Dear Amy: I recently found out that my employer's wife thinks we are having an affair. My boss and I have known each other for 25 years, both as friends and co-workers. We are quite close and I consider him a brother-type figure.
My husband and I ran into this couple, and I was shocked when the wife shot me a dirty look. I asked my boss about it the next day, and he told me straight out that she is accusing us of fooling around (with no basis for her suspicions). I told my husband immediately, and he trusts that nothing is going on.
The company we work for is very small. As a company we have all traveled and socialized together (including spouses). We will have a company holiday party/dinner, and I've told my husband I'm not interested in going.
I'm furious with her for accusing me of something so serious. I consider my marriage vows important. I worry I will feel uncomfortable all evening.
Dear Ticked: The bravest, most straightforward thing you could do would be to contact this woman independently to say, "Bart has told me that you suspect us of having an affair. Can you explain this to me?" She will either sputter and deny it or admit her suspicions. Either way, you can say, "Well it's simply not true, and I want you to know I find this accusation really out of line and I'm upset by it."
She may apologize or she may be unrepentant. Either way, this clears the way for you to carry on with your life without the damning unfounded allegation.
Dear Amy: I have three grown children who are married with kids of their own. I am fortunate that they live nearby and I can visit once or twice a month.
The problem is that they do a lot of bickering in front of me or complaining about their spouses' "laziness" or "pickiness" or other flaw while I am with them. I often leave upset and worried that they will divorce.
Should I just shut it out, or should I speak up?
— Caring Nana
Dear Nana: You are their mother. Part of this privilege means that you get to use your position once in a while to say something important. And this is very important.
Bickering in front of other people — or complaining about your spouse to your parent — is damaging to all of the relationships involved. Couples should not draw other people (their parents or their children) into their intimate relationship.
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