Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy
My boyfriend dated his ex for about 20 years. They were college sweethearts. It didn’t end very well (she had an affair), and they were not on speaking terms for almost six months after the breakup. I met him roughly three months after they ended their relationship. We absolutely adore each other, and we have recently combined our households after almost two years of dating.

Very soon after he introduced me to his family — about four months after we started dating — his ex began sending extremely inappropriate messages to him (after almost a year of silence) wanting to reunite. She made it a point to make comments about me, about how the length of our relationship was not long enough to not give their twenty-year relationship another chance, etc., all of which he selected to not respond to. With or without me in the picture, he has elected not to re-engage that relationship ever again.

Recently, one member of the family decided to tell me how his ex found out we were seeing each other. His sister-in-law, who was good friends with the ex, has been feeding her information. The family member that told me was perturbed by the situation and didn’t want to cause tension but thought I should be aware of what was going on.

The sister-in-law vocalized that she wanted my boyfriend and his ex to reunite and that she preferred his ex over me. While I know that she is welcome to her opinions, I do not feel comfortable being around his sister-in-law now, knowing that not only does she prefer his ex to me but also that she’s feeding his ex information about our relationship. If his ex didn’t seem to want to re-ignite the relationship, it wouldn’t matter, but she has continued to express to my ex that this is what her wishes are even though he doesn’t engage back.

Is it appropriate to confront his sister-in-law? Should I tell my boyfriend that he needs to be firm with his sister-in-law that her behavior is inappropriate? And is it really petty of me at this point to ask him to completely cut off any communication with his ex, i.e. block her number on his phone, even though he isn’t engaging back in the inappropriate conversation? I’m trying not to let my ego get the best of me, but I can’t help feeling like this is a direct threat to my relationship. — Threatened By the Ex and the SIL

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The election of Donald Trump as the next President of the United States is a scary and horrific thing for many of us. He and his cabinet, full of unqualified and unsuitable candidates, threaten civil rights, voter rights, climate control, health care, public education, social security, the first amendment, foreign relations, free press, and the values of most good and decent people everywhere. We must resist his actions to destroy the fabric of democracy and the security of our citizens. In an effort to do that, each week I share some acts of resistance and steps of activism you can take. Here are this week’s:
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Friday Links


Giselle Potter for The NYTimes

Here are a few things from around the web that may interest you:

The Japanese Art of Grieving a Miscarriage

I want a lover, not a boyfriend

10 Black College Women Respond to Obama’s Farewell Address

The Women’s March on Washington Has Released an Unapologetically Progressive Platform

Men are slow to show support for the Women’s March. Is it considered unmasculine?

Men Still Aren’t Comfortable With Ambitious Women: Two new studies suggest women pay a steep price for pursuing careers

Women get far less picky about a partner’s intelligence the older they get, researchers find

Mississippi has the happiest relationships, while New Yorkers make the most ‘clingy’ partners, study finds

This is classy: The touching letter the Bush twins wrote to Sasha and Malia Obama about being first daughters

Thank you to those who submitted links for me to include. If you see something around the web you think DW readers would appreciate, please send me a link to wendy@dearwendy.com and if it’s a fit, I’ll include it in Friday’s round-up. Thanks!

Follow along on Facebook, and Instagram.

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Ok, since we’re already talking about weddings, and since I’m still sick (finally saw a doctor this morning who said it’s a bad cold and may linger another week) and I’m sort of phoning it in this week anyway, here’s another wedding question to keep things thematic:

About a year ago, my girlfriend’s cousin got engaged. Due to an unexpected death in the family of her cousin’s fiancé, the wedding was postponed until this November. We’ve had the date to their wedding for months now. My girlfriend is extremely close to her cousin and their family and that side of her family does not come together often. Furthermore, many of her closest family members, whom she hasn’t seen in years because they live on the other side of the country, will be there. Also, her cousin comes from money so this will probably be the nicest/classiest event she will be able to attend for, what she believes, the rest of her life. This wedding will be one of the only chances she will get to see the entire side of this family together. There are no other family members on this side that have potential to get married in the future. So this would be one of her only chances to introduce me to everyone. To complicate matters, her ex-husband is extremely close with her cousin so he will be in attendance with his girlfriend at the same table as my girlfriend. Normally, this would not be a problem since the four of us know each other, are very nice to each other, and are all very involved with their kids. But I have a date conflict and don’t think I can make the wedding.

About four months ago, I helped my best friend of ten years propose to his girlfriend. Today I received a gift invitation to be a groomsman for their wedding. This will be the first wedding for me where I am in the wedding party. I’m not his best man but will be next in line. This is a smaller, less classy wedding — meaning less food, less time, less everything. Again, he’s been my best friend for a decade, and, since my girlfriend and I moved from the state, I won’t have an opportunity to see them or take them out and I feel that, by not going, I could permanently destroy my relationship with him.

My girlfriend’s wedding is in northern New Jersey; mine is in Florida. Both are scheduled on the same day at the same time. My girlfriend is extremely upset/sad about this. We feel that we both have to attend our individual weddings and that there is no other option. But the fact that she has to be alone at a wedding with her ex-husband and his girlfriend at the same time is making her sad. She says it will chip away at her and she doesn’t think she’ll handle it well. She knows she will think about her first wedding while she is there since I won’t be there to help her think about our future wedding instead.

I tried looking at airlines to see if I could do what’s needed in mine and get to her as soon as possible, but that’s looking like an impossibility as well.

I don’t know what to do. Please help me. — To Go or Not to Go

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updatesIt’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today we hear from “The Key Issue” who was unhappy that her girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend had a key to her new place. “One day, while I was staying at her place, he was over to see the [twins] and, when he left, he locked the door with a key that I didn’t think he had or needed. This issue has caused problems. Do I have the right to be upset?” she asked. Update below.
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