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Jeanne Phillips, better known as her pseudonym Abigail Van Buren, wrote the Dear Abby column for almost 50 years. After a long career of advice-giving, she died this month at the age of 94. To remember the advice columnist who became a household name, we are posting three of our favorite Dear Abby underwear advice articles and lessons. RIP Ms. Van Buren.
3. Wash Your Undies
Dear Abby: My husband sleeps in his underwear. He wears the long woolen kind, and he sleeps in the same underwear he’s worn all day. The problem is getting him to change it. Abby, there are four sets of clean underwear in his drawer, but he won’t put on a clean pair without a fight. I can’t even get the underwear away from him to put in the wash. Don’t tell me to grab it when he’s in the bathtub. He doesn’t bathe much either. Please help me. He’s getting pretty ripe. — Holding My Nose
Dear Holding: Look at it this way. You don’t have to worry about another woman stealing him. And he’s easy to find in the dark. But if you want action, try begging, bribing, nagging, and leaving! And in that order.
2. Wear Underwear that Makes You Comfortable
Dear Abby: I am in my 70s, on Social Security and in my second marriage. My wife, “Irene,” is in her early 50s and holds a good job. She also holds the purse strings, and allows me $5 a week for coffee with my friends. I drive a little scooter, and Irene has given me a gas credit card so I can get around.
Last week, I told her that I need some underwear and asked her for her store credit card. She said she has a drawer full of nylon panties and that I should wear them instead. She said when they are worn out she will buy me some new men’s underwear. She also said she didn’t want to waste any money on me since the panties are still wearable. What if someone finds out? Irene says that since I’m over 70 it doesn’t matter. Do you think this is right? – Prefers Briefs
Dear Prefers Briefs: No, I do not think it is right. Regardless of your age, your feelings matter a great deal. You should wear underwear in which you feel comfortable without having to worry about anyone “finding out.”
Because your wife is so tight-fisted, please consider finding a part-time job so you will have spending money of your own.
3. Thongs are Great
DEAR READERS: As promised, today you’ll see what some male readers had to say about thongs, as well as the results of my reader poll. Fifty-five percent voted thongs up, 28 percent voted thongs down, and 17 percent gave mixed reviews. And 9 percent of the readers were male …
DEAR ABBY: Thongs up, girl! I switched to thongs when I turned 14 and have never looked back. A man can’t wear tight white jeans with anything else. Love … DINO IN SAN FRANCISCO
DEAR ABBY: I’m a guy who wears string thongs under my work uniform and for casual day or evening underwear. I also wear thong swimwear by my pool in the summer, which I suppose makes me … STRUNG UP THE MIDDLE IN VEGAS
DEAR ABBY: I have never understood why girls would wear something that appears to violate all laws of comfort.
The only way for me to solve this mystery was to try a thong. I purchased two and wore them exclusively for a couple of days. After the initial “getting used to,” they were comfortable. In fact, I like them so much I bought a few more this evening. I am also thinking about buying other ladies’ underwear.
While this might be perceived as less than masculine, what I saw in the lingerie section looked a lot more comfortable and sexy to me than my old boxers or briefs. Abby, why won’t they let us guys wear sexy underwear? — CONFUSED IN VIRGINIA
Photo Credit: Andrew Christian, Tommy John