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Friends skeptical about reconciliation

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I were married nine years. He unexpectedly left me when COVID-19 first hit. We were apart for a year and eight months and ended up divorcing. I filed because, even though I didn’t want to believe it, I eventually accepted that it was over. Even though he hadn’t actually filed the papers, he had taken all other necessary steps. It was the first time in my life I had ever felt this level of heartbreak.

After time passed, he reached out and wanted to reconcile. We’ve been back together ever since, and he has asked me to get remarried. I happily agreed because he has been in therapy and made amazing changes.

My friends have mixed feelings about our remarrying. They saw how devastated I was when he left and how hard I worked to pick myself up and start over. We didn’t have a wedding our first time, so this time we are planning to have one. The date is set and the venue is booked. I have all these feelings of excitement, but it’s hard to share them because they get dismissed or there’s a snide comment from my friends.

They were there for me when we split up, and I understand their hesitation. They don’t want me hurt again. But it’s starting to hurt my feelings and makes me question if having a wedding is advisable. – Happy but Conflicted

DEAR HAPPY BUT CONFLICTED: The date is set, the venue is booked and you are happy. The next time any of your friends makes a sarcastic comment, tell them you don’t appreciate it and you aren’t going to change your plans. Tell them they are on the guest list, but if they can’t attend your wedding and wish you a happy future, they’re free to send their regrets. They may be protective, but at this point, they need to ease up on their resentment and give you both a chance to start over.

DEAR ABBY: One of my dear friends is Christian. She knows I’m Jewish. I don’t expect her to acknowledge many of the Jewish holidays because I’m sure she’s unfamiliar with them. However, Hanukkah is ubiquitous, and it would be nice if she would wish me a “Happy Hanukkah.”

Every year, she wishes me a “Merry Christmas,” buys me a Christmas gift and a Christmas card. She’s a truly nice person, and I don’t think she’s deliberately being dismissive or insensitive. I have mentioned this to her several times over the years, but it seems to fall on deaf ears. Without insulting her or seeming ungrateful, how can I let her know this bothers me? – Observant in Ohio

DEAR OBSERVANT: If she’s a dear friend, she’s not likely trying to upset you. A month before the beginning of Hanukkah this year, “remind” her that you do not celebrate the Christian holiday of Christmas. It should allow her enough time to find a suitable card for you. If she forgets after that, do not exile her into the wilderness, but forgive her.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.