(Ben Claassen III/For Express)

When is too soon to tell my boyfriend that I am on antidepressants, and have been for some time? He often spends the night and I always hide my meds. I wonder what is common practice for people and figured you’d know. -Wondering, D.C.

Common practice for people varies widely, and I’m not sure it should be a guiding force anyway. (Driven the Beltway lately?)

What will get you to your answer is figuring out what antidepressants represent for you, and where they fit into your life. Are your struggles with depression something you view as a fundamental part of you, or as a temporary health issue? There is a bigger narrative here, about your hopes, your challenges, your history — the onion layers of which are peeled away, naturally, when you develop a relationship. The only rule for disclosure is that it happens when it feels comfortable, but isn’t delayed so much as to feel like lying by omission. Do you want this guy to know the whole you? In that case, I’m surprised he doesn’t know this fact (big or small, depending on you) already.

Naming Rights

My sister-in-law calls my daughter a nickname that is not my daughter’s name. We actively do not like this nickname, despite it being a common one for our daughter’s name. I have told her several times that that is not the name we chose, and yet our daughter is 3 and she still calls her this. -Irked

Let’s say sis-in-law is the only one in your daughter’s life calling her this. That makes her seem stubborn, clueless or both, and your daughter herself will probably start correcting her before too long. Conversely, let’s say your daughter embraces this nickname — which, clearly, you’re afraid of. If so, there’s no way to pin this on sis-in-law, since it’s common and she’ll be exposed to others using it.

No matter what you wish for, your daughter will ultimately determine who she “is.” So save your energy for the other challenges that this particular auntie might present.


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