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Dear Abby

Dear Abby

DEAR ABBY: I recently got married at the courthouse. We had been considering it for months. (A courthouse wedding doesn't take a lot of planning.) We decided it was best for us and went for it. We didn't want to spend thousands of dollars on a wedding, and I'm not one for tradition. We invited immediate family and two of our friends.

My grandmother made excuses not to come, saying, "Not enough space," and, "I'm taking care of my grandchildren." It hurt my feelings that she didn't want to be there. Both my parents have passed away, and I wanted what family I have left around me. However, I now know that my grandmother didn't want to come because she's "traditional." She assumed I'm pregnant. (I'm not.) Many other people are also assuming that I'm pregnant because we didn't announce it and did it at the courthouse.

My grandmother is currently not speaking to me. Should I tell her I know she was talking to our family behind my back? What should I say to my family who are hurt because I didn't invite them? What should I tell people who think I'm pregnant? Or should I just leave it alone and they'll realize how stupid they were? -- NOT PREGNANT IN TEXAS

DEAR NOT PREGNANT: Not every couple wants a large, formal wedding. Many people -- like you and your husband -- prefer to put the money toward a down payment on a house, paying off credit card debt or travel. If your grandmother thought you might be pregnant, she should have ASKED you. If you would like to tell her you were hurt that she wasn't with you when you pledged your vows, feel free to do so. And while you're at it, point out that you have "heard through the grapevine" that she has been telling people you are pregnant, which you're not. And explain to anyone who feels hurt not to have been invited that you kept your wedding small for financial reasons.

DEAR ABBY: I have an etiquette question about differences in time zones. My son is currently serving in the military overseas, and there is a 14-hour time difference. My question is: When we talk to him on the phone before we go to bed, do we tell him good night, even though it is morning or early afternoon for him? -- DIFFERENT TIME ZONES

DEAR DIFFERENT TIME ZONES: Because you are in a zone in which it is night, it's only natural that you would say good night before signing off. If it bothers your son, which I doubt, ask him what he would prefer.

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