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Annie’s Mailbox: As longtime friend, lend ear to her woes

Kathy Mitchell/Marcy Sugar

Dear Annie: My husband and I are both military. Recently, two of our oldest friends (also military) announced that they are splitting. “Emily” was cheating on “Roger” while she was deployed and now believes there is someone out there who is better for her.

When Emily returned home, she was very angry because none of her friends would speak to her. She accused Roger of turning everyone against her. To my knowledge, he has done nothing but answer people’s questions honestly. Now she says no one will listen to her because they’re already on Roger’s side.

Annie, I know there are two sides to every story and every marriage. But I’m very upset with Emily for her behavior, especially because it’s not the first time it has happened. To be honest, I don’t think I can be unbiased about her side of the story because I don’t see how she can justify cheating. Do I owe it to her to listen? – Torn Friend in Rapid City, S.D.

Dear Torn Friend: We think you should take the time to listen simply to put the issue to rest. After all, she has been a friend for years, and even if you don’t agree with her, friends are supposed to lend an ear. Let her have her say, and then you can make up your own mind about whether the friendship is worth saving.

Dear Annie: I had to comment on the letter from “Confused in California,” who justifies shoplifting because he can’t find a good job. He needs to understand the impact an arrest for theft will have on his future.

With over 25 years in the staffing industry, I can state credibly that such an arrest, whether he serves jail time or not, will preclude him from employment even for unskilled, menial jobs. In the last five years, criminal background checks have become mandatory for all positions, so even a minimum-wage job that requires no secondary education, training or skills will require a relatively clean criminal background. – V.P. of Operations in Reading, Penn.

Dear Reading: Thanks for laying the facts on the line. We hope he is listening.

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