Dear Annie: Slighted by old friends
Dear Annie: My husband is friends with a couple from college with whom we have exchanged Christmas cards and graduation announcements over the past 25-plus years. They have three sons, all of whom we sent a card and money to when they graduated from high school. However, when our daughter graduated in May, they sent nothing — not even a card. They are in great financial shape, so it is not a monetary issue. This has bothered me for months. I expect their Christmas card to arrive soon, and I really want to send it back either refused/”return to sender” or with a note saying how hurt we were by their failure to acknowledge our daughter’s graduation. My husband thinks it would be sufficient to just throw the card away and not send them one. I feel that they need to know that we are upset about it, especially as he thinks it is the wife who was responsible and the husband may not even know. I would appreciate your suggestions. — Slighted
Dear Slighted: Just because you sent their children graduation gifts doesn’t mean they were obligated to do the same for yours. A gift given with strings attached is really just a trap. Also, there are plenty of benign explanations for their not sending a gift. Maybe they’re not so well-off as you think (we never know what goes on behind closed doors), or maybe they just forgot. Regardless, I urge you to try to find the grace within yourself to let this go. Retaliation is for war, not friendship. Send them that Christmas card, and put this behind you. I have a feeling you’d feel better for it in the long run.
Dear Annie: This is in response to “Senior Dating Adventures.” Although some of the points you made are valid and may apply to this gentleman, I feel that you missed the fact that the woman seemed to lose interest when he asked for a hug on the 34th date, which continued on the next two dates.
It is not uncommon for senior women to enjoy and even seek out the companionship of dating. However, many are not looking for a sexual relationship. This woman has been widowed twice, and she may be done with needing a man for an intimate relationship. Though many seniors still have sexual relations, many women say they would love to have someone to socialize and go out with but are really not looking for anything physical. They may enjoy the company of a certain gentleman but are not necessarily physically attracted to him or interested in having sex with him.
I agree that this gentleman had his feelings hurt, but your answer to him seemed to blame him for not being confident and fixating on the relationship. He seemed to just be trying to understand where he had gone wrong.
I live in Florida, am in my late 60s and know many women who had wonderful (and some not-so-wonderful) marriages and/or relationships with men but now are not dating because they are not looking for another intimate relationship at this point. They are happy with who they are. — Mary Lou
Dear Mary Lou: I’m printing your letter because you’ve shared valuable insight on another explanation for his date’s behavior. There are even dating sites geared toward people over 60 that reflect different levels of companionship.
“Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to firstname.lastname@example.org.