Dear Annie: I faithfully read your column every day, and I need your help. I have been dating a wonderful guy for about a year and a half. "George" and I talked about getting married and having a family. I have a small child from a previous relationship who adores George. Everything was terrific until a few months ago.
George informed me that a female friend of his needed a place to stay, and he offered to let her move in with him. He admitted that he once had dated this girl and she still has feelings for him. This girl has a reputation for being very sleazy and often plays the helpless victim in order to attract people.
I told George I was not OK with her living with him, and we left it at that, but two days ago, I found out she has moved into his house. George claims nothing has or will happen, that they're just friends and that I'm overreacting.
I am sick to my stomach and feel betrayed that someone I trust and love so much is ready to live with a loose girl like that. To make matters worse, George always mentions how great this girl gets along with his mother. I feel like the other woman here. I don't want to end this relationship, but I don't see how I can continue seeing this man. I am constantly wondering if this is the night he is finally going to be seduced by that tramp. Please help, Annie. The Real Other Woman
Dear Other Woman: It's time to clear things up with George. A man who is truly committed to you does not offer to share his living space with an ex-girlfriend, especially after you've asked him not to. It shows a disregard for your feelings and a willingness to be tempted. Tell George if the ex needs a place to live, he should help her find accommodations somewhere else, but if he insists on putting her needs above yours, he is not the man for you.
Dear Annie: I am 14 years old, and I have a big problem. My mother is a serious alcoholic. I've talked to my father about it, and we have tried interventions with extended family and friends, but she will not quit.
Mom is unemployed, and I think she has an emotional disorder, because she has no interests and spends her time walking our dog all day and complaining about it. I don't invite friends over very often, and when I do, they are put off by her drinking and don't want to come back. I believe this is rubbing off on me, as I am prone to moodiness. I need your help. No Name, No State
Dear No Name: Until your mother is ready to make changes, your efforts may not work. You need to concentrate on yourself right now. Please look into Alateen, an organization for teenage relatives and friends of alcoholics. The Web site is alateen-al-anon.org, or you can call (888) 4AL-ANON (888-425-2666). Good luck, honey.
Dear Annie: This is in response to "No Class Act in Hawaii." Her mother had died, and within a month, Dad began dating the woman who helped him purchase the burial plot. While I can understand the daughter's anger, as a widower of six years, I would like to share the following:
Your mother is gone. I am deeply sorry for your loss. Your father is not being disrespectful to your mother. It is more likely that he chose to begin another relationship because the one he had with your mother was so fulfilling that he wants to love and be loved again. Being upset with your father can only add to his loss and yours. Unless you see something seriously wrong, embrace this new person in his life. Widowed in Michigan
Dear Mich.: Marrying again after the death of a spouse is often a tribute to a successful marriage. It is an attempt to recapture those satisfying and loving moments. Thank you for pointing it out.
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