Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“Boyfriend’s Mother and Sister Almost Crashed Their Vacation”

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This crisis has been stressing my family for over TWO weeks. I’d like an outsider’s opinion. Here’s the story, names changed, as briefly as I can tell it:

Tom and Mary have been dating for almost two years.
Tom invited Mary to go on a cruise.
Tom asked his mother, Julia, if she would be available to babysit his dog.
Julia agreed and then told her daughter, Tom’s sister, Ann, about the cruise.
Ann had been planning to give Mom a cruise for Christmas, so booked herself and Mom on the same cruise.
When Tom told Mary, Mary was disappointed. Mary had been looking forward to a romantic cruise, and now Mom and sister were coming along.

Mary was at dinner with Julia and Ann.
Ann asked Mary, “Are you excited about the cruise?”
Mary answered calmly, “It will be fun,” her disappointment evidenced in her tone.
Ann asked, “Why do you say it like that?”
Mary answered, “Well, originally I had thought I was going on a romantic cruise. Now it will be a family excursion. But the more I’ve thought about it I think it will be fun for us all to be together.”
Ann was silent. Mary recognized that she had said the wrong thing and tried, unsuccessfully, to smooth it over.

Ann, ultimately, rescheduled the cruise for her and her mother for another time, costing about $1,000 more.
The final result is that Ann and Julia aren’t speaking to Mary.
Tom is hurt and betrayed by Mary’s treatment of his mother and sister.
And Tom and Mary’s relationship is nearly destroyed.

What, if anything, can be done to resolve this situation?
Should Mary pay the $1,000 expense that Ann incurred?
What apologies are needed? — From Cruise to Crisis

Mary absolutely should NOT pay or offer to pay an expense that Ann incurred, and neither should she offer an apology. The apologies owed here are all owed to Mary, and they should come from Ann, Tom, and Julia, in that order. Ann was entirely out of line booking tickets for the same cruise as Mary and Tom without so much as mentioning it to them first to gauge their reaction. They had a romantic cruise planned — one that I’m sure wasn’t cheap — and she completely changed the nature of their vacation by inviting herself and her mother along without even asking first. Not only that, but Julia had already agreed to watch Tom’s dog so Tom also had to find a new dog-sitter, which isn’t always the easiest thing to do.

Tom owes Mary an apology for being a dick to her and accusing HER of mistreating his sister and mother when, in fact, it is they who have mistreated Mary. That this incident has nearly destroyed Mary’s and Tom’s relationship should come as a HUGE warning sign to Mary as to how things could go in the future should she and Tom get more serious and perhaps marry one day. Mary needs to make very clear that this kind of treatment and insensitivity and, frankly, lack of understanding and compassion, will not be tolerated. Mary was understandably disappointed that her romantic vacation suddenly turned into a family excursion — something TOM should have immediately addressed with his clueless sister and, at the very least, should have been apologetic for on behalf of his family, rather than accusatory when Mary expressed some of the disappointment — in a very diplomatic way —¸that the nature of her vacation had changed without so much as an acknowledgment from anyone. If Tom had been thinking, HE should have talked with Ann about changing the dates of her cruise with her mother, explaining how he and Mary were looking forward to some quality time together and hadn’t planned on sharing that time with anyone else. That way, if anyone was going to be irate at anyone else, TOM would be the one taking the blame, not Mary. As it is, Tom, by agreeing with his sister and mother, has thrown poor Mary under the bus.

And then there’s Julia. She may seem blameless or mostly blameless, but she’s the one who raised Tom and Ann, two people who, from this letter anyway, seem spoiled, self-centered, and lacking in empathy. But her most recent mistake was joining Ann in giving the silent treatment to Mary. Mary! Who did nothing but express some understandable disappointment that her boyfriend’s family was suddenly crashing her romantic vacation. Good for her for trying to establish some boundaries and letting them know that these kinds of antics aren’t something she would welcome in the future. Unfortunately — or fortunately, as the case may be — it sounds like there might not BE much of a future here if this incident is any indication of Tom’s commitment to Mary. But maybe a romantic cruise for just the two of them will be the thing to turn it around. And maybe if Ann and Julia see this column from an outsider’s perspective, they can appreciate Mary’s side a bit better and see where they were wrong and how they can be better prospective family members in the future.

