Dear Abby: Daughter is about to make the same mistake I did — marrying young

Mom wants to be supportive but expects the woman’s marriage at 19 is doomed.

SHARE Dear Abby: Daughter is about to make the same mistake I did — marrying young

DEAR ABBY: I have been divorced for 18 years. The main reason for my divorce was that I married too young and wasn’t ready to be a wife and mother. My daughter has just announced her engagement to a truly wonderful man, but she’s only 19. I want to support her, but I’m afraid she’s making the same mistake I did. I have tried talking to her about it, but she is sure she is making the right decision.

I am tight on money now, and I don’t want to pay for an expensive wedding if it’s going to be a waste later on if my daughter gets a divorce. But I do want to be by her side and support her during one of the most important times of her life. What should I do? — EXPERIENCED MOM

DEAR MOM: Your daughter already knows you’re concerned about her marrying so young and the reasons why. Ultimately, this is her decision — or mistake — to make. Explain that you won’t be able to contribute financially to her wedding because money is tight right now, but that you are there to support her emotionally now and forever. Tell her, too, that many successful marriages begin at a courthouse, and you wish her better luck than you had.

DEAR ABBY: My wife of 38 years passed away a year and a half ago. My ex-wife, to whom I was married for 14 years, and who is the mother of our adult kids, is single again after four failed marriages. She’s making overtures about getting together again. She is assertive, likes to spend and was very jealous.

At my age, I could use the help, but it would require selling my house and moving several states away. She’s really pushing, but I’m just not sure. It would be nice to have someone around because I am lonely. She is a neat lady, but I just don’t know. Help! — PROPOSITIONED IN THE MIDWEST

DEAR PROPOSITIONED: Surely you can find someone to fill your loneliness other than a woman you divorced for at least two solid reasons. I have four words of advice for you: When in doubt — DON’T! Your common sense is fueling your ambivalence. Please pay attention to it. At most, maintain a long-distance friendship with her.

DEAR ABBY: During a recent trip to the supermarket, I noticed a couple in their 50s who were shopping for produce. The woman picked up eight different avocados before selecting one. (I counted.) The man touched three different bags of oranges before placing one in their cart. This was repeated with each item they shopped for!

I considered asking them to stop touching the food, but I didn’t want a confrontation. How would you have handled this? Can you please encourage your readers to minimize what they touch for the sake of public safety? — CONCERNED SHOPPER

DEAR CONCERNED: I would have handled it by talking about it to the store manager. In California, signs are posted asking customers to please handle merchandise as little as possible, and shoppers are encouraged not only to wear masks and practice social distancing while shopping for groceries, but also to wear gloves.

Once you bring your groceries home, you should wipe them down, and ALWAYS wash your hands thoroughly for the recommended 20 seconds.

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.

For everything you need to know about wedding planning, order “How to Have a Lovely Wedding.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds), to: Dear Abby, Wedding Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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