Dear Amy: I’m 28 years old. My childhood best friend, “Kenneth”, was recently engaged.
I couldn’t be happier for him.
Kenneth decided I wouldn’t be his best man at his wedding. The brother of his future fiancée, “Bart”, will be.
When he told me about it, it hurt a little, although I overcame myself quickly. I know his wedding doesn’t concern me.
A few weeks later, Kenneth and I went to dinner. We laughed and joked and had a great time until Kenneth joked that I was “the best man” and Bart “the better person” (because he chose him over me).
I was laughing a bit to have fun, but honestly, it hurt me deeply.
Kenneth and I have talked many times about what a jerk Bart is. He is rude, ungrateful, spoiled, and empowered. He is also a womanizer.
I tried to forget that stupid remark, but now he repeated it several times, not only Kenneth but other members of the wedding party as well.
Even though this is always said with a laugh and meant a harmless joke, it bothers me more and more.
I just chuckle because I know this wedding is not about me and I don’t want to cause any drama.
A few more months until the wedding, but I don’t know if I can take this “joke”. Am I exaggerating? Or should I mention this privately to Kenneth?
I know he didn’t mean to hurt me, but I’m not even sure why he made a joke at all.
Do you think this is something worth talking to him about, and if so, how do I approach it without causing any drama?
Or am I just exaggerating?
He disturbed the wedding
Ladies and Gentlemen: You don’t need to further guess your own reaction to this comment. The first time it was quite distasteful and unpleasant, and it does not improve with repetition.
My instinct is that Kenneth is trying to hide the fact that he has omitted you for the honor of being his best man, while admitting he did it – “owning” it with a no-nonsense joke.
I assume as time goes on you may feel relieved that you are not hosting this friend’s bachelor party. (Talk about avoiding mojitos!)
I suggest you confront this by pretending to be a fool. You can tell Kenneth, “That best man / better man. I don’t understand. What is it about? I mean, are you trying to tell me something?
And then you wait. He will spit and laugh. When it’s done, you can say, “Well it’s not really funny, it embarrasses me, I don’t like it and I wish you would stop.”
Dear Amy: My husband and I got married on Christmas Day. He died on the Memorial Day weekend eight years later.
Despite the passage of time, Christmas remains a difficult time.
What makes it extremely difficult is the forced weather of the season. Although I try to smile and respond in nature, it’s exhausting.
It is frustrating to be scolded by strangers for not showing the proper holiday spirit. Scandalous. Depressing.
I don’t want the mercy of strangers or try to instill myself at someone’s family gathering; I find peace in loneliness. I just wish others would stop stuffing my interpretation of Christmas down my throat.
All I want for Christmas this year is for others to remember that this is a difficult time for so many people in this country, from the working poor to the homeless who crowd shelters and eateries.
So please don’t get others to join your celebration and don’t call this woman at the box office “Scrooge” for not being “full of good humor.” You have no idea what kind of struggles he may be going through.
Still in mourning in Jacksonville, Florida
Dear mourning: Letting people “be” is a gift we can all give ourselves.
Dear Amy: I was interested in a question from Strangered Sibling as I considered sending a glorious Christmas letter to my estranged brother. Thank you for encouraging this person – and others – to stop boasting.
Dear Fan: I like simple, factual accounts of where and what people are like. I especially love the pictures of children, the elderly and animals.
Privileged people can live in their privilege every day. That should be enough.
You can email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.
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