My wife says that she saw our married neighbour out with a woman in an area of the city where female companions are usually paid for their services.
She says the woman certainly looked the part and the two were leaning together familiarly.
It was unusual for my wife to be driving through that dodgy area, but it happened because the regular route she takes was blocked by an accident.
Traffic was so slow due to the detour that she was able to clearly recognize this man. Also, he’s someone we see socially sometimes, as his wife is among the wide network of my wife’s girlfriends.
As his wife usually does at this time of year, she’s currently visiting her parents in South America, along with their children. She’s gone for a month in total.
My wife believes she should tell his wife what she saw, soon after her return.
My wife says it’s irresponsible and unfair not to, since the husband’s possibly risking sexually transmitted infections which he could pass on to his wife, some of which are incurable.
What do you think about this?
Your wife has a point on the STI warning - she’d likely feel terribly guilty if she kept silent and the wife contracted one.
However, she has no real knowledge of why her husband was with the woman, or who she was, or what transpired between them.
Tell her that you should both speak to the husband together.
Do so. Alert him that he was seen with the woman in that location, which naturally attracted your wife’s concern for her friend.
Give him a chance to respond to you both, saying that a reasonable explanation is needed to challenge your wife’s conviction that she owes a report to his spouse.
If he has been cheating, it’ll make him realize that he’s risking his marriage and possibly his lifestyle too, since at some point cheaters do get discovered.
If he’s innocent, he can protect his wife from unnecessary hurt and stop damaging gossip.
My widower father recently got re-married, and his new wife moved into my parent's marital home, acquiring many of my late mother's possessions.
Some of these items are very contentious, such as artwork and housewares that were intended as wedding gifts for my parents.
There was never any discussion about who would inherit these items after my mother's death, and it makes me uncomfortable to see my stepmother use them.
How do I discuss this with my father?
Yes, speak up to your father in an open but gentle way, pointing out that while there’s nothing in the will about it, your mother may’ve wanted her special items to be handed down to her children.
Usually, a mother’s jewelry and other valuable items specific to the marriage, and that were part of the family home, do get passed on to children as opposed to later wives.
But basic housewares for cooking and eating usually stay in the house unless the new wife brings her own.
As for the artwork, it’s unreasonable to expect him to dismantle his home and give it away now. But it’s not unreasonable to ask that he wills some of it as his legacy to you and any siblings.
Meanwhile, your discomfort about your stepmother’s use of items betrays an attitude towards her as an intruder, rather than your father’s choice of wife. If that’s so, it won’t help your discussion with your father.
We host an annual Christmas Open House for friends, neighbours, and associates. It takes hundreds of dollars and hours of preparation.
Three cheapskates always bring vile homemade wine/vinegar. I try to pour it for them, but it’s difficult among 30-40 couples.
Also, people should have the sense to leave their footwear at the door. I spent two hours cleaning black marks off my floors and carpet this year.
Hosting an annual Open House normally develops some self-protective strategies through experience.
Don’t invite people you consider “cheapskates.” If some protocol demands that that they’re included, have someone watch for their unwanted gift and hide it till it can later be spilled.
A box near the door with a sign, Leave Footwear Here, is acceptable, especially if you live in a winter city.
Your “hundreds” should pay for a helper checking that people follow through so you don’t have to comment… plus a cleaning assistant the next day.
Tip of the day:
Avoid unproven speculation and gossip about someone’s possible cheating.