***************

Follow along on Facebook, and Instagram.

If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.

55 comments… add one
  • Lianne

    Lianne December 22, 2014, 9:40 am

    WWS. Mary was not rude about her misgivings about the nature of the vacation and how it had changed. She was being honest – something that goes a long way in ANY relationship. Ann should have been embarrassed for her imposition rather than indignant that Mary tell her the truth about her feelings. I would definitely have a long talk with Tom if I were Mary and decide if this relationship is worth it in the long run.

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  • avatar

    Essie December 22, 2014, 9:50 am

    Mary’s about the only one in this situation who isn’t in the wrong. Everyone else owes her an apology.
    .
    Crashing someone else’s vacation is extremely rude. You do NOT invite yourself to someone’s vacation, no matter how close you are, no matter how much you think they’ll like the surprise. Ann owes Mary an apology.
    .
    Mary’s response was honest, kind and polite. There’s nothing more she needs to say.
    .
    Mother and sister have stopped speaking to her over this? Really? What are they, five years old?
    .
    And Tom needs to grow a set. As Wendy said, he should have gone to Ann as soon as he heard about the cruise and said, “WTH? Who invited you and Mom to come along on our vacation?”
    .
    And Ann gets to eat the $1000. In my family, we call that the ‘stupid tax’. She screwed up, badly, by trying to horn in on Tom and Mary’s vacation. Now she gets to pay for her mistake.

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    • avatar

      Seasick December 22, 2014, 9:56 pm

      When Ann expressed an interest, Tom helped her book the cruise, later telling Mary, “you’re so nice and so good to family that I didn’t think you’d mind. I probably should’ve checked with you.”

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  • avatar

    SasLinna December 22, 2014, 10:28 am

    MOA, Mary.

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    • Raccoon eyes

      Raccoon eyes December 22, 2014, 12:26 pm

      Yeah, Im really wondering who the LW is in all this- presumably Mary… bc if LW is just another family member bystander, then it is time to butt out, or support Mary’s position anyway as it seems she is being shunned unnecessarily.

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  • avatar

    snoopy128 December 22, 2014, 10:46 am

    I like this ‘stupid tax’.
    But essentially, I agree with the others. Mary should be wary of how Tom handled this situation and should see it as a red flag. Anne and Julia need to grow up. If it was such a big deal to change the cruise, they should have checked to make sure it was OK first.

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  • avatar

    emily85 December 22, 2014, 11:12 am

    Anyone else feel like this letter was written by Mary and that her comments to Anne and Julia were probably a lot more snarky than LW described them?

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 11:18 am

      I’m pretty sure it was written by Mary and it probably was snarkier, but I still think it was justified. Julia agreed to watch the dog. Ann invited herself on a vacation with her brother and brother’s gf without even asking.
      The only other thing which might have happened is that, unbeknownst to Mary, Tom actually did invite his family on the trip. This would explain why Ann is so pissed off that Mary effectively uninvited them, and Tom’s behavior can be explained as trying to cover for his error. Either way, the smartest thing for Mary to do is get out of this shitty family before it’s too late.

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      • avatar

        emily85 December 22, 2014, 11:31 am

        Totally agree about getting out of the family ASAP, it just seems a little fishy if she was THAT polite that people would freak out this way. I know people are crazy, but that is CRAZY!

