Life Advice



Ask Amy: Faux ‘wedding’ is a real gamble

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear M: You and your husband have pointed out some of what you see as positive aspects of being legally married, but you seem to be missing the entire “downside” of being legally married to a professional gambler.

Depending on where they live, your daughter could be on the hook for some of the debt accrued during a marriage.

And, given that the house usually wins, it is safe to assume that gamblers do occasionally take on debt during down times.

There are also legal issues regarding his taxable income. Does he declare his winnings?

Are you sure it is wisest for your daughter to be legally tied to him?

Regardless of whether they legally marry, you might urge her to plan for the downside and get a prenup, reducing her liability for some of these financial and legal issues.


Otherwise, if you had previously agreed to help pay for a party, in my opinion you should make good on your promise. Make sure she understands that this is the only reception you will help to finance.

Privately, you might be relieved that this marriage isn’t quite legal.

Dear Amy: My wife and I have two friends who have been married for almost three decades. I’ll call them “Fred and Ethel.”

Anyone married for a long time understands that every relationship has ups and downs – and more “downs,” sometimes. We realize that we cannot know what really goes on privately in anyone else’s relationship.


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