DEAR ABBY: I’m a twice-divorced woman who found my present husband late in life. I’m in my early 60s, and my husband is in his 70s. We married quickly because I didn’t want to be alone in life, and I thought I loved him.
My husband works while I stay at home because of a medical condition. Because I get bored, I spend some of my time communicating with and texting male friends from the past and one of my ex-husbands.
We have fun texting and sometimes it goes a little beyond that. I realize I am married and my ex is engaged, but how harmful can this be? I don’t think I’m hurting anyone, and it helps the day go by.
Is this considered cheating? I don’t think it is because my ex and I live in different states and the chances of us ever getting together again are slim to none. — Passing Time
DEAR PASSING TIME: This isn’t harmless fun; it’s a threat to your marriage. Whether I consider it cheating is beside the point. Whether your husband and your ex’s fiancee would consider it cheating is the question. If they got wind of your “pastime,” I suspect both would be hurt, angry and feel violated. Not only that, you could lose Husband No. 3.
DEAR ABBY: My 2-year-old daughter has recently become boob-obsessed. The first thing she does in the morning is point at my chest and say, “Boobs!” If she hugs me, she tries to grab them. Sometimes I catch her staring at my chest in fascination. I scold her when she grabs at them, but it’s disturbing.
I never taught her the word “boob” and feel annoyed that she probably learned it from our sitter. When I spoke to the sitter about it, she laughed and said it’s perfectly normal and that a lot of kids are boob-obsessed. But it doesn’t seem normal to me, and I’m creeped out.
I have started wearing sweatshirts to keep covered up. My little girl has also started grabbing my butt and lifting up my shirt, and I’m nervous about how she’s acting around the sitter and other women in the family. Is this behavior normal? — Creeped Out in Valencia, Calif.
DEAR CREEPED OUT: Children have been known to act out to get attention. If a parent acts shocked at something the child does or says, the child will repeat the action for its shock value. Because you are concerned that your daughter’s behavior isn’t normal, the person to discuss this with would be her pediatrician. The doctor can put your fears to rest or alert you if there is something to worry about.
Another thought: Ask your baby sitter to be more circumspect in the language she uses around your child if the word “boob” offends you, because children build their vocabularies repeating the words they hear.