“Ask the Clown”: an advice column by The Clown
A long-term boyfriend left me about eight months ago. Since then, I have overcome the grief and I have been doing as much as possible with some friends. Recently, I have been attracted more and more to one of the guys that hangs out with us occasionally. The problem is that he is always making fun of “thirsty” women that send him messages. I want to approach this without falling into that category. What do you suggest?
Pull the guy aside for a conversation and be direct and honest about what you have in mind. The worst that can happen is that he tells you he is not interested. You are obviously doing okay otherwise, so if the outcome is not ideal, just keep moving forward.
Best of luck,
My uncle will get out of prison in time for Christmas. He served time for armed robbery and he has gone through an addiction recovery program. My family is torn in half debating whether he should be part of our Christmas celebration. My mother insists that her brother has made no changes and that he will steal from my grandmother again. My grandmother wants him to be there and I side with her. I fear that this will ruin the holidays. What would you do?
Dear Caring Niece,
Tradition says to defer to the wishes of the head of the family. It seems that your
grandmother has faith that a recovery program and time served is enough and she wants to give her son the benefit of the doubt. Your mother wants to protect her mother, which is a natural thing to do, but extended punishment is not needed. If you can act as a more independent agent, be vigil of your uncle’s actions and if you suspect anything, say something. Perhaps your grandmother will just be happy to have the family together.
Since my sister died, I have been the sole parent to her children. This has been wonderful and heartbreaking and so much fun. Now that they are approaching certain ages, I am wondering how to approach the discussion about sex and gender and if I am the right person to do this. I worry most because my daughter/niece is the older one and has been asking questions. What would you do?
Dear Concerned Dad,
You are indeed the best person for this. You are the father and your communication should always be open with your children. Be certain to include only facts and handle every question asked honestly. Give them the long vision of changes to the body through life so that they can be prepared to endure everything. If we all do this, there will be no more shaming or guilt associated with sexuality and natural function. Education is everything.
Knowledge is power,
1. Kindness costs nothing. Give freely and often.
2. Adversaries are fed by attention and energy. Starve them and see number 1.
3. Taking time for yourself is fine. Don’t make guilt a part of it.
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