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Dear Christine, Annoyed in Adrian

  • Posted on October 30, 2017 at 11:51 am

Dear Christine, Every year for the past 10 years me and my wife travel either to her families home for the holiday or mine. We trade off each holiday between Florida and Southern California. Either way–nice to go to a warm place! This year it’s her families turn–that’s California. I just found out, however, that my mother is starting to fail. She’s 89 and my sisters are telling me this might be her last Christmas. My suggestion to my wife is that we go to visit my family this year and double up on hers for the next two years. She wasn’t having that so I suggested we each go our separate ways, me to mine and her to hers and she’s freaking out. We are at a standoff with neither of us giving in. All I know is, I AM going to see my mom! I can’t understand why my wife is not being more supportive. Any suggestions? I’m feeling angry at her. Signed, Annoyed in Adrian Dear Annoyed, I hear you! We all have limited days and we each have one Thanksgiving, one Christmas and one New Years per year. How to divide holidays between your two families…

Dear Christine, Annoyed in Adrian

  • Posted on July 10, 2017 at 8:14 am

Dear Christine,

I’ve had the same best friend since middle school. We share a lot and even came out together. We dated briefly but settled into an amazing friendship. We really enjoy each others company. I’ve been in a long term relationship for years and my partner also gets along great with my best friend. Recently my friend started dating someone we both find really annoying. We didn’t say anything hoping it would be temporary. It’s been a year now and they are moving in together and talking marriage.

My question is, is it too late to tell my best friend that her girlfriend is a know it all, hogs the conversation, and puts everyone off and that if she continues to be with her, fine, but can her and I just do things without Ms. KIA (Know It All)???

Thanks, Annoyed in Adrian

PS I enjoy your column!

Dear Annoyed,

How nice that you have transitioned from dating to friends! Isn’t is annoying when a friend picks a partner you can’t stand!? It happens all the time. If there is something you need to get off your chest, by all means, tell your friend. If you think that it will change her mind about her beloved, hold your peace.

Have you and your friend spent time together without Ms. KIA in the past year? If not, have you talked to your friend about what you need or expect about sharing time together, without partners? Often, new couples spend more time focused on each other rather than on others, so you may not have had much time with your friend in the past year. Ask her what she thinks about spending time with her alone. Her response will be based on her needs and the boundaries she has set up with Ms. KIA. Some couples are comfortable seeing friends separately, and some like to be in each other’s pockets and together all the time.

Remember that the only person you have a ghost of a chance of controlling is you and that is tough going! Friends will choose partners for reasons that may not make sense to anyone outside of the relationship. And friendships will change over time, depending on all sorts of factors that may and will arise. I know a 87 year old woman who maintained a friendship with someone since they were 5 years old. This woman believed that friends should remain close forever, but recently decided that wasn’t worth the emotional cost for herself. She decided it was time to back away from that friendship. They both had changed tremendously over the years and this woman was no longer comfortable trying to be close. We all change! If the friendship continues or expands to include both be close. We all change! If the friendship continues or expands to include both friends’ partners, wonderful. Try to be very Zen about this friendship, accepting your friend for who she is now with the partner she choses. Christine Cantrell, PhD, Psychologist

Christine C. Cantrell, PhD
1026 W. 11 Mile Rd,
Suite C
Royal Oak, MI 48067

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