I decided (since I couldn’t think of anything else to write) that I would take some Dear Abby questions and give them my own edgy, yet sort of funny answers. And hopefully just taking the question and not her answer isn’t some form of copyright infringement. *fingers crossed*
DEAR ABBY: I am 39, married, and a professional woman with a good income. My best friend, “Barbie,” and I both went to work after high school without completing our education. However, after several years I decided to go to college and get a degree so I could change careers. It turned out to be one of the best decisions I ever made. My income has more than doubled.
Barbie is obviously jealous of my new life, which affords me opportunities to travel, take vacations, and have the money to buy things I couldn’t afford before. She and her family barely make ends meet. Although we have been like sisters since childhood, I now feel as if I must walk on eggshells around her — guarding my conversation lest I mention a new purchase or having time off. If something does slip out, Barbie becomes defensive and sarcastic.
Abby, I shouldn’t have to apologize for my new lifestyle. I worked hard to make a change for myself. What can I do? I really like her, but this is becoming difficult.
An example: We went shopping last week. She bought only a gift she had to have for a birthday — nothing for herself. I felt uncomfortable with my purchases, even though they weren’t extravagant. She made a comment to the effect that “it must be nice to be able to buy something so frivolous.”
I should mention that Barbie’s parents are still willing to send her through college or a tech school, even at the age of 39, but she chooses not to make the effort. — TIRED OF FEELING APOLOGETIC
Why are you hanging around such a loser? Your friend is obviously someone who wants to benefit from a socialist America. She wants the same amount of money you make but she wants it given to her. I mean, you said yourself that her parents are willing to pay her way through school, but she refused to take them up on their offer. What’s she got going for her? Welfare? Food stamps? Section 8? Just another anchor pulling this ship down.
You have no reason to be apologetic. You worked hard for what you have. It’s not like “Barbie” has been denied opportunities. She chose not to take advantage of them, and that’s on her. If she’s jealous of what you’ve done with your life and feels the need to make snide comments about what you’ve earned and/or accomplished then she’s not really a very good friend now, is she?
My advice? Tell her to accept it or take a hike. A true friend wouldn’t hold it against you.
DEAR ABBY: I am the owner of a small boutique for women. My only full-time employee is everything an employer could ask for. However, she often comes in looking like she just crawled out of bed and doesn’t own an iron.
What can I say to help her become more aware of her appearance? I don’t want to hurt her feelings. I jokingly told her to “retire” a pair of slacks she frequently wears because they are too tight and the rear end is shiny. But this week she came in wearing them again — so evidently, she didn’t get the message.
Please help. Thank you. — ANNE IN MISSOURI
I must first disagree with your assertion that this is employee is everything an employer could ask for. If this were truly the case, you’d hardly be asking me for advice on how to deal with her fashion faux pas.
On to the problem. You seem to have trouble with the concept of an employer/employee relationship. You see, as the employer you are the boss. You get to tell the employees what you want them to do, how you want them to dress (within reason), when to be to work, etc. Your subtle hint was obviously not understood so maybe it’s time you actually, you know, face the problem. Grow a set and tell this employee that her appearance is unacceptable. Do so in a reasonable manner, though.
Start out by letting her know how much you appreciate all of the hard work she does and how much you value her as an employee, but that her appearance just isn’t meeting the company standards. If she continues to disregard your requests then you have to ultimately decide what’s more important to you: her appearance or her productivity.
Also, have you considered the fact that she may not be able to afford new clothes? Give her a raise if she’s doing that good a job for you!