When our first baby graduated from faculty, his godfathers (a homosexual couple) gave him a considerable financial present. When our second baby graduated, the godfathers have been going by way of a messy breakup and didn’t acknowledge his commencement in any approach. We’ve by no means talked about this to the godfathers. Our second baby is now about to earn his grasp’s diploma. He lately advised us he feels unhappy that his godfathers remembered his brother’s commencement, however not his. Ought to we remind the godfathers to acknowledge our youthful son’s upcoming commencement and what they gave our older baby? Belief me, it’s not in regards to the cash. We’re nonetheless shut with each males.


Professional tip: When individuals say, “It’s not in regards to the cash,” in my expertise, it’s practically at all times in regards to the cash. And once they add “belief me” to the phrase, they’re usually signaling, inadvertently, that we shouldn’t. So, I strategy your query with skepticism, although I completely get your protectiveness as loving dad and mom.

If a younger man in his 20s doesn’t but perceive that his godfathers — and life, itself — is not going to at all times deal with him the identical as his older brother, or that generally individuals expertise traumatic occasions (like messy breakups) that may eclipse his milestones, now is a superb time for him to be taught.

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When you disagree, give your youthful son a money present within the quantity of the godfathers’ examine to your older son. As for the godfathers, hold quiet about presents. They haven’t any obligation to present them. In case you are planning a celebration in honor of your son’s new diploma, invite them. However go away their commemoration of the occasion to them, in addition to previous greenback quantities given.

Credit score…Christoph Niemann

My husband and I have been invited to a celebration on the house of a good friend of a good friend. Our good friend canceled; we went. The host was beneficiant and pleasant and spoke with us for fairly some time. He mentioned that he would love us to return again for dinner quickly, and he sounded honest. The issue: He’s a series smoker, and my husband and I are delicate to cigarette smoke. We coughed regularly whereas there, and after we received house, we took off our smoke-reeking garments and left them on the again patio. We’ll most likely should dry clear them. How can we politely keep away from this gentleman’s subsequent invitation?


In case you are something like me, pleasant and beneficiant new individuals are not precisely flooding into your lives. And if the one demerit on this man’s report is smoking, wouldn’t it’s extra rewarding for you and your husband to think about a workaround somewhat than how by no means to see him once more?

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You can reciprocate his kindness with an invite to your house and share your sensitivity to cigarette smoke within the unlikely occasion that he lights up there. Or you possibly can recommend assembly at a restaurant, the place most states have legal guidelines that remedy this drawback for you. It’s your name. You’ll be able to at all times say, “Sorry, we’re awfully busy lately.” However I’d select friendship.

My father-in-law had an affair, which my mother-in-law found, 5 years in the past. A nasty divorce adopted, after 30 years of marriage. My husband now needs to restore his relationship together with his father (who, genuinely, is a stunning man who didn’t know how you can get out of a wedding during which he was sad). My husband advised his father he want to meet his associate (the lady with whom he had the affair). However his father by no means makes particular plans. He’s nonetheless awkward in regards to the scenario. My husband thinks he’s achieved his half by asking. However I believe we should always do extra. Ought to I contact his father about assembly his associate?


You and your husband could also be mistaking trigger and impact. Your father-in-law’s unwillingness to make a date could replicate his disgrace about his habits in his marriage. The stalling is an impact, not the basis of the issue.

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So, somewhat than pushing tougher for an ungainly dinner for 4 that gained’t change the underlying subject, encourage your husband to satisfy together with his father alone. He can categorical his need to maneuver past the divorce and take heed to what his father has to say. That could be the extra productive path right here.

I’ve plenty of vegetation in my workplace. It’s a pastime of mine. Many co-workers cease in to touch upon them, ask for recommendation or try new development. On occasion, I’ll go to a co-worker who has an clearly struggling plant. Is it impolite for me to recommend that they scale back watering, present extra gentle, and so forth.?


Typically, it’s higher to keep away from giving recommendation to individuals except they ask for it. However you current a novel exception: the place the stakes are so low that it’s onerous to think about anybody caring about you butting in (besides, maybe, for an additional plant maven).

When you’re a stickler about overstepping boundaries, restrict your recommendation to co-workers who’ve participated within the green-thumb membership in your workplace. In any other case, knock your self out, plant particular person!

For assist together with your awkward scenario, ship a query to [email protected], to Philip Galanes on Fb or @SocialQPhilip on Twitter.


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