Life Advice



Ask Amy: Friendship falters over shunning

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Is that disrespectful to gay people?

– Worried

Dear Worried: Many people make choices to tolerate someone whose views are diametrically opposed to their own. I believe there are valid reasons to do this, among them: the hope that you can influence the person to change their thinking. Some people also try very hard to lovingly accept those whose views they abhor, as a form of radical acceptance. Also, deep and long-term friendship does mean that we see and accept that our friends are flawed, just as we are.

Where this goes awry is when your friend demanded that you adopt her hateful views. In the end, she rejected you for refusing to hate. In my opinion, this shows how irredeemable she is, and why you are now wondering why you walked even partway toward her.

I’d say that you should allow your guilt about your own acquiescence to be your teacher. To be a true ally, you must reject hatred, and not “agree to disagree,” when the matter at hand involves human beings who are simply being human.

I think you should feel very sorry for this former friend of yours, as well as relieved to be shunned by her. No doubt, you are in very good company.


Dear Amy: I am part of a referral group that is comprised of professionals. We meet weekly.

One of our members is an attorney who wears badly fitted suits.

He is in his early 30s and is in great shape.

The attorney is super-great, but I want to advise him to get a better suit, which would be more fitted, etc. I have seen his photo on his social media, and he looks somewhat dumpy (for lack of a better word).


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