Ar­gu­ing with friend over which church to at­tend Dear An­nie

Sherbrooke Record - - CLASSIFIED -

TUES­DAY, DE­CEM­BER 4, 2018

Dear An­nie: This may be a new one for you, but I’m find­ing it frus­trat­ing, to say the least. My hus­band, who is a re­tired Euro­pean-trained chef, does most of the cook­ing now that we are both re­tired. For years, I’ve used zip-lock bags for stor­ing left­overs. Over the past two years, he’s in­sisted on buy­ing a kind that has to be lined up per­fectly to be pressed to­gether. I hate these bags, and he knows it. I have a hard time get­ting them to close prop­erly. He re­fuses to use the ones I pre­fer. I end up putting things in “my” bags if I can’t close “his.” What mes­sage is he send­ing?! I am so be­yond frus­trated! — Why?!

Dear Why: The per­son to put that ques­tion to is your hus­band. But I can tell you that when you and your part­ner are fight­ing about some­thing as small as zip-lock bags, there are big­ger is­sues at hand. This bag is­sue may just be the light­ning rod for all the emo­tional static that’s built up over the past two years — or how­ever long you’ve both been re­tired, as it’s nor­mal for cou­ples to ex­pe­ri­ence some fric­tion when ad­just­ing to re­tire­ment. You’re around each other a lot more of­ten, with all the rou­tines you’ve been fol­low­ing for 30-plus years sud­denly up­ended. Take a step back to­gether to look at the big pic­ture of your re­la­tion­ship. Are there things you haven’t been com­mu­ni­cat­ing? Are there needs that aren’t be­ing met — per­haps for more to­geth­er­ness or more alone time? Once you’re on the same page with the big things, the lit­tle things tend to be­come a lot less sig­nif­i­cant.

Dear An­nie: I want your opin­ion. I started go­ing to one church, and then I switched to another church of the same de­nom­i­na­tion be­cause it’s much closer to my house. One friend who is a mem­ber of the first church tries to tell me it’s wrong to go any­where other than the first church. She called me three times in one day about it. She is mak­ing me re­sent her. It’s her way or the high­way. What are your thoughts on this? — Church­goer

Dear Church­goer: My thoughts are that your friend is be­hav­ing com­pletely in­ap­pro­pri­ately. You are free to wor­ship wher­ever you please; that’s one of the found­ing prin­ci­ples of our coun­try. Tell this con­trol­ling friend that you won’t hear any more on the sub­ject, and if she in­sists on calling to be­rate you about it, let her go to voice­mail.

Dear An­nie: I en­joy your col­umn ev­ery day. I had to re­spond to the let­ter from “Dis­ap­pointed Aunt,” whose nephew did not ac­knowl­edge her or her hus­band af­ter los­ing a foot­ball game. I was sad­dened by fam­ily dy­nam­ics that had two adult fam­ily mem­bers stand­ing there “star­ing at” a young man near tears who had just suf­fered what was for him a deeply dis­ap­point­ing loss. What held them back from giv­ing him a warm hug right then and telling him they loved watch­ing him play? When they just “headed for the car,” he prob­a­bly thought they were too dis­gusted with him to speak to him. As a grand­mother who has at­tended many loved ones’ sport­ing events, win or lose, it is my re­spon­si­bil­ity to step for­ward and of­fer un­con­di­tional sup­port and love. Your an­swer was very good, but I hope that in the fu­ture, these folks re­con­sider the im­por­tance of be­ing ac­knowl­edged and open their hearts to the sit­u­a­tion. — Con­cerned Grandma

Dear Con­cerned Grandma: Ex­cel­lent point and well said. I com­pletely agree. Thank you for writ­ing.

“Ask Me Any­thing: A Year of Ad­vice From Dear An­nie” is out now! An­nie Lane’s de­but book — fea­tur­ing fa­vorite col­umns on love, friend­ship, fam­ily and eti­quette — is avail­able as a pa­per­back and e-book. Visit http://www.cre­ator­spub­lish­ing.com for more in­for­ma­tion. Send your ques­tions for An­nie Lane to dear­an­[email protected]­ators.com.

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