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Trying not to be a bitter ex

Dear Abby: After 19 years of marriage, my husband left me for a younger woman. I found out later that they had been dating for several years. They moved in together immediately after our separation, and she was pregnant at the divorce hearing. They had a baby boy eight months later.

At every event with my kids, they come together with their son and she steers the conversation to her life. I have tried to be silent and civil, but she ruined my daughter's graduation by gossiping and giggling during the entire event.

I am trying not to be a bitter ex, but I have had to bite back some nasty words to both of them. Any suggestions on how to deal with a miserably blended family?

-- Blended Family in Baton Rouge, LA.

Dear "Blended" Family: Yes, and please don't think I am without sympathy. The surest way to deal with your miserably blended family is to make a conscious decision to get on with YOUR life. If you're not interested in what the woman has to say, get up and move away. Develop your own interests and activities, and meet some new friends. The stronger and more independent you become, the better off you'll be.

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To tuck or not to tuck?

Dear Abby: There is an issue driving a wedge between my wife and me. I have always believed that my casual shirts (in fact, all my shirts) should be worn tucked into my slacks. My wife feels they should be left out. I think I look better with them tucked in.

Abby, you can save our marriage if you'll let us know who is right. To tuck, or not to tuck -- that is the question. And, by the way, she says I should mention that I have a bodacious waistline, which means I could lose 40 pounds.

-- Friar "Tucked" in Longmont, Colo.

Dear "Tucked": Your wife is your best friend and she is right. (If you doubt it, consult a men's haberdasher.) By leaving your shirt out, you would appear to be a few pounds thinner. When you tuck it in, your "bodacious" waistline is accentuated by a horizontal line, which makes you appear to be heavier.

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