“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Jun 28, 2014
DEAR AMY: My niece lost her mother (my sister) when she was 10 years old. She is now 16 and spends time at my home with my husband and me (approximately once or twice a month for an overnight).

We do not have children of our own. This is becoming a great source of stress for me because although my husband says he is OK with her staying with us, he always ends up getting offended by something she does.

To me these things are normal teenage behaviors, such as giving one-word answers or not cleaning up her dishes or making her bed. Today he was upset because she and her friend made brownies and did not offer him any.

My husband and I always end up fighting once she leaves because he complains about her, and I get angry and defend her. I have spoken to her about the things that bother him, but she always seems to do something that annoys him.-- Agitated Aunt

DEAR AUNT: The reason experienced parents tend to be tolerant about "normal teenage behavior" is because they have learned how important it is to pick their battles.

Your commitment to your niece is commendable. Encourage your husband to have a positive stake by taking a "team" approach, with the two of you making choices together. If he changed his perspective even a little bit, he would embrace this opportunity. As it is, his concerns seem quite petty, but I believe he is acting out because he lacks a more defined role with her and he doesn't know what else to do.

Do not offer a knee-jerk defense of her. If he has something to express, you should strategize together about how to do this -- kindly and carefully -- and then talk to your niece, together, at the kitchen table.

One night soon, take her aside and, rather than correct her after the fact, say, "Let's do something nice for Uncle Derrick and surprise him tonight with his favorite meal. I'll show you how to make the entree, and you show me how to make the brownies."

I know this sounds hokey, but sometimes the way through someone's tough outer shell is to do something obvious, thoughtful and sweet.

DEAR AMY: I have recently fallen in love with a woman who is 35 years younger than I.

Could I really be in love or am I just an old pig? She insists that she loves me for who I am and not for my wealth, but I'm having doubts.-- Old Man in Connecticut

DEAR OLD MAN: You can definitely be in love with someone a radically different age from you. The question you seem to want to ask is: Is she really in love with you?

It seems to me that when someone repeatedly insists that something isn't true, it increases the likelihood that it is (or might be) true. If your wealth is your most obvious asset (as her youth might be to her), then it is most likely a factor in your relationship. And, yes, when doubts creep in, pay attention!

If she is an adult, and you are having a consensually good time, then you should enjoy this relationship. Don't get married or purchase property together without receiving professional legal and financial advice.

DEAR AMY: Regarding the letter from "Feeling Appreciated," the assistant teacher who sent thank-yous to students for gifts while the other teachers did not, I have been organizing recently and found my scrapbook from second grade.

I had been invited to my teacher's wedding. Pasted in my scrapbook were the wedding program and the invite, but most prominently featured, with a big circle around it, was her handwritten thank-you to me for her gift.

In my crooked handwriting underneath the note, I wrote, "Miss Sandin sent this to ME!!"

I have never forgotten how special it made me feel, and I still write thank-yous to this day, 45 years later -- of course, mostly now in email form.-- Liz Davies

DEAR LIZ: This is a perfect illustration of the point I was making: These things matter.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#2 Jun 28, 2014
1- Your husband's an @zz. Once or twice a month for an overnight stay and he finds a reason to throw a hissy fit about something? Have him stay with his friends that weekend. Then talk to a divorce lawyer

2- She loves your money, dude

3- Your second grade teacher invited you to her wedding?

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#3 Jun 28, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
3- Your second grade teacher invited you to her wedding?
My third grade teacher invited teh whole class. Most of us went. I don't remember anything about a gift but it was the first full Catholic Mass I had gone to. At 8 years old that was impressive. She was Miss Doherty and became Mrs Sinclair in roughly 1958. Yeah, that's memorable.

She was a good teacher, too.
Pippa

Hancock, NY

#4 Jun 28, 2014
1: This letter makes me think of one of my older sisters. She had one of our nephews stay with her and her husband for a week or so one summer. She found all kinds of fault with this kid from how he ate too much (he was a very skinny kid) to his spending too much time in the shower to his not offering to help clean up. He was 8 for goodness sake and fairly normal for a kid his age. When her own son (who had been an infant during that visit) grew older, she found him to be perfect and never saw any of the "normal" flaws others saw in him. I bet if this niece was the lw and her husband's own child, he would not be finding her flaws. He would think she was perfect. It's all a matter of perspective. The lw's husband is the one with the problem here. That said, I think Amy's advice is as good as any.

2: Yes, definitely. She loves you for your money. Make sure you consult an attorney and have an airtight prenupt before you marry her.
Pippa

Hancock, NY

#5 Jun 28, 2014
2: Oh yes. If you have children from a previous marriage/relationship, make sure their inheritances are protected. Ask your attorney how to do this and whether you need to write a new will after your marriage so that it conforms to your state laws. In some states, you are required to leave a certain percentage of your assets to a spouse and in my state, a will was successfully contested because the deceased man did not rewrite his will to include his wife.
Kuuipo

Salinas, CA

#6 Jun 28, 2014
LW1: Team edog.

LW2: Team edog and Pippa for the most part. But... A few years ago, I met an elderly gentleman. He was a musician and music teacher and passed away at age 102. A film was made about him when he was 80-or 90-something. At the time, there was a young woman in her 20s who was with him quite frequently. They clearly had a special friendship and cared for each other. However, a lot of the people around them encouraged the young woman to associate with people her own age, and as a result, they parted company. Some of that was captured in the film. So to answer the LW's question, I do think people can fall in love with people many years older or younger. And if and when they do, almost everyone they know will discourage them from continuing the relationship.
pde

Bothell, WA

#7 Jun 28, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
3- Your second grade teacher invited you to her wedding?
One of my elementary school teachers invited our whole class to her wedding.
not a ghost

San Antonio, TX

#8 Jun 28, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
2- She loves your money, dude
Or she's happy to find someone who doesn't judge her faults.
not a ghost

San Antonio, TX

#9 Jun 28, 2014
You do know I'm joking?

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#10 Jun 28, 2014
pde wrote:
<quoted text>
One of my elementary school teachers invited our whole class to her wedding.
To you and PE, that is unheard of for me. Why would a teacher invite her class to her wedding? Don't they have family and friends? That's crazy to me

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#11 Jun 28, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
To you and PE, that is unheard of for me. Why would a teacher invite her class to her wedding? Don't they have family and friends? That's crazy to me
It sounds silly to me too , but I can easily see it being a case where they were invited to the church service, but not to the reception that followed later at a different venue. Don't cost nothing to have extra people file into church and sit in a pew.
Julie

Chicago, IL

#12 Jun 28, 2014
LW1: Your husband is an @hole. Kudos to you for not breeding with him.

LW2: Oh goody, you're wealthy. And stoopid. Tell Little Miss Gold-digger you've lost all your money; she'll be gone in 10 days.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#13 Jun 28, 2014
edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
To you and PE, that is unheard of for me. Why would a teacher invite her class to her wedding? Don't they have family and friends? That's crazy to me
We weren't invited to the reception. Just the ceremony.

There were people at my wedding who were more distant friends and attended to wish us well. I've gone to ceremonies as an adult when I knew one of teh principals but not well enough to make eh invitation list. I sent a card too.

That's what weddings are for.

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