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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

How to deal with DIL’s ‘loser’ family

Kathy Mitchell/Marcy Sugar Kathy Mitchell

Dear Annie: My son and his wife went away for a weekend, and she accidentally left her wedding rings at home. When they returned, the rings were missing. Her 17-year-old brother, 20-year-old sister and the sister’s boyfriend stayed at the house to watch their dogs. We later found out that the brother had a teenage friend over, and we think he stole the rings.

My daughter-in-law’s family is a bunch of losers and thieves. My daughter-in-law is a wonderful person who helps her family all the time, and this is the reward she gets. She keeps telling me she is going to file a police report, but hasn’t done it.

I am beside myself. My problem is, how do I handle an upcoming family occasion? I don’t want to start a war, but neither do I want these people in my house. What do I do? – A.

Dear A.: This is your daughter-in-law’s family, and although you don’t like them, you obviously care for her. That means putting up with her family now and then. If you don’t trust them in your home, have the festivities elsewhere – in your son’s home or at a restaurant. You also can lock up the valuables. As for the missing rings, these belong to your daughter-in-law, and she gets to decide how she wants to handle the alleged theft. It’s loyal of you to be angry on her behalf, but it serves no useful purpose if it also upsets her.

Dear Annie: I read the letter from “M.,” whose siblings expected her to pay $100 for a meal when she only ate a $10 salad. I have been a waitress for years and am always surprised when people have issues with splitting the check when they did not eat or drink equally. There is absolutely no reason not to ask for separate checks when you order your meal. Even if it is the restaurant’s policy not to do so for large parties, it still can be done. Ask for the manager if your server hesitates. Our industry is in a slump, and we will do what it takes to make the customer happy. – L.J.E.