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OPINION | DEAR ABBY: Bridesmaid gets third degree for missing bridal shower

by Abigail Van Buren | October 15, 2021 at 1:00 a.m.

Dear Abby: My daughter “Melanie” is going to be a bridesmaid in her cousin’s wedding. My son-in-law’s best friend from childhood recently announced his wedding date. The wedding is on the same date as my niece’s bridal shower. The events are about four hours apart, so it isn’t possible for Melanie to go to both.

Melanie will attend the bachelorette party in Vegas and all the other events. She told her cousin she was sorry but she needed to attend the wedding with her husband, who is in his friend’s wedding party.

The bride’s sister is giving my daughter a hard time. Melanie is now afraid she’s jeopardizing her relationship with her cousins, as they have told her how upset they are. I support her decision to attend the wedding and skip the shower. There are four other bridesmaids, and another one is also unable to attend. What would you do, and how can I be helpful to my daughter without causing a bigger rift in the family? — Wedding Drama, Drama, Drama

Dear W.D.D.D.: The pressure your daughter is receiving from her cousins is inappropriate. She isn’t obligated to attend any event she doesn’t wish to, and her reason for skipping the shower is a valid one. She should choose a gift for her cousin, have it delivered and apologize once for being unable to be there in person. Continuing to provide emotional support to your daughter is the best way to help her.

Dear Abby: Four months ago, I noticed a lady who was struggling to walk, so I offered to drive her where she needed. Turns out she was walking from a bus stop to a transit bus to catch it for work. (She works in a different county than she lives in.)

I have now been driving this lady to work from the bus stop every morning, picking her up from work and taking her home. She lives about 10 miles from me. She has not once offered to pay for gas, and now she has started asking me for money.

I’ve purchased coffees for her on several occasions and driven her to stores only to find out I’m paying for the purchases. She doesn’t have a car, doesn’t earn a lot of money, etc. I think I need to stop driving her, but I know I’ll feel guilty because she has no one to help her. How do I end this one-sided relationship? — Miffed In Michigan

Dear Miffed: The woman you have so generously befriended appears to be a bottomless pit. She is taking advantage of your generosity. It appears you need to create boundaries. Tell her you will no longer be driving her and be clear about the reasons. If you don’t, there is no end to what she will ask you for. She will manage just as she managed before.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles,CA 90069 or visit


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