When my 11-year-old daughter takes her bath, my husband sits on the toilet and eats his dinner in the bathroom with her. I find his behavior questionable and have asked him repeatedly to allow her some privacy. Nonetheless, he continues to "assist her" in bathing by adding bath oil to the water, etc. Neither my husband nor my daughter thinks anything is wrong with this behavior -- so what can I do?
He also strokes her backside to lull her to sleep at night, although she is now in sixth grade.
Please advise quickly before this gets out of hand.
Uneasy About My Daughter(s)
P.S. I have another daughter who is younger.
Your husband's behavior is inappropriate. Your daughter is old enough to bathe without supervision and should do so. You didn't mention how physically developed she is, but she will soon be a young woman. Your husband's method of "lulling" her to sleep is also too stimulating for both of them.
Discuss this with your daughter's pediatrician. Since your husband refuses to listen to you, he should hear it from an expert in child health and development. If he still refuses, the doctor can -- and should -- report his behavior to the proper authorities.
I'm writing about something I have seen happen more and more over the last several years. It's the behavior of young people at funerals.
Respect for the deceased and for those who are genuinely mourning demands that parents caution their children to restrain their natural impulses at funerals or the graveside. This means not running up and down the aisles, no loud talking or laughing, or (as on one memorable occasion), no groping of one's girlfriend or boyfriend. That kind of behavior is never forgotten by mourners and can sometimes result in permanent distaste for the misbehaving child.
Please remind your readers that funerals are highly emotional events, and people should be on their best behavior for the sake of good taste and the feelings of others.
Saddened and Offended in S.F.
I'm printing your reminder, but don't blame the children. Blame the parents who allow the misbehavior and disrespect, and who don't care enough for the feelings of those around them to intervene.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, Calif. 90069.
(c)2004, Universal Press Syndicate