Be­trayed by her friend

Los Angeles Times - - AT THE MOVIES - Send ques­tions for Amy Dick­in­son to askamy@ amy­dick­in­son.com or by mail to Tri­bune Con­tent Agency, 16650 West­grove Drive, Suite 175, Ad­di­son, TX 75001.

Dear Amy: I re­cently left a re­la­tion­ship with a man who was emo­tion­ally and fi­nan­cially con­trol­ling, and fre­quently ver­bally ag­gres­sive to­ward me, com­plete with ex­ple­tives and a phys­i­cal threat. Af­ter we broke up, he would send me end­less text mes­sages and emails, call­ing me an evil whore.

Less than a week af­ter I ended things, my best friend of six years (and cur­rent room­mate) had sex with him. I came home unan­nounced to find him in our house. Now she’s hang­ing out with him 24/7.

I do not feel com­fort­able. I’d like to have her in my life, but hon­estly I feel be­trayed.

Is there any way to sal­vage this friend­ship, while keep­ing my ex out of the pic­ture?

Dis­cour­aged

Dear Dis­cour­aged: I can’t imag­ine why you would want to con­tinue a friend­ship with her. She has made a choice. You should be hon­est with her about the im­pact her choice has on you.

Don’t ex­pect her to break up with him, but do your best to avoid both of them.

Dear Amy: My wife and I love to have peo­ple over. I be­lieve that when you host a party, you re­ally should not ex­pect your guests to do any­thing ex­cept show up and have a good time. But my wife gets very up­set if guests do not jump out of their chairs to help put food out or take out the trash dur­ing the party.

She gets so up­set that the party be­comes a source of stress for her. She will make it quite ob­vi­ous that she is un­happy dur­ing the party.

She will even start clean­ing up in the mid­dle of the party to “get a head start,” but to me that is telling your guests it is time to go.

Af­ter the party she will com­plain about “all of these lazy peo­ple,” and about how rude peo­ple are.

I be­lieve that when you of­fer to host a party, you should take care of ev­ery­thing and if you want help, ask for it, but I do not ex­pect peo­ple to come and work. What’s your take?

Jim in Vir­ginia

Dear Jim: I’m with you, over­all. But this prob­a­bly won’t help to solve the prob­lem in your house­hold.

So here’s a lit­tle ad­mis­sion of my own: Not too long ago, a fam­ily mem­ber of mine pointed out that while I seem to en­joy be­ing gen­er­ous, I would then com­plain about the per­sonal toll and stress of be­ing a per­pet­ual host­ess.

Ba­si­cally, the mes­sage was, “If you’re go­ing to of­fer, then don’t com­plain when peo­ple take you up on it. Oth­er­wise, don’t of­fer!”

Your wife is ob­vi­ously stressed by the ef­fort these large gath­er­ings re­quire. You should tell her that be­cause she al­ways seems so un­happy dur­ing and af­ter these par­ties, it might be best to take a break from large-scale en­ter­tain­ing.

Although it is al­ways po­lite for a guest to of­fer their help, a host should not ex­pect guests to leap up, un­bid­den, to clear and clean.

The next time you host a gathering, you should tell her that she will be your guest and that you will han­dle the host­ing du­ties. And then do it. Ask a guest (or your chil­dren) for help if you need it, and let your wife see what it’s like to en­joy your own party.

An ad­di­tional sug­ges­tion is to hire a teenager to help, so you can both have an ex­tra pair of hands to as­sist.

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