious conversation about it, preferably BEFORE the wedding.
DEAR ABBY: There is a reaction that sometimes happens when my daughter and I meet someone new that really frosts me. When someone says, "You look like sisters," I want to say, "Baloney!" In the first place, we do NOT look like sisters -- our 22-year difference is very obvious. I know the speakers think they are flattering me, but what they are really doing is making my daughter think she looks older. Please ask your readers to stop and think before making such fake-flattery comparisons. -- BALONEY IN COLORADO
DEAR BALONEY: I can ask my readers to refrain from saying it, but please explain to your daughter that the compliment is meant for you, indicating that you look young for your age -- not that she looks old for hers.
DEAR READERS: I deeply appreciate the relationship I have with you. You make my life a joy. Please allow me to wish you all a Happy Valentine's Day. -- LOVE, ABBY
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at http://www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
To receive a collection of Abby's most memorable -- and most frequently requested -- poems and essays, send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Keepers Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. Shipping and handling are included in the price.
Society on 02/14/2017