Dear Abby: I'm a 16-year-old girl, and I've been struggling a little bit. My family is super-Christian. They believe that members of the LGBTQ community are sinful because of who they are. I do not agree.
I have a small group of friends. Two of them have come out to me as bi and gender-fluid. When my family talks about gay people, they say horrible things. I want to tell them what they are saying is wrong and that the mean comments they make apply to my friends, but I'm afraid to give them my opinion. I'm unsure whether I should say anything at all. Can you help me? — Keeping quiet in California
Dear Keeping quiet: You are free to think the way you do, and to support your friends. However, you are not likely to change the way your parents feel on this subject. Your friends have come out to you, but not to your parents. If you out them to your parents, they may forbid you from seeing those friends. In two years, you will be 18, legally an adult and more able to express your thoughts with fewer negative ramifications. If I were you, I'd wait.
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Dear Abby: My husband was annoyed and upset by a cricket in the house. He had used insect spray, but it was still chirping, so he asked me to take care of it. I told him I didn't know how to get rid of a cricket, since we didn't know where it was exactly. He was banging around the utility room. I called his name and asked him where he had sprayed — no answer. I asked again. No response. I then used his full name, and he got upset that I did! He said it was disrespectful and that I was "treating him like a child."
I apologized if I had hurt his feelings, but he's still upset with me because I don't agree it was disrespectful. Am I wrong? IS it disrespectful to use your husband's full name when trying to get his attention? — Sad in Nevada
Dear Sad: It's not disrespectful if you can't get him to respond any other way. I don't know what your husband's relationship was with his mother. Perhaps she used his full name when he ignored her as he did to you when he was "playing cricket." The next time he tells you to take care of something you can't handle, pick up the phone and hire a professional. That way you won't have to inconvenience your husband.
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Dear Abby: The owner of a store I shop at every week, who I believe is in her 40s, recently posted on her Facebook page that she was having a sale because it was her birthday. I thought it was greedy and inappropriate, as I was always taught that it's a breach of etiquette to announce that it's your birthday, especially as an adult. Am I right? Or am I reading too much into this? — Bothered in the east
Dear Bothered: You are reading too much into this. There is nothing wrong about people revealing that it's their birthday. It doesn't obligate anyone to fork over anything more than their good wishes. If you decide to shop the sale, all you have to do is say, "How nice! I hope you are enjoying your special day."
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Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, Calif. 90069.