DR. WALLACE: Many celebrities have been speaking on social media lately about how often they bathe themselves and their children. Many say that they do it only sporadically — not every day or every other day like most of us thought was normal.
Now, I kind of want to skip a few days and wait to do my own “smell test” to determine if it’s time for me to bathe or not. What do you think the best time frame of bathing should be? I’m no celebrity, but this may be my chance to live like one, right? — Pondering my bathing schedule, via email
PONDERING MY BATHING SCHEDULE: This bathing issue seems to be a personal preference based on the people around you. The average person showers two to three times per week; every two to three days. Some people prefer to shower or bathe every day, especially if they have a job or a regular exercise schedule that causes them to sweat.
It’s certainly a personal preference, but most individuals like to be sure they smell clean. Regular showers or baths accomplish this best.
It’s also true that skin can dry up when exposed to many showers in a short period of time. Fortunately, there are many wonderful moisturizing products available that can help add back moisture and minerals to refresh the skin.
Finally, never forget that celebrities are often experts at creating publicity and attention. I wouldn’t be surprised if the entire “buzz” created on this topic turned out to be partially in jest in order to draw attention. In any case, here we are discussing it!
WHAT EXACTLY IS EMOTIONAL ABUSE?
DR. WALLACE: My second cousin told me that her boyfriend was abusing her. When I asked her if he was physically harming her, she said no. She also told me he wasn’t sexually abusing her. I was a bit confused, so I persisted in questioning her. I finally got a brief explanation from her, but it caused her to cry. She said she was being abused emotionally, and she seemed really upset about it. By then, I didn’t have the heart to ask her to explain how he was abusing her. Can you explain what emotional abuse is? I would like to help my cousin. She’s a really nice girl, and I hate to see her suffer. — Concerned cousin, via email
CONCERNED COUSIN: Emotional abuse sadly comes in many forms. It can include name-calling, insults and even behavior such as trying to control another person’s life, isolating that person from their friends and family, and threatening physical harm.
In the U.S., it is estimated that 90% of emotional abuse victims are female. You can, and should, quickly encourage your cousin to discuss this with a professional. She likely needs support urgently. It may be best to help her get out of this relationship as quickly as possible. Hopefully she will be open to seeking out this help and she can explain to a professional exactly what is going on.
You can tell your cousin that she should not feel alone. This type of abuse thrives in secret and is much more common than most people think it is.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.