Dear Abby: Graduating couple faces going separate ways

Dear Abby
Jeanne Phillips

Dear Abby: I have been in a relationship for more than five years. My girlfriend and I will soon graduate from college. I have accepted a full-time job offer, and she will be going to grad school.

Almost certainly our relationship will have to be long-distance for a year or two, and she has given me an ultimatum. She says she doesn’t want the stress of a long-distance relationship if it doesn’t lead to anything in the future. I am torn. I like the status quo. I’m not sure if I want to propose and be locked into something without being 100% certain we are meant to be. What should I do?

— Hesitant in the Heartland

Dear Hesitant: I’m so glad you asked! Because you have been in a relationship for more than five years and are still not certain if this young woman is “The One,” do her (and yourself) a favor and stop wasting her time. You both need to see others and gain more experience in the dating world before making a lifetime commitment. And don’t worry about her. I’m sure she will do just fine.

Dear Abby: When my mother passed away three years ago, the financial burden fell on me. I asked my brother (who earns more than double what I do) to help and got no help from him. Since then, I have been paying her storage unit fee.

I asked my brother to pay half because half the stuff in this unit belongs to him and his family. I’ve never received a penny. He took it upon himself to go through the stuff and take what he wanted.

I have spent $900 on this unit. I feel the contents are mine as I have more than paid for it. I’m willing to go through it together, but I feel he was wrong to have done it without me. Am I wrong? Am I overreacting? How do I deal with this without causing problems? I am way beyond upset.

— Stuck With Stuff in Montana

Dear Stuck: You are not wrong. Your brother should not have shouldered you out of the way to have first dibs on the contents in storage, and he should have been paying half the cost of the unit since her death. I am unsure what “problem” you are afraid of causing, because your brother appears to be the one causing the problem.

My inclination is to advise you that what is left in the unit is now yours to dispose of as you wish, but before doing that, you would be wise to consult an attorney. You should not be paying a monthly fee that is causing you financial stress.

Dear Abby: My mother-in-law has sent me a friend request on Facebook. It might sound simple, but we are not friends. We don’t hang out. Even though we live in the same city, we see each other only at family events.

I have never been good enough for her “angelic” son, whom I have supported for more than 15 years. Why would she want to be my FB friend now? She isn’t trying to make amends. She’s just being nosy. This is a lose-lose situation. Must I allow it?

— Trapped in Hurricane Country

Dear Trapped: You are no more trapped than you wish to be. Because someone sends a friend request does not mean that you are obligated to accept. My advice is to ignore it. Or, accept her invitation and use Facebook’s timeline settings and the option to not “share” with her.

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