It’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 “One in a Long String of Girlfriends” who disapproved of her boyfriend’s ex-wife being invited to his family’s annual Christmas get-together, along with their grown daughter, and she worried about the lies he had told about his past relationships. “I feel very torn. On one hand, this man is very attentive, loving, and committed to me. We get along beautifully. On the other hand, I feel like I am one in a long, long, LONG string of girlfriends. He assures me that I am ‘the one’ and he believes we could be married ‘one day.’ I wonder if I am being strung along and will fall to the wayside like 50+ women before me, or if he is sincere about marrying me.” Keep reading to find out where things stand between the LW and her boyfriend now.
I think your advice is spot-on, most of the time. Your advice to me, however, was pretty bad. Your readers joined your bandwagon and loved your advice.
To refresh your memory, I was concerned about my boyfriend’s, now fiance’s, ex (his 30-year-old child’s mother) being invited to all of his family events for “the sake of the child” (who is no longer a child but 30 years old). I was told that it was so great that they were just friends and I should be glad for the child, etc., etc., etc. I believe that sentiment, in theory, but I have a hard time in practice – especially after this much time. However, I listened to you and your readers who found me to be unreasonable with my concerns
As luck would have it, though, my gut feelings were correct. She had an ulterior motive, beyond that for the interest of her grown child.
That said, all is well that ends well. My boyfriend is my fiance. He saw the writing on the wall, and he addressed it. It’s not my issue.
In your original letter, you said that your boyfriend’s ex was invited to join him, their daughter, and his family at his place for Christmas every year. You never said anything about her being invited to “all his family events.” In fact, in your follow-up comment you said that, actually, you loved that the ex was included in the Christmas get-together and that YOU even invited the ex to your boyfriend’s birthday party. You said you were upset because “if given the choice between me and her, he chose her and said that to me. I don’t feel there should be a choice and, if so, at what point do I become the first choice?” You were also upset about the amount of lies your boyfriend had told you about his relationship history.
I stand by my advice. It wasn’t bad considering the information you shared. But, hey, if you’re happy now and have worked out the issues you had, and are now engaged and have gotten the commitment you were yearning for, then good for you. I wish you both the best. (And, out of curiosity, how does your fiancé’s daughter feel about your engagement, I wonder…).
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.