I’m 25 and my new husband is 50; it’s a second marriage for both of us. His family and friends are jealous that he’s with a younger woman and discuss his ex-girlfriends in front of me, trying to start a fight. My husband says they’re just teasing, but it
Handle it the hard way: stay cool. Don’t give them the fight they want and they’ll stop wanting it. If you fight, it will go on forever. Smile over gritted teeth when they talk about his exes and make jokes if you can; laughter is a tonic. Don’t complain to and fight with your husband as any trouble between you two will be taken as proof they’ve won. Meanwhile, try to make an ally among them who is at least a bit sympathetic. It’s a test you can pass if you’re patient.
Q. I have a best friend of four years. She was there for me in a bad time when nobody else was. Now she’s at college miles away and I have a job with some really great people. When I ask if she wants to visit and come out with us, she never does. I feel like I’ve moved on but she hasn’t—what do I do? A.
Her life is moving on too—only in a direction different to yours. Meanwhile, the best you can do is to keep the door open. Stay in touch online and by post. Remember her birthday and special events. Let her feel that you’re there for her and she’s always welcome. Maybe, eventually, you two will drift apart for good. Or maybe you will meet each other again, many years from now, and find the friendship is still strong.
Q. A month ago, my boyfriend proposed. But now he balks when I bring up wedding planning. Is he having second thoughts? A.
We don’t think so. In fact, we’re sure he’d like nothing more than to begin married life with you tomorrow...if it meant he could skip planning and go straight to the honeymoon sex. We’d even bet he’s looking forward to the wedding. It’s just that deciding which flowers look best in centrepieces or picking a colour scheme are not tasks most guys have any interest in dealing with. Your best bet to get him involved? First, stress how excited you are to spend the rest of your life with him—it’ll boost his ego and make him more eager for the actual event. Then, play up the fun aspects of planning. Once he sees that it won’t all be a pain in the ass, he’ll be more willing to get started.
Jen and Courteney have remained BFFs through distance, turmoil, and career switches