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“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Wilmington, IL

#1 Sep 18, 2013
DEAR AMY: My stepdaughter is in her late 30s and is getting married next year.

She has been in my life for the past 20 years. A few years ago she found her real father through the Internet. Honestly, we thought he was dead.

My wife has asked me to pay for half of the cost of the wedding dress. I asked who was walking her down the aisle. The response was her biological dad. He is also going to be sitting at the head table with us. This man ditched his family when my stepdaughter was 2 years old, due to drugs and crime. He never paid a cent of child support.

He is a complete deadbeat who still has no money to offer. But to ask me to pay for a dress and not have the right to walk down the aisle does not sit well with me. I believe it is wrong, and I said no.

I am also thinking of not attending this wedding because I hate uncomfortable situations. My wife feels we should forgive him, and the daughter is awe-struck by him.

I am afraid she will get hurt down the road. I am a faithful Christian and am torn. What's your opinion on this matter?-- Acting Foolish

DEAR FOOLISH: Stepparents have many minefields to scramble across, but they can also be heroes to their families. This is a hero opportunity for you.

The most generous and unselfish gesture is to join with your wife as a family to help pay for the wedding dress, but I understand that you see this as linked to your participation (but notice that her mother is contributing and the bride hasn't invited her mother to walk her down the aisle either).

Walking a bride down the aisle is an honor that in my opinion is earned rather than conveyed because of biology. Your stepdaughter may feel differently (many people do). But it sounds as if you are dodging this uncomfortable situation by sulking and conveying your disappointment to your wife, not your stepdaughter.

The adult thing to do is to say to her, "I am hurt that you have not asked me to walk you down the aisle; this is an important moment for a guy. I have been very proud to be in your life for 20 years."

And then, regardless, attend the wedding and be gracious and generous. Facing this uncomfortable situation boldly and with grace is being a hero.

DEAR AMY: It's typically hard for me to make friends owing to my social shyness, awkwardness and introverted interests.

Recently, I have begun to feel even more alone after moving back home from college. I have tried reconnecting with old friends but it has been difficult because we have simply grown apart and developed into different people. I would love to meet people with similar interests but have no idea how to do so.-- Mary

DEAR MARY: The transition from college into the rest of your life is challenging for everyone -- especially if a person is a little shy or introverted.

With that said, though, the most obvious place to make new friends and connections is through work. Working alongside other people gives you a shared task and things (and people) in common to talk about. It is also easier, practically speaking, for someone who is shy to get to know someone in a structured environment.

If you don't have a job yet, volunteering is a great way to keep yourself busy, to be helpful and to meet new people. You may not meet your new friends for life, but staying active will be good for you in every way.

DEAR AMY: "Bent Relative" strenuously objected to relatives who continue to "pop in" to her country home on weekends without warning, often staying for hours.

If it were me, I'd grab my car keys as they pulled in, telling them, "I wish you had called. I'm just on my way out." After a couple of times, they should get the message.-- Been There

DEAR BEEN THERE: Many readers suggested that technique. I have a feeling these relatives would respond by saying, "You go ahead -- we'll make ourselves at home while you're gone."

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#2 Sep 18, 2013
Who said the mother is paying for half the dress? LW doesn't. Maybe the bride is paying for half and since mom stays at home, she doesn't have the income to pay for it and is asking her husband that THEY pay half. I just don't like it when the columnist injects her own interpretation as fact...

Still...don't tie the contribution to you getting your way on this. Personally, I think she should pay for her own stupid wedding, but if you would contribute if you were walking her down the aisle, then contribute even if you aren't. And suck it up, Buttercup. Being left out of one little tradition is not worth destroying your relationship. And if you don't go to the wedding, it will.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

#3 Sep 18, 2013
1 This guy entered the kids life when she was at least 17 yrs old already. So she only was around him for the last part of HS and maybe some college time. Yeah, he as been around 20 yrs, but its not like he bounced her on his knee and took her to the park. He is not really "Daddy" to her either.
With that said, the advise was good. Your only being asked to shell out a couple hundred for a dress, not an entire wedding.

2 Troll the internet. Look for funny guys there.
Oh, and what about meetup? Its an inet place too

3 No, you grab your shooting iron and fill them full of rock salt if'n they dont get offa your land.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#4 Sep 18, 2013
L1: You didn't even raise her - you came into her life when she was an adult or nearly an adult. You sound more like you want *recognition* for having been a father figure than wanting to walk her down the aisle because you love her like she was yours her whole life.

And to threaten to not go? You are unbelievable.

L2: Get out of your parents' house ASAP and live an independent life.

L3: Why fake it? That's so spineless. Just be frank. People that pushy should be able to take it.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#5 Sep 18, 2013
Lw1: I side with lw...and the daughter. Lw entered the picture in her late teens. Pretty much just as she was headed out the door. He did not raise her. That being the case, it seems silly that he would just expect to walk her down the aisle unless they had a really close relationship over those 20 years. Something tells me that was never the case and that she sees him more as "my mom's husband" than "my step dad".

