Young wife expecting first child faces adult decisions


Dear Abby: I am 19 and a new bride. My husband is in the Army. We’re very happy, but I just found out that I’m pregnant — I’m not sure how far along yet — and I feel torn about what to do.

My husband wants a child very badly, but he did say he would support whatever decision I make. While I have no objection to having a child, I know my family will make me feel guilty if I do by saying they are disappointed, that I should have waited and that I’m “throwing my life away.”

Abby, I am so confused. I don’t know what to do. I want my family to support me and be there when I have our first child.

Pressured and Confused

Dear Pressured: Was your family disappointed and saying you were throwing your life away when you married your husband? If the answer is no, then why would they accuse you of doing so because you are pregnant?

You are an adult, albeit a young one, and a wife. The first thing you need to do is see a gynecologist and find out how far along you are. Your next step is for you and your husband to decide if you are emotionally and financially ready to be parents. No one can decide this for you, but your family’s possible “disappointment” should not enter into your decision. If they are not supportive, your in-laws might be.

Dear Abby: Before my son met his fiancee of five years, “Shelby,” he went with another girl, “Dana,” for three years. During that time we became good friends with Dana’s parents (the “Smiths”). After the breakup, we stayed in touch with the Smiths and go out occasionally.

Recently, Mrs. Smith invited us to her husband’s retirement party. When we told our son we were going, he mentioned it to Shelby, who told us we were being disrespectful to her by continuing our relationship with the Smiths.

Shelby’s position is that all ties to Dana and her family should have been severed when the boyfriend/girlfriend relationship ended. Our position is the Smiths became friends of ours before Shelby was in the picture, and we don’t think we are being disrespectful to anyone by continuing our relationship with this couple. Are we wrong?

Jim

In California

Dear Jim: Of course not. Your son’s fiancee appears to have serious insecurities. I sincerely hope you won’t allow her to control your lives and your relationships, because if you do, this is just the beginning of how she will try to control you —and your son. This is Shelby’s problem. SHE will have to deal with it. Please do not make it yours.

Dear Abby: I have friends who exclude me or take off with other friends before I can get to where they are meeting. What can I do to get them to call me? Why am I their whipping post?

Friend-challenged

In Overland Park, Kan.

Dear Challenged: Friends don’t treat friends the way you are being treated. There is nothing you can do to get them to behave differently. You are letting them do this because you’re hoping that if you ignore their insensitivity and rudeness, they will accept you.

Please stop trying to cling to them. Join activities where you’ll meet people with whom you REALLY have something in common. If you do, you will be much happier than you are today.

Dear Readers: Once again, here is my “timely” reminder that daylight saving time ends at 2 a.m. Sunday — so don’t forget to turn your clocks back one hour before bedtime.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.