Dear Amy: Sixteen years ago my best friend introduced me to the man who would become my husband. Her husband, "Stan," was my (future) husband's best friend.
The four of us traveled together for work and for fun and saw each other at least once a week. They even came on our honeymoon cruise.
Fast-forward to 2010. My best friend died. I was with her daily the last month of her life. Stan and my husband continued to be best friends. Then two years ago, my husband died. Stan was there for me through it all.
Stan has been dating a woman for almost a year. She has decided that I am a threat to her. I have no romantic interest in him whatsoever.
Now, Stan doesn't even talk to me. He told me (last September) that he is trying to help her "work through" her insecurities. She does not feel this way about anyone else in our circle of mutual friends.
I have declined a few invitations from friends, knowing that she will be there watching my every move. I have not contacted him, but really miss his friendship. I am also very close to his children and grandchildren.
Do I just accept that I am no longer a part of his life and move on, or should I sit down and talk to him? Should I talk to her as well? I am really hurt that he basically dumped our 16 years of friendship over a new girlfriend.
Amy says: I am very sorry for your many losses. To lose your friend and your spouse and then have this friendship fade away is a weighty challenge.
One solution for you would be to start accepting those invitations you seem to be avoiding. If "Stan's" new girlfriend will be watching your every move, then so be it. You seem eager to demonstrate that you are not a threat to their relationship, and the best way to do that would be to get to know her.
Stan has had opportunities to make this friendship work and he seems to have cast his lot with a possessive girlfriend. If your efforts are ignored or rebuffed, then ultimately, you may have no choice but to accept that this important friendship has ended.
OK to ask about invitation?
Dear Amy: I just received a "Save the Date" announcement for a wedding. One of my family members did not get one. Is it OK to ask the couple if that person will be invited? My attendance will be affected by this.
Amy says: It's OK to ask, as long as you don't try to influence the choice of the couple as they build their guest list. You could inquire of them, "I'm wondering if cousin 'Joe' is also going to be invited? No pressure either way — but it would be helpful as I make my plans if you could let me know."
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