Dear Annie: I’m a 15-year-old girl, dating an 18-year-old who just graduated.
We’ve been together for eight months, and at first, it was great.
Then, as our relationship progressed, he started getting really jealous.
He made me delete all the guys from my Facebook page and my cell phone.
At first it was a big deal, but now I’m used to it.
He’s kind of controlling in all situations, everything has to go his way, and he makes me feel bad all the time.
He tells me most of my physical features are unattractive and constantly disrespects me.
He makes me stop speaking to anyone who doesn’t like him, including my brother.
As you can tell, this isn’t a very healthy relationship, but I love him with all my heart and can’t leave him no matter how much I try.
I’ve broken up with him so many times, hoping he would change, but he hasn’t. I feel as though he has stopped caring about me.
What should I do? — Heartbroken in Michigan
Dear Heartbroken: Get out immediately.
Your boyfriend has all the earmarks of an abuser. He controls everything about you, finds ways to isolate you from family and friends, and will continue to demean and insult you until you feel worthless — and grateful that he still wants to be with you. The next step is physical harm.
And he’ll make you believe you deserve it.
He doesn’t take your breakups seriously because you always come back for more.
If he thought you would truly move on, he might beg you to come back — and the cycle would start all over.
You are smart to see that this isn’t a healthy relationship, but you cannot make it better. Talk to your parents about him so they are aware of what is going on. And please get away from this manipulative man while you still can
Dear Annie: I am a 49-year-old recovered alcoholic, and everyone in my office knows it.
Today, a co-worker gave me a piece of candy laced with a small amount of alcohol.
He thought it was hilarious and “no big deal.”
Annie, I consider this to be serious. I quickly spit the candy out, rinsed my mouth with salt water and called my AA sponsor. The co-worker was reprimanded by my boss.
Non-alcoholics, or “normies,” as we call them, should respect that we are dealing with a serious problem on a day-to-day basis.
It took me more than 12 years with AA to get sober, and I’ve been clean for four years. I am a much happier, saner person, but it took a lot of work. All we ask is that others recognize this. — Still Sober
Dear Sober: People who have never had an alcohol problem do not understand the severity of the issue and think a little bit of booze won’t matter.
They do not realize that “a little bit” can tip the scales for an alcoholic and send them on a binge. And if your co-worker thought destroying your sobriety would be amusing, he’s a malicious idiot.
Good for your boss for making it clear that such practical jokes are neither funny nor harmless, and kudos to you for maintaining your sobriety.
Dear Annie: You recently printed some letters regarding whether or not to call 911 when a terminal patient has a DNR order. I went through this with my father.
I was called from hospice and was advised that his condition had worsened. They asked if I wanted him transported to the hospital. I called my wife, who had been through a similar situation with her dad a couple of years earlier.
In her usual clarity, she said, “Of course you need to send him to the hospital. It’s a ‘Do Not Resuscitate,’ not a ‘Do Not Treat.’”
It was the right call. My father died two days later, but I know he had privacy and dignity.
He felt no pain, and I feel no guilt. — Carolina Son
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.