Dear Abby | Parents should share pride in daughter"s dance pursuit -

Dear Abby: My husband and I are fielding some snide comments because of our daughter’s choice of college major: dance.

When people with college-age kids or grandkids find out, their expression or tone of voice speaks volumes.
“Oh, really?” they say.

Our daughter has always been an honors student. I want these people to realize that it takes guts to pursue a career in dance and/or choreography. We support her decision, and she already has an associate’s degree that will prove useful as a backup.

Why can’t people understand that fine-arts majors are brave, bold and passionate about their crafts? — Dancer’s Mom in Texas

Dear Dancer’s Mom: If you react to the comments positively rather than defensively, your remarks would give you the opening to smile and tell these “conventional thinkers” how proud you are of your daughter’s decision to pursue her dreams.


Dear Abby: I tend to react poorly when someone pulls a prank on me. My reaction is usually hurt or embarrassment, and I might say or do things I later regret.

My husband has always liked playing pranks, and my children have started to follow his lead. The pranks tend to involve things like putting ice down the back of my shirt or bopping the end of a glass or bottle while I’m drinking from it, so it splashes in my face.

I don’t like it, and I don’t do it to them. If I react, I am deemed the “bad guy” because I “can’t take a joke.”
I feel guilty about the latest incident because when my l0-year-old daughter bopped a drink in my face, I slapped her across the face. When I apologized, she said, “Dad does it all the time.”

How do I get my family to understand that these “jokes” aren’t funny to me? — Unamused in Indiana

Dear Unamused: Jokes at the expense of others can be funny if everyone agrees that they’re funny. Because you’ve told your husband that you don’t find his pranks amusing, I can only conclude that his sense of humor is sadistic. And it sets a poor example for the kids.

I wonder how he would react if you poured a pitcher of ice water on him at 2 a.m.? Would that be “funny”? I doubt it. Normally, I wouldn’t stoop to such a level, but this might call for an exception.

Write to Dear Abby at Universal Press Syndicate, in care of The Columbus Dispatch, P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069; for a reply, enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Or visit


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