Help Me, Bubby!

Other Bubby Books at Amazon:

Bubby Irma's Kitchen

Yiddish Your Bubbe Never Taught You

Poetry by Jewish Grandaughters

Bubbe & Gram

Bubbe's Kitchen

My Bubbe's Arms

Bubbie & Zeide's Favorite Language

Bennett and His Bubbe's Beau

Click to learn more about Bubby's book

Site Disclaimer
Send your questions to
Monday, February 28, 2005
Hi Bubby,

It's nice to find an on-line Bubby since my own Bubby died a few years ago (she was 99 and 11 months). Like you, she had solid, strong opinions that I miss terribly.

Exactly one year after my Bubby died I had a sudden urge to create my own family. After a year of thinking about it, I decided to go ahead and get started. But it was a little more complicated than usual since I am in a Lesbian relationship for 22 years and my father is a fundamental Christian (my mother is a closeted Jew).

My partner and I decided to use an anonymous Jewish donor and 42 weeks later I gave birth to a wonderful little boy. On Feb 19th our son will be one-year old and we are planning a birthday party for him. I have also been thinking about a naming ceremony. I would like to give him a Hebrew name but I'm not sure if a kid's birthday party is the right place for that or if I should have done it sooner.

I have taken him to our local synangogue a few times but have not officially joined the congregation. Should I ask the Rabbi to perform this ceremony? I don't really know anything about naming ceremonies since I wasn't raised Jewish. Any suggestions?


Dear Searching,

It is very nice of you to want to give your little son a Jewish name. In the Jewish religion male babies are named on the eighth day after birth when they are circumcised unless there is a reason to postpone it . There is a religious procedure that is performed by a religious man called a Moal and specially trained for this task.

I think it is a good idea to speak to a Rabbi and he will explain the whole procedure to you. Usually the baby is named for a loved person who has passed on.

It is very nice that you would like to do this and since you want to do it, by all means speak to a Rabbi. He will certainly lead you in the right direction. I wish you the best of everything for you and your son.
Saturday, February 26, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I am 18, and live in London. I have just left University because I was unhappy there and missing all my friends and family. Especially my boyfriend. I was only there for 3 weeks but all I wanted was to come home and spend time with my boyfriend.

My parents were extremely unhappy with my choice to leave university, they think that I left for all the wrong reasons (that I only wanted to come back to be with my boyfriend). I've decided to take a year off, earn money for a car and my own flat and then reapply to a London university. But now that I am back home in London my boyfriend's been acting offish with me, and we can't seem to get back that spark we had before I left???

I feel so alone at this current point. I feel like I don't know where I stand and where I am meant to be in life. I feel like everything is moving around me and that I have no control of my life.

Now I am having regrets about leaving uni. Maybe I did do it all 4 the wrong reasons.

I need some reassuring and help.

Standing Still

Dear Standing Still,

I think the wrong thing you did was leave the university. You did not give yourself a chance to get to know the school or the people in the school. No doubt your boyfriend realized that there were a lot of girls of 18 and he should explore the field. And I say at 18 and being on campus gives you the same oppuntunity: to meet other young men. You may find that what you experienced up until now was just "puppy" love.

I think you should go back to the school or go to another school and take classes that will prepare you for a future. When you are graduated, you can get a car and an apartment. Your future should be first. You will meet a lot of other young men at the university or even after.

You are young. I'm betting on you.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I'm a very, very jealous girl. I'm very angry towards anyone who has something good, or who is very happy about his or her life or a situation, opportunity, etc. I know it is bad! How can I eliminate it?

Jealous girl

Dear Jealous Girl,

By being jealous of another person you are developing a very bad habit that you already have. You must remember by developing bad habits you will always have bad habits. I think you should forget all those bad habits and think good things for yourself and for those around you. If you stay negative you will not have good thoughts so it is best to analyze yourself. Throw away bad habits.

At first it may be hard but little by little this feeling of jealousy will leave you and your thoughts will become happy and you will be on your way to happy thoughts and deeds. When you start thinking jealous thoughts, stop yourself and think of something nice to do or say and you will be a happier person and a good friend.

Stay happy.
Monday, February 21, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I need your advice. I have really bad acne scars and when I look in the mirror I want to cry. I feel ugly. I am getting married soon and don’t have money for plastic surgery. What should I do?

Fallen Face

Dear Bride,

Good luck to you in your forthcoming marriage. Evidently, your fiance loves you and doesn't care about your skin condition but you do and rightly so.

I am sorry that you are having acne. Many young people have the same problem. I am not a dermatologist so I can't prescribe the remedy. But by all means get to see such a doctor. I am sure he will take tests and will do everything to heal your condition. Follow his instructions to the letter and overcome your condition.

Good luck and happiness in your forthcoming marriage.
Thursday, February 17, 2005
Dear Bubby,

The Administrative Assistant ("Sue") that I work with suffered a grave loss today with the sudden death of her husband. I am quite close with her, and she called me to tell me that he had passed. I asked her, among other things, whether she would like me to send out an email to our workplace, and she told me that, yes, she would like that.

In accordance with her wishes, I sent out a very short email simply notifying our office of her husband's passing, and informing them that information on services would be forthcoming.

My boss who has worked with her for many, many years, was extremely angry with me for sending out the email. He stated that I "usurped his provenance" and was unprofessional and disrespectful for not clearing said email through him first. He chastised me, giving me a long, stern (and, quite patronizing and nasty) lecture.

Did I act inappropriately? I was certainly not trying to overstep my bounds at all, and did not feel that I was acting in a professional capacity at the time I sent out the email; I felt I was acting as her friend and in accordance with her stated desire.

In my mind, my boss has turned Sue's tragedy into something all about him. This isn't uncommon; he is someone who truly believes in his own infallibility, and would be shocked to learn that the earth, in fact, revolves around the sun, and not his glorious personage.

Nonetheless, I find this episode particularly distasteful, but I think I may be hideously overreacting. Either way, I would like to get your opinion (even though what's done is done, and it's over now).

Thank you!
Supportive Friend or Napoleon wanna-be?

Dear Supportive Friend,

I know just what kind your boss is. I had the same kind of experience but once I understood him I realized that he felt threatened by all these little things in the office. He has to be top "banana" to show that he is the boss.

From now on when you want to sent out a memo to the staff -- check with him first. It may come to the point that he will say to you "go ahead and send out the memo but show it to me first." That will appease him and he won't feel that his position is being threatened.

It is little things like this that shows up a person's personality. I'm sorry for your friends loss. I extend my sympathies.
Wednesday, February 16, 2005
Dear Bubby,

About a month ago, one of my friends asked me to be his girlfriend, and I said yes without really thinking. I know I made a mistake of not dealing with the problem sooner, but now I really feel bad that I don't return the feelings he has for me, and I think it would be best if we stayed friends, instead of being in a relationship.

My problem is that sometimes I'm not sure how I feel about him. Sometimes I like him, sometimes I wish that he'd give me more space. I think that the best thing to do would be to break off the relationship, but then I get second thoughts. How do I figure out my true feelings for him?

My second problem is that if I do decide to dump him, how do I do it in the nicest possible way? I still enjoy his company as a friend, but without the pressure of being his girlfriend. He is a great guy, and the greatest first boyfriend a girl could have. I'm lucky that I got this experience with him, so how do I keep him in my life after I dump him?

Your wisdom would be thoroughly appreciated, Bubby.

Sincerely, To love, or not to love?

Dear "To love or not to love?",

If you are not sure about this boy the best thing to do is tell him that right now you should be friends and see what the future brings. Don't tie yourself down.

Be friends with other boys and compare them. Then you will know which is best to your liking. When in doubt - leave it out.

A close relationship in school is really a waste. Better to be friends with a lot of boys so you can compare one to another. Not only will you know which boy is nicest, but it will help you later on when you are out in the world.

Good luck.
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
Dear Bubby,

I'm 21 years old, and have never had any experience with boys; no dates, no hand-holding, no nothing. It didn't bother me too much at first, because I figured I would start dating in college. Unfortunately, I've been there three years and still no luck. I'm starting to panic.

I've had a crush on this guy for almost 2 years. We work together, so we got to know each other pretty well. I thought he was interested in me since he was
so nice and friendly. Eventually, I confessed my crush to him because I thought he felt the same. He didn't. He told me that although I was a "cool girl", he didn't feel "that way" about me.

That didn't stop me, though. He continued to act friendly towards me, so I asked him if we could see a movie some time. He agreed and we exchanged phone numbers. He even traveled 2 hours to attend my birthday party when I invited him, but seemed distant, and talked more with the other guests. A few weeks later, when I called him for a movie, he said he was busy and didn't offer to reschedule. I am extremely confused.

My logical side tells me to stop acting like an obsessive fool, but my romantic side is hopeful that something may happen between us. Which side should I believe?

Torn, Confused, Inexperienced

Dear Torn, Confused and Inexperienced,

If this young man is not interested in you except as a friend, I think you should forget about him and try to develop a friendship with another boy and maybe this one will wake up. Competition is a very good incentive. Make yourself more attractive. If you are too heavy--loose a few pounds. Change your hair style. At this time in your life appearance is very important.

If nothing works--then I would guess he is just not interested in girls at this time and I would find a new romantic fellow. I'm sure there are plenty on campus.

Good hunting and let me hear from you.
Saturday, February 12, 2005
Before we get to today's question, take a look at this sweet letter Bubby received today:

Welcome back Bubby! Glad to see you're feeling better. :) Take care and happy holidays
-A reader

Thanks, Reader!

Dear Bubby,

I am a solo mum to a beautiful 8 year old boy. I love him dearly but lately all we seem to do is fight. He seems to go out of his way to do little things to annoy me, or emotionally hurt me. This is most unlike his usual behavior.

I have spoken to friends and family about it and they tell me it is just a stage, and that for them he is always a delightful boy. Why then does he create so much unhappiness in our own home? I try to give him as much attention as I can, but it is hard, as I work to support us all week, then have all the house jobs to do at the weekends.

Please can you advise me on what to do to bring back our happy home.

Feeling desperate

Dear Feeling Desperate,

Why don't you start by asking your son to help you with the household chores so that he will learn that it is not easy.

Discuss with him some of the things that are upsetting you so that he will see that he has a lot to learn.

Ask him what he would do in some circumstance and correct him in his thinking.

Give him "food for thought". When he starts to upset you, tell him to stop and think and point out the logic of the situation and get him to discuss the problem with you. Ask him if he were you what would he do.

Speak in a normal tone and rationalize the problem. You can even use a funny situation in the explanation and he will laugh. The next time it happens remind him, "No shouting. Let's talk it out."

Let me hear from you. I know it is not easy to bring up an 8 year old - he is testing you as well as you are teaching him.
Friday, February 11, 2005
Dear Bubby,

First of all, get well soon! I hope you can find some time to answer this letter, no matter how long it takes, I'd really appreciate it.

My mother and I visited a store which has very minimal security--you can walk out with things that you didn't pay for in your pocket, and no one would notice as there is no security alarm. We shopped around and got some things for an upcoming party. My mom also needed a new toaster oven, so she picked up a $40 one. When we came to the cashier, all our items came to $70--except for the toaster oven. The cashier didn't realize that it was in the cart, and she didn't charge it up.

I immediately pointed that out, and our charges rose to over $100. My mother had such a sad look on her face as she paid. She even mentioned to me outside that I should have let us get away with not paying for the toaster oven. My mother works a lot, and we worry about money often. I feel so horrible that I couldn't save her those $40... But on the other hand, I didn't want to carry that weight of knowing that we stole. I don't know what to think. Please help, Bubby!

