Dear Doctor Love,
Next year I will be married to a man who is everything I want. We come from similar families and the families have much in common. One of these is gift-giving. There are gifts for all occasions from birthdays, holidays and graduation. Both families are horrible gift-givers. Neither of them have a clue about what we need or what we like. They buy whatever attracts their eye. They especially like humorous gifts that have no use other than as money wasters.
Would it be wrong to tell someone close to you that their gift doesn’t suit you?
None of the gifts you receive are given with malice or bad intentions. They are given in an attempt to please you. The person buying the gifts sees something that would amuse or please themselves and they assume it would amuse or please you.
Of course it would be wrong to tell them their gift doesn’t suit you. You sound like the kind of person who would rather give and receive socks or underwear for special occasions. Make sure that from now on you only give what can be considered fun and amusing gifts. These are gifts. Develop a sense of humor and accept them as such.
Dear Doctor Love,
My neighbors and I have lived next door to each other for eight years. Even though I am a single divorcée they have always included me in their social circle. We have usually had dinner at either my house or theirs once or twice a month.
A year and a half ago my neighbor’s wife died after a short sickness. Since then, he has almost become a recluse. He never goes out anywhere. He is still very pleasant and friendly, but spends all of his time by himself. I was always aware that he was a handsome man but because he was married to my friend I never felt any attraction to him. Now, I would love to become part of his life and help him through these troubled times.
It has been a year now. Is it too soon to ask him for a date?
Only the widower knows how long his grief should last. Your best bet is to operate as a friend. When you make a special dish or dessert go over and offer some to him. It will be hard for him to refuse. Once you can get him to accept this ask him to share it over coffee.