Dear Annie: I know a 60-year-old woman who wears high-heeled shoes and no pantyhose with miniskirts — without even a slip underneath. When she wears light-colored miniskirts, they're somewhat see-through in the daylight. She wears bikini-style underwear, and through the skirt, there are visible rolls around her bottom, waist and stomach. She's not really someone to whom I can say something, so what would you recommend? — Curious
Dear Curious: Quit looking so closely.
Dear Annie: My husband and I have been socializing with another couple, "Cal" and "Sandy," for many years. We go out to dinner often and have taken trips together. Cal has always made snide and off-color remarks. He would say derogatory things about my political affiliation, my profession (I'm a teacher) and my children. He always laughs and acts like he is joking. I usually brushed it off and chalked it up to him being an insecure bully.
Recently, he asked my opinion about our pastor's request that we wear face masks in public to keep others safe. I said that I thought it was important, especially since my father was currently in the hospital suffering from the coronavirus. He is a resident of a nursing home that has been on lockdown since March, and there was a large outbreak of the virus at his home. It has been a difficult time for my family since we have not been able to visit him.
A few days later, we were having dinner with Cal and Sandy along with two other couples. Cal made a snide comment about my political affiliation, which I brushed off, and he made a snide comment about my profession, which I also brushed off. He then made derogatory comments about my dad's so-called coronavirus illness. My dad had just been released from the hospital that day and, thankfully, was doing much better. I was shocked and didn't say anything at that time.
The next day, I did a lot of thinking and decided to cut this man out of my life. I unfriended him on social media and made a vow to not associate with him again. Is it fair to ask my husband to also quit associating with Cal? It's going to be difficult because we go to the same church, and he and my husband are in a club together. — Hurting in Louisville
Dear Hurting in Louisville: Cutting Cal out of your life sounds like a great decision. He sounds insensitive and like a true bully. Right now, your focus should be on your well-being and your family's well-being. In the future, if you find yourself with a bully such as Cal, and the wherewithal to have such a conversation, consider telling him to stop the snide comments. Sticking up for yourself is an act of self-care that can create a ripple effect of others sticking up for themselves, too.
It's time to have an honest talk with your husband. He heard what Cal said about your father and your profession, as well as Cal's lack of social graces so as not to discuss political issues at the dinner table. When this happens in the future, how would you like your husband to support you? And if he is to continue his friendship with Cal, then your husband must demand an apology from Cal to you.
What about Sandy? She has to be married to this man. Reaching out to her might also be a good idea.
Best of luck either ridding yourself of Cal or teaching him some manners and lessons in kindness.
"Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie" is out now! Annie Lane's debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]