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  • avatar

    SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 11:16 am

    WWS. I kind of hope that the LW isn’t Mary, so that Ann or Julia just got a stern talking to. But, it probably is Mary which means that nothing is different because everyone else is still acting like oblivious assholes and don’t know it.
    So, LW, if you are Mary- Consider yourself lucky that you learned what a momma’s boy Tom is and what jerks Ann and Julia are before you married him. Cut your losses and MOA.
    If you are Ann or Julia- First, apologize to Mary. Then, grow the fuck up and stop thinking that “silent treatment” is a thing that adults do to other adults. That’s ridiculous.
    If you are Tom- if you can’t side with your girlfriend over your mother, then either you’re a hopeless momma’s boy or she’s not the right woman for you. You may need therapy (and some good strong scissors for that umbilical cord) to fix the underlying issues.

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    • avatar

      shg23 December 22, 2014, 12:04 pm

      Me too me too! I hope it’s the sister or the boyfriend….that would be delightful. It would also make for REALLY great comments if the LW joins in!

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      • avatar

        Seasick December 22, 2014, 10:01 pm

        LW Mary is in. And is so effin nice that she really wasn’t snarky when she made the comment. Although the comment, no matter how sweetly delivered, did hurt them. Although I wonder whether Ann was more hurt by my comment or by her own guilt? Her initial response was, “I made a mistake. I should’ve asked you.”

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  • TaraMonster

    TaraMonster December 22, 2014, 11:21 am

    Wut. Mary, girl. Break up with Tom, go on the cruise by yourself, and proceed to have a great time having wild, uninhibited sex with a hot stranger.

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  • bittergaymark

    bittergaymark December 22, 2014, 11:37 am

    Eh, all handled it poorly. Going against the grain here, I have to admit that the dinner scene as described is so, so passive aggressive. Maybe — having been on a cruise with a huge family — I know first hand that there is PLENTY of time to sneak off on your own and do your own thing… Romance and whatever. But seriously? Romance at Christmas? Really? Um, yeah, sure. Whatever. Talk to Dan Savage about how unfucking sexy Christmas is. Is Tom’s family USUALLY all together at Christmas? It’s not like Ann tagged along on some Valentine’s Day or Anniversary trip. And stealing somebody away for Christmas when your just “dating” is pretty damn and deliberately divisive.
    .
    I’m sorry. But the whole “It will be fun” clear disappointment showing wah wah wah is just kind the kind of woe is me bullshit, I fucking can’t stand. The time to react was the very MOMENT you first heard about the news, not WEEKS and WEEKS later when it is much trickier to change the tickets.

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 11:47 am

      I agree Mary was passive aggressive. But I kinda like her for that. Ann needed to be told off and it seems clear Tom was both not going to do it and wasn’t letting Mary do it. However, I don’t buy for a minute that Mary didn’t realize she said the wrong thing until after she said it– her reply to Ann is obviously calculated to have exactly the effect she did (minus the part where Tom is mad at her, probably).
      As for how long it took between when Ann bough the tickets and the dinner scene, the letter gives no indication into how much time had passed. It could have been only a couple days later.

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    • Dear Wendy

      Dear Wendy December 22, 2014, 11:51 am

      Nowhere does is say the cruise was scheduled for Christmas. The letter says that Ann had planned to give her mother a cruise as a christmas gift. For all we know, the cruise is scheduled around Valentine’s Day! Also, Tom invited Mary to go on the cruise. Mary is hardly “stealing him away for Christmas” even IF the cruise actually is over the holidays.

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      • avatar

        SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 12:16 pm

        Not picking on BGM specifically, but I HATE this notion that traveling to not-home over the holidays is stealing someone away from their family. Like a person’s parents have exclusive rights to Dec 25th for the entire duration of their life? Like just because you ALWAYS have a family thing for the holidays means you always have to?

        Especially since in this case it seems like they live close to the family (close enough for mom to dogsit and to be randomly out for dinner one night) so they see them all the time. What’s so wrong with wanting to use vacation time to take a real fucking vacation?

        …issues? I have them.

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    • avatar

      neonswedishfish December 22, 2014, 12:05 pm

      I was under the impression that the cruise was a gift for Christmas, to be taken at a later date.

