I have 3 daughters, is it wrong that I want a son?

DEAR ABBY: My wife and I have been married for 17 years and have three wonderful daughters, ages 13, 10 and 5. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m the odd man out in an all-girls club. I wish I had a son with whom I could share my interests. I would love to have someone I could take fishing, teach about classic cars, and play soccer and baseball with. I’ve tried to introduce these interests to my girls, but they don’t want them.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my daughters beyond words. I take pride in their cheerleading games, dance recitals and family gatherings and thank God for them everyday. I recently asked my wife if we could try for another child in hopes of having a son. My wife is healthy, all three pregnancies went well, and we both make enough money to be good providers. He said he would “think about it.”

I learned that she reported this to her mother and sister, who are both angry. Her mom compared me to King Henry VIII. Abby, just because I wish I had a son doesn’t mean I don’t love my daughters. It hurts that such a thing was suggested. Am I wrong to want to try again? — DADDY’S GIRL IN NEW YORK

DEAR DADDY’S GIRL: You are not wrong. Your feelings are your feelings and you are entitled to them. This decision is something that should be between you and your wife, not her extended family. If she feels like three kids is all she can handle, consider finding young males to share your interests with. Consider mentoring fatherless boys who need a role model. Get online and do some research. You may find that there are opportunities in your community. However, if there are none, please contact Big Brothers Big Sisters of America because there is a need for the guidance you could provide.

DEAR ABBY: I am a high school student. I have many friends and acquaintances that I consider near and dear to my heart. However, this year I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety, both of which have affected my relationships. I have this problem where I tend to “suck up” the emotions of my friends and loved ones.

If a friend is feeling sad, I do what I can to make them feel better (I’m assigned the role of “healer friend”), but regardless of the outcome, I always end up feeling sad. If my friends are happy, I’m happy. if my friends are depressed, i’m depressed. My therapist has described me as an “empath” and a “sponge.”

I still haven’t figured out how to live my own, independent life. I’m sick and tired of feeling the way I do because of other people. What can I do? — RACE IN THE NORTHWEST

FAVORITE MATCH: You are already working with a therapist. This is good news. Now that you know what your diagnosis is, you have someone who can help you manage your emotions so they don’t overwhelm you. Be patient. Your therapist will help you find the tools to achieve this and they will be important to you later in life.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, aka Jeanne Phillips, and founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.