Out of !!!!s

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:

My former best friend is royally angry with me and I think she is very
in the wrong. We’ve been neighbors for 20 plus years. Our husbands
used to work together. Our sons grew up like brothers; both are
getting married this summer to wonderful young women. But she and
her husband have decided to move to where their son/daughter-in- law
will live. In the year since she made this decision our relationship has
deteriorated, in part because her attention is focused two hours north,
and in part because she’s started to treat me like chopped liver, as the
old saying goes. She assumes I am on tap for whatever she needs,
and has never once asked if I needed anything because she is so
preoccupied with her transition. She’s putting her house on the market
(for sale by owner) soon and asked if I would stand in for her. Why?
Because she and hubby are going to be out of town attending their
son’s Frisbee tournament! If it were the Olympics, I would stretch but
it is &*%^ frisbee and I work 60 hours a week plus care for my
own family. I told her “Sorry. No can do. Not enough time.” Now she is
accusing me of not being supportive of their move.

Out of !!!!s

Dear Out of:

Twenty years is plenty long enough for big asks, and I put hostessing
an open house in that category. But her request reflects a lack of
understanding of the status of your friendship. It’s not the same as,
say, Can I list your address for a package delivery? Or Can you fill in
for me when the cable guy comes in case I can’t make it home in
time? Selling a house requires not just a warm body to open the door
but being “on” socially with prospective buyers, and also being
knowledgeable enough about the home to be able to answer questions
that potential new owners might ask. No was a thoroughly legitimate
answer. She should reschedule the open house or pass on the Frisbee


I understand that your No came not only from not having much
discretionary time for yourself but also from your sadness about the
changes in the friendship. That seems like a worthwhile conversation
to have before she moves away.