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Girlfriend notes change in man’s talks with ex

DEAR ABBY: I am dating a slightly older divorced man. He and his ex-wife have been divorced 15 years. They remain civil. Their two children are now adults. Recently, a friend of my boyfriend and his ex passed away. They spoke on the phone, caught up a bit and that was the end of that.

Another tragic event happened last week that caused them to talk again. Early in our relationship, he told me he and his ex don’t really communicate unless tragic events or things involving the kids come up. However, there has been an increase in dialogue between them beyond these events. It seems odd to me that out of the blue their communication has increased. Granted, it was sparked by unfortunate events, but while those have come and gone, the talking remains, even though it never used to. Should I be concerned? Should I bring this up? — EX ISSUE IN NEW ENGLAND

DEAR EX ISSUE: I am sorry you didn’t mention how long you and this man have been seeing each other. If your exclusive relationship has been going on longer than six months, you are within your rights to point out that this is a change in his pattern of behavior and ask him what’s up.

DEAR ABBY: My mom and I haven’t been close in 20 years. We live on opposite sides of the country, talk monthly and FaceTime on holidays. She has abused alcohol for years, and has gone through phases of phoning me drunk and berating me for leaving our hometown. Recently, she’s been saying she wants me to visit, but she is anti-vax. I’m not comfortable visiting her until she gets vaccinated. Please advise. — STAYING AWAY IN OREGON

DEAR STAYING: I assume you have been vaccinated. If so, and your mother is willing to wear a mask and socially distance during your visit, then you could go. Of course, my response is predicated upon your DESIRE to visit your mother, and from the tone of your letter, I have the distinct impression you would rather not. (And for good reason.)

DEAR ABBY: My mother passed away from dementia in January 2020. When she was diagnosed in 2016, I started keeping all her appointments and anything else important in a journal. During those four years, my life was so involved with hers that writing daily became an outlet for my feelings. I have 11 small journals I still read occasionally, and it would be a shame to throw them away. Please tell me what to do with them. — REMEMBERING IN TEXAS

DEAR REMEMBERING: The course of your dear mother’s illness must have been painful. The intimate thoughts and feelings you kept in those journals might be of some value to your children, if you have any. Because the writings are of such a personal nature, offer the journals to them. If they refuse, you might also contact the Alzheimer’s Association and ask what others do with these kinds of sensitive documents.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.


Singer Gene Chandler is 81. Country singer Jeannie Seely is 81. Actor Burt Ward (Robin on “Batman”) is 76. Former President George W. Bush is 75. Actor-director Sylvester Stallone is 75. Actor Fred Dryer (“Hunter”) is 75. Actor Shelley Hack is 74. Actor Geoffrey Rush is 70. Country singer Nanci Griffith is 68. Political reporter/moderator John Dickerson (“Face the Nation”) is 53. TV host Josh Elliott is 50. Rapper 50 Cent is 46. Actors Tia and Tamera Mowry are 43. Comedian-actor Kevin Hart is 42. Actor Eva Green is 41. NBA star Zion Williamson is 21.


Consider your options. Explore engaging, creative endeavors that broaden your perspective. Refuse to let outsiders interfere with your plans. Change begins with you, so follow your heart and put your energy where it counts. Don’t take unnecessary health risks.

CANCER (June 21-July 22) — Do what feels right and makes you happy. Take responsibility for your life and your livelihood. Step into the spotlight if it will help you reach your objective. Don’t let anyone meddle in your affairs.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22) — Work to improve your relationships with honesty and integrity. Limit overspending and taking on responsibilities that don’t belong to you. Choose to be fair, not generous.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) — Nothing will be as it appears. Double-check information and don’t rely on others. Spend more time on details, and use your imagination to outsmart someone who offers an exaggerated point of view.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23) — Stand alone and finish what you start. Don’t listen to someone who can’t support their claims. Choose peace over chaos, and you’ll come out on top. Romance is favored.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 22) — You’ll face opposition if you are too open about your intentions. Iron out any foreseeable problems before you share your plans. Changes you make at home will improve your lifestyle.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23-Dec. 21) — Leave nothing to chance. State the facts and proceed to the finish line. Your strength and courage will motivate others to help you reach your objective. Beware of temptation.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) — Cut your overhead and free up cash for something you want to do that will improve your life and an important relationship. Trust your intuition to help you make the right decision.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — Spend more time at home or with someone who makes a difference in your life. Discussions will lead to plans that will add stability to a meaningful relationship. Listen to your heart.

PISCES (Feb. 20-March 20) — Be careful what you say. Sensitive issues will erupt if you don’t choose your words wisely. Someone you think you can trust will lead you astray. Verify all the information you receive.

ARIES (March 21-April 19) — Reach out to someone who can offer sound advice. Clear up a work-related situation before agreeing to something that may stand between you and a job prospect. Personal improvements will be heartening.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20) — When in doubt, take a step back and let matters unfold naturally. Don’t feel pressured to get involved in something that is costly or doesn’t line up with your beliefs.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20) — Take better care of yourself and avoid unpredictable situations. Pay attention to detail, and respectfully present your thoughts. Tell the truth and stand behind your word.


By Chuck Sheppard

Bright Idea: Nathan Finkel called 911 on April 17 to report that Courtney Wilson and another person showed up at the gate of his expansive mansion in suburban Fort Lauderdale, Florida, claiming that they were having a wedding there that day. “I have people trespassing on my property,” Finkel said. “They say they’re having a wedding here and it’s God’s message. I don’t know what’s going on.” According to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Wilson, the groom, had inquired about buying the estate, listed for $5.7 million, several weeks ago, then asked Finkel if he could use the backyard for his wedding. Finkel said no, but Wilson and his betrothed, Shenita Jones, sent out online invitations anyway, with festivities beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday and continuing through brunch on Sunday at what they called “the Wilson estate.” “The guy figured it was a vacant house and didn’t realize (Finkel) lived on the property in a different home,” explained Town Attorney Keith Poliakoff. Wilson was told to vacate the property and was not charged with a crime.

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