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    • avatar

      Seasick December 22, 2014, 10:05 pm

      LW Mary here. Cruise is booked for January. And was to be my 1st ever cruise so was special and romantic to me. Perhaps never-married-Ann and elderly Mom couldn’t relate to that.
      Also, I did react immediately when Tom broke the news. This was now my 1st encounter with his sister and mother, just one week later.

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    • avatar

      Rodney January 16, 2017, 7:32 am

      Lol oh so you are the type to invite yourself on someone else’s vacation without asking and then expecting folks to be happy about. Smh

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  • PippaTee

    PippaTee December 22, 2014, 12:08 pm

    I was married to a Tom. He was an only child and often felt sorry for his parents and invited them along. Well they didn’t come on our honeymoon but I am sure they would have if asked. The point is that unless Mary gets this resolved now with apologies from all concerned to her, it’s only going to get worse if Mary thinks she and Tom can have a happily ever after future. Tom has to grow a pair now and demand apologies from his mum and sis to Mary. At the same time, Tom needs to apologize and see this as an opportunity to create adult boundaries. Tom also needs to realize that if he can afford a cruise he can afford a kennel for his dog. There is no other solution other than MOA. Tom could be the greatest catch in many ways but the present family dynamic will destroy the couple.

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 12:33 pm

      I’m with you except for the kennel. I kennel my dog a lot because most of our friends are cat people and our dog is not cat friendly. I feel badly for him everytime i kennel him. I know it’s not the end of the world, but I’m sure he’d much prefer kicking back on my mom’s couch (she would probably spoil the crap out of him) to spending his time alone in a crate at a kennel.

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      • PippaTee

        PippaTee December 22, 2014, 1:04 pm

        Oh I agree about kennel guilt. In this case thought, I think that part of cutting the umbilical cord might mean you have to stop asking favours from family. If Tom actually speaks up on behalf of Mary, I doubt his mum will still agree to look after the pooch. But you never know. This might be a wake up call for all of them.

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      • avatar

        Kate December 22, 2014, 1:35 pm

        A kennel or family member aren’t necessarily the only two options. It’s good to have a trusted pet-sitter who can either care for the dog in your home or in his/her home. That way you’re not imposing on family every time, or feeling guilty about your dog being in a cage. Part of being a responsible pet owner is ensuring you have good care for your pet when you need to be away.

        Regardless, reading the LW’s update below, I agree with Wendy’s response – bullet dodged. Ugh!!!!

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  • Addie Pray

    Addie Pray December 22, 2014, 12:57 pm

    I think there’s a lot of passive aggressive silliness going on – but I really don’t think this is such a big deal. Yes, it was inconsiderate of Ann to buy tickets to the same cruise without asking. I’m sure she just thought it would be fun – a “a more the merrier” situation. Unless she has a history of intruding, ruining plans, etc., it sounds like she just …. wasn’t thinking? But I think Mary’s whining about it after the tickets were bought was also immature. Come on, it’s a big cruise, you have your own room. Think of it as a lesson never to tell Tom’s family in advance of romantic get-aways. He has a sister that likes to tag along without asking. Hardly a terrible horrible thing. Considering how quickly she was to change the cruise plan even at $1000 cost makes me think she realized that she was out of line. If I were Mary, I’d probably thank Ann for changing the plans and apologize for getting sensitive about it. (And moving forward Tom can have talks with Ann about it. I really doubt anything like that would happen again.) For the sake of keeping peace, that’s what I think Mary should do.

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    • avatar

      RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 1:36 pm

      I don’t know, this is exactly the type of thing my husband’s mom would do, and think nothing of it. And if you think you’d get time away from her, think again. The only way we’d be alone is if we stayed in our room, and even then she’d be calling or stopping by to see what we’re up to. And if we at all implied that we wanted a chunk of time alone, she’d be hurt. I’ve been on vacation with her, and it’s fine if it’s a family vacation. If it was supposed to be a romantic vacation and she came, it would essentially ruin it. It would be another family vacation. I’d be pissed.

