http://www.slate.com/id/2264417/ (8/19/10) <---Original Prudie Questions Can Be Found There
Hey hidey-ho, Shippers! How in the hell are ya on this fine, fine Prudie Day? I have to admit, Shippers, it’s a woeful day for your ol’ Smaggie. I had a dental appointment earlier. And shippers, in my fourth decade of life, after a great deal of smartass bragging on this silly subject over the years, I’ve finally gotten...a cavity. Now, don’t make fun of me! It really pisses me off! I was proud of the fact that I’d never had one. I mean, that might sound like a silly thing to have been proud of, but, I was. No more. So, next time I go in (in six months or so), they’ll fix me up. Oh well. Such is life, eh? But, enough of my pitiful whining. We’ve got letters! So, without further ado, let’s get crackin’!
LW#1: Dear Prudie. When I was a kid, just six years old, I accused a man of cornering me in a bathroom. It was a lie, told on the spur of the moment, as I didn’t want to go home with my dad, an abusive, alcoholic man who’d taught me early in life that cornering a child in the bathroom is bad. As a result, this man that I accused (likely somewhat mentally handicapped, I now realize as an adult) is perhaps labeled a sex offender--or worse. I’m living with unbearable guilt over this, and afraid that I may even go to jail over it if I admit it. What can I do? Signed, Cornered In a Bathroom of Lies
Dear Cornered. What a shitty set of cards you were dealt. Listen, there are a lot of unaddressed skeletons in your closet. And this one may not be the first one that can be hauled out, but it can be the goal. What I mean is that you may have to talk with your dad first. You may have to explain to him how he made you feel as a child. You may have to tell him what happened and see if he can help you find out what happened with this man in order to make progress. And then, you’ll have to verify it yourself--his take won’t necessarily be reliable. For you sake, and for the sake of this man, you need to find out what happened. Your father may not be able to help, but he’s complicit and you need to address the issue with him, too. There are all sorts of people who can help you, and you’re more than intelligent enough to figure out who they are. As for potential jail time, though I’m not lawyer, I have to believe that’s not even a consideration. You were six. You’re just now at a point in your life where you can deal with this information and, as such, you’re trying. Sometimes people do the best they can with what they’ve been dealt. But you can call the betting. You can get some better cards. You just have to take a deep breath, look around the table and do it. Now come on. Belly up and make this right. Someone’s counting on you and one day, when you look in the mirror, you’ll know who...
LW#2: Dear Prudie. I like people to think that I’m successful. I like people to think that I’ve got it together. But, fact is, my family (and one family member in particular) have ridiculed me all my life. I’m intimidated by them all, but by this one woman in particular. The abuse is so acute from her that I’ve had to limit our contact to the barest minimum. Well, recently I found out that she’s applying for a job with my company (her last job is on the rocks because she’s so mean--something that happens frequently in her work life). Prudie, if hired, she would put my job in jeopardy. And I love my job! And fact is, I’m senior enough that a gentle whisper from me to the right person would put the kibosh on her application. What should I do? Signed, Pissing My Diapers
Dear Pissing. You’re successful in your job, eh? Senior enough that you could put the kibosh on the hiring of a known office cancer, yet you’re conflicted about what to do? I’d suggest that you’re neither very senior nor very successful if you don’t know what you have to do. You don’t have to mention anything personal. Matter of fact, you should not! What you should do, though, is make sure that the hiring official is aware of the woefully dismal track record that “the applicant” has in keeping her jobs. What you should do is recognize that, regardless of what happens, you know your job and are well-liked and respected at work--you do know your job and you are well-liked and respected at work, aren’t you, Pissing? Or should I doubt your story? Because, frankly, anyone as senior and successful as you claim to be shouldn’t have any problem with this situation if they remember to keep their personal and professional lives separated. Do that and the solution is painfully simple.
LW#3: Dear Prudie. I have the bestest boyfriend in the whole wide world. He’s so great that from very early on, we’ve argued over my past boyfriends. He insists on details about my sex life before him. He’s very insecure and so wants details. He was a virgin before we met, and, in order to spare him any hurt feelings, I lied and said I’d only had sex with very few people before we met. I feel that lie’s okay, Prudie, because I’d had a full STD screening done and his health was not at risk. But now that lie haunts me, Prudie. What should I do? Signed, Living With an Asshole
Dear Lover of An Asshole. Your boyfriend is a Grade A, Top Shelf, Douche Bag Asshole. And you are a Chicken Shit. Anyone outside of middle school who gets all jealous and wants to fight about past partners deserves to be left right there, on the spot (provided you haven’t given them an STD, etc., which sort of gives them the right to be a little pissy...but not about your past, just your irresponsibility). Period. Saying your boyfriend is all great and excellent just cements this all for me. He’s an asshole and you’re a doormat. Either get used to being a doormat and feeling guilty about all manner of things (because it won’t end with this, trust me), or, put on some adult panties and get the fuck out. This feeling of dread that you’re experiencing? That’s not how relationships are supposed to feel.
LW#4: Dear Prudie. I’m divorced. I have a minor son. I say “minor” because I can no longer say “young” or “toddler” (but that’s a whole other issue that adds to the inappropriateness here). When my son stays with me, I have him sleep in my bed because there’s no room anywhere else. When my boyfriend’s over, though, I have my son sleep on the couch (amazing how I can find room!). My ex husband says this is wrong. I don’t think it is and need you to help me figure out how to argue with him, Prudie. Signed, I Am Right
Dear Retarded, Selfish Idiot Who Is So Not Right. Buy an inflatable mattress or a roll-away bed for your son. Buy some real bedding. That stuff costs next to nothing and can be stowed away neatly when he’s not there. I know, you might have to forego drugs or booze for a week or two to buy it, but, it’s the little things, you know? Then, when your son is there with you, set him up in a quiet place. Also, due to how small your apartment is and how little self control you obviously have, ditch the boyfriend sleep overs when your son is with you. I know, poor you. Here’s a tear for you. You might want to decide not to drink or do drugs during that time, too. You know, just for the hell of it. Dumbass.
Well, Shippers, that’s about it. I’ll be back next week on my regular schedule, regular day, regular channel . Until then, fair winds and following seas to you all!