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DEAR ABBY: I have a handyman who works on my house. I noticed that if he uses the bathroom, he is there for a while and goes to number two. My anxiety levels are through the roof. Am I telling him something and what should I say? — NERVOUS LADY IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR MRS: May I share a truth? If we must go, we must go. If your handyman leaves the bathroom in the same condition when he leaves the bathroom as when he enters it, you have nothing to worry about. Be merciful, and if you need a handyman, there is always someone willing to help.
DEAR ABBY: My colleague benefits from our employer’s generous sick leave policy and regularly calls in sick. She returns the next day with no outward sign of illness and has returned on several occasions with a fresh haircut and a new manicure. When she’s at work, she often steps away from her desk for face-to-face conversations.
I finally said something to our supervisor because I feel cheated. Having worked in this office for over 10 years, I know the job inside out, so I can do my job – and hers – with ease. I actually like my colleague, but I feel like she takes me for granted. Our attendant had a conversation with her, but it didn’t help. Would it be unreasonable for me to have a candid conversation with her directly? I foresee it may cause a cool reception, but I’m losing patience. — EMPLOYEE CONUNDRUM
DEAR EMPLOYEE: It is not unreasonable to talk to this colleague, but what do you gain by confronting her and what do you have to lose? If it creates a frostier work environment, don’t do it. A better solution would be to stop doing her job for her. If she has to face the consequences of slacking, she can be an incentive to change her ways.
DEAR ABBY: My husband of many years is sweet and sweet every morning, but after drinking, which he does every day from 4 or 5 o’clock, his personality changes. I have to be extremely careful with every word I say or I will receive his sarcasm and/or anger, so I am anxious and worried every night until he goes to sleep, which thankfully is very early.
In the morning he expects me to be happy and cheerful as if nothing happened the night before. I’ve tried to discuss this with him, but it doesn’t help. After years of this I have become depressed and would really appreciate your advice. — AT THE END OF WHITE IN FLORIDA
DEAR AT WITS’ END: You are married to an alcoholic. Marriage to a verbally abusive alcoholic would make anyone depressed! I can only wonder why you chose to tolerate this for so long.
The path to a solution to your problem would start with locating the nearest Al-Anon meeting and attending some of them. If you do, you’ll find the support and help you’re looking for. You can find a meeting near you by visiting al-anon.org/info.
Dear Abby was written by Abigail Van Buren, aka Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.