Q. It has been four months since my wedding and I am still upset about the speech my husband’s best friend gave at the reception. He has always been like a brother to my husband and I have welcomed him with open arms into our lives, and I considered him one of my best friends. But his speech was crass, sarcastic and unflattering to me and my husband. My husband gave him a pass and said he was nervous and had drunk too much. I feel like he embarrassed us at the biggest day of our lives and it has tainted the whole wedding day to me. —Still Upset, MD
I doubt you’ll be able to stop thinking about this until you figure out how to move on with your relationship with this guy. Presumably his Toast for the Ages was not enough to make you sever the relationship completely, so you need a path forward. What would you require: an apology? An acknowledgment? His fully listening as you get it off your chest? Letting things just get back to normal, with his being the mensch he always was?
Certainly, time can lessen the sting, but it will be helped by your making an effort to establish and relish the positive memories of your wedding day, through photos and others’ recollections. More good stuff equals less space for the bad stuff.
I know lots of people will write me and say that this whole concern is petty, but I hope they realize that this is about being hurt by a close friend, not about a wedding being less than perfect. Right?
Total eclipse of the sibling
Q. Can you please tell parents not to constantly compare their children to one another? I am in my 30s and it still is happening between me and my sister. They like her husband better, they are more impressed with her job, they are more in love with her children. It’s hard not to be bitter. I suppose I’m not looking for advice but rather to vent my frustration. —Parents Playing Favorites
I can’t help but give some advice (it’s kind of central to my job description), so at least try to have a conversation about this. Perhaps you’ve already done everything I’d advise — choosing a non-loaded time, using “I” statements, giving specific but not ambush-y examples. You can also try to nourish your relationship with each of them individually with new common interests, so that it’s not always the Comparisons of Doom each time you’re together but rather sometimes just talking about “Stranger Things” with your dad. If all that fails, focus on insulating yourself from the hurt, taking back control by accepting the limits of the relationship. Let yourself mourn what you’ve never gotten, and work on accepting that you never will. You’ll also need to work on detaching their judgments completely from how you think of yourself. Cognitive-behavioral therapy techniques can help you keep your hurt from turning into corrosive resentment.
Send your questions for Baggage Check to Dr. Andrea Bonior at email@example.com.
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