While I think it’s brutal for older people who suffer from dementia to be treated as pariahs and isolated (and many are), and clearly this friend is well-meaning, I also feel strongly that a person’s wishes stated in advance should be respected. Blanche may have wanted to be remembered as the person she was and entrusted her friend to carry out her wishes “after she reached a certain point.”
The writer of that letter asked me if I thought she was wrong to disregard her friend’s wishes. I apologize if anyone was offended by my telling her I thought she was.
Dear Abby: My wife and I have a disagreement. No matter what we are doing, she’s constantly checking her cellphone for texts or emails. Then she’ll get into text conversations and talk to herself while I sit there wondering what’s so funny. It happens a lot anytime, anywhere. Her cellphone is a constant companion and usually the center of attention.
Am I too sensitive in thinking that the phone should be put away sometimes when we’re together? Or is this the world in which we now live?
Like I’m Not There in
@text1_boldintro\::Dear Like You’re Not There: You are not being overly sensitive. Have you told your wife that you feel she’s neglecting you because she pays more attention to her cellphone? If you haven’t, you should. If she has any consideration for your feelings, she will turn it off for an agreed period of time so she can spend that time with you.
Marriages take work if they’re going to last, and communication is crucial. If she refuses to listen to you, deliver the message via text or email, or with the help of a licensed marriage counselor.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.