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Dear Abby: Wedding plans cover almost everything

Dear Abby: Wedding plans cover almost everything


Editor’s note: Wednesday’s and Thursday’s Dear Abby columns are combined here.

DEAR ABBY: I am getting married, and my fiance’s daughters, 19 and 21, are in the wedding party. I have purchased the dresses they are wearing, which are light and flowing. I have told the girls that on the day of the wedding I do not want them wearing thong underwear. The older one then went to her dad and said she didn’t want to wear regular underwear. He told her she could wear whatever she wants. I have tried telling them that as young ladies there are times you don’t wear thongs, and under a flowing dress is one of them. It’s ONE DAY of their lives. How can I get my point across?


DEAR WISE BRIDE: Explain to your fiance exactly WHY you are concerned about his daughters wearing thong underwear under their bridesmaid dresses and, when you do, be graphic. After that, if he still feels the same, accept it. Then pray no slip-ups occur while they are dancing, and no strong gusts of wind come along when the wedding photos are taken.

DEAR ABBY: I’m dating a lady and committed to our relationship, but every time I visit her at her apartment, she expects me to take her dog out. The building has a policy that if the dog poops, you have to pick it up and dispose of it, so they have bags at different locations.

I don’t like doing it. I grew up on a farm where we had dogs, but never would I think about picking up their poop. It grosses me out. OK, so I have been doing it for a couple of years, but I don’t want to do it anymore. But if I say that or don’t do it, she’ll think I’m not committed to her. What should I do?


DEAR DOG WALKING: Stand up for yourself. Because you feel so strongly, tell her that from now on you will walk her dog TOGETHER or she’ll have to do it herself. You may have been raised on a farm, but you are now part of a community with ordinances against leaving excrement on the streets. Your devotion to this person should not be predicated upon your willingness to perform a task she should have been doing herself.

DEAR ABBY: My wife and I are having a minor argument, and we are seeking your help in resolving it. We live in an age when we commonly experience “conversations” with robo-calls, virtual assistants (Alexa and Echo) and phone routing software. All this technology is powered by artificial intelligence. So given that we are talking to machines, do we need to follow the rules of etiquette with these robots? My wife insists we should say “Thank you” and “Please” to these software creations, while I say no manners are needed. Your thoughts?


DEAR MULLING IT: Although it isn’t mandatory, I know of at least one AI “assistant” that would acknowledge the courtesy.

DEAR ABBY: I’m a gay man who has been in an on-again/off-again relationship for three years. My partner still lives at home with his mother. He has never left the home, aside from a four-month period when he and his mom weren’t getting along.

My issue is, aside from never fully committing, my partner, “Damien,” seems to always find a way to abandon me when I hit a rough patch. I lose my job and I’m low on money? He yells at me and leaves. And he manages to not return until I’m “back on my feet.”

When the coronavirus hit and I had all my bills paid but nothing to eat, I finally had to say, “Hey, can you get me something?” We go to a burger place, the line’s long and he complains nonstop about the wait. We leave and go to my place to hang out. Then he leaves and calls me and talks about what he’s going to eat. I hang up.

Before, when I was homeless, even though he doesn’t have a place of his own, he never offered any help. If I say, “I know you’re really guarded with your money,” he becomes enraged. And when he hears about my difficulties, he talks down to me and mocks the situation I am in. He attributes his never leaving home to his family helping him and caring about him. The fact that I’m not in a situation like his implies my family doesn’t care. Can you help?


DEAR A LOT WRONG: I’ll try. It’s time you recognized that Damien is NOT your “partner.” Partners HELP each other when they are in trouble. The sooner you lose this person, the sooner you will start to feel better. Damien is all about Damien. His character is fully formed. You can’t change him, and neither can I. Leaving Damien may help you become more independent — and that’s a good thing. Trust me on that.

DEAR ABBY: I love my wife dearly. We’ve been married for 21 years. I’m frustrated with how she dresses for work and when we go out. Her idea of fashion is wearing clothes that are too large in size for her. I don’t like going out in public with her when she dresses that way. Granted, she put on some weight after our third child, but she still has a nice, shapely figure. I have seen women with similar body shapes who wear closer-fitting clothes, and they look great. How can I convey that her style is unflattering without upsetting her?


DEAR FRUSTRATED: Your wife may dress the way she does because she’s self-conscious about her weight or simply because she thinks loose-fitting clothes are more comfortable. Because you feel they don’t flatter her, start by asking why she’s dressing the way she does. Tell her you think she is beautiful and that the items she is choosing don’t do justice to her “nice, shapely figure.” You might even volunteer to go with her to help her choose some things, if she’s interested. But if she isn’t, let the subject drop because, ultimately, she’s going to wear whatever she wants.

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 or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.


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