December 28, 1997 in Features

Method Should Suit Each Couple

Ann Landers Creators Syndicate

Dear Ann Landers: Your response to “Angry in Rockford” was out to lunch. She said women always wind up taking the responsibility for birth control. You disagreed, saying men can and do take responsibility because condoms are the most frequently used method to prevent pregnancy. You added, “Any male who refuses to use a condom because it cuts down on his pleasure is selfish and inconsiderate.”

Selfish and inconsiderate? Try inflexible, juvenile and irresponsible. Men who cannot see beyond the moment of pleasure are very poor candidates for a durable, long-term relationship. They also make lousy husbands.

“Angry” was commenting on the couple who had decided not to have any more children. The wife didn’t want to have a tubal ligation because it was major surgery. The husband, however, refused to get a vasectomy, telling his wife he might want children with someone else if she should die or the marriage should fail.

The man doesn’t need a vasectomy. He needs a lobotomy. You blew it. - M.M. in Connecticut

Dear M.M.: When I blow it, I admit it, but the advice I gave was solid. I would never recommend a vasectomy for a man who says he doesn’t want one. The repercussions could wreck the marriage. Some men see the ability to reproduce as a symbol of manhood. Every couple should work out the method of birth control that best suits them.

Dear Ann Landers: I am writing to give support to the single woman who was sick and tired of being asked, “When are you going to get a husband?”

When vulgar, nosy, usually married people ask me when I’m going to get a husband, I reply with a smile, “Oh, I get offers from husbands all the time.” That shuts them up in a hurry. - Julie in Manhattan

Dear Julie: What a clever response, even though it could make some wives a little nervous. Any clod who asks such an insensitive question deserves to be hauled up short.

Dear Ann Landers: I was disturbed by the letters from several of your readers who would rather commit suicide than go to a nursing home.

Aside from my strong religious convictions that life is sacred and should not be consciously destroyed, I know from personal experience that nursing homes are not horrible. There still may be some that are substandard, but the picture has changed dramatically in the last generation. Your readers who wrote to complain are in the Model-T era.

I was in the Rose Blumkin Home in Omaha for five months and am now on my own. I am 84 years old. The home was scrupulously clean and absolutely odorless. The food wasn’t exactly gourmet, but it was nourishing and plentiful. More than anything else, I was impressed by the nursing staff. The nurses and aides were caring, loving, gentle, compassionate - and competent.

People who dread old age for fear of poor care should begin to search now for a nursing home like the one I was in. - Rabbi Meyer Kripke, Omaha, Neb.

Dear Rabbi Kripke: I have visited the Rose Blumkin Home and agree it is exemplary. I am sure the staff there will appreciate the well-deserved accolades. Meanwhile, if any of you readers have loved ones in a home that doesn’t look right or smell right, complain to the top brass. Remember, it’s the wheel that squeaks that gets the oil. You should also quietly check out other homes and report the substandard home to your state department on aging.

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