Dear Ann Cannon • I am very troubled by the fact that my preschool grandchildren (they belong to my son and his wife) are allowed to watch very violent mature movies on a regular basis. I don’t think this should be happening. At all. Should I say something? My husband thinks I should keep my opinions to myself.
— Worried Grandmother
Dear Worried Grandmother • My first impulse always is to advise against interfering in your married children’s business unless life and limb are at risk. But I understand your concern. I don’t think your young grandchildren should be watching violent movies either.
You can, of course, choose to calmly and kindly express your concerns, although I would only bring up the subject once and be done. And if you do so, talk to your son instead of your daughter-in-law, who might be especially sensitive to anything that sounds like criticism coming from you, her mother-in-law.
I’m not sure talking to your son will change anything, however. For better or worse, he and his wife get to be in charge of their own family, and you’ll have to find a way to live with that reality.
Best of luck!
Dear Tribune Readers • This week I also received several letters from readers who just felt like letting off some steam rather than asking a specific question. So, this is the “Readers Letting Off Some Steam” edition of Ask Ann Cannon. Maybe you’ll recognize some of your own pet peeves here.
Feel free to let us know.
Dear Ann Cannon • Unfortunately, group texts are sometimes necessary. Could you please educate your readers on etiquette regarding group texts? Please let them know it is usually not necessary to reply to all. But if you just can’t help yourself, please ONLY reply to the sender so that everyone in the group text does not get bothered by a lot of unnecessary messages.
Also, BE RESPECTFUL about the time of day you reply. Last night at 1 a.m., someone replied to a group text that was sent 12 hours earlier. I sleep with my phone on my nightstand because I have children and want to be available for emergencies. My heart stops when I get a text after midnight because I’m afraid someone I care about it in trouble!
Sometimes when I send out a group text, I will send the message to one friend and forward it to each contact so that my friends are not bothered. Also, at the end of a group text, it does not hurt the sender to remind everyone that it is a group text and please do not reply to everyone. Thank you for letting me vent.
— Frustrated with My Fellow Texters
Dear Ann Cannon • I wrote this letter after an experience I had last week and thought you might be able to use it in your column.
TO THE OWNER OF THE OFF-LEASH GOLDEN RETRIEVER: There are reasons for leash laws, including the fact that if a dog on a leash is charged by one off-leash, the leashed dog feels helpless and threatened. Your dog not only charged me and my dog but growled and leaped. In response, mine (of course) did the same. I am a 73-year-old woman and ought to be able to walk my dog in a neighborhood I’ve lived in for 30 years without being charged by an off-leash dog or to be told to turn around and go the other way, which is what you said to me.
You didn’t apologize, of course, because you obviously didn’t feel that you were in the wrong or bore any responsibility for what occurred. Some people consider themselves above the law, I guess. And blameless, no matter the circumstances. But laws are usually in place for good reason. To wit, what happened today, I want to thank you for making an old woman cry with fury and frustration.
— Trying to Be a Responsible Dog Owner