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Marriage madness across America has wedding costs soaring

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

NEW YORK — Last week, Kate Zhang snapped up a wedding dress at a bridal store in Manhattan. It was only her second appointment.

Her decision to get married was slightly less hurried. Zhang and her fiancé, Harrison Li, agreed to tie the knot the weekend before. Granted, they had waited more than a year because of the pandemic, but this summer...Read more

Friend Doesn't Respect Walker's Boundaries

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: I have started walking for fitness, and it is good for me: I am slowly getting healthier and shedding a bit of weight. Because I am still heavy, though, I can walk only so far before my knees start hurting. I work with a trainer who recommended that I walk 3 miles or less to protect my knee. That works -- except when I meet up ...Read more

Feeling Guilty After Outburst At Demanding Relative

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am afraid I did a bad thing, and I am not sure how to fix it -- or even if I should try.

We have a family member, an elderly woman in poor health, who has an addictive personality. She has overcome substance abuse, but has substituted other destructive habits. The hallmarks of her behavior include poor decision-making that ...Read more

Do I Deserve a Referral Fee?

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I am in my late 60s, and my boyfriend, "Mark," is in his early 70s. We have been living together in my house for a year and a half. We're both divorced and have adult children from our previous marriages. Mark communicates daily with all five children via phone calls and text messages. My problem is that he's also regularly in ...Read more

Ask Amy: Woman feels the tick tock biological clock

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I am a woman about to turn 35 years old. I have been with my boyfriend for a year and a half. He is a wonderful, caring and nurturing man who will stick with me through thick and thin. He’d be a wonderful dad.

Neither of us have ever had children. We have had many discussions about our future: getting married, living together, and ...Read more

Grandma's Responsibilities Begin To Pile Up

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: My daughter is pregnant with her second child. Her first, my granddaughter, is 2, and the light of my life. I lovingly offered to take care of her when it's time for my daughter to have the baby. She's having a C-section, so she may be in the hospital for a couple days.

My daughter wants me to come to her house one day out of every ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Worried Friend Down South

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My best friend and I are widows in our 70s. "Agatha" has suddenly gone gaga over a widower who wants her to move into his place, pay rent, and split the grocery and utility bills. He will take care of the garage, yard and car, and she will take care of the house. This man also wants her to rent her house for income for the two of ...Read more

Reader Hurt When Ex And Best Friend Become Tight

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: When I was in college, my boyfriend was physically abusive to me. I confided in one of my best friends, and apparently he forgot. I moved away after college, but my ex and my best friend were in the same town, and they became close friends. I was so hurt to learn this. How could my friend choose to hang out with this guy who had ...Read more

Couple Needs Signals For 'time To Leave This Party'

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: Pre-pandemic, my fiance's dear friends came into town for a week, renting a beautiful home with gorgeous hardwood floors. When we were invited to a dinner party there and I was meeting the hosts (and most of the guests) for the first time, we were informed that the rental contract required all shoes to be removed upon entry.

...Read more

Boyfriend Won't Step Up

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I am a single mother of two teenage girls. After a series of abusive relationships, I hadn't dated for two years until recently. A few months ago, I met a man, and we've been seeing each other and sharing intimate moments. But the way he acts has me very confused.

He says that marriage is something he's simply not interested in. I...Read more

Ask Amy: Husband has a ‘mommy’ problem

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: My husband isn’t capable of speaking with ME about decisions in our marriage and insists on running to his mommy for everything.

Instead of planning events that he and I could attend, he has to ask his mommy. Instead of speaking to me about what’s going on in his life, it has to be mommy.

We’ve been together for eight years and...Read more

New Living Arrangement Includes A Proposition

Life Advice / Dear Abby /

DEAR ABBY: Six months into the pandemic I was furloughed, then laid off a few months later. Because of the loss of income, I could no longer afford my rent and was forced to move. It was tough finding anything affordable in the area. A good friend from college (Josie) and her husband own a big home with a detached guest house, and offered me the...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Concerned Mother

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: Our son, "Cody," is 11 years old and a good boy. This was his first year competing on the school track team, and he did well, mostly third-place finishes and one second. We could not attend his last track meet, and when I picked him up, he excitedly told me that he'd placed first in the mile run. My husband and I were very proud of ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

Erika Ettin: Don't doom the date by asking this question

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

I recently remembered this article in Business Insider I read a few years ago titled “Posing this simple question to a first date will help you decide if you have a future together.” As a dating coach who gives plenty of first-date advice, I was obviously curious to see what this “simple question” could be.

I tell my clients to start a...Read more

Single File: Church as Connection

Life Advice / Single File /

You can commune with God as you perceive Him while you're out walking or riding in a car -- anytime the need surfaces. Out of that fundamental craving for connection comes a deeper hunger to go beyond known boundaries and reach a level higher than human.

That hunger I call "churchness" draws some people toward one another, and their common ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

Barton Goldsmith: The biggest mistake I ever made

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

I’ve seen a lot of articles lately about young people making the decision not to have children, as I did. Here’s a perspective from someone who made that choice — and now isn’t so sure it was the right one.

When I entered graduate school, a few years after my first partner passed away, I made a conscious decision not to have any ...Read more

Friend Who Wanted Off Group Chat Hanging With Other People

Life Advice / Sense & Sensitivity /

DEAR HARRIETTE: A few months ago, one of my friends texted in our group chat that she needed to take a break from us. She has always struggled with her mental health, and she explained that she couldn't handle the pressure of hanging out with people right now. She said that if we wanted to, we could add her back by the end of June.

Yesterday, ...Read more

Inconsiderate Guests And Old Plumbing Don't Mix

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: We are lucky enough to own a vacation house in a highly sought-after locale (think island house) and we enjoy having visitors. However, the utilities are a bit delicate. Water is limited and somewhat expensive, and our septic system can be finicky.

We try to explain the situation to family and friends, and most are absolutely...Read more

Dealing With Depression

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: My ex-husband was very controlling and always had to have the upper hand in conversations. Today, we do all of our communicating through email only, but he still needs to end all correspondence on his terms.

We have been divorced for three years now, but he still thinks he can control me because we have a joint parenting plan, ...Read more

Ask Amy: A broken couple pretends to be ‘whole’

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I have been married for over 30 years. At our 25th anniversary dinner, my wife told me she was interested in trying an “open marriage.” I was shocked, thinking that we still had a strong desire for each other. Later, at a counseling session, when asked if she was physically attracted to me, she said flippantly, “Not now, never ...Read more