DEAR ABBY: I have a close friend who is obsessed with selling “finds” on eBay. I often give her little items that she has mentioned she liked — or outright asked for. I always thought she wanted to keep them for herself. Recently I saw some of the things I gave her for sale under her eBay account.
I am dismayed that she is taking advantage of my generosity to make a few bucks. No, she is not desperate. And no, I don’t feel comfortable saying something unless it’s clever and I won’t appear to be jealous or petty. — TRACI IN PENNSYLVANIA
DEAR TRACI: You don’t have to say anything clever. What you should do is tell your friend that you were hurt when you saw the items she had requested up for sale on her eBay account. Period. And in the future, be a little less generous about providing stock for her retail venture.
DEAR ABBY: Over the years, I have seen many letters from soon-to-be-brides asking if they should include their husband’s sister or other female friend in their bridal party, even if they don’t know them. There is a solution.
This summer, I was honored to be the best man at the wedding of a close friend. He had a female friend, “Liz,” whom he wanted in the wedding party. Liz didn’t know the bride, so instead of having her be a bridesmaid, Liz was a groomswoman. She stood in photos with the groomsmen, and even wore a matching outfit — a lovely gray dress with a red ribbon to match our gray suits and red ties. — BEST MAN IN REDMOND, WASH.
DEAR BEST MAN: That is certainly an appropriate solution to something that shouldn’t be a problem in the first place. Women have also occasionally served in the capacity of “best man.” I’m glad you mentioned it.
DEAR ABBY: I have seen letters in your column referring to not being invited to children’s birthday parties and the hurt that follows. It’s amazing to me that some adults have also never learned the importance of being sensitive to the feelings of others.
We recently moved into an established neighborhood where a group of adults go on trips, out to dinner, etc. I am old enough to realize that my husband and I will not be invited to everything. But I am not “old enough” not to feel a stab of pain and isolation when group plans are discussed in my presence and we are not invited.
Somewhere along the line, people need to learn not to discuss group activities in front of those who are not included. No one wants to feel left out. — NEWCOMER TO MINNESOTA
DEAR NEWCOMER: You’ve said it well. While I don’t think the offenders are being deliberately cruel, if people would think before opening their mouths, a lot of hurt feelings could be avoided.
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, CA 90069.