December 1, 2023

My husband and I are fortunately child-free, although most of our new colleagues and mates have younger youngsters. Now that the worst of the pandemic appears to be behind us, we’re desperate to entertain at residence and join with our new mates. The issue: Certainly one of us would favor to ask {couples} over with out their youngsters, so the adults can have a dialog. The opposite worries concerning the impression this would possibly create, asking new mates and colleagues to imagine the expense and complication of arranging baby care. Any ideas on this?


Let’s begin with the convivial foundation of your query and go from there: You and your husband wish to welcome new mates into your own home to deepen your relationships with them. I find it irresistible! The hiccup: You wish to exclude their children. I get that, too. My residence isn’t child-friendly, and I’m not significantly considering redecorating or having my finest makes an attempt at sheet-pan dinners (or grownup conversations) hijacked by fractious 8-year-olds.

You’ve gotten the fitting to set your visitor record. Right here’s the factor, although: An invite that excludes youngsters could also be burdensome, as you notice, and even off-putting to some mother and father. Arranging baby take care of social occasions shouldn’t be a luxurious everybody can afford. And ignoring the wants of your friends might chill the very friendliness you are attempting to foster.

So speak to your new mates! “My partner and I might like to have you ever over for dinner. We’re not geared up to deal with children, although. So, for those who’re snug hiring a babysitter, we are able to do it at our place. Or we are able to all meet up for a picnic within the park or for a brief hike. What works for you?” Some mates will rent sitters; others gained’t. However don’t let the discussion board stand in the way in which of what’s vital right here: constructing nearer relationships.

My father died three years in the past. He was abusive. Whereas I coped along with his abuse by way of remedy, my mom largely swept it underneath the rug. She doesn’t acknowledge the ache he triggered. This has created a rift between us. Now, she desires to provide me a diamond from her marriage ceremony ring to put on as a necklace. I believe it’s a fraught image of a painful marriage, and I don’t need it. However I’m reluctant to refuse it if which may trigger additional strife between us. Recommendation?


My commonplace line on presents — to givers and receivers — is that recipients are free to do with presents as they like. I really feel in a different way right here, although. First, the diamond is an heirloom. If you don’t worth it as such, give your mom the chance to seek out one other relative who will — or one other use for the ring altogether. You are able to do this lovingly.

Extra vital, this explicit diamond calls up painful recollections for you. You don’t say whom your father abused. (I’m sorry it occurred to anybody.) Nonetheless, I believe it’s unproductive to humor your mom on such an vital subject. My recommendation is to not sweep this underneath the rug — as you might have accused her of doing — and to work collectively in household remedy to heal the rift between you, if attainable. An sincere relationship along with your mother is extra vital than a diamond.

Many neighborhood bars supply two-for-one joyful hours: You purchase the primary drink, after which obtain a ticket for a second, free drink. However I not often need a second drink, so I’ve amassed a large assortment of tickets. They don’t have dates or phrases printed on them. Would it not be fallacious to make use of the tickets on subsequent visits — for my first drink — when the two-for-one presents are in impact? I’d tip the bartender, after all, however these are small watering holes with one bartender who will surely discover if I hadn’t purchased something.


These are in all probability not banner days for small watering holes, with many people working from residence at the least half time. (I believe fewer persons are inclined to go to bars to have a good time the top of workdays which are spent largely at a kitchen desk.) Right here’s my comfortable recommendation: Pay for the primary drink each time. You is probably not breaking an specific rule by cashing in a leftover ticket and even by giving it to a different patron (who would then get two free drinks), however I believe you’d be violating the spirit of the supply.

We obtained a save-the-date card for the marriage of a cousin’s daughter. We have been happy! We purchased new outfits (the costume code known as for floor-length robes), made journey preparations and despatched a present from the registry. We have been unable to R.S.V.P. on the marriage web site: Our names weren’t there. Now, it’s solely 5 weeks till the marriage, and we nonetheless haven’t obtained an invite. Is it attainable we weren’t invited?


Until there was a glitch with the marriage web site, I’m sorry to say that you simply in all probability aren’t invited. My hunch: You might be a casualty of a visitor record that wanted trimming after save-the-date playing cards have been already mailed. After all, the couple shouldn’t have despatched playing cards till the record was finalized. Name your cousin to ask what’s happening. (Attempt to be understanding. Errors abound.) You probably did nothing fallacious. However don’t you wish to know for those who’re invited earlier than you journey to a different metropolis in a floor-length robe?

For assist along with your awkward state of affairs, ship a query to, Philip Galanes on Facebook or @SocialQPhilip on the platform X.

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