Life is complicated. Short Answers isn't.
THE WAY OF THE WORLD CIRCA 2014
Dear Short Answers: I spent most of my life in the pre-cell phone era when it was possible to be inaccessible. This was an option I appreciated and often enjoyed. Today, I have a cell phone, but I sometimes turn it off when I don't want to be disturbed. Some of my family members and friends say I am being selfish, making their lives more difficult when they "need" to get in touch with me. I consider that expectation to be selfish on their parts. Who's right?
-- Likes to Be Left Alone Sometimes
Dear Sometimes: Everyone deserves down time. Everyone needs to be accessible to family (most of all) and friends in Real Emergency situations. Make your preferences known. Email and phone settings allow for many options. WE PROBABLY ARE NUTS!
Dear Short Answers: Not a question but a comment to a response (to Wannabe Me) regarding should he or should he not get a tattoo because his wife hates them. Well, I HATE them and if my husband walked into the house and said "sorry but I got a tattoo anyhow" -- that would be a relationship killer. You must be nuts!
-- Tattoo Hater
Dear Hater: We presume (apparently, wrong in your case) that love is more than skin deep. Sorry sweetie.
IN A WORD
Dear Short Answers: There is a guy in town that I would love to have sex with, but he's been married for over 20 years to a woman who happens to be a friend of mine -- so I figured it was never going to happen.
-- Still a Sista
Dear Sista: Yes, it would be wrong. What are you thinking?
THE WAY IT IS
Dear Short Answers: What is to be done about ungrateful children?
Dear Dis: Give less.
Send your questions anonymously on our website (www. shortanswers.net) or email them to email@example.com. Jeff Johnson has worked as a psychologist for New York State, New York City and the federal government as well as teaching at the graduate level. He is a Williams College alumnus and lives in Pownal, Vt. Paula Forman has worked as a professional "trend spotter" with high-profile clients such as Procter & Gamble. More recently, she taught sociology in the New York City university system. She lives and writes in Hudson, N.Y.