Kathryn – That’s amazing. But I find Abby’s answer a bit disheartening. I understand that there’s a craft here. You need to advise without scolding, lest the advice-seeker shut you out defensively. Or something like that. But the guy’s a sex offender. And this is Abby’s response:
DEAR CONFUSED AND TORN: Wanting to be with someone you love isn’t silly, but it’s time for you to think maturely and realize the consequences of your decision. After six years with Wade, you are still single. You could be single forever.
When you became a mother, life stopped being all about you. Wade is a sex offender. What if you should become pregnant again? Is it fair to your parents to dump your daughter on them like an unwanted pet? What effect could it eventually have on the child? Do you fully understand that what you have in mind will isolate you from relatives and friends who have minor children?
While I can’t dictate what you should do with your life, I can say you’re heading in the wrong direction. Please step back and rethink this.
So, for starters you’re not silly for loving a sex offender…..Okay. Then the first argument is that the sex offender can’t commit! “After six years you are still single.”
The whole thing seems so non-judgmental. I mean, how bad a person do you have to be for an advice columnist to say “Drop him like a hot rock”?
Update: A few readers complain/suggest that maybe the guy isn’t like a pedophile sex offender, but maybe merely someone who was 21 who slept with a 19 year-old or some such. I suppose this is possible as there has been a rise in the number of sex offenders who shouldn’t be lumped in with rapist, pedophiles and the like.
But if you read the actual letter, it seems like a fair reading goes the other way. The guy can’t be around kids. Maybe there’s extra information that Abby is privy to. But the ambiguity here doesn’t reflect well on Abby or her editors.