DEAR ABBY: My wife died two years ago. Since then, I have had health problems that make it difficult to live alone.
I tried an assisted-living complex, but when I added up the expenses, my son suggested I move in with them. I thought it was a good idea because I would rather give them the money.
The problem is my 15-year-old granddaughter, "Vanessa." My son and his wife are intelligent people, and I don't understand how they have raised this selfish, inconsiderate, insolent, demanding brat. Vanessa thinks the world revolves around her. If she doesn't get her way, she yells, screams, and says terrible things to her parents -- and they take it! I want to get up and slap her. Even though she is my granddaughter, I find it difficult to like her.
Abby, there are no rules, no discipline, no punishment, no guidelines whatsoever in their home. I can't take her behavior any longer. I want to move out at the end of the month. What do you think? -- HAD IT IN DENVER
DEAR HAD IT: Please don't blame your granddaughter for this situation. In a household where there are no rules, no discipline, no consequences and no guidelines, her attitude and behavior are logical.
It is possible that a better living arrangement for you might be to share a home or apartment with someone closer to you in age. Your local area agency on aging may be able to steer you in the right direction. However, before you make any hard and fast decisions about changing your address, I urge you to have a frank talk with your son and daughter-in-law about the reasons you're making the move.
DEAR ABBY: I have read your column for more years than I can remember, and have always wanted to read the very first letter that appeared in your column. Would you print it again? -- AIMEE IN MACEDON, N.Y.
DEAR AIMEE: With pleasure! The letter appeared 46 years ago today, on Jan. 9, 1956. Read on:
DEAR ABBY: I have never written to a paper for advice before, but need help desperately and cannot talk to my family or friends about my problem. I am a private secretary to a well-known executive in the Bay area. I have been employed by him for five years. You may think this sounds cheap, but we are deeply in love. His wife speaks to him only when she wants money and he has no respect or affection for her.
He has told me repeatedly that I am the woman he loves, but we can't consider marriage because it would ruin him financially and socially. In addition to an excellent salary, he has given me an automobile, a fur coat, and he pays my rent. When he takes business trips, I always go along. I am not getting any younger, yet I feel one day he will make me his wife. What do you think? -- CONFIDENT
DEAR CONFIDENT: I think your boss is a super salesman! He did a terrific job when he convinced an intelligent girl like you to give up a decent, respectable life of her own to be available when he whistles. Of course he won't marry you. Why should he? He is getting the whole show for the price of the amusement tax.
Pauline Phillips and her daughter Jeanne Phillips share the pseudonym Abigail Van Buren. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.