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      • avatar

        RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 1:37 pm

        But yeah, I wouldn’t have said what Mary said. Of course, my husband wouldn’t have thrown me under the bus like Tom did. He’d have been the one standing up to his mom, not leaving me to do it.
        .
        Best advice I got in our pre-marital class: Always be the one to deal with your own family. Never leave your partner to do it.

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    • avatar

      Seasick December 22, 2014, 10:11 pm

      Great suggestion, Addie Pray, but Ann isn’t speaking to Mary so Mary is unable to express appreciation. Mary previously mailed a note of apology, disguised as a Christmas card, with no return address or she wouldn’t have opened it!

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    • avatar

      Rodney January 16, 2017, 7:39 am

      They shouldn’t have asked a question about a vacation they weren’t invited to in the first place. If someone is going on vacation and you want to be on a boat with them your should at least ask them what kind of vacation they had planned before you book a trip on the same boat. We all know this mother and daughter will not not give them much time alone.

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  • Dear Wendy

    Dear Wendy December 22, 2014, 1:16 pm

    From the LW:

    “Thank you for your prompt response!

    I had tried to summarize the situation as succinctly as possible and with no apparent bias. I am the ‘poor Mary’ in this saga and, unfortunately, have suffered more than anyone.

    I should clarify that Ann did approach Tom about the cruise…he had found a great onlne bargain…and HE HELPED HER book her trip at the same great rate! He admitted later that he probably should have consulted with me but assumed that because I’m so nice and so good to his family, that I’d be ok with it. (More proof that nice guys finish last!)

    He is depressed, angry, disappointed in me and our relationship has totally deteriorated. I see no hope. My remark has cost me my relationship (and a cruise!)

    Thanks again for sharing your perspective.”

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    • Dear Wendy

      Dear Wendy December 22, 2014, 1:17 pm

      My response:

      BULLET DODGED.

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      • avatar

        Anna December 22, 2014, 1:43 pm

        Agreed. A decent boyfriend would not invite his family on a couple vacation without discussing it with his partner first. And then have the nerve to get mad at her for being legitimately upset about the disrespect?! She is lucky to have found out he’s like this before going any further with him, like marriage or kids.

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph December 22, 2014, 1:58 pm

      This guy is a turd. Plain and simple. “Probably should have consulted with you” how about DEFINITELY?
      There’s nothing wrong with being nice to a guy’s family, a normal guy wouldn’t take that as a reason to invite the family along on a vacation (even if he wasn’t picturing romantic getaway, it’s still not nice to trap a girl on a boat with your mom and sister without even warning her) and also shouldn’t get to the point of anger and depression over his girlfriend speaking her mind when asked, directly, what she thought. (Let’s not forget that the sister, knowingly or not, walked straight into Mary’s remark).
      Bullet dodged, indeed.

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    • avatar

      RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 2:11 pm

      If Mary knew that Tom had helped Ann book the trip, then she was in the wrong to make that comment. At that point, Tom was the only one who had done something wrong, because he gave the impression to Ann and Julia that going on the trip was fine. He screwed up by not making sure that was the case. Mary shouldn’t have taken out her anger on Ann and Julia when Tom was the one who caused the whole mess.

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      • Skyblossom

        Skyblossom December 22, 2014, 2:36 pm

        You’re saying she should have lied? Ann shouldn’t have asked if all she wanted was a lie. If she thought that Mary was okay with it and then realized she wasn’t she should have had a word with her brother at that point instead of everyone being mad at Mary.

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      • avatar

        RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 2:48 pm

        Putting myself in Ann’s shoes, if I thought everything was totally ok (because Tom told me it was), and I was excited about the trip and thought Mary was too, and innocently asked her, I’d be upset too if she came back with a snarky passive-aggressive response. As if it was my fault, when I had checked with Tom and he said everything was fine. You see what I mean?
        .
        And it’s not a lie to omit the fact that you wish they weren’t coming. Particularly if she knew that they thought she was fine with it, due to Tom telling them that. It’s a totally different situation than if they had just booked their tickets on their own, then I think her comment is more acceptable. But if Tom helped them, they have every reason to believe that everyone’s happy about the arrangements. I can see why they’d be upset at Mary about that comment. But silent treatment is childish and uncalled-for.

