Dear Barb – Apology Acceptance

Dear Barb:

My son and his girlfriend spent Halloween night at our home helping to give out treats. A young girl came to the door with her mother and my son recognized her from years ago. They chatted a bit and he mentioned to her that she really looked good, which was fine. After she left, he kept going on about how good she looked and my son’s girlfriend became angry and left. We thought he should go apologize to her. But he said he didn’t want to. My brother-in-law supported him, while my sister-in-law tried to explain to him that if this bothered his girlfriend he should apologize to her and not continue doing this. But my son was adamant that he wasn’t going to apologize, that he had the right to say whatever he wanted to. Eventually he did bring her back, but I don’t know what he said to her. What is your opinion, should he apologize or not? Julie.

Hi Julie:

Great question! I tend to agree with you that he should apologize. If something offends, or causes his girlfriend to be upset, it will ultimately affect the relationship. She seems to have a jealous nature and be a bit insecure, so why make her feel worse? This is just being considerate of another person’s feelings. Some individuals would not be bothered by this, but I would think most people would not want to hear their partners going on about how good another person looks. Hope your son eventually comes to realize these are compromises a person makes to maintain harmony in a relationship.

Dear Barb:

My best friend was diagnosed with a chronic illness many years ago. Her condition was stable until recently but she is beginning to deteriorate. Her surgeon has suggested a few options: medication, surgery, or other procedures. But she’s been going on the internet researching them and is now refusing all treatment. She won’t even take the medication. I am very upset, as is her family. We all want to encourage her to accept some of these options but we aren’t sure how to go about doing this. She is declining rapidly. I’m not sure what we should do? Thanks for your help, Tamara.

Hi Tamara:

You obviously can’t force someone to do something they don’t want to do, but you can encourage them. First, searching the Internet for medical information is not always a good thing, each situation is unique. Your friend obviously needs to be motivated to take her meds and/or do the procedures recommended. I would suggest an intervention, where family and friends get together and show someone that they care and the reasons why they need to accept help. Your friend should begin with a trip to her family doctor, as she may be suffering from depression, which can impair thinking processes. Good luck, and I hope this helps.

Email your questions to Some submissions may be edited for length or to protect confidentiality; your real name and location will never be printed. This column is for entertainment only. The author is not a professional counsellor and this column is not intended to take the place of professional advice.

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