Posted: Tuesday, June 5, 2012 8:00 pm
Dear Annie: My wonderful wife and I have been married for a little less than a year. Though I love her with all my heart, I absolutely do not get along with one of her friends. “Sherry” is negative, overdramatic and incredibly self-centered. She bullies my wife and expects to receive far more support than she’s willing to give.
When Sherry moved to another city, I figured we were both finally free of this woman. But I was mistaken. Within a couple of months, Sherry demanded that we visit her and spend the weekend. She now expects us to reciprocate at a moment’s notice, inviting herself to stay at our place and babysit her kids whenever she comes to town to shop and have her hair done.
My wife knows how I feel about Sherry. I have tried hard to keep my mouth shut and be away from the house when she comes by. But my veneer of politeness is only able to withstand so much. The thought of having to deal with a person like this for the rest of my life nauseates me to the point where I’m seriously considering divorce. Any advice? — Ready To Walk
Dear Ready: You’re being a little overdramatic yourself. We can see that Sherry is a pain and you can’t stand the sight of her, but divorce is an extreme reaction. Please allow your wife to have her own friends. You get to avoid the ones you dislike. Don’t ever visit Sherry. If she comes to your town, you and your wife should suggest she stay elsewhere, and your wife can meet up with her in a neutral spot. If your wife insists that Sherry stay with you, absent yourself as much as possible (or pack a bag and stay with friends). Over time, Sherry will discover shops and hair salons closer to her new home, and these visits will become less frequent. Please be patient, and let distance do the job of making the friendship lapse.
Dear Annie: I am engaged to a kind, wonderful, hardworking, compassionate man who treats me like a queen. He was once quite wealthy but lost his business during the economic recession. He’s working hard to regain his status, and we try to remain optimistic. We’re also pulling our belts tighter and making the best of our situation without complaining.
When he proposed, he presented me with an elegant, simple band. He said it was all he could afford right now, but promised to buy a fancier ring when he’s more financially able. I do not place any importance on how extravagant the ring is. I love him for who he is. But how do I deal with insensitive remarks from others who think he’s being cheap? Why do people feel the need to belittle an engagement ring no matter what it looks like? — L.A. Bride-To-Be
Dear L.A.: People can be rude and insensitive. The correct response to any unkind comment about your engagement ring is to look at it lovingly and then smile sweetly and say, “It’s exactly what I wanted. I’m so lucky.”
Dear Annie: This is in response to “The Bride’s Mother,” who was afraid that she didn’t have enough money to contribute to her daughter’s wedding.
My family comes from a working-class background, and my husband’s family is very well off. We just wanted our families there to celebrate with us. When we planned our wedding, we didn’t expect my folks to contribute, but they generously gave us what they could afford. It meant just as much as the more extravagant help his parents gave us.
It sounds like The Bride’s Mother has a good relationship with her daughter and future son-in-law. I guarantee that her love and support is more important to them than a check. — Happily Married Broke Girl
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 Third St., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 6.5.12