See more of the story

Dear Amy: I'm having a hard time letting go of being snubbed by a close friend of many years.

My friendship with "Shelley" included our spouses and children. We've celebrated, laughed, shared meals, vacations, worries and mourned together.

Recently I learned from a mutual friend that we both were excluded from two major celebrations hosted by her family. (Other members of my extended family and friend group were invited.)

Shelley recently saw me at a different social event, ran up to me and said: "Can you forgive me?" without naming the offense I was to forgive her for. I said, "Yes," but I'm hurt.

She didn't acknowledge my comment, except to say that she's had a lot on her mind. Then she drifted off. It was a bizarre interaction, and the apology felt glib.

Ever since then she's attempted to interact with me at social events, but I've been keeping my distance. I don't know if I should just move on and simply realize that we are not as close as I thought, or try to discuss it with her.

Am I acting like a middle-schooler?

Amy says: You are not acting like a middle-schooler. You are feeling like a middle-schooler.

I'll explain it this way: When adults fall in love, we feel like a high-schooler. When we are snubbed or excluded, we feel like a middle-schooler.

Shelley chose a crowded social event to pounce upon you and ask if you could forgive her. This is a middle-school move because it prevents you from reacting in front of a crowd.

But Shelley forgot something. She forgot to apologize. Isn't an apology supposed to precede a bid for forgiveness?

At this point, you should choose to react like an adult. Say to her a version of: "What's going on with you? You've asked me to forgive you, but I don't know what I'm supposed to forgive you for because you haven't explained or apologized. I'd really like to clear the air."

Once you've owned your completely legitimate feelings and used your words to describe your perspective, it will be much easier to let go and move on.

Unwanted company

Dear Amy: I'm 64 and a widow, living in my own home. My sister is finally getting divorced after 30 years in a terrible marriage. She has a 21-year-old daughter.

She is going to be moving in with me while she figures out her next steps in life. We lived together when we were younger, and got along very well.

My concern is with my niece, who will be coming along. She is a good person — smart and savvy. But in the past, she has had boyfriends stay in her bedroom.

Also, there seems to be an open-door policy on friends coming and going. My sister said that she never knows who's coming over, and they come at any time of the day and night.

I want them both to feel good about living here during this transition time. But I'm not comfortable with the open-door policy. What would be the best way to approach this?

Amy says: You should be completely honest with both women before they move in. Tell your niece that you are extremely uncomfortable having overnight guests in your home, and so you are going to say no to that. Ask her to describe the way she typically hosts friends, and if you want any guests out of the house before 11 p.m., you should say so.

Handling this in advance could head off problems and resentment later.

Amy Dickinson is stepping down at the end the month and will be replaced by R. Eric Thomas. Send him questions at