DEAR ABBY: My grandson is 6 and very sensitive, maybe too sensitive. He's also lovable, super scientific-minded, good-hearted and generous with his little sister. However, he still uses a diaper at night and has CVS (cyclical vomiting syndrome). It's heartbreaking. For that reason, he's on a special gluten-free, no flour, no chocolate diet.
The other day at school (he is in kindergarten), they had a presentation with a magician about the danger of drugs and alcohol. Just to let you know, his parents are very much into teaching their kids morals and values, and they only let him watch cartoons like "Paw Patrol" and similar programs. No movies and no TV in general. (Abby, isn't this too early to introduce the subject of drugs and alcohol to children in school?) My grandson asked, "What are drugs and what is alcohol?" Long story short, he was super scared and started to cry in class.
The school called his parents and he came home devastated. We reassured him that in our homes there are no drugs, and alcohol is in a special cabinet only for adults who use it in moderation and only occasionally because it can hurt your body and mind.
Finally, he fell asleep still crying and took a short nap. He woke up still worried about the presentation, but Mom and Dad explained there was nothing to worry about, that he was living in a safe house and nobody would hurt him or Mom or Dad and no one in his family would be hurt by drugs or alcohol.
What is your opinion on this matter of super sensitivity? I love him so much. — CONCERNED GRANDMA
DEAR CONCERNED: There are many super-sensitive adults who began life as super-sensitive children. It's not necessarily a bad thing, but children must learn to exist in and to navigate the increasingly complicated world in which they live. Your grandson's parents should have his pediatrician recommend a licensed child psychologist who can help the boy and his parents address the challenges ahead.
DEAR ABBY: My 34-year-old daughter is the youngest of three. She has never married and has no kids. Her friends, her older sister and both female cousins are all married. She has been seeing a guy for about three years, but it's a long-distance relationship. She lives in Washington state; he's in California.
During this time, they split up once after he told her he didn't think she was The One. After six months apart, they started seeing each other again. It has been a year now. When he asks, she flies down to see him. My question is, how long should she stay in this relationship before getting engaged? — CLOCK-WATCHING DAD
DEAR DAD: How long your 34-year-old daughter should stay in a relationship that appears to be headed nowhere is not for you or for me to decide. She's an adult who appears to have settled for a friends-with-benefits arrangement, or a situationship. If and when she finally concludes that it isn't going to become anything more, she will move on.
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, CA 90069.
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