Troubled Lives and Twisted Words

News flash, people: Marriage is not a magic salve that miraculously cures a couples’ ailments. Ok?

Q: I have met the girl of my dreams (we’ll call her Angela), and we are planning on getting married in August. But lately I have begun to see changes that I don't understand. Angela has never had any real close friends; she doesn't even see her sister very often, and she lives nearby. When we first started dating, Angela loved being with my family, whom I am very close to. But my brother said something one time in fun, and we haven't seen him for a long time because Angela's feelings were hurt. And now she doesn't want me to see my sister because she wants us to have more time together.

My mom and dad are spending a great deal of money on our wedding, and my mom was looking forward to inviting her golfing friends. But Angela only wants certain people to be there, which do not include my mom's friends. Mom was very understanding, and said it was Angela's day and she could do whatever she liked.

And now Angela has started badmouthing my parents. Angela had a tough time growing up. Her parents were alcoholics, and there was not much of a home life. I know she will make a wonderful wife and mother, but I am worried about her relationship with my family. Hopefully, it will work out once we are married. You think?—Worried

A: No, Worried, I do not think it will work out once you are married. I think once you are married, Angela will continue to spin her controlling little web around you tighter and tighter until you are completely devoid of contact with your family and friends, and, consequently, any sense of self. Marriage is not a magic salve that miraculously cures a couple’s problems. Quite the contrary. Ask anyone who’s ever been hitched, and they’ll tell you that annoyances morph into major aggravations, molehills grow into mountains and those cute little quirks that once made you smile now make you seriously consider strangling your partner.

But you probably won’t even get to that point, Worried, because Angela is already well on her way to cutting off your oxygen supply. Unless you’re leaving out critical details of the situation—like that your closeness with your family includes S&M bondage or your bro’s “in fun” comment was that Angela looks like the Stay-Puf Marshmallow Woman in her wedding dress—your fiancée’s behavior is beyond worrisome; it’s highly disturbing.

I’m sorry to hear that Angela had a difficult childhood, but her past is obviously affecting what a healthy definition of family is. Yours sounds like a delightful one, not a strain of deadly infectious disease that should be quarantined. Beyond that, another sign of trouble is that she’s never had any real friendships. This is not a woman who would make “a wonderful wife and mother”; this is a woman who would make an excellent candidate for therapy.

The bottom line: There are enough red flags here to furnish a parade for the Republic of China. And if you don’t believe me, well, listen to your gut. The fact that you wrote to me—with “Worried” as your sign-off name, no less—means you should be backpedaling from the altar faster than Julia Roberts in “The Runaway Bride.” Angela has some serious issues that need to be addressed immediately, likely with the help of a pro, and in the meantime, you need to figure out whether you really want a relationship with someone so determined to cut you off from your family.

Finally, whatever you do, PLEASE make sure that if you’re still doing the deed, you’re using reliable protection—i.e., condoms that you personally buy and wear. This is the stuff that punctured diaphragms, missed pills and “surprise” pregnancies are made of.

Q: What do you do when your ex won’t tell his family you broke up and everyone keeps asking you when you’re coming to visit and inviting you on family trips?—Vexed by the Ex

A: Send a mass e-mail to his family saying you’re sorry but that you two broke up, making sure to cc the ex on it, and you appreciate all the invitations, thankyouverymuch, but you’ve already used all your vacation days on romantic getaways with your new dude (make one up if you have to). Include a link to photos of you two frolicking on the beach and feeding each other grapes (again, recruit a friend if necessary). That oughta do it, and if not, it’s high time to start screening calls and ignoring e-mails.

No Comments »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment