I am stuck. I am 24, in a relationship with a man who I know loves me. He has even relocated to be with me from another continent.
Yet because I have trust and insecurity issues, I did something pretty low. I read his e-mails. In one e-mail he had written to an old buddy bragging about all the "hot chicks" at his place of work, describing their bodies and being really rude about it.
I trust that he will not cheat on me, yet it hurts me to read the things he has written. I can't stop thinking about it. When I go to his place of work, I can't help but feel extremely sensitive and irritated.
He knows something is up with me, yet I can't bring myself to tell him I read his e-mails. But this is nagging me to no end.
Your advice would be greatly appreciated.
Hurt and Torn
Dear Hurt and Torn,
Shame on you for reading mail that is not yours! When you do that, a person never reads anything good about himself or herself. And if you tell him that you read his mail, you will surely lose him in more ways than one.
You will have to figure out how to bring up the subject of spying on mail in an impersonal way and learn how he feels about such a thing. He may mean something by writing these messages to fellow employees, or maybe not.
I have never done such a thing so I really can't advise you except to say, Don't ever do it again - EVER.
You might ask him in conversation how he feels about someone doing such a terrible thing. But to confess is to lose.
Four years ago I met the woman of my dreams. We seem to have so much in common and we love to be together. She has a smile in her heart. She buys flowers every week and knows how to laugh. I love the complex nature of her soul. In many moments I will feel the lightning bolt course through me and I realize how deeply I love her and how I can not live without her. I am so happy with her, playing tennis, golfing. I would trade a lifetime for one weekend with her; to walk with her and hold her hand. She makes me laugh, cry and smile. I want to just talk with her and to hear about her day.
However, I am married (over 20 years) and have two kids. One just left for college and one is in high school. My wife is wonderful, beautiful, warm, sweet, kind, loyal, helpful. I stayed in the marriage because of the kids. She loves me and I have not treated her fairly.
I have recently moved out and I am trying to figure out what to do. Do I pursue the chance of love with this other woman I've know now for four years, or do I go back and be a good husband and help my kids get through school? What do you think..?
My friends tell me I am nuts to take a chance on this other woman (who has already been married twice) but my heart tells me to take a chance on love. Loving someone and caring means risking it all. Love doesn't give you a choice, it takes your soul. It doesn't mean you are weak, it means you are in love!
What do I do???
Dear Distracted Husband,
I think that once you know this young woman in time you will look for another woman. You say nice things about your wife so she must be a very good wife and mother, so why break a home that seems to be going fine?
You are going through a midlife crisis and I am sure it will pass. Many husbands go through it. You will recover. This younger woman does not want an older man - I am sure she is looking for one closer to her age.
I would say to you -- think it over very carefully get this out of your system. Go back home and be a good husband and a good father.
This younger woman is not for you, believe me.
I just turned 13 years old a few days ago and I am in the 7th grade. I really want to make some money, and I mean, I really do. I don't care how, I just do.
I can't get a serious job for 3 more years, and I can't mow yards, or get an allowance from my parents, or find someone who will let me clean their house for money. The reason is because those things, besides a serious job, are not around where I live, like mowing and cleaning.
I want to set up a bank account so I can pull the money out when I need it. I am tired of asking people to borrow money. My step-brother always goes to the big malls in huge cites and I won't go with him unless I have money because I hate having him pay for me. Everyone can tell that I never go anywhere because I have no money.
So please Bubby, help me and give some advice for what I could do. It will be appreciated greatly. I need a job.
Dear Penniless Girl,
At this time if you want to work you can go on errands for your neighbors, you can go to the library and ask for some work. And -- there is nothing wrong with baby sitting. You can make money at that very easily. You can go to the supermarket and try to get a job filling up the shelves. In the winter you can sweep away the snow.
I have boys who do that and are very happy with the money they make.
I do think the best job at this time for you is babysitting. Try it. I think you will like it.
You can put an ad in your local paper stating your age and ask for a light job that won't interfere with your school work. And when you get answers you can pick the work you will like.
I am 15, and me and my boyfriend are having a few problems. I'm black and he is white. Most of the people around here are trying to break me and him up and I don't know what to do. What should I do?
I have already got called some bad things and he has got into fights because all of this.
Please help me.
Have you discussed this situation with your parents? How do they feel about it?
You are just 15 and I assume that the boy is about the same age too. So I think that neither one of you should be more that just friends. And in that case, you can be friends and enjoy your company without any complications.
At 15 you should be concerned with your school work, not a boyfriend. Wait until you are a few years older and you will laugh at yourself. Wait until you are in college and you will find plenty of boys of all colors.
Don't get involved with anyone at this time. You are too young.
And now for something a little different...
Today Bubby's brother-in-law sent along this funny list of rules for a Jewish grandmother to live by. It's called, "Bubby's Talmud". So, nu, who needs a little laugh today?
- If you can't say something nice, say it in Yiddish.
- If it tastes good, it's probably not kosher.
- Some people leave and never say good-bye. Jews say good-bye and never leave.
- Israel is the land of milk and honey; Florida is the land of milk of magnesia.
- The High Holidays have absolutely nothing to do with marijuana.
- Always whisper the names of diseases.
- If you don't eat, it will kill me.
- Anything worth saying is worth repeating a thousand times.
- Never take a front-row seat at a bris.
- Prune danish is an acquired taste.
- Next year in Jerusalem. The year after that, how about a nice cruise?
- Never leave a restaurant empty-handed.
- Before you read the menu, read the prices.
- According to Jewish dietary law, pork and shellfish may be eaten only in Chinese restaurants.
- If you're going to whisper at the movies, make sure it's loud enough for everyone else to hear.
- No meal is complete without leftovers.
- If you have to ask the price, you can't afford it. But if you can afford it, make sure you tell everybody what you paid.
Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
How about a fun update today? In June of 2005 we received a letter from "Hair Despair", a 15-year old teenager who was devastated by her new haircut. Every time she looked in the mirror, she told Bubby, she burst into tears at the sight of her new look. Was that because she got it cut in France, or was it just a case of over eager shears? Either way, she poetically exclaimed to Bubby, "I can't go on..."
Always eager to help, Bubby offered "Hair Despair" some high-tech, super scientific, mensa-level advice: HAIR GROWS BACK. In fact, Bubby noted, even while "HD" was writing this very letter, her hair was growing. Not only that, Bubby said, "you will have a long tale to report to friends about what happened to your hair in France."
Nearly a year later, we just have to know: Still Hair Despair? Or Quite Contraire?
When I wrote to you asking for help that was a year ago and I was quite upset about my awful haircut. But now a couple months later I am very HAPPPYYY :D
My hair is quite long now and I love it :)
I just had highlights put in my hair last week which I love and have gotten many compliments about :)
I realized I was being a bit stupid about my hair when it wasn't really even that bad. It was quite nice. I may get it cut again. So I am very happy now with my hair and I won't be sending any more letters of help to you :D
Thank you for getting back in touch.
Thanks for writing!
What You Said...
Lots of great comments are being added to yesterday's post from the 66-year-young woman looking for more adventure in her life.
I am a 13-year old girl and last year in school I was bullied. It wasn’t really bad -- mostly name-calling, ganging up on me and stuff like that. Then this girl I knew felt sorry for me and became my best friend. She is the best ever -- so kind and funny and cheers me up. We have been close mates ever since.
But I think it’s a bit different now. We are still best friends but sometimes she calls me insulting names and says that I'm fat and that she hates me. I know that she’s joking and all, but I take it a bit too seriously. If I ask her if she’s joking, she gets really, really annoyed. When we send each other text messages on our cell phone we always say, “lv ya xoxoxo”. If we are texting, but she’s annoyed, then she doesn’t say that.
One time after I came back from her house, I got really sick. I was so tired and I vomited all night. I didn’t wake up until the next day and I didn't go into school. I didn’t text her to tell her and she got annoyed. She texted me, saying, “Why were you not in school? I was a loner all day. Thanks a lot”. She didn’t even ask how I was.
I know this is a stupid problem and I know deep down that we are good mates and we trust each other. But when people call me names, even as a joke, it hurts. I feel like crying sometimes I’m so sad. I cannot fall out with her though. I like her too much and I haven’t ever done anything bad to upset her. I cannot tell her how I feel coz she gets annoyed when I do.
You have got to help me, Bubby.
Dear Sad Chick,
These little things that you find annoying are just natural among young friends and you should not let it bother you. Ask your mother if she thinks so too and ask her to help you out.
You should have a serious talk with this friend if you don't want to lose her. Both of you will clear the air and get back to the friendship that you shared. Talking things out always "clears the air".
Let me hear from you again.
This is really silly... Here I am, a semi-retired 66-year old woman asking you what the "H" I should do with my life.
I have been retired since Dec 2005, and am now feeling very lost, unwanted and useless. I truly do not know where to turn.
Can you offer any suggestions?
Looking For More
Dear Looking For More,
You don't tell me what you have looked for but there is a lot out there. You can do any volunteer work which is so needed in schools, hospitals, and many organizations.
Then there are many courses of interest you can enroll in at the "Y" in your town. There are courses you can take and meet many new friends. If you are well and can get around, the world is your oyster.
Get to it and enjoy.
We noticed that yesterday's post from the aspiring doctor/architect is inspiring a few "opinion posts" from our readers. Scroll down to read the letter again to see what people are writing (it's under the hamentashin recipe). It seems like you guys have more advice for "Something Out There", and we think that's cool. Thanks, and keep sharing your opinions.
And without further adieu, here is today's letter...
My ex girlfriend and I broke up 5-6 weeks ago. She broke up with me and I've been a complete wreck since.
Four days after breaking up with me, she went on a date with her current new boyfriend. She's completely moved on (extremely fast) and I'm still a wreck. She wants to meet and talk in a few days -- to make progress towards a friendship, but I'm dying to be back with her. Plus I'm still deeply, deeply hurt. From the way she acts, she doesn't even really care anymore that I'm so hurt.
My question is, what should I do when we meet in a few days?? I want to just go off on her about all that she has done. However, at the same time I'm dying to be with her and I don't know what to do.
Dear Broken Hearted,
When you meet your ex girl friend, be as nice as possible. Act like a good friend - don't bring up what might have been. Talk as a friend and she will see how nice you are and start wondering if she really did the right thing by breaking up with you.
The fact that she called you shows that she has some misgivings. Give it a try. See her and be pleasant.
Bubby's recipe for Hamentashen/Purim Cookies
Just in time for the holiday today...
A year or so ago a reader named Betty the Baker asked Bubby if she could share her recipe for delicious "Purim cookies", also known as Hamentashen. So now, in honor of the holiday Purim this weekend, Bubby has dug out her special recipe to share with all of you.
2 1/2 cups flour
1/4 t. salt
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup pareve margarine
1 egg-slightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
Pre-heat oven 375 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Cut the margarine into small piece & cut into flour mixture until it looks like cornmeal. Mix well to form dough. (I use an electric mixer.) Chill several hours. (You can freeze for a later baking.)
Roll out dough 1/8" thick on a lightly floured board. You should have a clean place to roll out the dough - preferably a sheet made especially for rolling out dough. You can buy these in home cooking supplies stores. Also the cookie cutters. Keep a little dish with flour nearby when rolling out the dough to keep it from getting sticky. Just a sprinkle will do.
To form the hamentashen use a round cookie cutter no larger than 3". Cut dough into 3" circles. Place 1 tsp of filling towards the top of the circle. Fold over the flap directly above the filling; then fold over the flaps on either side of the filling sealing the corners on all 3 sides of the filling to form a triangle. Place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes till lightly browned.
The best filling to use are PRUNE BUTTER and APRICOT BUTTER or if you like you can use POPPY SEED MIXTURE. You should be able to buy all these things in a gourmet food shop.
Please help me because I really need advice....
I am 25 years old. I want to go to medicine school to be a medicine doctor and help people. But my parents, especially my father, doesn't want it. He wants me to go to school for engineering. I was really really disappointed and I tried to talk to him, but he doesn't want to hear it and won't bless it. So I try to cooperate with him and find a solution, which was to go to architecture school.
So I went to the placement test at medicine school and architecture school. And Bubby, you know what... I failed the placement test in medicine school. But I am accepted at architecture school. At the time I was really happy but I think I really, really don't know what must I do now. I feel like I have lost my way...
I try to enjoy the architecture school but it's hard because when you love something else so much, it makes you feel so desperate. But thanks God I can finish my architecture school...
But Bubby, since high school until now, my dream was to be a doctor. Always in my heart and my mind. I try to let it go but I can't. I can't forgive myself for failing the placement exam. I just want to find my biggest dream. Sometimes I can't forgive my father but I try.
Oh Bubby, please give me advice. Should I try to follow my dream or just let it go? I am really really sad, Bubby...
Someone Out There
Dear Someone Out There,
If you failed the medical test exam, you can be sure that you will not be able to pass the rigorous program that you will have to go through to be a doctor. It is very hard and not glamorous. I am sure that since you did well on the architectural exam, you will learn to like it. And if you continue all the way through, you can earn your PHD in that field and even earn many honors.
I think you should give it a try and see what happens. Architecture is a wonderful profession - creative in every way. You no doubt have a gift that you have not yet recognized. You can always change.
Good Luck and let me hear from you.
Happy Birthday to Bubby's granddaughter!
One of us is turning 28 today...
On July 25, 2005, we posted a letter to Bubby from a woman who called herself, "From the Old Continent". She herself was a young 25, and was living in Brussels with her boyfriend/potential husband. Despite her success in love, she was having no such luck with her career. Her parents were encouraging her to take a job in Paris, in a position that she felt didn't fit her "adequation or experience." She said to Bubby, "I am afraid my parents will resent me if I don't accept, but they'll think I declined because my boyfriend is living in Brussels and not in Paris."
Bubby was most encouraging, assuring her that no job was worth getting up in the morning just to feel miserable. And in terms of the boy, Bubby advised, "Don't worry about your boyfriend. If you really love one another, distance will not make a difference. There are many ways to communicate - calls, travel and when the time is right, you can plan a wedding."
Well, enough time has passed and we wanted to know: Is our writer a bachelorette in Brussels, or a professional in Paris?
Here is an update on my current situation. I was a French girl in love with a Belgian guy. I was living with him in Brussels and didn't know if I should stay there with him (with very little job opportunities) or go back in France to look for a job (with very few moments to share with him because of the distance).
I'm happy to say I'm still in love with my Belgian guy, he's fantastic and we're planning to get married in a few months. I'm currently in France, training for a job as a civil servant and that's very gratifying (and a good pay). My boyfriend has stayed in Brussels for the time I'm training but we see each other on week-ends, we call each other nearly every day, and are using a webcam to see each other a bit more.
And this is working, because we made it work, with lots of patience and love.
Thanks for your nice advice to me when I asked for it. It was useful and helped me a lot. I'll send you another update for the wedding.
Hugs and kisses,
From the Old Continent
Thanks for the update!
What a nice way to start the day...
No need to ask you for advice. Just wanted to say it must be so cool to be such a modern Bubby. Mine is 91 and has no use for computers. But she is an awesome oil painter. Thanks for giving out great advise. I'm sure IÂ'll be coming to you.
Happy Birthday belated as it is.
-- Sunny in CA
I'm a 14-year old girl in 8th grade. And I am seriously seeking some advice, because I can't seem to find it from anyone else.
I moved to Virginia about 2 years ago, from the state I loved and hoped to live in forever, Georgia. In the past when I moved, I usually got used to my peers very quickly. But this was different, these kids were different. They didn't welcome new kids at school. So I was shy all year.
Now I am in 8th grade and I finally have a bunch of friends I love to death. But I feel like it's not enough. I wish I could finally conquer my shyness. The thing is, when someone who I think is popular at my school talks to me, I get all nervous. My voice turns high and I don't know what to say.
