Dear Abby:

I have a friend I'll call Cameron. Cameron is a very judgmental person. My mom watches her every summer.

Mom doesn't like the fact that Cameron is always saying how dumb and stupid people look as she sees them pass by. Mom is going to talk to her and tell her to straighten up or she can't come over next summer. If that happens, I know Cameron will ask me why she can't. What do I tell her? If I tell her the truth, I'm afraid she'll be mad at me and not want to be my friend anymore. I don't want to lose my friendship with her because she makes me laugh.

Worried in Denver

When your mother talks to your friend about her behavior, she'll be doing the girl a favor. If Cameron feels the need to ask you why she's no longer welcome, you should tell her the truth. Her behavior is obnoxious. People who act that way usually do it because they think it makes them look superior. In actuality, it's a tip-off that the person is insecure.

Dear Abby:

After my separation and divorce, I had a relationship with a man I'll call "Austen." He was in financial trouble and asked me to take out a loan of $15,000 for him, since I have good credit. He claimed that if he could get himself "straightened out," we could have a brighter future.

After two years of emotional abuse, I finally ended the relationship. It has been several months, and he is consistently late making the monthly payments. Last month, he told me that since I won't resume the relationship, I can go to hell and said not to call him again.

I am now stuck with the burden of paying off the loan. Any ideas how to persuade Austen to fulfill his responsibility?

Feels Like a Sucker, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Unless his name is on the loan document, the financial responsibility is all yours. Consider what happened to be very expensive tuition in the school of experience. I'll bet you don't make that mistake again.

Dear Abby:

I am a 33-year-old mother of two. I have been in a relationship with a married 41-year-old man for four years.

About a year and a half ago, he filed for divorce and had her served with the papers. She signed them, but she signed in the wrong spot. He went back to his lawyer's office and got new papers for her to sign, but for some reason he has not pursued it.

The lawyer's office finally sent a letter saying that they're going to dismiss the case if he doesn't come back and file to have her served by the constable. I told him I would give him the $350, but he hasn't taken me up on my offer. What do you think I should do?

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

For openers, forget about marrying him. He's still married. The problem isn't that the man has a lack of money; what he lacks is motivation.

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