‘Family failure’ refuses to enable sibling’s behavior

Published 8:05 am Thursday, September 1, 2022

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DEAR ABBY: I am the oldest of three. We grew up in an abusive alcoholic family. I’m considered the “failure” of the family because I don’t drink. I graduated from college, work full time, got married and have a pretty stable life.
Both of my younger siblings drink and use drugs, and their lives are in constant turmoil. The youngest sibling has mentioned they will need to move by the end of this month and their current job has not paid them for several weeks. I dread that they will ask to stay at my house soon, which I cannot allow because of the drinking and drug use. I know they will be upset that they can’t stay with me. How do I protect my peace without feeling like I’m making my sibling homeless? — BAD SISTER IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR BAD SISTER: Your reason for not wanting to host your substance-using sibling is sensible. State it kindly and clearly and do NOT feel guilty about it. You won’t be making your sibling homeless. Unless your sibling is friendless, which I doubt, they will find another place to crash, I assure you.
DEAR ABBY: My father recently passed from cancer. He was divorced from Mom, but she helped take care of him and made him happy in his last year of life. I’m having the baby blues (a 2- month-old) and grieving at the same time.
My mother has now announced that she plans to take a vacation with her best friend. I think it’s too soon and I told her that. Am I wrong for feeling this way and trying to stop her from going? But at the same time, I know she deserves this vacation. I’m so confused. Please help. — RIGHT OR WRONG IN ARIZONA
DEAR RIGHT OR WRONG: Allow me to offer my sympathy for the loss of your dad. Considering the recent changes in your life, that you “need” your mother is understandable. However, your mother needing a break at this point is also understandable, so please let her go.
As you should know, your baby blues may be happening because of the abrupt hormonal changes your body is experiencing after the birth of your child. Discuss your emotions with your doctor, because there may be a medical solution for your situation. Please don’t wait.
DEAR ABBY: Please don’t think I’m misogynistic, but whenever I see females, they’re CONSTANTLY talking or scrolling on their cellphones. It seems like it is all they do! They don’t seem to be interested in anything except their damned phones. They have no personalities. They have no sex drive. They’re not even interested in men! Some even seem to lose their interest in shopping, which we know is a female addiction. It’s not cute. It’s not normal, and it’s not sociable. In fact, it’s bizarre and weird. Is there one “halfway” normal female left on this earth, or should I move to another planet? — READY TO BAIL IN NEW JERSEY
DEAR READY: Have you heard that men are from Mars? Your space shuttle departs in 20 minutes. It’s a one-way trip. Safe travels …
P.S. I am not calling you misogynistic, but it will be interesting to see what my readers call you. Stay tuned.
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.
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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