Dear Amy: There was a story in the news recently about a child who found $1,000 inside a videotape at a Salvation Army store.
The child was applauded for returning the money.
I am all for charity, but I had to think that the money originally was not given to the Salvation Army intentionally. Someone obviously hid the money in the videotape case and then forgot about it.
Was the Salvation Army the rightful recipient of this cash – or could that child ethically have kept the money, or even given it to a different charity of his or her choice?
Dear Challenged: I certainly hope this story is true and not just one of those feel-good urban myths that surfaces this time of year.
Whoever finds money in an otherwise anonymous videotape box with no way to trace the owner should do a happy dance and then enjoy his windfall.
The fact that this child chose to donate the money back to the Salvation Army speaks volumes about the child.
This child was not obliged to donate this money back to the Salvation Army – or donate it anywhere – but now I'm inspired to ask others to follow his or her example and (on top of any other holiday giving) consider turning over any “found money'' to their favorite nonprofit.
I'm headed over to my couch to shake out those cushions.
Dear Amy: I've been seeing my boyfriend for 11 months – and he's great.
We see each other three or four times a week (sometimes more), have met parents and friends, and treat each other with respect and affection.
This is the most drama-free, honest, happy relationship I've ever been in.
I've told him that I loved him, but he hasn't returned the feeling yet.
We discussed this again on our 11-month anniversary, and he still doesn't say he loves me.
He “likes me more every day,'' but I'm worried that if he doesn't love me by now, perhaps he never will.
When I voice my concerns about this he assures me that he does envision a future with me, and that he'll love me “some day.'' But what if he doesn't? At some point I deserve to hear those words (and know they're meant), too. Should I continue to wait for him to make up his mind, or am I setting myself up for disappointment?
Liked But Not Loved
Dear Liked: If your guy “likes you more every day,'' then you're forced to do the calculation to see if and when these incremental increases will add up to love.
Some people just can't seem to drop the L-bomb. Perhaps an experience from childhood or a previous relationship has soured your guy to the word. Perhaps he perceives that withholding an expression of love in the way you want is the key to power in your relationship. Or – he's not feeling it yet and being scrupulously honest.
You need to make sure that he is comfortable with love as a concept, however. The best way to find out is to talk frankly about it – and not on a date like an anniversary.
This will be a challenging conversation, but if you listen attentively without pushing, you may learn a lot.