Who is Miss Abigail?

Abigail Grotke
Silver Spring, MD
email: missabigail at missabigail dot com
twitter: @DearMissAbigail

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Miss Abigail has a collection of over 1,000 classic advice books, spanning from 1822 to 1978 and covering a variety of topics, from love and romance to etiquette and charm. The collection sparked the idea for this site, then a book, Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, and Marriage, which has inspired an Off-Broadway production of the same name!

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Posts Tagged ‘compatibility’

He’s As Dull As My Grandpa’s Dentures!

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

what is it about joe that marion likes?Q Dear Miss Abigail:

My beautiful, creative, talented, cool friend is engaged to a perfectly gross man. Not only is he as dull as my grandpa’s dentures, he’s also kind of a jerk. Should I tell her how I feel about him? How do I avoid him without dumping her?

Your fan,
Irritated with Her Soggy Boyfriend

A Dear Irritated:

Such a sticky situation you face! Your friend sounds deserving of a much more wonderful man, but is it really up to her friends to let her know that? Even though you might be tempted to say something, it might be best for her to come to that realization herself. And then you’ll never have to see him again!

I’m hoping that these words can provide some guidance, for you and for her. She must make absolutely sure that this jerk is the man she wants to spend the rest of her life with. She must also realize that her future might not include her dear friends if she stays with him. Goodness, let’s hope she’s reading!

1956: Compatibility

Future spouses should have similar likes and dislikes over a wide field, but not necessarily identical interests, for this would make a dull life. Compatibility means that they have the same ideas of what is right, proper, polite, etc., and that all their interests fit reasonably together. This holds for wealth level, intellectual level, and so on. Though stories of successful marriages between rich and poor, intellectual and mediocre, refined and brusque, are frequent, the actual chances of success in these cases are low. “Marry your own” is a worthwhile motto in every sphere.

Source: Sattler, Henry V. Parents, Children and the Facts of Life. Garden City, N.Y.: Image Books, 1956.
~ p. 206 ~

1967: Your Friends’ Opinion

A high school girl asks, “If your friends do not approve of a boy, can you afford to go out with him?” She goes on to tell of how only she, of her whole group of pals, is interested in Joe. She wonders whether she should go with Joe in the face of her friends’ disapproval or whether she should follow their advice and give him up.

The answer to such a question depends upon several factors. First of all, why don’t her friends approve of the boy? What it is about Joe that Marion likes? How much do Marion’s friends mean to her? How much does the boy mean? Could she stand losing her friends if need be over Joe? Or are they so important to her that she couldn’t give them up? . . .

How Can You Judge?

The big question for many young people is: How can you judge another person? Should a girl judge a boy by what her family says about him or by what she knows of him? Should a boy judge a girl by what people say about her or by what he sees in her? Or both? How much should one listen to others in judging an individual? And how much can one trust one’s own judgment in appraising another’s personality? These are difficult questions to answer, especially when we realize how much is at stake in the reputation and the future happiness of the persons involved.

Source: Duvall, Evelyn Millis. The Art of Dating. New York: Association Press, 1967.
~ pp. 63, 65 ~