April 11, 2010
Dear Amy: My parents own a beach house that is the site of our annual family vacation. Our family has grown, the house has not. There are now five couples, four singles and three children who are planning on being there this summer. There are nowhere near enough beds or couches. I've decided to rent a two-bedroom condo about a half-mile away for the overflow. The issue we're having is how to pay for it. I think that everyone, including those who stay at my parents' home, should help, although I'm flexible in how to divide the cost.
March 7, 2010
Dear Amy: My sister "Carol" was married for about 10 years to "Steve." About three years ago, he started cheating on Carol and eventually left her. She was devastated. He recently married the woman and they have a baby. My sister "Sarah" and her husband have maintained a close relationship with Steve and his new family. Do you feel this relationship they maintain with Steve is appropriate? Christine Dear Christine: A sensitive family member will realize that during a difficult divorce, attention and concern should be lavished onto the aggrieved family member.
December 24, 2009
Dear Amy: Every year my family exchanges our gift lists, and every year I shop, wrap and ship our gifts in time for Christmas. However, one family member, who always is the first to ask what we would like for Christmas, continuously sends gifts days, weeks and at times months after Christmas. As much as we really enjoy and appreciate the gifts, it is becoming somewhat insulting to receive them so late. We have a very small family, and it is only my husband and I who receive the gifts late.
December 13, 2009
Dear Amy: My mother has suddenly turned against drinking. I am hosting a 60th birthday party for myself. My mother will not go if there is one glass of alcohol served. How I should handle this? Julia Dear Julia: You are not the cause of your mother's distress, but you should do your best to reassure her without letting her unreasonably control you. You should also make sure her health is stable because she doesn't sound completely rational. I suggest you lovingly dodge dwelling on this.
January 3, 2010
Dear Amy: Seven years ago, when my then boyfriend was dating me, he "confessed" that he had intimate relationships with three women before dating me. And I took him at his word. We have been married for two years. Recently when I cleaned the basement, I came across many love letters written by his ex-girlfriends. These letters detailed his sexual activities. Based on these letters, my husband slept with way more than three women. I understand what happened was before my time, but I don't understand why he was not telling me the truth in the beginning of our relationship.
January 4, 2010
Dear Amy: Recently I reconnected with a woman I knew more than 25 years ago. We e-mailed, texted and spoke by phone. A few months ago, I was in her hometown and she came to my hotel. We had a few drinks and spent the night together. We continued our conversations, and recently I was at a convention where she also was and we spent the week together. We virtually skipped the convention and just enjoyed each other's company. More recently, I was back in her town and we spent another few days together.
February 14, 2010
Dear Amy: Our grandson recently got married. One Sunday afternoon, the newlyweds paid us an unexpected visit. After visiting for a short while, I thought my wife should have offered them coffee or tea. I would like to know who should take the initiative to make an offering. I feel that the wife (who is the homemaker) should have taken it upon herself (or should have asked me) to make a lunch or something to offer to our guests. I know we made a bad impression on them.
February 22, 2010
Dear Amy: My mother is a beloved member of our family. Because Mom is so great and such a fun person to be around, whenever one of my siblings or I travel with our families, we will often invite Mom and pay her way. My father, who has no interest in coming along on these trips, has a problem with this arrangement. He says that we are being disrespectful and that we are treating Mom like a glorified nanny, especially if we take her up on her offer to watch the kids one night so we can go to dinner with our spouses.
February 24, 2010
Dear Amy: Later this year I will wed the love of my life. This is his first marriage and my third; it will be a small, intimate affair. We are both pushing 50, and neither of us has children, but we both like kids. I have four couples who are friends with small children. After some lengthy conversations among us, we would like to have our day with adults only. Most of these couples will welcome the chance to get a baby sitter and party for a few hours. However, other couples will be offended, and that worries me. Should I call these couples before I send out the invitations and explain that our wedding is adults-only?
March 2, 2010
Dear Amy: We recently learned that my husband would likely be laid off within a month. My husband is devastated; in addition to the impact this has had on his professional ego, he feels he's letting his family down by not being able to support us until he finds another job. I have tried to reassure him that this is a chance to get a job he will love. His paycheck is not what makes him the amazing father and husband he is. Is there anything else I could do? Concerned Wife Dear Wife: One unfortunate aspect of the current unemployment situation is that men are losing their jobs at a disproportionally high rate.