Fan Mail

Dear Short Answers: Hi, first of all I’m gonna thank you a lot for your great and helpful website.  But I wanted to know if is there any way that my question won’t be shared on this site, and I have my answer privately?? Your (Secret) Fan Dear Fan: Thanks darling, we love to be [...]

Risky Business

Dear Short Answers: A few months ago, I volunteered to construct a family tree for all the members of my extended family. As part of the research, I asked everybody in the family to fill out a questionnaire so that I could get started researching online. Nobody batted an eye — and everybody gave me [...]

Whose Story Is It?

Dear Short Answers: My son has been heavily involved with drugs and is doing his best to kick the habit. He’s been in jail and in rehab which means that he “disappears” for long periods of time. Most of my friends think he’s working or in college and they ask how he’s doing. I never [...]

Goodnight Irene

Dear Short Answers: FEMA has just opened up an office in my town because of the hurricane damage from Irene. Technically, I didn’t get any damage, but I spent two whole days putting up shutters, taking down awnings and putting away outdoor furniture. Because I have a bad back, I had to hire two kids [...]

Fools Jump In

Dear Short Answers: My best friend is engaged to a guy who I don’t think is right for her. She’s only 22 and has already been engaged twice. He’s a nice guy but they are very different people and I think she would be happier with someone else. She asks me all the time if [...]

Don’t Get Mad, Get Packing

Dear Short Answers: A very good friend of mine agreed to go on vacation with me this winter. Everything is all planned and all booked (on my credit card). My friend has now decided that he can’t go because he’s afraid of losing his job and he needs all the money he can save. I [...]

Equal Opportunity

Dear Short Answers: All of a sudden, it seems that girls have started to swear as much as boys and I find it very upsetting. They tell dirty jokes and talk about their body parts in the most shocking ways. Is this just a passing trend or is this what women’s liberation has turned into? [...]

You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know

Dear Short Answers: A friend of mine has started to collect money to help the hurricane victims in New England. The problem is that I’m pretty sure that he’s not really going to send it to New England. He’s going to spend it on himself. I don’t have proof — just a feeling. He has [...]

Sticky Wicket

Dear Short Answers: My uncle died a couple of weeks ago and I am his closest living relative — even though we were never close. He left a little bit of money plus a house and an insurance policy. Everything was left to me. The problem is that there are other relatives who actually were [...]