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Section: relationships, momey

Dear Ann Landers,
This is a reply to "Dilemma in N.Y.," whose ex-husband complained that his child-support money is not being spent on his two sons. The law states that the mother must give an accounting to the father on how his child-support money is spent. This is reasonable and makes a good story, but that's as far as it goes. The truth is, she can do what she pleases with the money. "Dilemma" says she doesn't "go out partying or dress to the nines." Why should she? It's not her money. That money is to support the child and nothing else. She should be ashamed to admit she buys macaroni and cheese by the case. It is not adequate nourishment for a child. As for money for school dances, costumes and so on, if Mom chooses to have these extras, then Mom should pay for them. They are not necessities. I didn't have them when I was young, and I grew up just fine. I am not an angry ex-husband. I am a 71-year-old woman. Please print this letter. "Dilemma" needs to see the other side. -- Grandma in Crown Point, Ind.

Dear Grandma,
"Divorced Mom" buys macaroni and cheese because that's what she can afford -- and it does indeed provide nourishment. As for the costumes and school dances, Mom doesn't want her kids to be left out. She wants them to enjoy the normal activities that other kids do, and she should be commended. I'm on her side.

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Hi! It's Margo here. I'd love to know what you think of the letters -- and the answers!

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Reader Comment
The mom should divide to month household bills by the number of people in the home. Then say that half of each child's percent is paid for from the child support. This includes Rent, or house payment , electric, gas, phone, cable, internet, and car payment and insurance, as they are taken to school, Dr. appointments and extra curricular activities. I am sure this will be all or more than the child support. This makes for easy accounting of the money and then if she choses to spend more on the activities then good for her. Also then nobody knows what she buys for food. Mac and cheese may not be the only thing they have for their meal, but it has lots of good nutritional values, and is sometimes used as a protein in nursing homes, if the person doesn't want the offered main dish. Children love it. My granddaughter will grab a cup of M

Andy's Comment
From what I've seen of various friends and relatives regarding "child support" payments, they usually aren't enough to feed and clothe a pet hamster let alone a human child. And that is IF the father pays their support on time. The mom should at least make a list on what she spends on the children, ALL of what she spends on them, and then submit it to the father. It will probably exceed his payments. Of course, if the father thinks his children are being short-changed, he can always have them live with him.
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Our Reader to Reader Question of the Week:

Dear Readers,
, whatever they needed I provided. What really hurt my son and I the most was the obituary - we were not mentioned at all. Our friends (mine and hers) were appalled. I was embarrassed and upset for not just me, but for my son-who loved her also. I never been so upset. Her x-husband put his wife and kids and their grandchildren in the obituary, who my girlfriend barely knew. They live an hour away from us. I know its silly to be mad over a little section of the newspaper, but it still hurts. Will time let this devastating loss of her and this article ever go away? I am so angry at this whole situation, its not like we can go and rewrite an obituary notice.

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"Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other."
-Ann Landers