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      • Skyblossom

        Skyblossom December 22, 2014, 4:13 pm

        I’d need to hear the tone of voice to know whether it was passive-aggressive or just painfully honest. I think there is a difference and I’m not assuming that it was passive aggressive. Maybe it’s regional, I can’t think of anyone that I spend much time with who is passive-aggressive so I don’t tend to go there but lots of other people are so it does seem to be common.

        I still think Ann should have taken up the issue with he brother rather than getting mad at Mary. I think that if a long term relationship is going to work, like these women becoming sisters-in-law, they have to be honest with each other. If there is a misunderstanding they have to be able to talk about it honestly, without being petty. Mary could say that she thought that they were going on a romantic cruise and was surprised to find that it was a family cruise. She did say that she was okay with it after being initially disappointed. I don’t see anything wrong with that as long as it wasn’t in a sarcastic or snarky tone of voice.

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      • avatar

        RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 5:04 pm

        Even painfully honest would be hurtful. It’s unnecessary to tell someone you were initially disappointed that they were going somewhere with you, when you’re fine with it now. She could have easily said just the last part of what she said, “I think it will be fun for us all to be together”. That’s not lying, and it can’t be taken as hurtful.
        .
        It kind of sounds to me like she wanted to make sure that her feelings were known, and now she’s upset that they’re unhappy with her. She should have kept it between herself and her boyfriend, since he’s the one who caused the issue. The other two women were totally innocent in this and she blindsided them with her comment. There’s no way to say that comment that would make them feel good about going on the trip with her, tone of voice can’t overcome the content of it. And it was unnecessary for her to say, which makes me feel like she did it on purpose to show her boyfriend how upset she was. She should have talked to him directly, like an adult. Frankly they’re all acting very immature.
        .
        Also the fact that she left out that pertinent information (that it was her boyfriend’s decision to have his mom and sister come along, not just them butting in), makes me feel like she knows she did something wrong.

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      • bagge72

        bagge72 December 22, 2014, 3:49 pm

        Yes she should have lied, people lie about those types of feelings all of the time, and this is all Tom’s fault, so even though Mary felt that way, the only one she should have told was Tom, because the sister and mother weren’t really at fault for this. That was a complete whoa is me move by Mary, and it backfired in her face.

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      • bagge72

        bagge72 December 22, 2014, 3:56 pm

        When I say this is all Toms fault, I mean the misunderstanding with his sister, mom, and Mary. The whole backlash of all of this is shared between Mary, and Tom.

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      • avatar

        simonthegrey December 22, 2014, 8:59 pm

        I didn’t have the feeling he confessed to having helped book the trip till after, but maybe I am reading wrong.

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      • avatar

        Seasick December 22, 2014, 10:15 pm

        LW Mary here – you are correct.

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    • Skyblossom

      Skyblossom December 22, 2014, 2:33 pm

      If that remark ruined your relationship it wouldn’t have lasted anyway. That’s what dating is all about, weeding out those who are incompatible.

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    • othy

      othy December 22, 2014, 3:34 pm

      Yep, with this update I’d say the whole thing is 100% your (ex) boyfriend’s fault. If one of my brothers pulled something like this, I’d be pissed at them, not their significant other. Of course, I’d also check with their significant others before I bought the tickets…

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      • bagge72

        bagge72 December 22, 2014, 3:51 pm

        It isn’t all Tom’s fault. Mary new Tom helped them book it, so if she kept her frustration to just Tom, she would still be going on a trip instead of pissing everyone else off, because she was pissed off.

