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My husband likes to tell inappropriate jokes. This is fine in adult company, but I recently found out that he is telling the same jokes to his young nieces and nephews. I discovered this because the young children’s teacher called their mother to find out why the children were telling inappropriate jokes to their friends at school.
How do I apologize to my relatives? How do we get my husband to stop telling racy jokes to 6- and 8-year olds?
Who’s the kid, and who’s the adult?
This one is a no-brainer. You get your husband to stop telling racy jokes to 6- and 8-year-olds by saying, “Dear, stop telling racy jokes to your nieces and nephews. Their parents don’t appreciate it, and the teachers have called to complain. It’s not funny, and it’s not cute – it’s inappropriate.” If that doesn’t work, follow it up with, “If you don’t stop, you won’t be able to spend time with them. Alternatively, you may have to clean the erasers.”
And as far as apologizing to your relatives, it is he that needs to apologize, not you.
I have a thing about blond women. I don’t like them. Whenever I meet someone with blond hair, I automatically think “stuck up airhead.” I know I am being judgy, and I am not proud of it. How do I change my thought process?
Dark hair, dark soul?
You may be splitting hairs here. I think what you may mean is that you have a little less respect for women who dye their hair blond to look more attractive, because we as a culture have judged blondes to be more appealing. Am I right?
Since society is constantly battering women over their (now blond) heads to conform to white heteronormative ideals of beauty, we cannot blame ourselves for incorporating these values into our own ideas of self-worth. We are all guilty of conforming in some way, and it shows up in what we wear, what we pierce, how we sit, what we drive, the make-up we put on our face, whether we put ketchup on our Chicago dog, etc.
Try replacing your first sentence with a different characteristic, one that is beyond our control like, “I hate women with brown eyes,” or “I hate women under 5’6.” My guess is that you will cringe at how that sounds and what that implies about you. And if I know you, you are not that! So just remember that being blond, brunette, tall, not tall, etc., are all meaningless and unimportant when it comes to judging a human being.
As they say, do unto others, don’t judge a book by its cover, and if you live in a glass house, don’t run around naked. Can you ever have enough aphorisms? I’m gonna say no.
I have always been adventurous but have an irrational fear of being home alone at night. Any practical tips for dealing with this?
I’m not sure the fear of being home alone at night is so irrational; however, I get your point. If you feel that all the typical things one does to feel safe – locked doors and windows, exterior lights – do not make you feel any better, perhaps you may want to invest in an alarm system. Living next to a house with a new alarm system, where all sorts of errors have tripped the alarm, I know that the Evanston police have responded very quickly.
If you don’t want to get an alarm system, you can call 311 to get crime statistics in your area, in case that might put you at ease. I would not recommend getting a dog, as that is a major commitment and expense and not a great reason to get a dog. Lastly, if you feel that nothing would make you feel safer, and that this is a true irrational fear, you may wanna make an appointment with a therapist since I only play a therapist on the page.
Dear Gabby appears in the RoundTable every Monday. Yes, Gabby is an advice columnist – but not just any advice columnist. Because that would be boring! Gabby combines wisdom with wit. And a pinch of snark. She is not a trained therapist by any means, but has seen and loved many in her day. Her aim is to make you think while she makes you laugh. Gabby welcomes all questions and queries and is only too happy to hear your opinion, no matter how much it may diverge from hers. Write to Gabby at firstname.lastname@example.org.