Dear Abby: I have my suicidal friend’s guns, and he wants them back

Reader has been holding on to the weapons ever since the depressed man’s wife spirited them out of the house.

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DEAR ABBY: My wife and I have been friends with another couple for more than 50 years. The four of us have shared lots of good times together.

After recent open heart surgery, the husband became very depressed and talked to his wife about “ending it all.” She asked me to take the few handguns (all legal) they had in their home to be safe. I didn’t feel I could say no. I’m not interested in guns, but it seemed a simple request. So she “snuck” them out to me during our last visit.

When the husband discovered what his wife had done, she told him about my role in it. He now demands I return his guns and says he no longer wants anything to do with me. His wife wants me to hold onto them for now.

What should I do? — TORN OVER THIS

DEAR TORN: From what I have been told, depression after heart surgery is not unusual. Hang onto the guns and urge the wife to report her husband’s threat to harm himself to his doctors and let them guide her. She should also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, which is 800-273-8255. Someone who has talked about suicide should not have easy access to the means to do it.

DEAR ABBY: Since this coronavirus pandemic started, I have seen lots of articles stressing the importance of staying connected to elderly family members, friends and those living alone. My husband and I have each other, so we are sheltering in place. Although we have eight grandkids who all live within 50 miles, we haven’t heard a word from any of them, whether via phone, email or text, all of which we do. How bad is that? — DISCONNECTED IN CALIFORNIA

DEAR DISCONNECTED: If you have reached out to your grandchildren and been ignored, shame on them. If you haven’t, it’s time you did. Sometimes young people become so engrossed in their daily lives they forget about anything else. But that’s what PARENTS are for, to “remind” them that reaching out to someone who needs a kind word (or an errand run during a pandemic) can be rewarding not only for the receiver but also for the giver. Parents should remind them to take five minutes occasionally to text Grandma.

DEAR ABBY: I started and completed a college fund for my two daughters. Only one of them used it. The other joined the military and used the GI Bill for college instead of the money from the college fund ($10,000). Am I obligated to give her that money? I did pull it out of the fund and have it in a certificate. I figure when she buys a house, I’ll give it to her then. — WONDERING IN FLORIDA

DEAR WONDERING: Check with the bank to make sure there won’t be a problem if the college fund money isn’t used for your daughter’s education. If you can apply it elsewhere in a way that will benefit her — and part of a down payment on a house would definitely qualify — I think it would be wonderful. But check first.

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.

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 $8 (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.)

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