Thursday, September 05, 2013
My husband and I have disagreed about this since the day we were married . I was divorced and he was divorced twice .
Let's call him "Joe Smith" and I'll be "Jane Doe". After my divorce I went back to using my maiden name . I didn't want to be the third "Mrs. Smith".
Here's the problem : Mail , holiday cards and invitations all come addressed to "Mr. and Mrs. Joe Smith." I feel it should be "Mr. Smith" and "Ms. Doe".
It irks me to no end and that people cannot grasp this simple concept . I am right , Aren't I ?
Who Am I
Dear Who Am I ,
Basic etiquette says a married couple is addressed as "Mr. and Mrs. Whatever," unless informed otherwise . Even if people are aware you use your maden name, they may think it is only for business purposes and not for social invitations .
This is not an unreasonable assumption, so you need to clarify your preference. You should let your friends and family know that you use your maiden name for all forms of address and would appreciate it if they would respect that.
Some folks may need to be reminded more than once , so please be patient .
Dear Maxy ,
I have a good friend who recently got sober . He had been a pretty heavy drinker for many years, but he has been sober for about nine months . Here's my problem : I am hosting a party with a few friends and we will be serving alcohol . We want to invite our friend but do not want to set him up for failure. We also don't want to hurt his feeling by not inviting him . There is no way that he will NOT hear about the party .
Dear Good Friend ,
Reach out to your friend and check in with him . Ask him how he is doing and get a sense of how he is managing his sobriety . You can ask him directly since he told you about his sobriety. Tell hom about the party you are planning . Point out that you want him to come. Make it clear that if he does not, you will fully understand .
Your directness will be appreciated . It may also ignite a conversation where the two of you can speak frankly about his journey .
Sometimes people who are sober can manage in the company of others who are drinking . But a warning in Alcohoilics Anonymous is about "people, places and things ." It could be that he will be better off staying away from triggers that lead him to drink . Let him decide .
Dear Maxy ,
I am a woman and I am deeply attracted to a good friend, also a female . We have begun watching a racy TV show together at my home and it's becoming very uncomfortable for me to watch it with her . I find myself wondering whether I should instead offer to loan her the DVDs so she can watch them on her own . If so do I need to explain why ?
She has told me over the course of our friendship that she is eschewing romantic relationships until she is in a healthy frame of mind and she plans to move on in six months or so . I have a young son and am not interested in a temporary entanglement . I do not want to alienate my friend and am wondering what course of action is least likely to put a crimp in our friendship .
Dear Crushing ,
Is it possible your friend is insterested in you romantically ? If you think that may be the case, you should tell her that you are attracted to her and see what happens . However, if that is too emotionally frightening and you fear it will end your friendship, you need to stop these incendiary "dates" in whatever way removes the intimacy from your get-togethers .
Offer her the DVDs and say you are tired of watching this show . You could suggest an alternate TV program that is less racy ot invite more people over so it's not only the two of you . You could meet at a local coffee shop or restaurant to chat . You do not have to bare your soul to her if it makes you uncomfortable, but it means you must stop putting yourself in this compromising position .