Life Advice



Ask Amy: Imitation is more annoying than flattering

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

My question: How do I field — or squash — the very annoying question numerous friends ask me: "So, do you think this is it?" "Is he the one?" "Do you think they'll get married?"

My immediate reaction would be, "Ask them!" but I don't want this great young couple getting unnecessary questions.

It's not as if I bang on about how marvelous they are together. As with my other child and grandchild, I give updates as part of the normal topic that is asked about each other's family in a chat.

My friends are likely posing what they perceive as normal questions, but it does rub a raw wound. My spouse and I waited four years for a longed-for baby — all the time hearing, "When do you plan on having a family"-type comments.

You are very good at this Amy; please give me a couple of clear and polite responses to these friends.

— Unsure in the UK


Dear Unsure: I’m going to lend you a phrase from my friends in the American South that is guaranteed to politely shut down just about any query.

It goes like this: “Oh, aren’t you sweet?”

That’s it! Then you change the subject.

Otherwise, you could safely assume that these folks are really wondering what you think of your daughter’s guy. And so you can say, “Well, we really like him. They’re a lovely couple. Whatever they choose to do is fine with us.”


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