Dear Short Answers: I have had a friend for many years who has always been extremely overweight. She recently started to lose weight and, apparently, is having sex for the first time in many years. I think that’s great. The problem is that she talks about it incessantly and I find it rather disturbing and very unpleasant to listen to. How do I get her to stop without losing this lifelong friend? — Don’t Want To Hear It

Dear DWH: This is one time where we think it would be great to grin and bear it. Your friend needs all the support she can get to stay on track with weight loss. Her inappropriate confidences are just a nervous announcement of entering unfamiliar territory. Mercy Now.

When Money Talks

Dear Short Answers: My husband and I are working on an addition on our home. A few months ago I mentioned to a friend that money was tight as we are paying for the addition out of pocket. Recently, I mentioned to her that I am headed to California to which she replied, “I thought you were broke!” I found it terribly rude. How should I have responded? — Dollars And Sense

Dear D&S: Talking about money with others is risky business and invites the kind of response you got. If you’re anxious or feeling flush — keep it to yourself.

Easy Does It

Dear Short Answers: I have a good friend who I believe is getting Alzheimer’s. She forgets things more and more and sometimes seems a little confused. She lives alone and I am afraid that something bad will happen if I don’t intervene. But what do I do? — Getting Worried

Dear GW: Gently suggest it might be time for her annual physical. Her doctor is probably a more reliable judge of her symptoms.

Witness To The Crime


Dear Short Answers: What do you do when you are at a dinner party at someone’s house and the host says the most outrageously bigoted things? Don’t bad things happen when good people keep quiet? — Shocked

Dear Shocked: Yes, bad things happen when good people don’t speak up. When evil is across the table, it is good to confront it. It may cost you your friendship, but values are expensive. That’s why not everyone has them.

When Yours Is Yours

Dear Short Answers: When do you have to tell a new boyfriend that you had breast implants? I think one reason he likes me so much is because of how I look and I don’t know how he’ll react if he knows. But I feel dishonest every time he compliments my “figure.” What do I do? — Hourglass

Dear Hourglass: No reason to ever tell him. Your body is your body and whether you were born with it, built it, or bought it is nobody’s business but your own.

Winners And Losers

Dear Short Answers: Why is it so hard to be friends with an ex-girlfriend? — Ex-BF

Dear X: Breakups are about broken hearts and someone walks away with the deeper wounds. This is not a strong foundation for friendship.

Life is complicated. Short Answers isn’t.

Send a question about whatever is bothering you to DuplinTimes@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 week right here.