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Dear Abby: I am writing about your Keepers booklet, the collection of your most popular essays, poems and letters. I would like to purchase a copy, but first, I have a question. Is there a particular favorite of yours in there? Big Fan in Fort Wayne, IN Dear Fan: My Keepers booklet contains 72 column items that readers have told me they had read and reread until they were yellowed with age and falling apart. This booklet was created because of the high volume of requests from my readers for a collection of these items in one easy-to-use booklet. The subjects are diverse, covering a variety of topics, including parenting, children, aging, animals, forgiveness, etc. One poem in particular has always resonated with me. It is titled “The Time Is Now,” and I find its message both poignant and meaningful. I hope you will agree. The Time Is Now (author unknown) If you are ever going to love me, Love me now, while I can know The sweet and tender feelings Which from true affection flow. Love me now While I am living. Do not wait until I’m gone And then have it chiseled in marble, Sweet words on ice-cold stone. If you have tender thoughts of me, Please tell me now. If you wait until I am sleeping, Never to awaken, There will be death between us And I won’t hear you then. So, if you love me, even a little bit, Let me know it while I am living So I can treasure it. Filled with clever observations, my Keepers booklet is both witty and philosophical. It can be ordered by sending your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds) to Dear Abby Keepers Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447.... (click for more)

ARIES. (March 20 - April 19): Be open to a change in plans. You could find something more worthwhile than what you initially set out to achieve. (click for more)

Dear Abby: I dwell in a small, Southern and, I thought, safe hometown. I’m currently unemployed and therefore unable to afford a place of my own. I live with my parents. I have job-searched for months now for something within walking distance. I pay for food with food stamps. But I can’t yet pay for transportation, insurance, necessities, etc. My problem is, I love to walk four to six times a week for 30 minutes to an hour. It helps me with depression and boosts my self-esteem, health and wellness. It shouldn’t be a problem, right? Well, I’ve been warned several times that I could get hit by a vehicle, kidnapped and even murdered if I continue to do it. (My parents are TV crime show fans.) Abby, I have spoken with the police in my area. They assure me it’s safe to be out for a walk. Yet, if I’m gone more than 15 or 20 minutes, I receive incessant, ominous, foreboding warning calls on my cell phone. What can I do about their overactive spookiness? I can’t afford a treadmill. Stepping Out in Arkansas Dear Stepping: When you leave for your walk, tell your parents approximately what time they can expect you back, leaving yourself a few minutes’ leeway. Then silence your cell phone and enjoy your walk. Dear Abby: Is it wrong to question some belief or fact that someone else has brought up? I’m not in the habit of picking fights or bringing up controversial topics in social situations. But if someone else brings it up first or makes a verifiable claim, I think I’m within my rights to ask for a source or to argue the point if I disagree. I am being told that doing this is rude. I always thought that if someone makes a claim or statement, then it’s acceptable for the people you are talking with to ask where the information came from or to disagree. And... (click for more)

Dear Abby: When I first started dating my boyfriend seven years ago, I told him that I wanted to someday adopt a child. He said he would like his own children first, but adoption would be “cool.” We now have two children, 5 and 3, and I’m ready to adopt. We’re financially able to support another child, and we both have great careers. When I recently mentioned adoption to him, he said he has changed his mind and doesn’t want to adopt. He says because we have our own children, he wouldn’t want the adopted baby to potentially feel like the “odd one out.” Is this something to end an otherwise happy marriage over? Or should I give it one more shot and hope maybe he’ll want to adopt? I have wanted to do this since I was a little girl, and it is important to me. Pro-adoption in Ohio Dear Pro-adoption: You and your husband may need professional mediation to reach an agreement that will work for both of you. Bringing a child who needs a loving family into your home can be managed if everyone is on the same page with it — including your biological children. Your husband may not want the responsibility of another child because he has experienced parenthood twice and knows how much is involved in raising them, but the reason he gave doesn’t strike me as valid. That said, leaving your husband would be no guarantee that you would be in a position to adopt a child alone. There may be other options for you if you want to help children waiting for adoption — including fostering, mentoring or volunteering with the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. Dear Abby: I read your column daily and notice that you often suggest readers consult a “nutritionist” for assistance with healthy eating, weight loss, etc. I have... (click for more)

Dear Abby: My niece (age 25), despite numerous warnings against getting pregnant, deliberately did three years ago. It was an affair with a man who is in a live-in relationship with another woman. My niece ended up in the hospital and had to have serious surgeries. She lost her job and moved in with my sister and her husband. She’s working again, but she and her daughter still live with my sister because she doesn’t earn enough to support them (and gets no help from the father). She has recently announced that she’s pregnant again by this same man! My sister says she feels compelled to support my niece because she is concerned about her grandchild(-ren). How do the rest of us “opt out,” without seeming mean or judgmental? I feel sorry for the strain on my sister, but she keeps asking family members to help as she is only working part time and her husband is on disability. I don’t feel it is our responsibility to keep supporting this irresponsible adult. Help, please! Auntie No More Dear Auntie: Unless you and the family want to support your niece and all the children she may have, draw the line. Tell your sister “the family” will chip in one more time, but the money must be used so she and her daughter can consult a lawyer about how to compel the deadbeat dad to assume his responsibilities. There are also state child support enforcement agencies that can help. Dear Abby: I started dating my next-door neighbor two years ago. We have known each other for 17 years. We hit it off, and after about a month he was spending every night with me. He’s 72 and retired; I’m 55 and work full time. We have a great relationship, but I feel he is stalling about marrying me. In the beginning, he said if we were together after one year we would talk about selling... (click for more)

Dear Abby: I met a really great guy online eight months ago. He lives in another country, and we have been in a long-distance relationship for the last six months. We talk all the time, video-chat frequently and have grown very close. I have never clicked with anyone like I have with him, and I know he feels the same. We are having a significant disagreement about meeting in person. I’m willing to travel to his country. The expense, while not negligible, is within my means. However, he says he has some serious health problems and he wants to wait until they are resolved to meet. He has had them for much of his life, although they have gotten worse during the time I have known him. So far, there has been no diagnosis or treatment plan. When I have asked, he says I should be patient and he doesn’t want our relationship to be about waiting to do things because of his condition. Meanwhile, I know how much pain he is in. I see it every time we chat, and I know how much it affects him. It’s not going to scare me away. I just want to be there with him, to see if we work as well in person as we seem to online. I don’t want to add to his stress by insisting we meet, but I also don’t want to spend months or years with my life on hold, waiting for a perfect time to meet. What should I do? Gamer Girl in Indiana Dear Gamer Girl: When someone you meet online is reluctant to meet in person and interact with you fully, there is usually a reason. Having had these “health problems” all his life, one would think there would be a name for the illness and a treatment plan. Because he has neither, I question whether his health is the reason he doesn’t want you to visit him. He may be in a relationship or not as he has represented himself in some other way. What you need to... (click for more)