Dear Abby: Student has trouble getting homework help from mom
DEAR ABBY: My mom is mad at me. I have been a little bad, but I always do the dishes, sweep, clear the table and take out the trash. Every day when school is finished, I wait for Mom to get off work so she can help me with my homework, but when I do, she gets upset, mad and frustrated and stops talking to me. She tells me to do it myself, but I don't know how to do some. She says I'm smart, but I don't know if I am. Please help me because I want my mom happy. -- STUCK STUDENT IN NORTH CAROLINA
DEAR STUDENT: Of course you do. When your mother becomes frustrated while trying to assist with your homework, the reason may be she is stressed about something else after a hard day at work, or she doesn't know the solution. Please take that into consideration, because I have no doubt you are smart and want to please her.
When you get stuck, ask your teacher for help if he or she is available. If that isn't workable, another solution to your problem may be as simple as your mom finding someone who can tutor you in areas you are weak in. High school and college students do this (online for now) for extra money. You may also find help online with Khan Academy or other nonprofit educational organizations.
DEAR ABBY: A couple of our family members habitually come late to gatherings, making the grand entrance. They attended a wedding shower several years ago. They arrived late, ate the food and socialized minimally. Just as the gifts were being opened, the two of them got up, smiled at everyone and walked out. The rest of us were shocked.
Fifteen months later, the two attended a baby shower for the same relative. Again, they arrived late and barely interacted with anyone. When the meal was served, they ate and, just as the presents were about to be opened, they got up and left. Several attendees commented on their rudeness.
How do you deal with relatives who feel this is acceptable behavior? We were brought up to believe that if you attend an event, you stay for the event, rather than eat and run. If you can't stay, don't come.
Older family members are having a hard time accepting their behavior. Are we older folk out of step with today's society? -- HATES RUDENESS IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR HATES RUDENESS: The way to deal with this kind of rudeness is to point out to the offenders that what they are doing is disrespectful. And if it happens after the warning, omit them from the guest list.
DEAR ABBY: I clipped and saved a quote you published years ago. Given today's challenges, I thought it might be a good time to reprint it: "Things turn out for the best for those who make the best of the way things turn out." -- BOB IN NEW HAMPSHIRE
DEAR BOB: Amen to that. And it applies to so many different situations.
Daily chats end when friend is blocked without warning
DEAR ABBY: I had a friend I would talk to every day while I was doing my deliveries for work. We had anywhere between six and 25 conversations a day. For months it was never an issue. All of a sudden, I got blocked on her social media, and her boyfriend (my husband's good friend) sent me a message telling me to leave her alone! I felt blindsided since it was out of the blue with no warning or any discussion between her and me about the amount of time we were talking.
Well, they are using my Disney+ streaming service, and I feel like they are taking advantage of me. I'm not allowed over to their house anymore or to talk to her, but my husband is welcome anytime. I pay for the Disney+ out of my personal money. Would it be so bad if I removed her from my account and changed my password? -- TALKED OUT IN OHIO
DEAR TALKED OUT: To talk to someone 25 times a day was excessive. Your friend had things she had to do besides keep you company on your route. It's possible that instead of telling you it had become too much for her, she complained to her boyfriend about it, and he decided to take action on her behalf.
The way this was handled is regrettable. That your husband continues to socialize with them while you are being ostracized is also regrettable. Because the friendship is now over and the streaming account is paid for out of your personal money, I see no reason why you shouldn't remove her access to it.
DEAR ABBY: My brother says whatever is on his mind without regard for anyone else's feelings. He brags about not having health insurance and says his doctors will see him for $10, which, believe it or not, they do. He brags about not having life insurance and says his kids will have to deal with his funeral expenses when he dies. He has spent thousands on the house he recently purchased, so money isn't the problem.
He doesn't believe in giving gifts, nor even sending a card. He is my only sibling, and over the years I have given him more than you can imagine. On a recent visit to pick up something he had asked my husband for, he began insulting me without provocation. It escalated to him calling me several vulgar names. To avoid a confrontation, I went into the house. What do I do to put my brother in his place so he will stop? -- SISTER OF A JERK
DEAR SISTER: Stop tolerating it! Quit giving things to your brother and doing him favors. Make a conscious effort to spend less time (or any time) in his presence. It should be clear that your efforts have not been appreciated, so do yourself a favor: Spend time with people who do treat you well, appreciate what you do for them and reciprocate.
DEAR READERS: On this day of love, I want you to know how much I value the relationship I have with you. Wishing you all a happy Valentine's Day. ... WITH LOVE, ABBY
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.