Posted: Friday, April 13, 2012 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: I have always had a rocky relationship with my older sister, “Nancy.” She’s lived with our parents her entire life, and even after she married, she convinced her husband to move in with them. Her marriage didn’t last long.
Nancy has always been a drama queen. At my wedding, she threw a tantrum about how horrible her life was because her little sister was getting married and she was single again. My parents made me apologize, as always, for something over which I had no control.
Last year, my husband and I had our first child. Mutual friends told us Nancy is showing pictures of our son, claiming he’s hers. She even has his photo, as her son, on her Facebook page. It isn’t the first time. Nancy is a professional nanny and has told people her charges were her children.
My husband thought that if we let her know she’s important in our son’s life, she’d stop, but she didn’t. When I brought it up to my mother, she told me to let it go because Nancy is having a hard time with her job. Clients have been dropping her service because she’s getting too pushy.
We live six hours away, and Nancy insists we visit every other weekend. We argued, and now she won’t talk to me. Nancy’s roommate called last night to warn me that Nancy is looking to sue for visitation rights with my son. This is astonishing, and I worry that she has some issues that should be addressed, but I don’t want this to create a bigger family problem. My mother is on Nancy’s side, and my father won’t talk about it. I’m about ready to cut ties with all three of them. — Bad Sheep Sister
Dear Sister: Nancy sounds mentally ill, delusional and threatening. Under no circumstances should you let her near your son. She has no basis to sue for visitation, and in fact, you might consider an order of protection to keep her away. She desperately needs to be under the care of a psychiatrist.
Dear Annie: I really love my two co-workers, but we are all in one room. Eight months ago, “Mary” began using a new medication to help her quit smoking. Unfortunately, the medication has now caused her to become rather flatulent. I’d understand if it happened once in a while, but it is becoming very repetitive. Mary always says, “I didn’t know it was going to happen,” but I think she’s doing it on purpose because she thinks it’s hilarious.
My other co-worker laughs and actually encourages Mary. I’d spray air freshener, but I have a major sensitivity to the scent. When people walk into our office, they can smell the odor, and I worry they think it’s me.
How can I bring this to Mary’s attention without causing any embarrassment or arguments? — Bombed in Kentucky
Dear Kentucky: You might take Mary aside and, with great concern, say that her doctor might be able to put her on medication that doesn’t have such unpleasant side effects. Meanwhile, there are air fresheners that have no discernible odor, and we recommend you purchase one and assiduously spray it whenever necessary.
Dear Annie: You periodically run letters from disgruntled women whose husbands will not give them sex. What is wrong with these men?
I am 81 and because of age no longer can perform, nor am I interested. That does not prevent me, twice a month, from satisfying my wife in other ways. Being willing to give rather than receive is my expression of love, and it provides an opportunity to be close. — Happy Husband in Oregon
Dear Husband: This sage advice works for both sexes. Thank you.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 4.13.12