Dear Abby: My best friend "Diane" and I have known each other since we were children. She has always had difficulty in her relationships with men.
In the last three years, she has begun dating married men. She was sure the latest one was the man of her dreams, but it was short-lived and destroyed his marriage. Diane rationalizes what she's doing by saying the men will cheat anyway, so why not with her?
Diane is now in love with someone new. If he leaves his wife and children for her, this will be another home Diane has helped break up. She wants my blessings and for me to get along with her boyfriend. Being a married woman and a mother, I sympathize with the wives of these men.
Why has my best friend become a home wrecker? What can I do to avoid being pulled into this affair without losing her friendship? —MORALLY COMPROMISED IN MICHIGAN
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Dear Morally Compromised: There is no one-size-fits-all answer about why a woman dates married men. Some women do it because they fall in love; others because they don't care whom they hurt to get what they want; while still others see it as a competition they "have" to win — again and again.
You do not have to allow yourself to be drawn into this. Avoid it by making clear to Diane that as much as you care about her, you don't approve, and want no contact with the new man in her life.
Dear Abby: Our son has not spoken to us in 2 1/2 years. This isn't the first time it has happened. When we are asked how he and his family are doing and where they are living, we don't know how to respond. What do we say when meeting someone new and they ask whether we have children?
If we answer that we have one son, a number of questions are sure to follow for which we don't have answers. Can you offer some appropriate responses to these questions that don't require having to say, "We don't know"? — NEEDS AN ANSWER IN VIRGINIA
Dear Needs An Answer: When someone asks how your son and his family are doing and where they are living, say, "We are estranged." And if you are asked by a stranger if you have any children, look the person in the eye and reply, "I'd rather not discuss it."