Dear Maxy ,
My husband and I moved to Florida 30 years ago and raised our children here . Some friends recently retired and moved to our area . Florida is a large state and we were surprised that both of these couples (who don't know each other) chose to purchase homes within a 20-mile radius of us . My husband and I are being pressured to resume these friendships but frankly, we are not interested . When these couples email I keep making excuses and I don't answer the phone when they call . It's been months and none of them has figured it out . They persist .
One of these women was a childhood friend but she is boastful and competitive and her husband is worse . I don't have it in me to level with them . How can we stop them from calling without creating hurt feelings ?
Dear Needs Advice ,
Has it occurred to you that these couples may have moved to this location because they thought they had at least one friend in this area ? It means they will persist until they develop new friends who occupy their time . If you are likely to run into them at shops or social events, it may be in your best interests to allow a limited friendship so you are on speaking terms . That means, you answer every fifth call or email and arrange a social engagement every few months . As they become more acclimated to their new digs, you can cut back until you reach the amount of contact you can handle . By then your absence will be less important to them .
Dear Maxy ,
My boyfriend will be 67 in two weeks and for the third year in a row I will probably watch his heart break because his 90-year-old mother will not acknowledge his birthday .
He has done nothing to make her feel this way. She lives in our city but he has not seen her in more than three years . I am so afraid she will pass on before they reconcile . What would cause a woman to have no feeling for her own son ?
Dear Baffled ,
I don't know but if they haven't seen each other since she was 87, there is a possibility of a decline in her mental faculties . Did she acknowledge his birthday before . Was she OK the last time he saw her ? Is there a sibling, relative or friend who could intercede on his behalf ? Some children call their parents on their birthdays for giving birth to them . Your boyfriend might try this to see whether it breaks the ice . But if nothing works, do something for his birthday that he enjoys and that will take his mind off of Mom, but remember, she is ninety and should be relieved of family obligations. You and your husband could take the burden off her and assume responsibilty for keeping in touch.
Dear Maxy ,
I love my husband . He is a wonderful man , but when it comes to his cooking, I would rather he not step in my kitchen again . Last Saturday, my husband took the initiative to make breakfast; he made pancakes, scrambled eggs and turkey sausage .
His goal was to put a smile on my face. Sadly, I threw out the food he made because it was terrible . He was upset because I threw out the cooked food and made breakfast the right way . I think I could have handled the situation differently.
Shaky Ground .
Dear Shaky Ground ,
You are tough. It would have been far nicer for you to thank your husband for trying and to eat what you could . You insulted him and surely hurt his feelings. Instead, encourage him to spend time in the kitchen with you .
You can still thank him for his efforts and invite him to make a special meal with you . Teach him how to make eggs to your liking, or choose another dish . As a couple, you can have fun learning about anything together.
Attitude is everything !
And you my dear need an attitude adjustment .
Message to my Cubs - I will always be your friend and thank you for letting me be your Aunt Jeannie. Much love
5 weeks ago