DEAR ABBY: I baby-sit during the day for a 9-year-old girl who's in school most of the time, a 4-year-old boy, and a 5-month-old girl. I do not tolerate talking back, whining, kicking, hitting or screaming, or time-outs will occur without hesitation. Needless to say, the kids are well-behaved with me. When the parents come home, however, the kids start acting badly and even kick and hit their parents! It pains me. I am extremely shy, and it would be hard to confront the parents to show more discipline.
- Cathy in Cleveland
DEAR CATHY: It would not be "confronting" the parents to have a private chat. Your shyness will lessen when you concentrate on the importance of your message.
DEAR ABBY: My friends saw an accident unfold in front of them. Nobody was killed or seriously injured. The following day they acted like it had been a horribly traumatizing experience. Yet, when I was 11, I watched a family friend die only a few feet away from me. I told my friends my experience was obviously more traumatizing. They're calling me insensitive.
- Kyle in Connecticut
DEAR KYLE: What you witnessed was undeniably traumatic. However, rather than alienate your friends because you need to be right, let them heal from their "trauma" and drop the subject.
DEAR ABBY: If someone near me is having what I would consider a personal conversation on a cell phone, should I leave the area, or should the other person move to where he or she cannot be overheard?
- Johnny in Gassville, Ark.
DEAR JOHNNY: It is the responsibility of anyone using a cell phone to safeguard the information being shared. *