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Dear Abby 11/19

Online pursuit of a daughter arouses mom's suspicions

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Posted: November 14, 2007 3:10 p.m.
Updated: December 11, 2007 7:16 a.m.
    DEAR ABBY: Several months ago, my 35-year-old sister met a man online. After corresponding (via telephone and e-mail) for about two weeks, she moved two states away to move in with him. She never saw a picture of him and had never met him in person before she moved to be with him.
    This man — I believe he's 45 — now wants to communicate with my 14-year-old daughter. He tries to chat with her online and doesn't understand why I think it is inappropriate. He says he's "family" now, and I am being overprotective.
    Abby, am I being overprotective of my daughter? I have never met or spoken to this man and feel he has no right to communicate with my daughter. Please help. — LOSING IT IN MONROE, LA.
    DEAR LOSING IT: It's your duty as a parent to protect your minor child from perceived danger. You sister's friend is acting like a pedophile and a stalker. He isn't "family," and objecting to your daughter being approached by a stranger is not being overprotective.
    Since you don't know his background, contact the police department in the city in which he lives and ask if he has a record. Then Google him to find out if there's any information about him online. And, above all, warn your daughter not to trust him because, from your description, the man could be dangerous.

    DEAR ABBY: I have been seeing a very nice man for about four months. He lives with his 23-year-old daughter.
    He loves when I cook for him, and when he asks me to cook I do it because I enjoy it as a creative outlet. But every time I make a dish, his daughter comes along and adds things to it. I was making Sunday gravy, and she added something to that. Another time, I was making pasta primavera, and she poured a can of beans into it.
    I am a very good cook, Abby. I do not need any help in the kitchen. How can I stop her from adding things to the meals I am cooking? — FRUSTRATED IN FLORIDA
    DEAR FRUSTRATED: The least confrontational way to accomplish it would be to cook for her father at YOUR house.
    DEAR ABBY: Would you allow me to add to your letters sharing acts of kindness? My husband was deployed to Iraq for a year. Close to the time of his return, I went to some businesses in our community to ask if they would put welcome home messages in their windows or on their marquees. The responses I got were incredible!
    An eye doctor even offered to give our family free eye exams and glasses/contacts if they were needed. A chiropractor offered to give my husband a free adjustment. I was overwhelmed with the support my family was given, as was my husband when, on the drive home, he saw message after message of support and welcome.
    It was touching to see that the sacrifices he, and we as a family, made were appreciated by our community. — THANKFUL AND INSPIRED, ROSWELL, GA.
    DEAR THANKFUL AND INSPIRED: Your letter touched my heart, not only for the sacrifices your husband and family have made in the line of duty, but also because of the spirit displayed by the members of the business community in your city. We all owe a debt of gratitude to the brave young men and women who serve in our armed forces, and it is one that should never be forgotten.

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