Dear Abby: A short time ago, I discovered my parents are “swingers.” I had picked up my mother’s phone to take a picture and an incoming text caught my attention. When I read it and investigated further, I learned the truth.
I don’t mind what they do with their marriage, and I respect their choices. However, my siblings and I were raised in a strict Christian home. My parents taught us the opposite of what they are doing. Now I feel they are hypocrites.
How can they tell me to act a certain way when they don’t practice what they preach? I’m not sure if I should talk to them about it or drop this entirely. Help!
— Disillusioned Daughter
Dear Daughter: What exactly do you mean when you “investigated further”? If it means you searched the history in your mother’s phone, you crossed the same line children do when they search through the drawers and closets of a parent’s bedroom looking for things that are none of their business.
Before labeling your parents as hypocrites, please remember that they raised you with basic values that are shared by the majority of people. If they have “strayed from the path,” it’s their choice — and it may have happened after they taught you your good Christian values.
I think you should talk to your mother about what you did and what you found. If you do, she may have a few more lessons to impart.
Dear Abby: My husband and I are avid sports fans and have season tickets to several sporting events. Our seats are in the middle of a row. Before we go to our seats, we check to see which way has fewer people seated so we disturb the fewest possible. We also try to leave our seats only during halftime or between innings and always apologize for disturbing anyone.
However, I am bothered that we are forced to climb over certain individuals who don’t stand up to let us by. Sometimes I feel I’m almost bumping into the folks in the row ahead of us.
Is there a rule of etiquette that states that people should stand to allow others to get by? I don’t want to step on toes or spill drinks on anyone. What should I do in these situations?
— Squeezed out in Houston
Dear Squeezed: Emily Post does have a rule regarding crossing in front of people in theaters and at sporting events. According to her, you should say, “Excuse me” or “Pardon me” on your way to your seat and “pass with your back to those already seated.” (Personally, I would rather that someone face my navel than my posterior at eye level, but I didn’t write the rule.)
For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more sociable person, order “How to Be Popular.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)
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 DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.