DEAR ABBY: I take strong issue with your response to "Wrong-Way Housewife." Daily experience convinces me that a sense of direction is either inborn or not, on an individual basis. I have always had it - my husband has not. And lest you assume he is "slow-witted," he has an IQ exceeding 150 and was a high-ranking military officer in a position requiring exemplary map-reading skills. He also has an MBA. By his own admission, he has absolutely no sense of direction. He has striven all his life to overcome this failing, to no avail. This is a man who has the willpower of a bull and intelligence approaching genius level, so please don't tell him to "try harder." - THE FAMILY NAVIGATOR IN SCOTTSDALE

DEAR ABBY: Usually you're right on course, but your answer to "Wrong-Way Housewife" was 180 degrees off course.A sense of direction is a right-brain function, and some of us are more left-brained than right-brained. Case in point: My husband and our oldest son are very good at directions - they always know where north is and can get anywhere with no problem. They both tend to be right-brained people. My younger son and I barely know left from right and find directions impossible to follow. We tend to be left-brained people.

Abby, please be a little more sympathetic to the ones who have this problem. It's no fun, believe me. - WRONG-WAY KENNEDY

DEAR ABBY: While I was driving, my wife awoke from a sound sleep to tell me that I had made a wrong turn!

I can get lost in a revolving door, but my wife has an unerring sense of direction. Those of us without it know that to keep from getting lost is not, as you said, "Simply a matter of paying attention." The fact of the matter is that many of us have to work twice as hard to get lost only half as often. - THE REV. RAYMOND J. HOWE, ST. PETER'S EPISCOPAL CHURCH, TUNKHANNOCK, PA.

DEAR ABBY: You should have checked with your experts before telling "Wrong-Way Housewife" that anyone can find his way if he just charts his course, then concentrates on staying on it. A neuropsychologist would have probably told you that there are people who confuse left and right due to an inborn learning disability or a minor brain injury.

It's not a matter of intelligence, either. When I go to a large shopping mall and park my car in one of those enormous parking lots, I practically have to leave a trail of bread crumbs in order to get back to my car. I am fairly bright; I'm a member of Mensa, Phi Beta Kappa and a champion contract bridge player. - GETS LOST A LOT IN COLUMBUS, OHIO

DEAR ABBY: I can't believe you told "Wrong-Way Housewife" to "try harder."

Abby, her problem could be the result of a minor accident, or even something she was born with - in which case, no amount of "trying" can help her. It's like saying, "Abby, you could be a great opera singer, or a ballet dancer, or a gold medal Olympic winner, if you would just try harder."

Come on, Abigail, get real. - DISAPPOINTED IN YOU

DEAR DISAPPOINTED: All right, I'll take my lumps. I said, "No one is born with a sense of direction," which I still think is true. But I should have gone on to say that many people are born without one, due to a learning disability.

So, give me a break, and give me a charitable "D minus" on that one.

DEAR ABBY: Now that fax machines are here, they have become almost a status symbol. They are remarkably speedy and convenient for business correspondence, but how about faxing thank-you notes for social occasions?

I hope this doesn't catch on. I just received one, and I must say it lacked the warmth and elegance of lovely stationery, as well as the personal touch. Please comment. - NO FAX, PLEASE

DEAR NO FAX: Almost any thank-you note is better than none, but a faxed thank-you is definitely a no-no. It's tantamount to sending a "collect" telegram, because the recipient must pay for the fax paper, which is not exactly petty cash.

C) 1989 Universal Press Syndicate