Dear Abby: Since ex won’t give back the ring, maybe she still loves me

The engaged couple had agreed her ring would go back to the man in the case of a breakup, but now she won’t returns his texts about it — or about anything.

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DEAR ABBY: Five months ago, after eight years, my fiancee terminated our relationship. I still have very strong feelings for her, although she ghosted me and won’t communicate with me.

We agreed from the outset that should the relationship end, the ring (or value thereof) would be returned to me. I have sent numerous emails and text messages and have received no response. Her explanation for her silence for 22 days — just before she broke up with me over the phone — was because I “gave her an ultimatum.”

She had selected the ring and told me repeatedly how much she loved it. Do you think she’s still “in love” with me and that’s why she refuses to return the ring? — DUMPED WITHOUT RING

DEAR DUMPED: No, I think she is still in love with the RING, which is why she refuses to return it. Because your former fiancee has chosen to keep it rather than abide by the rules of etiquette or your verbal agreement, it’s time to consult a lawyer. If you want that ring back (or the value thereof), you may have to take her to court to get it. Be GLAD you are rid of her, even if it wasn’t your idea.

DEAR ABBY: I have an extremely well-educated and intelligent friend whose emotions, ideas and opinions seem to have become subjugated to the control of her relatively new spouse. I should add that he has a bad temper, and I am afraid it could escalate.

What are my options for reporting or intervening in the situation? It’s possible that she’s willingly submitting, but it seems uncharacteristic. I have personal experience with this kind of situation in regard to family members, but I don’t want to make a fuss if I’m wrong. — CARING FRIEND IN KANSAS

DEAR FRIEND: Unless you have proof that your friend is being physically abused, the most helpful thing you can do is stay in close contact and make sure she knows you will always be there for her if she needs you, day or night. If she confides that her husband is emotionally abusive, support her by reminding her that, despite what her husband may have told her, she’s intelligent and well-educated.

Talk to her about the situations you have encountered in your own family and mention the National Domestic Violence Hotline (; 800-799-7233). If she contacts you because he has hurt her physically, get her to an emergency room right away. They know how to handle (and report) domestic abuse and are mandated to do so.

DEAR ABBY: Is it fair to other family members to leave dirty dishes in the sink until “later”? My wife and I have been married 15 years, but my wife still leaves dirty dishes in the sink all day, every day, “until I can get to them.” To me, this is rude and inconsiderate. If I have time enough to use a dish or a glass, I have time to rinse it and put it in the dishwasher. Who is right here? — RUDE IN TEXAS

DEAR RUDE: You are. Because you have asked your wife repeatedly not to do this, one would think she would accommodate you. It takes only a moment to put used dishes and utensils into a dishwasher rather than leave them stacked in the sink. Her disregard for your feelings is passive-aggressive. Consider asking her if she does it as a way to punish you for something she’s not willing to discuss.

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.

Good advice for everyone — teens to seniors — is in “The Anger in All of Us and How to Deal With It.” To order, send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds), to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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