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      • bittergaymark

        bittergaymark December 22, 2014, 5:42 pm

        EXACTLY. This is somebody being a brat and being called on it. Sorry. But I am amazed so many are siding with Mary…

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      • avatar

        snow.angel December 22, 2014, 5:56 pm

        Hearing the new information in the update completely changed my perspective on this letter. I definitely think Mary should have kept her complaints and displeasure about the situation between her and Tom. Ann didn’t try to crash your vacation, Tom flat out invited her along. He’s the one who didn’t prioritize the romance aspect of the cruise.

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      • avatar

        RedroverRedrover December 22, 2014, 6:00 pm

        Exactly. In the initial letter I thought Mary was a bit snarky, but it was justifiable. With the update, she shouldn’t have said what she did. She can’t be surprised that they’re upset, when they thought they were welcome on the trip and then she made that kind of comment to them. This situation is partly on her (albeit mostly on Tom).

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  • avatar

    PDXGirl December 22, 2014, 6:01 pm

    I think I see more of compatibility issue than a clear cut right or wrong issue. Some people are more ‘the more the merrier’ kind of people and some are not. I grew up in a family full of ‘the more the merrier’ and so to me it wouldn’t be unusual for other people to be invited along. Part of what I love about my SO is that he also comes from a large family and sees things this way too. That being said, we are both OK scheduling couple time and with the other missing family functions if one of us just needs a break. In any case, Tom is the common factor in the situation and (probably unintentionally) set it up so that his family and SO were unhappy.

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  • avatar

    Seasick December 22, 2014, 9:00 pm

    OK, LW Mary here. Yes, I truly did make the comment that kindly. And when Ann responded, “I made a mistake, I should’ve asked you” I said “no, no. No problem. It’s all gonna work out fine. Big boat, long trip, there will be plenty of time for romance and for togetherness.”

    Ann later reported back to her brother that I had said I “didn’t want them on the boat.”

    I recognize my error in thinking I could be tactfully honest.

    Unfortunately, brother believes sister’s story. I asked that we all come together to discuss honestly but no one is interested.

    It’s bee over 3 weeks since the blew up – my boyfriend still can’t reconcile with me.

    Cruise is in January but at this point, I don’t see it happening for us.

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    • Lyra

      Lyra December 22, 2014, 10:06 pm

      Bullet dodged, seriously. It is ridiculous as to how they are handling it, and especially ridiculous that they can’t all sit down and talk about it. It sucks, but it’s better that this came out now than later.

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    • Cassie

      Cassie December 23, 2014, 12:51 am

      LW Mary, this is what is called a blessing in disguise. Your remark did not cost you your relationship– Tom’s inability to admit when he’s wrong, his selfishness, and his inability to communicate or see it from your viewpoint did. This was actually a good thing because now you see what type of character Tom really has. And it wasn’t even such a big issue! So, if he (and his family) reacted so ridiculously over something like this, then think about how awful it would have been when the next issue arose. Honestly, at this point, even if he wanted to get back together I would advise you to move on and find someone else who can actually handle a relationship like an adult. Tom has too many red flags with his character and how he handled the whole situation. Please jump overboard on this relationship. Keep swimming, and don’t look back.

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  • bittergaymark

    bittergaymark December 23, 2014, 1:24 am

    In hindsight, if you REALLY had barely met them before… then I wonder if Tom did want you to spend some quality time with them so they could get to know you as he was THINKING about popping the question at some point.
    .
    Oh well. Passive aggressive behavior has made Old Maids out of many a lady, so you are NOT alone, LW. Even though, well… you are. 😉

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    • Cassie

      Cassie December 23, 2014, 2:00 am

      Either way, the communication and problem solving skills in the relationship were lacking, and if an issue like this ended the relationship, then the relationship is better off ended. Tom is not the last guy on earth. The LW will be just fine.

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  • avatar

    Seasick December 23, 2014, 5:36 am

    LW Mary here – Tom & I are in our 60s with no question-popping planned. We’ve dated for nearly 2 yrs, considered ourselves life partners, and we spend adequate time with his mother and sister.

    It now appears that Tom & Mary will split (more $ lost on our cancelled cruise.)

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