Dear Annie: Over the holidays, I stayed at my cousin's home. My cousin has two children, a daughter and a son. The son is 14 years old.
I noticed that the boy's grandmother slept with him in the same bed. I think she has a weird obsession with the boy. She is constantly touching him and rubbing his back. She always has to sit next to him. She pays very little attention to the younger granddaughter. Worse, the granddaughter told me that her mother also sometimes sleeps with her brother (instead of her dad).
I think it is extremely odd for these women to be sleeping with this young man, who also still sleeps with his baby blanket. Isn't he too old for this? What is wrong with these women? Should I say something? — More Than a Little Grossed Out
Dear More: Yes. We are surprised that a 14-year-old boy wouldn't object more to the sleeping arrangements, and we suspect he will put a stop to it soon. If the mother and grandmother are doing this over the boy's objections, however, that is completely inappropriate and potentially abusive. You could ask your cousin about this, saying you find it odd and possibly damaging. You also could mention it to the father, suggesting he step up and protect his son.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from Help, whose husband naps when he gets home and then is up half the night. She seems to think everyone can handle regular nighttime hours.
If I slept every night from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., I would be more tired as the week went on, because my body wakes me up multiple times at night. When I don't set an alarm, I sometimes don't wake up until 10 hours after I went to bed. If I get up after eight hours, I often need a nap later because I did not get enough actual sleep.
While I agree that seeing a doctor might be helpful, his wife can also suggest that he stay up all night one time and then try to sleep from 9 p.m. until 7 a.m. He might be able to manage that. — John
Dear John: Why are you getting up so much at night? To use the bathroom? Because something (snoring, apnea, dryness, light, noise) is waking you up? While we understand that not everyone has a "normal" nighttime sleep cycle, a sufficient amount of sleep is important to your health.
If the problem is snoring, dry mouth, excessive urination or apnea, please see a doctor to find out whether there is any effective treatment for you. But also check your bedroom to make sure there isn't a lot of light or noise, or electronic gadgets that glow or vibrate. This, too, can interfere with restful, restorative sleep.
Dear Annie: I am responding to Actively Confused, whose wife battled cancer and now resents his activities.
I am a lung cancer survivor. My wife took care of me for the better part of 18 months, showering me and feeding me through a tube. She also worked full time outside the home. At the time, I didn't much care what she wanted to do.
As I progressed, I realized she needed to get out of the house and do things for herself, even though it meant going without me. That was fine. As my mobility improved, I would do things with her even if those weren't my favorite things. We both knew that I needed to be more active, or I'd just waste away on the couch. It takes a long time to get your stamina back, and I still haven't after four years.
Together, my wife and I are getting through this, and we both realize that neither one of us is what we used to be. With her, our children and good doctors, nurses, therapists and prayers, I am still here to try. — Less Active, Not Confused
This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2015. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.