November 13, 2018

Bet the Better

Dear Frankly, I am the wife of a compulsive gambler. He didn’t start out that way, but in the past four or five years he has become hooked on betting on everything from professional sports to our kid’s soccer matches. Friends are afraid to show up at sporting events in fear he will approach them. How can I stop him? It would be easier if he was losing money, but he has won enough to recently buy me new car. Worried Wife Dear Worried, I like that you waited to get a new car before writing to get him help…

Mom to Visit

Dear Frankly, My mother wants to come visit us here at the ranch. She is a divorcee  and  in  between  husbands. She is a smoker and has always been a hard  drinking woman.  Our relationship has been rocky since I was a child. I married a minister and together we are pastors at a small, country church. We have five young children of our own and we are raising them quite a bit more sheltered than I was raised. I am leery about her visit. How do I deal with my mother’s lifestyle? Scared Sarah Dear Scared, It seems you turned out quite well,  according  to  your  standards. It’s funny, many boozing, smokers’ kids end up the…

Shameless Brother

Dear Frankly, My mother lives on Social Security and has very little savings left since Dad died last year. I manage her affairs, and encourage her to save for emergencies. The problem is my 38-year-old brother. He can’t keep a job and is burning through the little bit of savings she has. It has reached the point that Mom is now hiding food in her own house so she’ll have something to eat. Any advice on how to deal with my brother? Bothered Brother Dear Bothered, Are you aware of interventions? I suggest you have a family gathering, perhaps a…

Party Pooping Remedy

Dear Frankly, I’m the kind of person who likes big gatherings of friends and family over the holidays. My husband of four years, who is Jewish, is an only child and never celebrated Thanksgiving and certainly had no Christmas Eve feast. He begrudgingly participates when everyone crowds the house, but disappears to the basement and the television while lively conversation takes place elsewhere. Should I just let him be or push him to join in? People Person Pam Dear People, Let him be. The holiday cheer will be over soon enough, but your husband will hopefully still be around. I…

Sink or Swim

Dear Frankly, My sister says I need to put a time limit on waiting for my boyfriend to propose to me. She says I should not let him know about the time limit. We have been together for more than 5 years. I think our relationship is very strong. We live apart, but I spend a lot of time at his apartment and he at mine. I would like to marry him, though. We have talked a little about marriage, and he says he plans for us to marry. I am not sure how I would approach this time limit….

Sisterly Encouragement

Dear Frankly, My younger sister needs to lose weight and quit smoking. She is in her forties with one son nearly college age. Far be it from me to interfere, but I have genuine concerns for her health and well-being. What should I do to encourage her without upsetting her and causing her to add depression to her list? Stubborn Sister Dear Stubborn, Well, a first read of your letter gives a tone of concern. But then I started to see that your sister may have issues because she has always had to deal with her perfect little Miss Priss…

Online Role-Playing

Dear Frankly, My dad has found an online role-playing game with live people and everything, but now he is talking to them more than his own family. He doesn’t even eat dinner with us so he can play this stupid game. He doesn’t understand that as much fun as he is having with his game, he is hurting us. It is also getting in the way of my parents’ marriage. They have been married for 20 years; I don’t want it to end because of my dad’s childishness. How do I tell him to stop? Should I just delete the…

Hand Me Down Boyfriends

Dear Frankly, I have a situation. My sister and I are the best of friends. We share almost everything, clothes, music, jewelry, you name it. But recently, she broke up with her boyfriend of more than four years. How long do I have to wait before asking him out? I don’t want to upset her, but he and I have great chemistry. Is two weeks long enough? She didn’t cry much and seems to be over him. How about one whole month – that’s over four weeks. Is that long enough? Help me figure this one out! Hot 4 My…