Is this like, not a adaptation to my new environment??
Thanks so much,
Lost In My Daze
Dear Lost In My Daze,
What you are experiencing is beginning fright from the new "kids" you are meeting. Nothing to worry about. Just be yourself.
Speak in your natural voice and very soon you will find that your voice has adjusted. It's when you try to change your voice tone that the sound becomes garbled. Changing from a southern state to a northern state and hearing other accents always affects the voice. The accents are different and sound funny.
Don't worry - just be yourself and in no time your voice will adjust.
Bubby's podcast is on itunes!
Visit her page by clicking here. You'll need to have itunes installed on your computer in order to "subscribe" to our feed.
In an attempt to keep Bubby up-to-date with technology, we are making her recent audio posts available as a podcast on itunes. So for those of you who were unable to hear the original .wmv files, hopefully these new mp3's will help.
If you don't have itunes, you can download the new mp3s directly from this post below...
Posted Nov.16: "Holding Myself Back"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Nov.17: "Where's My Glory?"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Nov.18: "End of the World"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Nov.30: "Overprotected"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Dec.3: "17 and Pregnant"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Dec.16: "The Other Woman"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
Posted Jan.4: "Grandma Trouble"
Read the question
Hear Bubby's advice
How's that sound?
E-mail the granddaughters and let us know if enjoy this little podcast.
As a reminder, for those of you into RSS feeds, Bubby's website is available here and here:
We're posting a new poll based on today's question...
Click here to cast your vote!
I was thinking... When you were a kid, was there something you wanted to be when you grew up but everybody thought you were silly?
What would you do?
Dear Girl Wondering,
When I was a young girl and in school, I always said I wanted to be a teacher. That was because I loved the teacher that I had at that time. She seemed to me to know everything.
But as I grew up I wanted to be a dancer, an actress, but always in the back of my mind was "a teacher".
In December I received notification that my husband, who was serving in Iraq, was shot and died. This terrified me. But what seemed worse was that I am 7 months pregnant with a little girl and now she won't have a dad.
How am I supposed to tell my daughter, when she is old enough to understand, why she has no daddy? Will she hate me for telling her this?
I would really like some guidance and I thank you for your help to people in need.
Thanks very much,
Dear New Mom,
I extend my sympathies to you on the loss of your husband. What a tragedy. Of course, your baby will not understand at first that her daddy was a casualty of this war. But the time will come that you will explain to her that her daddy gave up his life to save his country.
You should wait until she is of the age when she will understand. That may not be until she is 6 or 7. Hopefully by then you will have remarried a man who will love this little girl just like her biological daddy would have loved her.
This whole process is not an easy one but by then you will have the strength and love to do the right thing.
I am always looking back at the past and I wonder, "What if I did this or I did that to change my life's path?" I think "the grass is always greener" is probably the best way to look at it but I know that I am probably in a better spot today just because of what happened in the past.
I am a 46-year old man with a 28-year old wife and two small kids. I married late and found a wonderful wife who just happened to be a bit younger than me. We have had 8 wonderful years together.
I guess I am just looking for your advice on how to forget the past and look ahead to the great years ahead with my wife and two kids. I am the guy who always keeps in touch with old girlfriends and they do the same with me. I didn't date much in school and really did most of my dating in my late 20's and early 30's. When I was younger, I was always all the girl's "buddy" but never the boyfriend. I just wonder sometimes if those girls also look back and wonder, "what if?" just like I seem to do from time to time.
Thanks for your thoughts on this topic. I think I know what you will have to say but sometimes it is better to hear it from another source.
Have a good day Bubby!!!
Days Gone By...
Dear Days Gone By,
It is very strange to me that if you have a happy marriage, why you keep up this relationship with old girlfriends? How does your wife feel about this?
I think you would be much happier if you concentrated on your wife and two children. If on occasion you happen to meet these other "friends", say Hello and let it go at that. You don't need extra baggage.
Concentrate on keeping your wife and family happy.
"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.