ASK AMY: Cinderella’s gown creates a friendship fracas

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Dear Amy: I live with my fiance and our cat, and I’m really happy.

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We are getting married at Disneyland next year!

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I have everything I’ve ever wanted for my dream wedding, including riding in Cinderella’s crystal coach.

My mom and I have made a plan to go wedding dress shopping together. I also invited my future mother-in-law to come with us.

My fiance doesn’t have any sisters and his mom always wanted a daughter. She and I are really close.

The problem is that a friend of mine is really offended. He says he’s bothered that I didn’t ask him to come with me on this dress shopping excursion, but that I did choose to include my fiance’s mom.

He said it’s usually a bridal party of close friends, or just the bride and mother of the bride who go shopping for a dress.

I plan to go ahead with my plan to include the two most special women in my life. But I am wondering, am I in the wrong?

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– Anxious Bride

Dear Bride: Researching your question I have now perused numerous photos of Disneyland brides riding in Cinderella’s crystal coach (which is pulled by four white ponies and guided by a driver and two footmen).

In a world beset by challenges, conflict, and dreams deferred, I’m actually happy to report that … this sort of “fairytale” wedding is a thing!

The Cinderella dream is alive, well, and available – for a price – in Anaheim, California (and other locations).

In terms of your question, it’s a true fact that – even though Cinderella had a fairy godmother who did her dress shopping for her – any bride or groom has the right to include anyone they want when shopping for their own wedding clothes.

Sometimes this involves friends, wedding planners, family members, or future in-laws. And yes, I give you permission to exclude this pushy friend.

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(When I got married, I had only a flock of bluebirds to help me get dressed.)

Your friend is wrong, you are right, and I hope you have the fairytale wedding of your dreams.


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Dear Amy: I am currently in an empty marriage. I want a divorce.

We have been a couple for 29 years, but have been married for 11 years.

We didn’t marry until we had been together for 18 years.

I was a fool but didn’t realize it until we were finally married and had our son.

I have been severely unhappy for about five years, but even before that my unhappiness was building.

Now, I am attracted to someone else and want to leave the marriage. I am determined to leave.

In the meantime, should I reveal how I feel to this person I‘m attracted to?

I think he feels the same way toward me but holds back because I’m still married.

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I have told him I’m not happy and that my husband and I are sleeping in separate rooms. But the bottom line is that I’m still married.

What do you think I should do?

– Sad and Depressed

Dear Sad: You have stated that you are leaving your very long relationship, and yet the question you ask is really about embarking on a new relationship.

People do often leave an already unhappy relationship only when someone else comes along – giving them the emotional incentive to leave. It is easier to leave when you believe you are moving toward something positive that feels life-affirming and exciting.

You should also ask yourself: If this other man does not reciprocate your feelings, would you choose to stay in your marriage? Are you willing and able to go it alone?

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You’ve already telegraphed your discontent to this other man, including him in some intimate details about your marriage.

The ethical thing to do (which is also the right thing) is to separate your motivations for leaving, and to deal with your marriage – and especially your child’s welfare – before emotionally entangling with another person.

Dear Readers: Have you ever had your question published in the “Ask Amy” column? If so, I’d love to hear from you. Did you accept or reject my advice? Was the issue you wrote about ever resolved?

As part of our ongoing conversation about human behaviour and its consequences, I’d love to learn how things turned out for you.

Please – get in touch! Write to me at [email protected] – write UPDATE in the subject line, and tell me your story.

I welcome the opportunity to be back in touch.

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