Assuming that to be the case, and basing on what seems to be a marriage of seperate finances instead of pooled finances, I tend to think she needs to pay for daufhter's wedding herself and not expect money from him.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#6 Sep 18, 2013
Oh, but lw1 IS a whiny butthurt bitch for trying to link his potential financial participation to him getting to walk her down the aisle.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#7 Sep 18, 2013
itser wrote:
Who said the mother is paying for half the dress? LW doesn't. Maybe the bride is paying for half and since mom stays at home, she doesn't have the income to pay for it and is asking her husband that THEY pay half. I just don't like it when the columnist injects her own interpretation as fact...
Still...don't tie the contribution to you getting your way on this. Personally, I think she should pay for her own stupid wedding, but if you would contribute if you were walking her down the aisle, then contribute even if you aren't. And suck it up, Buttercup. Being left out of one little tradition is not worth destroying your relationship. And if you don't go to the wedding, it will.
If it was the case of a stay at home wife, wouldn't she ask that "we" pay for half the dress? The way he phrased it leads me to think they maintain seperate finances.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#8 Sep 18, 2013
I predict that bio dad will be out of the picture soon after the wedding. I hope stepdad is up to the challenge of being there for his stepdaughter.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#9 Sep 18, 2013
Lw2 advice about finding friends at work...

I tend to try to keep my work life seperate from personal. I can think of 2 people i've met in 20 years of work that i socilized with outside of work.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

United States

#10 Sep 18, 2013
1- I side with the lw but think he should go to the wedding. He's been married to this girl's mother for 20 years, vs this stranger she just reconnected with a few years ago. And who abandoned her and her mother. He should have a frank talk with the daughter and urge her to reconsider.

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#11 Sep 18, 2013
LW1: Team Tonka

LW2: "... introverted interests."

WTF does this mean? You like to knit? Play WoW? Masturbate?

You meet people by doing stuff. Join a club or church, take a class or volunteer. The friends aren't going to just magically appear on your doorstep.

LW3: Abby's probably right. They seemed a special kind of rude.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

#12 Sep 18, 2013
Then why do you socialize with all of us at work?
Mister Tonka wrote:
Lw2 advice about finding friends at work...
I tend to try to keep my work life seperate from personal.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

#13 Sep 18, 2013
I took it that way too, but the point can be made that if she is a stay at home wife, she could be acknowledging the fact that He is the bread winner and it really is his money that is paying for the dress.

Which begs the question...If this is true what obligation does he really have to spend any of it on the dress? Not his kid, is not a household expense, not even a shared vacation cost.
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text> If it was the case of a stay at home wife, wouldn't she ask that "we" pay for half the dress? The way he phrased it leads me to think they maintain seperate finances.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#14 Sep 18, 2013
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text> If it was the case of a stay at home wife, wouldn't she ask that "we" pay for half the dress? The way he phrased it leads me to think they maintain seperate finances.
Or she doesn't work, he does, and spending "their" money on bigger purchases is something to be agreed upon, not just one person decides to write a check for $400 and it's good to go.

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#15 Sep 18, 2013
L1: Buy the dress. If you want kudos it's the best way to get it. The LW sounds like if he pays for the dress he's buying his spot walking down the aisle. Well, tell her she feels like she's a daughter he never had pay for the whole thing and not half. Insist on it. Go ahead if you think when you pay for things you're buying love. I think the LW is being silly.

L2: Volunteer at something you like to do. Take a class in something you like -- pottery, glass blowing, fitness. Join a club -- bridge club, board game players. There's all sorts of things to join, at least around Chicagoland there is. I imagine it is the same where she lives.

L3: People like this, in my experience, are totally clueless. You can be as polite as possible and they're still not either going to get it or take offense like YOU did something wrong. So, you might as well tell them straight out and stick to your guns.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#16 Sep 18, 2013
RACE wrote:
Then why do you socialize with all of us at work?
<quoted text>
i don't work with you. And this is what's known as goofing off. Either way, this is not the socializing lw is talking about. I think she's looking for peeps to actually go out and spend facetime with. If she was loking for nline interaction, she could just continue the college friendships she already has on facebook

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Location hidden

#17 Sep 18, 2013
Late 30s? Pay for your own damn dress. Walking down the aisle? Stupid archaic tradition.

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Location hidden

#18 Sep 18, 2013
Sorry for the double post. :(

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#19 Sep 18, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Or she doesn't work, he does, and spending "their" money on bigger purchases is something to be agreed upon, not just one person decides to write a check for $400 and it's good to go.
you missed my point. Its about the words used. Your scenario and word you selected makes my point. You referred to it as their money. Exactly. Its the difference between

My wife asked that WE pay for half

Vs

My wife asked that *I* pay for half

“Not a real reg”

Since: Jan 13

Location hidden

#20 Sep 18, 2013
Mimi Seattle wrote:
Late 30s? Pay for your own damn dress. Walking down the aisle? Stupid archaic tradition.
Agree.

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