Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy
My boyfriend and I recently decided we want to get married in May when he’s on leave from the Army before he deploys. We had talked about an intimate wedding on the beach near our hometown, just the two of us and our witnesses, and then when he gets out of the Army we could have a big ceremony with all our loved ones. Now my boyfriend is mentioning that he wants his parents at our intimate wedding. Which is great! I love his family and I would be happy to have them there. The only problem is, if his family is there, I would have to invite my family. I would be fine with my dad and his wife being there, but my mom and her boyfriend are alcoholics. My mom showed up drunk to both my brother’s and sister’s college graduations, and I wouldn’t put it past her to show up drunk to my wedding. Unfortunately, she always acts out in some way and completely embarrasses me. And if I invite them, there will be so many other people that will feel they should be there. I told my boyfriend this and he said it could just be the two of us if that’s what I really wanted, but I know he REALLY wants his family there and I don’t want to take that away from him. I’m so torn and I don’t know what to do. — Wedding Bells are Ringing

[click to continue…]


It came to my attention over the weekend that there’s some confusion about the role of the forum moderator. For the record, Kate, whom many of you know as a longtime and frequent DW commenter with an amazing memory for details, has been a volunteer forum moderator for a couple years. She is not an employee of the site! There are no paid employees of the site. There’s Kate, who volunteers as forum moderator, and my mom, who is a retired English teacher and volunteers as a copy editor, and I’m very grateful to them both for the time and energy they invest to help keep the site running smoothly and looking at least a little professional. They do these jobs because it’s fun for them, they enjoy the site, and it’s something of a “pastime” (Kate’s word here, and I think my mom would agree, too).

Someone asked me if Kate speaks for me, if the views she expresses in her comments reflect the site/me, and the answer is: Kate speaks for herself and I speak for myself! I don’t think either one of us has a problem speaking for ourselves. Kate’s role as keymaster is to keep trolls under control. She very rarely deletes or edits a comment — almost never from regulars, and only if there’s, like, a slur in it. Sometimes a comment may automatically go to spam because of a glitch or something, but I promise that, when that happens, it is not Kate or me deleting comments that we simply don’t like or don’t agree with. In summary: Kate’s comments are her own; they do not necessarily reflect the views of the site. She is not employed by me, but she has a full-time job and does the forum moderation in her free time and on a volunteer basis. In addition, the only other person who pitches in is my mom, who edits, also on a volunteer basis, and I don’t believe she has any presence in the forums or comments at all, but if she did, it should be noted to avoid confusion, my mother’s comments would be solely a reflection and expression of her own views as well.

I do not employ any staff at all, I am not in a position to employ a staff; this is a part-time gig for me that pays a part-time salary and supplements my main job as a mom of two small kids. (If you’re curious, know that my salary comes from ad revenue — with major support from my ad network — and from affiliate commissions.) As always, I am really grateful to everyone’s support — as readers of the site, as advice-seekers, as commenters, and as volunteers who help keep things running smoothly. I hope this clarifies things for anyone who may have been confused.


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 “Lonely Gay,” whose boyfriend was upset that, after over a year together, the LW still hadn’t introduced him to his family. The LW only came out of the closet after he started dating his boyfriend, and he wrote: “It took time for my family to be comfortable with my being gay and it’s only been a year since I told them. He, on the other hand, has been out to most of his family for years and they are all comfortable with it. Plus, his parents are younger than mine and he also has a gay brother. I understand that it’s customary to [introduce a significant other to one’s family] after a certain amount of time has elapsed. But, honestly, I don’t know how to talk about it with my family. Eventually, I would like to invite him over for dinner with them, but I don’t know how to navigate this situation. I love my boyfriend and he is amazing to me, and I don’t want issues like this to affect our relationship.” This letter was from almost three and a half years ago. Did the LW ever introduce his boyfriend to his family? Are they still together? An update, below:
[click to continue…]


Friday Links

Like many of you, I was saddened but not surprised to hear about yet another school shooting, this time at a high school in Florida. It was the 18th school shooting this calendar year. We are only seven weeks into the calendar year. Politicians offer their thoughts and prayers; gun-lovers suggest that the real problem isn’t our pathetic lack of gun control but mental illness. “We need to really address mental illness!” a comment on Facebook I saw yesterday read. Um, ok, sure, yes. Mental illness definitely deserves attention, research, resources. In the meantime, why don’t we make it harder for people with mental illness to walk into a store and buy a gun?! Why don’t we make it harder for everyone to walk into a store and buy a gun? Why don’t we treat buying a gun like we do other life-altering purchases and procedures, where you have to get licensed, undergo extensive background checks, go through a waiting period? Why don’t we legislate guns like we legislate uteruses? Oh, right – because the NRA doesn’t want us to and they own our country. Here are the top 10 career recipients of N.R.A. funding – through donations or spending to benefit the candidate – among both current House and Senate members. The next chance you have please vote these motherfuckers out of office, and if you value human life — if you think kids deserve to go to school and not get shot and killed — don’t support candidates who accept money from the NRA! Nothing will ever change until we have a majority of legislators who aren’t afraid to defy the NRA by passing commonsense gun laws.

Now…here are a few other things from around the web that may interest you:

A Reckoning With Women Awaits Trump

Don’t expect the women who enable Trump to be better than the men

The Best Age For Sex For Men And Women

No, Opposites Do Not Attract

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 [email protected] and, if it’s a fit, I’ll include it in Friday’s round-up. Thanks!

Follow along on Facebook, and Instagram.

I have been divorced for five and a half years, and I have two kids with my ex, a 10-year-old boy and an 8-year-old girl. I have been dating this guy now for four years, and he’s been living with us. In the last year, his jealousy for my ex has completely blown out of proportion. He doesn’t like that I have a good relationship with my ex and feels that I am only on good terms because my ex has me trained to do him favors. For example, last weekend was my ex’s weekend with the kids, but we were at my daughter’s hockey game and my ex wasn’t feeling well, so he asked me if I could take my daughter after the game for an hour and a half until our next hockey game. I said sure, absolutely no problem, but when I told my boyfriend this, he was upset that, first of all, I didn’t get his approval. I don’t think I need his permission to take my kids at any time that I’m asked, and I believe that having a good relationship with my ex is very beneficial for my kids. I want them to see that we are able to have a good relationship even though we’re no longer together, and I’m sure they will appreciate that when they are older.

I guess what I’m feeling is that my boyfriend wants to be involved in decisions that I believe, as my children’s mother, I should be making without him, and that he wants to be involved in a controlling way. Now, don’t get me wrong: If my ex asked me for three weeks from now to take the kids on a Friday night because he had an event planned, then I would say that I would have to look at my schedule first and then, if I didn’t have anything planned, I would switch weekends with him. But my boyfriend has the mindset that I’m just constantly doing whatever my ex wants when I think that the relationship is give and take and, if I want favors, I need to give favors too. This last weekend was the last straw for him, and he grabbed his stuff and moved out, saying that, basically, if I’m not willing to let him be part of the decision-making, then he can’t be with me. I just want to know if I am incorrect or even crazy to think the way I do. What is the right thing here? — A Desperate Mom

[click to continue…]