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Short Answers March 19

Short Answers

By Paula Forman and Jeff Johnson

Sunday, March 19, 2017


Dear Short Answers: I’ve never been a particularly fashionable person, but my 2017 New Year’s resolution was to try harder this year. So I hired a fashion “consultant” to help me pick out clothes that were a bit trendier. Unfortunately, I am starting to feel ridiculous — like the two women on “Absolutely Fabulous.”

This consultant comes highly recommended by friends (and my friends all say that I look terrific), but I’m just not sure if high fashion is the right thing for me. Should I stick with it a bit longer or should I throw in the towel and go back to my old closet of pants and blouses? — Not AbFab

Dear Not: We applaud your commitment to a personal restage! It takes courage. However, it is not surprising that after years as a sparrow you feel uncomfortable as a peacock. These are early days. Tell you consultant to dial it back a bit and talk to us again in June.


Dear Short Answers: I had a relationship with a very abusive, lying, cheating man that ended about three years ago when I simply refused to see him anymore. He completely disappeared from my life until I got an email from him last week. He says that he is sober and has a job and wants to see me just to apologize. I think this might be part of his AA program but he didn’t say that.

I want to help him stay sober, but I don’t want to get involved with him in any way. He says that he only needs a few minutes to explain and nothing more. Do I owe him this? Or should I keep him completely out of my life? — What to Do?

Dear What: You owe him nothing. If it is your nature to do something, meet him in a public place — like a Starbucks. Do it in the morning — and make sure you have a lunch date.


Dear Short Answers: What do you do if you absolutely can’t stand to be around your husband-to-be’s family? I mean, I get physically sick just thinking about having to go to the in-laws for dinner or spend time with his brothers and sisters. There is no rational reason for this. They seem to be perfectly nice people. They just drive me crazy. Do you think this is a warning that I might not be ready to marry this man? — Nervous Nellie

Dear Nellie: What do you think?


Dear Short Answers: How do you get over having a crush on someone at work? Especially when the other person is clearly not interested in you. But I have to see him everyday, and that is just driving me crazy. I don’t want to make a fool of myself. But I also don’t want to miss the chance that he might just a little bit like me. How do I handle this? — Rosie

Dear Rosie: Really. Leave him alone. Not interested means not interested.


Dear Short Answers: I just heard that an old friend and colleague passed away several years ago. Is it too late to send a card to his wife or do you think she would rather not be reminded? — Sarah

Dear Sarah: We can safely assure you that the death of a spouse is not ever forgotten, and words of remembrance are always appreciated, however belated.

Life is complicated. “Short Answers” isn’t. Send a question about whatever is bothering you to reflector@shortanswers.net or go to www.shortanswers.net and a psychologist and sociologist will answer. A selection of the best questions will be printed every Sunday in The Daily Reflector.