Dear Annie: “Britany” is in a special ed program at my school. She is really nice and I try to include her in conversations with my friends. At the end of the year, there is a separate prom for the students in special ed. Britany asked if I wanted to go and I told her I would.
The problem is, there is another girl, “Natasha,” who is a senior at a different school. We both kind of have feelings for each other, but it’s not exactly official. She is a year older than me. Last week, Natasha asked if I wanted to go to her prom, which is on the same night as Britany’s.
I don’t want to hurt Britany’s feelings or have people think I’m a jerk. But if I go with Britany, there won’t be another chance to go with Natasha because she’s a senior. What should I do? — Friends or Feelings?
Dear Friend: You have to go with Britany because you accepted her invitation first and that is what a stand-up guy does. We know you’d rather be with Natasha, but if you abandon Britany now, you will feel terrible and it will prey on your conscience forever. Explain the situation to Natasha and ask if you could meet up later, after you have escorted Britany home. If not, you can always ask her out another time. We know it isn’t the same thing, but it’s the right thing.
Dear Annie: Is it appropriate for a mother to tell her son secrets and then say, “Don’t repeat them to your wife”?
My mother-in-law constantly confides in my husband and then instructs him not to tell me. A mother should not expect a man to keep things from his wife. I have asked my husband to tell his mother to stop, but he won’t. What’s a wife to do? — The Outsider
Dear Outsider: How do you know there are secrets? Is she whispering in his ear in front of you? This would be rude and she should stop. Does your husband tell you he has a secret but can’t repeat it? This is a deliberate attempt to get your goat and he ought to knock it off.
Husbands and wives shouldn’t keep things from each other, but these are not your husband’s secrets. His mother is entitled to confide in her son without having to also confide in her daughter-in-law. If she is having problems with Dad, this is not your business and no cause for jealousy. If she is telling him that your housekeeping skills are lousy, he should ignore her and so should you. If she is repeating gossip, what do you care? We bet if you stop being so upset, it will happen less often.
Dear Annie: What’s wrong with us? My wife and I don’t argue. We share chores. When I was working, she fed me, but since I retired, I cook most of our dinners and she insists on cleaning up.
We never had problems with sex. We always did it when we were both in the mood. Every day she tells me how much she loves me and I do the same. She never complains when I go to meetings and insists I wake her up when I come in late. She encourages me to go skiing or fishing alone since she doesn’t enjoy these activities.
How can two people be married and live together for over 60 years and still be madly in love? From what we read in your column, this is not normal behavior. — Contented Couple in Canada
Dear Contented: We love it. It’s obvious that you deeply love and respect one another and are willing to work through whatever problems arise. Congratulations.
Dear Readers: Today is Administrative Professionals Day. If you have assistants who make your job easier, let them know how much they are appreciated.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 4.23.08