Abby: Offhand comment about weight still stings many months later
Dear Abby: I went on a cruise with several other women. I was friendly with one of them, but didn’t know the others.
I’m overweight. One of the other women, “Dolores,” was also overweight, heavier than me. She’s very proud of being Christian, but she made the comment, in front of others, that she didn’t mind going places with me because with me around she didn’t feel so fat.
I was so stunned I remained silent. Actually, I was afraid that if I spoke I’d say too much, but I felt very hurt and ashamed. Even though I have tried to ignore it, this has bothered me for months and I don’t know what to do.
Should I say something to Dolores or continue to ignore it? I don’t really want to be friends with her now because I don’t know what kind of snide remark may come out of her mouth next. And I certainly don’t want to go anywhere with her again.
Taken Aback in Texas
Dear Taken Aback: When mankind was created, a delete button should have been installed at the end of our tongues. However, it’s possible our creator thought common sense would suffice. Obviously, Dolores was elsewhere when it was handed out.
While her comment was tactless, it says far more about how she feels about herself than it does about you. Because this is still bothering you, I don’t think it would be at all out of line for you to tell her how hurtful her comment was.
Dear Abby: I was out this morning for my daily run (facing toward traffic) and a very long funeral procession drove by on the other side of the road. The cars pulled over to the curb to let it pass. I continued to run, but now I feel guilty. Should I have stopped for the procession?
Unsure in Michigan
Dear Unsure: No rule of etiquette requires it. However, it would have been a gesture of respect and sympathy to have stopped running (and removed your cap if you were wearing one) until the procession had passed by.
Dear Abby: I was divorced 10 years ago. My children are all over 21. I talk with them once a month, but I contact my ex-wife only when there’s an issue that relates to our kids.
My ex now has cancer. When she dies, am I expected to attend the funeral? I would like to go as a show of respect to my kids. However, I don’t know how they would react because they know I have had little contact with their mother for the last decade.
The same question goes for my ex-mother-in-law, who is almost 90. I had a good relationship with her until the divorce, at which point she would no longer talk to me. Should I be there since she is the grandmother of my children?
Dear Planning: I think your question may be somewhat premature. Your relationship with your ex-wife and her mother may improve before anyone dies — and let’s admit it, YOU could be the one to go first.
If there is any chance that your presence at her mom’s funeral would upset your ex-wife, then I vote for skipping it and explaining the reason to your children. As to attending your ex’s funeral when (and IF) the time comes, remember that funerals are to comfort the living. During one of your monthly conversations with your kids — once your ex-wife is found to be terminal and NOT before — ask what their wishes are and abide by them.
Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.