By Annie Lane
Dear Annie: I am a widow, 78 years old. I have a daughter who’s been married for 30 years or more, no children. Next month, we have several family get-togethers planned for a weekend out of town. My daughter and I had planned to travel together for the events. She lives a bit closer to where these events will take place, so the plan is for me to get to her city the night before, and then we’ll travel together the next day. Well, it seems that my daughter expected me to stay in a motel. She has a large 凯发体育官方sporthome, including a guest room and bathroom.
I made the decision to ask her if I had done something to offend her. I haven’t seen her since Christmas due to COVID-19. I couldn’t think of anything I might have done to offend her since then. She replied that her house was not presentable for me to visit, and that’s why she didn’t invite me to stay there. She has known about the events for several weeks. If she truly wanted me to stay with her, then she had time to prepare. I think she used that as an excuse.
I have always loved and treated my children equally. I feel it was not important enough to her to invite me to stay with them. My feelings are hurt. In fact, it has been five years since I last went to her 凯发体育官方sporthome. When they come to visit, they always stay at my 凯发体育官方sporthome rather than with my son-in-law’s family. I make sure that I have food they like, that the room they stay in is clean, that there are clean linens on the bed, etc.
She’s my child. I know it would not be right for me to have resentment toward her. I will pray about it. On a human level, how do I get past this? I feel that when I do see her, I will not be comfortable around her. — Concerned Mother
Dear Concerned: Your daughter didn’t clean her house in time for your visit. That doesn’t mean she doesn’t love you or care about you. All it means is that she didn’t clean her house in time for your visit.
Of course, the more gracious thing for them to have done would have been to invite you to stay; I’m not disagreeing with that. But don’t read their lack of hospitality as hostility.
Perhaps she has a serious clutter problem; perhaps it’s been a very busy few weeks at work and she hasn’t had time for a deep clean. Maybe she or her husband find having any sort of overnight company extremely stressful.
That said, you can express, toward the end of this trip, that you’d love to stay with her sometime. Keep the focus of the conversation on your feelings, avoiding accusations and assumptions.
Dear Annie: I hear a lot about sneezing into your elbow. How do you sneeze into your elbow? I can’t touch my elbow with my nose let alone sneeze into it. So, I was just wondering. — Reader of the Inyo Register
Dear Reader: I’m not sure if you wrote this with a wink and a nudge, but I take your point nonetheless. They don’t mean to sneeze on the outside of your elbow, but into the crook of the elbow — which I’ve just discovered is called the cubital fossa or elbow pit. You learn something new every day!
“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 [email protected]
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