Reader’s Commentary: “I’m a woman, 38, who’s dated online for five years.
“I’d divorced at 32, stayed home and felt sorry for myself for a year, then turned to the Internet.
“Going on dating sites instantly distracts — you’re busy searching profiles, checking for winks, etc.
“It’s also frustrating, when the person who ‘likes’ you ignores what you posted about yourself. Or, when after responding, you get a foul-mouthed invitation for sex.
“But once I figured out how to avoid the creeps, I started dating. Some men became friends, and I had one great relationship for 18 months, until we realized it was a for-now romance only.
“To those who are afraid, or too shy to try online dating: it’s better than moping at home!
“Communicate online only until you feel you could meet this person safely, but still choose a neutral place (not your place or his).
“If a guy comes on too strong about sex or undying love on that first meeting, forget him.
“Look for someone who’s good company, is willing to try activities that you like, and be willing to try new ones yourself.
“You may not find true love online, but it sure beats feeling sorry for yourself.”
Ellie: Good advice. Readers who’ve had a positive online dating experience, even if it didn’t produce “The One,” are invited to share in this column, and you’ll help others get over the breakup blues.
My husband and I have been together for five years (married for two). He’s extremely close with his parents, who live 10 minutes away.
They’ve been so sweet and welcoming to me.
However, they’re disorganized, flustered by any change to their routine, and always late for any gathering.
They traditionally host Christmas dinner for 25 people. From Thanksgiving on, his Mom talks about how much she has to do and how stressed she is about it.
My husband and I have offered to clean for her, run errands, make food, etc. She either doesn’t accept, or gives so little notice we must scramble to get something done.
She doesn’t serve dinner until after 9 p.m. and has 20 people asking to help (because everyone is starving).
This year, I intend to host the holiday.
My husband says she’ll be very upset and hesitant to not host at her house.
I don’t want to upset her, but I feel it’d take so much pressure off her.
She could still cook and contribute, but we’d be responsible for the cleaning, hosting and majority of cooking. I want both of our families to feel comfortable and welcome.
Am I being unreasonable?
Sweet and welcoming in-laws are a gift! They have annoying habits? Well, who doesn’t have some? Work with them.
Since they’re always late, invite them for an earlier time.
To avoid her Christmas stress, give her a list of what you’re going to do and when, at the start of the month: e.g. you’ll cook the side dishes, and help set the table the day before.
But if she’s still stressed, read her lips: she’ll be more grateful than you think if you take over the hosting.
Do it gently, by asking her to cook or bake just her favourite things, and saying it’s time she got to sit back and just enjoy her family on the day, at your place.
Then, raise a toast to her at the dinner, thanking her for all those years of effort and caring for so many.