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Annie’s Mailbox: Son’s ‘cheap’ comment hurt dad

Mon., Feb. 24, 2014

Dear Annie: My son recently said something that embarrassed me and kept me awake most of the night.

My wife and I were at his home for dinner, along with my daughter and several others. We were talking about TV, and my son mentioned a show where a guy does all kinds of things to save money. He said to my daughter, “If you think your daddy is cheap, you should see this guy.” I said nothing at the time because I didn’t want to spoil the occasion. But evidently, he and my daughter both think I am cheap.

Annie, I put both of them through college, and so they don’t owe any money. I worked three jobs so my son could attend a prestigious university out East. They have never wanted for anything.

It’s been three months, and I’m still hurting. Any advice? – Disappointed Dad

Dear Dad: No one wants to be thought of as cheap, especially by his own children. But we don’t think your son or daughter intended to be hurtful. What you consider sensibly frugal, they undoubtedly recall as you saying “no” to their innumerable requests for toys, gifts, vacations, etc., and how pleased you were when you saved a penny here and there. But please don’t let this fester, as it could damage your relationship with your children. Talk to your son and tell him how much his comment hurt you. We hope he’ll be more aware of your feelings in the future.

Dear Annie: I read the responses to “I Need Nice Clothes, Too,” about large-size clothing selections. My complaint is about petite sizes for mature women. There is no selection at all. It’s as if we are being discriminated against because we are short.

We like to dress fashionably. We wear coats, pajamas, slacks and dresses, but few stores carry petite sizes, and fewer still have clothing suitable for anyone over 12. I’m sure it’s the same problem for tall women. – Warren, Ohio


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