My best friend was just diagnosed with a brain tumor. I’m devastated. I want to be there for her and her family. I’m very close with her kids.
The problem is her husband. He and I had a falling out before COVID, and because we then didn’t see each other in person for over two years, it never got resolved. She and I spoke about it, but we just figured out how to live life without he and I being in the same room.
Now he’s shutting me out of everything. She’s unable to speak on the phone or even text. He answers all of her correspondence. I don’t know if she’s getting any of my messages at all. He’s not responding to me.
I’m heartbroken, but I’m getting angry. She’s my best friend! How do I get him to drop this nasty game? It’s not good for his wife or me.
Out of the Picture
I’m so sorry for your friend, and for you. You don’t need this when you are suffering. And I agree that this isn’t healthy for your friend. She needs you by her side, if you are truly BFFs.
You could just drop by and hope he lets you in. Better yet, you could drop by when you know he’s not there (you’d have to figure that out on your own).
If you’ve known her forever, perhaps you could reach out to her siblings and/or her parents. Maybe they could help you out with this.
But ultimately, I definitely think you need to reach out to her husband. Swallow your pride. Tell him you’re sorry for whatever happened between you. But now is not the time to be vindictive, or to hold a grudge. Tell him you’re happy to resolve the issue any way possible, but now it's all about his wife, your best friend, and your focus should be on her and her health.
My brother is going out of town on a first-time vacation with his wife. They have twin six-year-olds and have been hands on since they conceived. They both desperately need a break.
I’m newly married, with no children yet, and a three-year old dog. I work from home and make my own schedule. As soon as my brother mentioned the vacation, I jumped at the chance to take care of the twins.
To my surprise, and disappointment, he and his wife have already made plans with her parents, brother and sister-in-law. They don’t need my help. I’m so upset! They didn’t even ask me!
I can completely understand why you’re hurt, and upset. But I can confidently say this isn’t about you. Your brother and his wife are nervous and their primary concern is the happiness and well-being of the twins.
At six, the kids need a lot of hands on, and specific help. They’ll either need to sleep out, or someone will need to move into their house. And whoever takes care of them will need to do so on the children’s schedule.
That means early rising, breakfasts, lunches made for school (and kids can be picky eaters at that age, especially if they are out of their comfort zone), being dropped off and picked up from school, taken to and from activities, bathed, teeth brushed, etc., etc. It’s a lot!
Tell your brother and his wife that you will happily be on reserve to help out her parents, brother and sister-in-law, and would love to be included in any activities. They may not have thought you’d want the hassle/responsibility.
FEEDBACK Regarding the advice to the young men at the ski hill (March 16):
Reader – “I believe your answer to this question was sexist. If it had been young women being propositioned by men in their 60s and 70s “inebriated and draped all over them” surely you would not have suggested that they ‘politely decline with kindness and respect’!”
Lisi – Realistically, an average 20-something year old male working in a ski resort can physically hold his own over a drunk woman in her senior years. The same is not necessarily true in reverse.
Having said that, my answer would have been the same, to politely decline with kindness and respect. But if that didn’t work, I would have added that the young woman should then get help from her older manager, male or female.
It’s not about gender, it’s about physical safety.