Work to keep friendship alive

I was close to “Bob” in college. Four years ago, when he married “Sue,” whom I vaguely knew, I was the only one of his friends to attend her bachelorette party.

Dear Annie: I was close to “Bob” in college.

Four years ago, when he married “Sue,” whom I vaguely knew, I was the only one of his friends to attend her bachelorette party.

A few years after their wedding, I flew across the country and stayed with them for a while.

I had fun and sent a nice gift afterward.

When I later learned the whereabouts of a mutual friend who had fallen off the face of the earth, I suggested we all visit him, but Sue was adamantly against it.

She had been close to this guy in college and said I should respect his wishes to be left alone.

So I didn’t go.

Since then, I’ve had this vibe that I’ve been dumped as a friend.

They are both on Facebook, but don’t acknowledge my membership.

I still send Christmas cards and occasional letters, but only rarely get a reply — and it’s always short.

I would like to visit again, but I hesitate.

Bob has never been great at initiating contact, and Sue and I are not that chummy.

Should I confront Bob and end the mystery? Or should I assume this is just how they operate? — Vancouver, Wash.

Dear Vancouver: It is not uncommon for some wives to subtly discourage friendships between their husbands and other women.

Plus, you might have triggered something that made Sue uncomfortable.

A confrontation will only bring denial.

If you want to maintain the friendship, you will have to make the greater effort.

Continue sending cards and letters, and be especially friendly to Sue. Let them know when you’ll be in their area, and suggest meeting for dinner.

In time, the friendship will either warm up or fizzle out on its own.

Dear Annie: We recently hosted a barbecue for our son’s 18th birthday.

We invited members of his sports team and their parents, along with a few other friends.

Over the past four years, most parents have hosted at least one event for the team, so we thought this would be a good time.

We were not expecting gifts, but guests all brought cards. It occurred to me that some might include gifts, and I didn’t want to embarrass anyone, so I put the cards away. The next morning my son opened them, and they all contained various amounts of money. Thank-you notes will be sent.

My question is: Did I make a faux pas by not opening the cards that night?

Also, most of these people had never been to my home. Am I a snob if I don’t offer to show them around? Am I a showoff if I do? — New at Hosting

Dear New: You’re fine. The cards should not have been opened at the party.

As for your home, it’s OK to offer to show guests around when you have a small group over. When you are entertaining a large crowd outside, however, you should not be ignoring some of your guests in order to give others a guided tour.

Dear Annie: Your advice to “Debbie” was dangerous. Please don’t tell her to put a lock on her bedroom door. In case of fire or other emergency, interior doors must not be locked. In a rental, locks on bedroom doors are often illegal. In new home construction, keys to locked doors are placed in view on the trim above the door. Everyone should know where the keys are.

Another error people make in their homes is thinking that a window screen will prevent someone from falling out of the window. — David

Dear David: Those are excellent warnings, but we think you might have misunderstood this particular case. Debbie doesn’t want to lock herself in, which could be dangerous. She wants an exterior lock so her sister cannot steal her things when she’s out. When Debbie’s in the room, it is not necessary to keep it locked.

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to anniesmailbox@comcast.net, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 6061

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Contributed image)
Wolf Creek Public Schools will not participate in curriculum pilot

Central Alberta school jurisdiction joins others across Alberta

AstraZeneca vaccine is ready to be used at a homeless shelter in Romford, east London, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Frank Augstein
Most unvaccinated Canadians uncomfortable with AstraZeneca vaccine: survey

Just 41 per cent of Canadians who aren’t vaccinated, but intend to… Continue reading

Advocate file photo
Red Deer County approves winery in central Alberta

Winery proposed for rural property northwest of Innisfail

Sharis Carr, a nurse at the Aaron E. Henry Community Health Service Center in Clarksdale, Miss., holds a vial of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine that was administered to seniors, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. A second COVID-19 vaccine is being investigated for possible links to blood clots, though the syndrome appears to be extremely rare. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Rogelio V. Solis
Canada receives report of blood clot linked to AstraZeneca

OTTAWA — A Quebec woman is the first in Canada to develop… Continue reading

Jennifer Lopez, left, and Alex Rodriguez take a selfie as they arrive at the 26th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in January 2020. VAX Live: The Concert to Reunite the World will showcase Lopez. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP, File)
Selena Gomez and J.Lo headline vax concert for poor nations

NEW YORK — Backed by an international concert hosted by Selena Gomez… Continue reading

A vial of the vaccine by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a company owned by Johnson & Johnson. Federal health officials in the U.S. said early Tuesday they were urging a pause in the use of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine after reports of six serious blood clots, and officials in Washington state and around the country quickly complied. (Aristide Economopoulos/NJ Advance Media)
How J&J and AstraZeneca differ from the mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna

Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose COVID-19 vaccine has hit a stumbling block in… Continue reading

An emergency response worker carries an air monitoring device at the site of a crude oil spill at a Trans Mountain Pipeline pump station in Abbotsford, on Sunday, June 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Failed fitting caused 190,000-litre spill at Trans Mountain site in B.C.: TSB

VANCOUVER — A Transportation Safety Board report says the failure of a… Continue reading

Ottawa
Indigenous leaders, experts urge Ottawa to quickly pass UNDRIP bill before election

OTTAWA — Indigenous leaders and legal experts are pushing federal lawmakers to… Continue reading

Visitors to a roadside memorial pay their respects in Portapique, N.S., on Friday, April 24, 2020. The Canadian Red Cross confirmed today it has collected $6.2 million in donations to help the families in rural Nova Scotia affected by the mass shooting last spring that claimed 22 lives. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Red Cross collects $6.2 million for families affected by Nova Scotia mass shooting

HALIFAX — Canadians and people from around the world donated $6.2 million… Continue reading

Hindu devotees wearing face masks as a precautionary measure against the coronavirus stand in a queue to offer prayers inside a temple dedicated to goddess Kali in Jammu, India, Tuesday, April 13, 2021. New infections have surged in the past month and India has now reported over 13.6 million cases — pushing its toll past Brazil, and making it second only to the United States. In the past 24 hours, over 160,000 new infections have been detected and experts fear that the worst is yet to come. (AP Photo/Channi Anand)
Johnson & Johnson delays shot rollout in Europe

BERLIN — Johnson & Johnson says it is delaying the rollout of… Continue reading

Restaurant workers and restaurant delivery workers wait in line to sign up for Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine at a mobile vaccine site, Wednesday, April 7, 2021, in the Sunset Park neighborhood of New York. The mobile vaccination effort includes two buses equipped with four to six vaccinators each, delivering the COVID-19 vaccine directly to communities most in need. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
US recommends ‘pause’ for J&J vaccine over clot reports

WASHINGTON — The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in using the single-dose… Continue reading

FILE-Team Canada’s Meaghan Mikkelson fights for control of the puck with U.S.A.’s Hayley Scamurra during third period of Women’s Rivalry Series hockey action in Vancouver, Wednesday, February 5, 2020. Gina Kingsbury, Hockey Canada’s director of women’s national teams, hopes a Rivalry Series against the United States can happen this winter.THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michael Dwyer
Canadian women’s hockey team to open selection camp in Nova Scotia

Six goaltenders, 15 defenders and 26 forwards will vie for spots on Canada’s 23-player roster

Most Read