Thank you!
Totally Toasted

Dear Toasted,

First of all you and your mother were stealing no matter what the store
security reputation was. Now that you paid for the merchandise you can sleep
at night without feeling guilty.

You should explain to your mother that it does not pay still and in the end you have to pay. If you consider yourself honest then you should practice what you preach --- be honest in every way.

Your honest Bubby.
Wednesday, February 2, 2005
A Special Message from Bubby

Thank you for all your good wishes. I've had a trying time but I'm back to almost good health. From now on I hope that we will not have any interruptions in questions and answers. Just like in school.

To be fair, I'll start with the first questions that were sent way back in September 2004. My wishes for all of you are Happy Birthday, Happy Valentines Day, Happy New Year, Happy Chanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanza, Happy Weddings, Bar-Mitzvahs, and anything else that I left out.

"Help Me, Bubby!" Disclaimer
By submitting a letter to this website, you grant Help Me, Bubby! permission to publish it on this site or elsewhere including print publications. Your letter will only include an anonymous signature that you provide or that we use to substitute for your real name. Your email address will never be included or distributed. Due to the large number of letters received, there is no guarantee that a letter will be responded to. Any information or advice given at Help Me, Bubby! is not intended to provide an alternative to professional medical treatment or to replace the advice or services of a physician or psychiatrist. Neither Bubby nor her granddaughters are professional therapists or medical experts. If you have any serious medical or mental problem, please consult a professional. Although all this advice is offered lovingly from the heart and in good spirit, we are not responsible in any way for your decision to accept or reject the advice or the results thereafter.

Powered by Blogger Logo

Click to learn more about Bubby's book

Bubby is our 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93 94 year old grandmother.
A few years ago we introduced her to the internet and we've been getting daily e-mails from her ever since. When she was 87, we began this website. We now believe she is the oldest blogger on the Internet.

Whether Bubby is reminding us that boyfriends do not substitute for warm jackets in the winter, or that it's better to receive a compliment than a brick, she always has something to say to her granddaughters.

Now with this new website, Bubby can finally share her wisdom with the rest of the world. And she's excited about it! (Which confuses us, because she used to say we were all she needed.)

Hopefully this will be as much fun for new readers as it will surely be for her. And if not, well, as Bubby says, it will all come out in the wash.

So, are you looking for advice on food, work, a broken heart, or the perfect bat mitzvah present?

But no dirty words allowed or you'll only get one matzah ball.

Bald and oblivious
Denim diagnosis
Girls are weird
Halloween ideas
I smell him from here
I'm gonna marry you
How to meet a man
Nerds go far
Political predictions
Sloppy spouse
Tastes like chicken

Voted "Blog Of Note" on (2003)
4-star Review from The Weblog Review (1.5.04)
Voted "Blog Of The Day" by The Blog Hunter
Voted "Blog Of The Day" by
Featured in the Tampa Tribune online
Featured in USA TODAY (4.22.04)
Bubby's first radio interview - 96.5 WOXL (5.4.04)
JewsWeek Jewriffic Award: "Best blog of the week" (6.6.04)
New York Times: Letter to the Editor (6.11.04)
Jerusalem Post: Feature article (7.2.04)
Interview for Akron, Ohio newspaper (aug.'04)
Golden Web Page Award (dec.'04)
Reader's Digest article, "Me Me Media" (july.'05) "Alternative Site of the Day" (aug.'05)
AARP Magazine article: July/August 2006 issue
Listed as "Cool Site Of The Day": (7.27.06)
O Globo Online: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (aug.'06)

Bubby on itunes
Holding Myself Back
Where's My Glory?
End Of The World
17 And Pregnant
The Other Woman
Grandma Troubles

Other Jewish Bloggers:
80-year old Millie
Nice Jewish Doctor
Send us your links!

Creative Commons License
All content and images
on this website are
licensed under a
Creative Commons License.