Dear Abby: Daughter who vowed never to marry wants to try on wedding dress
The teen’s mom, who said her vows in the gown 21 years ago, wants it worn only by someone who believes in marriage.
DEAR ABBY: I am cleaning out my closet and have decided to sell my wedding dress from 21 years ago. I love the dress; it’s beautiful. But it’s a very large box to store. My 16-year-old daughter has made it clear to me she will never marry. It was difficult for me to accept, as she’s my only daughter.
The thing is, she wants to try my dress on. I don’t want her to because she doesn’t agree with the sanctity of marriage or the commitment of it, and I don’t want my wedding dress tried on by anyone who feels this way about marriage. It means more than playing dress-up, and I believe it should be worn only by someone who respects it.
Am I wrong? Does my daughter have a right to have hurt feelings over this? — NOT A GAME OF DRESS-UP
DEAR NOT: You are not wrong. But if you are trying to impose your values on your teenage daughter, I seriously doubt it will work. I wish you had mentioned why your daughter feels the way she does. Have you asked her that question? Rather than argue about whether she has a right to put on your wedding dress, a discussion about what she thinks it symbolizes to you — as well as what trying it on means to her — might be more productive.
P.S. Because you are feeling cramped for storage space, consider donating the dress to a bride-to-be whose traditional values mirror your own.
DEAR ABBY: I drive a classic car to work every day at a construction site. Since I began working there this summer, people often ask me about selling it. Most of the time I take it as a compliment and tell them it is not for sale currently, but the same people often continue to ask.
It is starting to get on my nerves. I have even seen people trying to open up the hood to see the engine while I’m off in the distance. I understand people asking about it is part of owning an old vehicle, but I do not have another car or mode of transportation, and I’m starting to get worried. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. — ON EDGE IN GEORGIA
DEAR ON EDGE: Tell the offenders (again) that your car is not for sale AND you do not want anyone touching it. If it continues to happen, tell your supervisor or your boss that someone trying to get into it “while you’re off in the distance” makes you concerned for the safety of your vehicle. There could be legal liability if your car is damaged. However, if you’re still not comfortable after that, change jobs.
DEAR ABBY: I’m having trouble with feelings I probably shouldn’t be having about someone. She’s always walking around in her underwear when I come over. I like it, of course, but I’m not sure if it is meant to tease me or if I should act on it. — CONFUSED IN THE EAST
DEAR CONFUSED: A positive message of the #MeToo movement has been that when there is a shadow of a doubt, a person should COMMUNICATE to avoid any unfortunate misunderstandings. In this case, it would be appropriate to ask this woman why she walks around in a state of undress when you are there, because you are not sure how to interpret the message it sends. DO NOT ACT ON ANYTHING UNLESS HER RESPONSE IS THAT IT WOULD BE WELCOMED.
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.
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