Dear Abby: It has recently come to my attention that at work I am considered "bossy." It came as a shock to me. I'm hurt that my co-workers and department manager think of me this way.
I know I come on strong sometimes when it comes to helping customers, but I view it as helping.
I tried for the manager position, and was initially angry when someone else got it. But now I see she does a good job, and I respect her. It seems, however, that my actions have sent the wrong message. What can I do to mend fences? Or, should I just forget about it and look for something else? —MISJUDGED
Dear Misjudged: No, you should apologize to anyone you might have offended. Sometimes it's how you say something, not necessarily what was said, that's the problem.
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Dear Abby: My daughter, "Alana," has a 7-year-old son my husband and I have helped to raise while she got her life together and pursued her career. "Tristan" excels in school and is a great little man. The problem is, every time Alana gets a new boyfriend, she rushes to make the boyfriend Tristan's "daddy."
The men my daughter chooses are crude, rude and, without fail, feel a need to "straighten out" Tristan. My grandson does not need straightening out because he is polite, engaging and a good soul. The newest guy in Alana's life, "Jeff," told me point blank that if Alana doesn't stop babying her son, Tristan will grow up to be a girl! This man is homophobic, sexist, racist and controlling.
Alana claims she's "in love" and fails to see the potential harm this guy could inflict on Tristan. We do not employ corporal punishment, but Jeff has already said (several times) he would "beat his butt"! What should we do? —FEARFUL NANA IN GEORGIA
Dear Nana: Where is your daughter meeting these people? It appears her taste in men is atrocious, and she has serious self-esteem issues. You and your husband need to get across to her how harmful it is for her to repeatedly introduce men to her son as "daddies." Parents should wait until they know their prospective mates well enough to be assured they won't injure the child physically or psychologically.
If Alana insists on marrying Jeff, offer to take Tristan to live with you. If that's not acceptable, the next time Jeff says he'll "beat Tristan's butt" respond point blank that if he lays a hand on your grandson, you'll report him to Child Protective Services.