Dear Abby: I haven’t seen my friend in a decade, do I have to send his son a graduation gift?

Trending 3 weeks ago

DEAR ABBY: My friend “Gene” and I person been friends since simple school. We’re now successful our 50s. We were inseparable champion friends each those years. When we were astir 30, I started noticing our relationship seemed to beryllium a one-way thoroughfare because he made nary effort to initiate contact. 

Gene was gracious and inviting if I called him, but he ne'er called me. Instead, he focused connected friends he could use from professionally and withdrew from aged friends for illustration me. About 20 years ago, I stopped calling him and decided to move connected pinch different friends who were much congenial and courteous. 

You could count connected 1 manus really galore times I’ve seen aliases spoken to Gene successful nan past 10 years, but coming I received a graduation invitation from his boy who wants a rate gift for his precocious schoolhouse graduation. Abby, his boy wouldn’t cognize maine if I tapped him connected nan shoulder. To opportunity I was appalled is an understatement. 

I consciousness nary responsibility to nonstop money to personification I don’t know, and moreover little than that fixed nan measurement Gene abandoned our decades-long relationship years ago. How tin I grip this tactfully without coming crossed arsenic rude aliases bitter? — SHOCKED IN THE BLUEGRASS STATE

DEAR SHOCKED: The polite measurement to grip it would beryllium to nonstop nan young man a congratulatory card, wishing him well.

DEAR ABBY: I conscionable said goodbye to my 3rd beloved pet. Even though it has gotten easier complete time, each passing has been devastating, and I person grieved profoundly complete their loss. When my mom passed a fewer years back, I was pinch her during that serene moment. I felt sadness, but thing approaching nan level arsenic it has been pinch my pets. 

My father’s clip is increasing near, yet I don’t consciousness sadness. I person had loving relationships pinch my parents, but not for illustration immoderate of my friends who described their parents arsenic their stone aliases their champion friend. 

I’m worried that I deficiency thing successful my heart, and I should beryllium emotion a greater nonaccomplishment for humans than for pets. Please thief maine make consciousness of this. I don’t consciousness OK. — GRIEVING DIFFERENTLY IN FLORIDA

DEAR GRIEVING: Please judge my sympathy for nan nonaccomplishment of your pet, and please extremity flogging yourself for your feelings (or deficiency thereof). Everyone grieves differently. It is imaginable that you were capable to judge nan decease of your mother because you were nary longer interacting pinch her connected nan affectional level your friends did pinch their parents. The aforesaid whitethorn beryllium existent for your father. 

Your pets, connected nan different hand, were a root of affectional support connected a regular basis. Sometimes pets go nan equivalents of children, and nan nonaccomplishment of that “child” tin beryllium much achy than losing one’s parents.

DEAR ABBY: A very beloved comparative has conscionable announced her engagement. This will beryllium her 3rd marriage. Are gifts necessary? — HOPE NOT IN NEBRASKA

DEAR HOPE NOT: If you be nan festivities, you shouldn’t travel empty-handed. Some benignant of gift is necessary. However, if you person generously shelled retired for your relative’s first 2 marriages, your 3rd gift request only beryllium thing humble you deliberation nan mates mightiness enjoy. 

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, besides known arsenic Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby astatine aliases P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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