Dear Abby: Man keeps granddaughter a secret from his ex-wife
DEAR ABBY: I divorced my wife 20 years ago, leaving behind two daughters. My older girl was 5 when I left, and due to my ex's lies, I wasn't able to see them.
When my older daughter turned 18, she contacted me. She confessed that she had been forced to lie in court, and we reconnected. At 19, she came to me pregnant. She asked if I would take her baby and asked that I tell no one, especially her mother. I agreed.
Last year, my daughter died in a car wreck. My granddaughter will turn 4. Should I go against my daughter's wishes, tell my ex and risk her taking her? Or should I let things remain as they are? My current wife and I are the only people who know. -- SECRET IN VIRGINIA
DEAR SECRET: I urge you to discuss this matter with a lawyer because there may be legal ramifications. Your former wife has demonstrated she is the kind of person who would force a child to lie in a custody matter. Having done it once, she's capable of doing something equally underhanded. I am trying hard to come up with a reason why you should go against your daughter's wishes and disclose this to your ex, and I cannot think of a single one.
DEAR ABBY: I'm concerned about my daughter. She's 12 and wants to hang out with a 21-year-old male volunteer from her school. His mother works there, and I've known their family for a few years, although we've never socialized.
Recently, my daughter said she wants to meet him at a park to learn some skateboard moves. She tries to tell me it's harmless, that he just likes the skateboarding sport, but I am uncomfortable about the age difference and the fact that he works at her school. I don't know what to do. What's your advice in this situation? -- STUMPED IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR STUMPED: Although the young man's motives may be pure, I do not think your daughter should be meeting him at the park without supervision. Accompany her so you can gauge the situation. Because he is volunteering at her school, you should first check to see if that kind of fraternization is allowed because it may not be, and it could cost him his position.
DEAR ABBY: Am I awful because I don't sympathize when people put their business on the internet? For example, I read some comments on YouTube, and this woman was talking about how "all men cheat." I told her maybe it's just all the men she opens her legs to. My account was suspended for a week because of it.
Another time, a man was talking about how none of his many kids talk to him. I asked what he had done to them that none of them speak to him, and he got mad. Abby, I'm not looking for trouble. I feel that if you can't take someone not kissing up to you, stop putting your business out there. Am I wrong? -- STRAIGHTFORWARD IN THE WEST
DEAR STRAIGHTFORWARD: I think so. When traits were handed out, it appears someone forgot to give you a filter. I agree that some people overshare online and doing it comes with a risk. However, your comments weren't helpful; in fact, they were cruel. When a bee stings, its prey tries to swat it away, and that's what's happening to you. To avoid trouble, curb your impulse to comment, or be prepared to deal with the consequences that are sure to follow.
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 www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.