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Father-in-law's fish story is a whopper

Dear Abby: Two weeks ago, I went on a fishing trip with my father-in-law. It was great. I caught the biggest fish of my life. I kept it so I could have it mounted when I returned home.

When we arrived back at my in-laws', my father-in-law took the fish out of the cooler and claimed he had caught it. At first, I thought he was joking, but now he's planning on having the fish mounted!

I didn't want to make him look bad in front of his daughter and his wife, but I am furious.

My wife thinks I'm overreacting, but this really is the big one that got away. Should I confront him and call his bluff?

— Something's Fishy in New York

Dear Something's Fishy: If you were going to confront your father-in-law, you should have done so as soon as he took credit for catching your fish.

Instead of being "furious," be grateful that you now have a clear insight into the man's character. That he would lie about something like this calls into question anything that has ever — or will ever — come out of his mouth.

Dear Abby: My 8-year-old nephew was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3. He has made amazing progress with therapy and has advanced so he is practically functioning at his age level.

Our entire family has teamed up and joined a charity that raises money for autism. We have devoted our time and energy to this important cause. My sister (my nephew's mother) refuses to get involved! She says she is "too busy."

We all work and have other activities, yet we still make time to devote to this cause. She doesn't work and has no other responsibilities outside her family that prohibit her from participating. She says raising money isn't something she likes to do.

I don't have much time for it either, but our family MAKES the time because this cause is important to us. It makes me furious that she won't help raise money for her own child's disorder. How can I talk to her about this without seeming confrontational?

— Raising Money in Florida

Dear Raising Money: I urge you to refrain from doing so. For heaven's sake, your sister is the mother of a child who is working hard to overcome a disorder. She has a full-time job — one that lasts 24 hours a day, seven days a week. She is not malingering, so stop judging her.

Dear Abby: I am a happily married woman. Fifteen years ago, I was married to another man I'll call "Mario." Mario and I divorced after four years and ended it as friends.

Mario and I have both been in the restaurant business separately as well as together. Mario called me two days ago and asked me if he could hire me for his newest venture because he knows what a good manager I am. When I mentioned it to my present husband, he was adamantly against it.

Do you see anything wrong with my working with my ex?

— "Cyndie" in South Florida

Dear "Cyndie": I don't — but obviously your present husband does, because he's threatened by the idea. It appears you have an important decision to make. Which is more important to you — the job, or keeping peace in your marriage?

Dear Abby: My grandfather left me money from his life insurance policy but left none to my sister. The money could help me get our family out of debt, purchase a house and pay for my son's education.

My sister has repeatedly made poor choices and expected others to clean up after her. Word got out that I received the inheritance, and I was told I should give her some. I know in the back of my mind that she'll do something stupid with it.

Grandpa left me the money — not my sister. Why do I feel so guilty about deciding not to give my sister the money?

—- Money Blues in Michigan

Dear Money Blues: Close your eyes and clear your mind. Ask yourself that question and then speak the first words that pop into your head without censoring and you'll have your answer.

Who told you you should give your sister some of the money? Your sister? Your mother? Please remember that your grandfather left the money to you — and only you — for a reason. And it may have been that he had already cleaned up a mess or two for your sister in the past.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

© Universal Press Syndicate