Dear Abby: In 1985 I met a lovely divorced lady with two adorable children. The three of us got along well. A year later I married into this family. Until then I had no children of my own.
The kids had regular visits with their father. The first Father’s Day after I married their mom, we arranged for them to spend the weekend with him. When they returned home that Sunday night, they were exhausted and off to bed they went.
I did some thinking about the idea of celebrating holidays and realized there are holidays in every month except August. (Even a rodent gets his day in February.) My family and I discussed it and came up with the idea for a Step Parents’ Day on the second Sunday in August. When that day arrived, we all went to church and then to brunch. The kids gave me cards and a nice gift. It was a wonderful day, and it became a tradition every year after that.
I wrote a letter about it to our mayor. He sent me back an official-looking document with his signature proclaiming the second Sunday in August to be Step Parents’ Day in our city. It was gratifying.
Abby, your readers in blended families may want to observe this special day, too. – Stepdad in Ohio
Dear Stepdad: Your letter made me smile. When I went online to learn more about it, I discovered that, for more than 20 years, there has been a National Stepfamily Day observed on Sept. 16. You may want to consider adding it to your calendar because it’s a day that celebrates all members of the blended family, not just the parents.
Dear Abby: For the past couple of years, my husband and I have not been happy with the service provided by our dentist. We have been patients of his for years and recently decided to switch to someone else. What would be the best way to approach this? We are unsure how to diplomatically tell him that we won’t be going back to him. We both have upcoming appointments. – Dental Dilemma
Dear Dilemma: You do not have to explain why you are leaving unless you want to do the dentist the favor of telling him why. All you need to do is call the receptionist and say you are canceling the appointments. Your new dentist can contact the old one and request your records.