Ask Amy: Pick up your family from the airport instead of sending a ride


Dear Amy: My nephew recently reported that no, he would not pick up his 77-year-old mother from the airport. “Plus,” he said, “it’s easier to get a taxi, Uber or Lyft.”

To that remark I say, “Easier for whom?”

Visiting loved ones means packing, patting, going through security, plus crowds and possible delays—not to mention the expense. So is it too much to expect that the person you are going to visit can make the trip to the airport to pick you up?

Let me put it this way. After an arduous journey, seeing a familiar, loving face and then getting a big hug means the journey is over. Whew! Climbing into even the nicest rental car means you’re still traveling—sitting in the back of a car, alone, on yet another leg of your journey.

Today, it is common to outsource everything. Let’s not outsource love and compassion.

Aunt: Picking someone up (or taking them to) the airport is such a signal of intimacy that it has entered popular culture. From “When Harry Met Sally” to “Seinfeld,” the act of transporting someone to or from the airport shows that you care. A lot.

I’m reminded of the wonderful opening and closing scenes in the movie “Love Actually,” which consist of an extended montage of people greeting each other in an airport terminal and — squeezing their hearts out.

When I travel, I fly in and out of an airport that serves a nearby army base (hello, 10th Mountain Division!). Want a scene that stops you in your tracks? Watch a service member come home after a deployment.

I am publishing your thoughtful letter as a public service to far-flung families everywhere. Dude. Meet your mom at the airport! It is a beautiful act of love.

Dear Amy: I have been with a woman for almost six years now. The problem is that she calls her husband several times a day. They are separated but not divorced. She says it’s about the children (who are all adults).

She has told a few people in the family that we are together, but she refuses to tell her husband because she still has things in the house and she is afraid that he will either break her things or not let her have her things.

They were together for about 20 years. We live together, but she tells everyone we are roommates. Am I wasting my time or what?

I love her and I think she loves me. I think she’s just afraid of change and she’s keeping him on the hook in case we break up. What do you think I should do?

Worried: Let’s assume you’re right in everything you say: Your partner is still attached to her husband, afraid of change, lying about your relationship and keeping her on the hook. Given that all of this is true, after six years – is this what you want?

You are in a relationship with someone who is married, and will probably stay married. She is not willing to be in an honest and open relationship with you.

Imagine if a friend of yours described her own relationship this way: “She is married and still close to her husband. She and I live together, but we’re on the downswing, so we have to keep it a secret.”

Would you describe this as a healthy way of living? Would you want your friend to be in a relationship that seemed to have no future? I doubt it.

So yes – you are wasting your time. It’s time for you to be your own best friend and move forward with the authentic life you want to live.

Dear Amy: “Happily single,” and many other people are constantly wondering how to answer intrusive personal questions. What usually works for me is a friendly, direct smile along with a change of subject and a non-intrusive question.

For example, “Yes, this rain. I practically had to swim here. When will it give up?”

Nosy people get the message, no one gets hurt, everyone saves face, and the conversation moves on.

Nailed It: Although I suggested a technique to rephrase the original question and throw it back at the person who asked it, I really appreciate your suggestion, which is a version of “Wow, what about those kids this year? I see they finally got a shortstop; do you think they will turn it around next season?”

©2022 by Amy Dickinson distributed by Tribune Content Agency

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