Loading...
A no BYH to the neighbor constantly burning. You got me sick. So I’m sending you the dr bill....

Son's introverted fiancee not comfortable at family meals

Carolyn Hax

Carolyn Hax

Loading…

Carolyn Hax

Friday, August 10, 2018

Q My son and his fiancee bought a condo close to us, which then flooded. They moved in with us and repairs have taken longer than anticipated.

His fiancee, “Laura,” is an intense introvert. For that reason, I gave up my exercise, TV and craft room for her to have her “alone” time.

The problem? She feels trapped when she must eat at the table with us. He just informed us tonight. I do the dishes and clean the kitchen to release the tension, but it’s obvious, she would rather eat in the bedroom or not eat. My son is fine with eating with us.

I really don’t want anyone eating in other rooms due to roaches, ants, mice, rats, etc. And I certainly don’t want to make Laura feel “trapped.” I was even told she hated family get-togethers before they moved in. It seems this is an extreme introversion, or maybe I just don’t understand it. Please advise. — Anonymous

A You actually don’t need to understand it.

You don’t even need to accommodate it, technically, since it’s your home.

It would help if you could do both to some degree, of course, but only to demonstrate compassion versus prostrate yourself to the point of resentment.

In this case, just say:

■ You’re sorry to hear Laura isn’t comfortable;

■ She’s welcome to handle her meals as she wishes, of course;

■ And she’s always welcome at your table.

That’s it. Donesies.

It’s not personal so don’t take it personally; it’s not your business so don’t make it so.

The vermin thing would make it your business because it’s your home, sure, but that concern is also a red herring unless Laura is a messy eater and/or leaves crusty dishes around.

So, drop it. Drop it all. Your best chance that she’ll be comfortable with you eventually is for you to be at ease with — and make things easy for — her.

I hope your more outgoing son (right?) understands fully the life he’s committing to — for Laura’s sake especially — and is ready to compensate and compromise to get his own social needs met. Your willingness to listen and be flexible, without butting in, could be a gift to them both.

Q One neighbor, “Julie,” takes indifferent care of her lawn, and it has never bothered us. Another neighbor, “Neil,” is very lawn-conscious and sent Julie an anonymous letter asking her to take better care of her lawn.

Julie now gets professional spraying and mowing. I’m self-conscious that Julie thinks we’re the letter-writers (we live closer to her than Neil does). I don’t want to tell Julie we didn’t write the letter, because then it will be clear we know who did. If we’re extra friendly to Julie it may look like we’re trying to make up for doing something so aggressive. Is there any way to signal to her that we don’t care if her lawn is a little long and scraggly? — Walk on My Lawn, I Don’t Care

A Treat Julie as you always have, and stay out of it except to tell Neil, on behalf of all who have ever received one, that anonymous notes are a chickencrap way to speak his mind. Julie pays in paranoia for his lack of spine? He’s OK with that? So not cool.

Email Carolyn Hax at tellme@washpost.com, follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/carolyn.hax or chat with her online at noon each Friday at www.washingtonpost.com.

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

December 14, 2018

The 23rd-century world of "Mortal Engines" looks great: a fabulous and richly textured steampunk dystopia of haves and have-nots straight out of H.G. Wells. Populated, on the one side, by people in frock coats festooned with gold braid, and, on the other, begrimed laborers in goggles and grease-…

FILM-MORTAL-REVIEW-ADV13

December 12, 2018

Q Is the push to take probiotics just another fad or is there a good reason to take them? AD, Winterville.

A You may have heard me suggest eating yogurt with active cultures if you are taking an antibiotic to help avoid diarrhea -- I’ve been saying that for years. But there is lots more…

Kolasa, Kathy

December 09, 2018

Texas Roadhouse located at 720 Greenville Boulevard next to Cracker Barrel in the Shoppes at Greenville Grande has Texas sized food and spirit. The restaurant is as big as Texas too with plenty of space with a down home country feel. Come in and be met with upbeat sounds of top country music and a…

Steak Display Case.jpg

December 09, 2018

A Stokes resident and retired public school teacher recently published a novel based on a larger-than-life friend engaged marijuana smuggling in the 1960’s abd 1970s.

Life and Times in the Sierra Madres: An American Smuggling Story is written by Michael Biondi. It was published in November…

Michael Biondi

December 09, 2018

 

In the Spring of 1986 I was invited by the deputy chief of staff for Vice President George H. W. Bush to a meeting with the vice president in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building across from the White House. At the time, I was a young executive in the U.S. Department of Commerce working…

David Edgell

December 09, 2018

“There should be an historic plaque in Chapel Hill honoring George Bush.”

On the day after the former president’s death, Chapel Hill lawyer and chair of the town’s historic district commission, Bob Epting, was making opening remarks at a public seminar on preserving historic…

9780812979473.jpg

December 08, 2018

It’s an odd-ball sort of bush.

It’s a native species — nothing odd about that — and it was originally restricted entirely to the coast, from North Carolina all the way to Mississippi.

Now, though, it is common well inland within all of these states, and beyond, and appears…

120818mysteryplant.jpg

December 07, 2018

In the annals of potentially disastrous spinoffs, "Creed" surely stands as an all-time champion. Directed with finesse and sensitivity by Ryan Coogler — who famously went on to make the blockbuster "Black Panther" — the 2015 drama had it all: a classically contoured boxing story, a…

FILM-CREED-REVIEW

December 07, 2018

Over nearly three decades of “The Nutcracker,” it is hard to imagine that anyone saw the Dance Arts Theatre production more than Jeane Welch.

She watched the first performance in 1985 when her daughter, Marty, was a dancer. She was in the audience when her granddaughter, Holton, twirled…

120718gonutcracker1

December 05, 2018

Members of the cast of Magnolia Arts Center's “Elf Jr.” are too young to remember when Will Ferrell starred as Buddy the Elf on the big screen. The beloved 2003 movie, which cost $33 million to make, grossed more than $220 million at the box office.

The musical version, which opens…

187 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 19
        Next Page»   Last Page»