DEAR ABBY: I was involved with "Ralph" for two years. We live in a senior apartment complex, and women have been coming on to him for years. He is now seeing "Joan," who happens to be my neighbor. This hurts me deeply.
This is a small complex and it's difficult to face them. I am desperately trying to hold my words and feelings inside because it is hard not to call the woman a "slut." I blame Ralph more. He made the decision to humiliate me, but how can Joan do this to her own neighbor? How do I handle this with class? — SHATTERED HEART
DEAR SHATTERED HEART: The smart way to handle it "with class" is to keep your temper in check and do no name-calling. If Ralph didn't make your relationship official, he was free to start seeing someone else.
While I agree that this is a painful disappointment, do not waste one more minute feeling "humiliated." Not all romances work out — and a remedy for easing the pain is to become more active. Do not sit around feeling sorry for yourself watching Ralph and Joan come and go. Time can ease a broken heart — but if it doesn't, consider trading rooms/apartments with someone on a different floor.
DEAR ABBY: Please settle something for me. As I was getting into my car, which was parked on the street, my cell phone rang with an important call. I took the call and wanted to finish the conversation before I pulled out and started driving. Meanwhile, someone had pulled up and wanted my parking spot. He honked his horn at me repeatedly. It was a diagonal space, and he would not have seen my arm if I had waved him on.
I know it was frustrating for this person who wanted to park, but I thought it was more important for me not to drive while on the phone. My husband thinks I should have pulled out anyway, or postponed the call. Who do you think is right? — CAREFUL IN LA JOLLA, CALIF.
DEAR CAREFUL: You did the right thing by not pulling out. If the call was important — as you say it was — you were right to deal with the matter immediately. Until you vacated it, that parking spot was yours.
DEAR ABBY: My 50-year-old husband and his 27-year-old son from a previous marriage like to call each other profane names. Neither one seems to have a problem with it, and argue that they call their buddies these kinds of names.
I am personally offended by profanities and find it disturbing that such language would be used among family members, let alone in front of others. Am I the only one who thinks this is unhealthy behavior? — OFFENDED STEPMOM IN WASHINGTON STATE
DEAR OFFENDED: Probably not. However, if neither your husband nor his son is offended, perhaps you should loosen up and be less judgmental. More important than what your husband and stepson call each other is the meaning behind the words. And more off-putting than the terms of "endearment" they're using with each other may be your well-intentioned efforts to censor them.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.