Dear Abby: My stepson “Steve” is getting married out of town. His fiancee is an only daughter with three brothers, and her family is throwing a large wedding. My husband and I have just been informed by Steve’s mother that we are to host the rehearsal dinner for the wedding party, their spouses and out-of-town guests. It will cost thousands of dollars in addition to the cost of us attending the wedding, and we will have to go into debt to pay for it. Is this fair?
When we were married, we had a simple wedding because it was all we could afford. Should we be expected to fork over money we don’t have just because the bride’s family can afford to throw a large wedding?
– Stepmom in Canada
Dear Stepmom: No, you should not, and you should let the bride’s family know it ASAP. Although, traditionally, a rehearsal dinner is hosted by parents of the groom, today it can be hosted by anyone who is willing. While the guest list normally includes attendants and spouses, close relatives and special guests such as clergy and spouse, you aren’t obligated to include out-of-town guests.
Calls are harassment
Dear Abby: I had a working relationship with a couple, “Ed” and “Millie,” for many years. I have since left the company and moved about 80 miles away. While I have enjoyed staying in touch with them, their phone calls to me have been overwhelming. They sometimes call at inappropriate times – day and night. I finally responded with “Please don’t call me anymore,” but Ed’s calls and emails continue. How do I get these people to give me some space?
– Smothered in Carrollton, Ga.
Dear Smothered: Multiple daily phone calls and email messages after you have asked the person not to contact you isn’t normal behavior. It’s harassment. In light of your long friendship with this couple, and the fact that Ed’s behavior is escalating, call his wife. Explain that you are concerned about her husband’s behavior and urge her to have him evaluated by his doctor.