Life Advice



Drunken brawl leads to sulking

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

You should clarify where you stand regarding his behavior and offer him an opportunity to affect the outcome. Email him: "We've decided that if you pay all court costs and keep your grades up next semester, we'd be willing to discuss resuming our previous financial arrangement. Understand that receiving a middle-of-the-night phone call is an experience every parent dreads. We were shocked, scared, and disappointed in your behavior. We all make mistakes in life (ask me about the time I skipped my bio-chem final in order to go to a U2 concert); however, part of the process of turning the page is to take ownership of what you've done, in order to do better in the future. So far, you don't seem to have done that."

After you send your email, don't aggressively chase him for a response.

If he continues to sulk, understand that he is not yet the grown man he will someday be.

Dear Amy: How do you politely ask people to leave your home?

I host a holiday midday meal gathering of family and friends, totaling 16 people.

I get up at the crack of dawn to prepare with a nice table setting, food and drink.

Throughout most of the day, I am busy with my guests and their needs. I never get off my feet.

Most meal gatherings I go to conclude once dessert and coffee have been served. For some reason, half of my guests decide it's time to move to the living room and continue for several more hours. Usually these last holdouts stay three or four more hours after dessert. I am exhausted, I still have major clean-up to do and really would like to invite everyone to leave once dessert is over. But how?

-- Won't Host Again


Dear Won't: I think this is happening because your event happens during the day. Guests don't feel midnight bearing down on them.

You should ask stragglers to help with the clean-up. Give them jobs! And you take a seat and drink in your own hospitality.

If you want them to leave, you should say, "Well, this has been wonderful, but I really need to pack it in. Can I help you find your coats?"

Dear Amy: "Moving On" wanted to exit a long-term friendship.

I, too, had a 30-year friendship that was suffocating. Many times, I thought about to how gracefully exit. Then came the day I made a major life decision that didn't include him. He dropped the friendship like a hot potato. I don't miss him at all. Sometimes friendships just run their course.

-- Moved On and Glad

Dear Moved On: Exactly.

(You can email Amy Dickinson at or send a letter to Ask Amy, P.O. Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.)



Social Connections


Drew Sheneman Diamond Lil Chip Bok Master Strokes: Golf Tips Hagar the Horrible Nick Anderson