DR. WALLACE: My boyfriend and I planned to get married in 2020 but the pandemic put a crimp on our plans to hold a big, social wedding with hundreds of guests. Back then we were looking forward to renting a fancy wedding hall and spending a lot of money to celebrate our love.
Since we were stuck at home for over a year, we kind of got used to living together and we were not as anxious about having a big wedding right away, but we still planned to do it.
Now, over two years later we face a different world. The economy is no longer as good as it was, and we are watching our money much, much closer than we did back in 2020. These days inflation is crazy and it’s definitely impacting our thought process. We also don’t know how much job security we each can count on in the industries we work in. Right now, we’re both still employed, but we have each heard rumors of possible layoffs at each of our jobs.
So now my fiance thinks we would be better off just getting married with only the two of us there. He thinks we could just get our marriage license and find a local justice of the peace to marry us, or, since we don’t live too far from Nevada, he also offered to drive us over to Las Vegas to get married in one of those famous little chapels there. He said if it was good enough for Elvis, it should be good enough for us!
I do agree we don’t now need an extravagant wedding, but I’m not sure we should slide all the way down to a quiet justice of the peace ceremony either.
What do you think? Does it really matter what type of wedding we have? Will a small wedding increase or decrease our odds of being happy and sticking together for the long run? — Bride to Be, via email
BRIDE TO BE: I suggest that you each speak to your respective families before you make a final decision. Taking off on your own to get married is often called “eloping,” and it makes sense for some couples. For others it does not make as much sense.
In my opinion the key is your collective harmony within the relationship, not what type of wedding you have. I feel you have just as good a chance at staying together in either scenario. But since you are hesitant, I feel that the harmony between the two of you would best be served by thinking through this issue carefully. Hopefully you’ll both only ever be married this one time, so you’ll both want it to be a happy and memorable occasion.
Your family members or his might have some good suggestions the two of you can consider and potentially implement. Take all ideas under suggestion, but in the end, make your own decision together.
I’M TROUBLED BY WHAT I HEARD
DR. WALLACE: I’m a girl who has a lot of friends at my high school, but only about three of them are what I would call close friends. All four of us are friends with one another too, so we often talk in a group at school when we have downtime.
Well, recently one girl in our group was talking about how her brother was taking some pills his friend was buying on the “dark web” so that they could stay up later to study longer before big tests and before term papers are due.
All the girls in my group said that was not too smart, but when one girl suggested to the girl telling the story that she should inform her parents what her brother is doing, she said, “I’m not getting in the middle of that.”
Then over the next weekend I saw my father watching the news when I got home from a date one night and he called me over to him and had me sit down. He then told me about a story on the news about some teens that took some pills that they didn’t know the source of, and both died due to fentanyl poisoning. He said these were good kids, not drug addicts. My dad right then made me promise to him that I would never, ever consume a pill of any kind, under any circumstance, that came from a friend of acquaintance of mine. He said only prescribed medication from a legitimate pharmacy is safe. I did make the promise to my dad, but now this has me thinking about my friend’s brother. Should I say anything? If I should, how can I do it without causing a huge problem amongst my group of friends? — Worried for This Brother, via email
WORRIED FOR THIS BROTHER: Since it has come to your attention, I do feel you should act upon it. However, although it may very well be true, you can’t be sure that it is. You only heard the story, and you have no direct proof. And I trust that although you wish to protect and help your good friend’s brother, you also don’t want to unnecessarily toss out an unconfirmed rumor about him either.
I therefore suggest that you write an anonymous note and explain exactly what you heard, but don’t go into details about who said this to you or who heard this in the first place. Simply put in your note that the way it was explained made you feel it could potentially be true and that although you don’t know for sure, your conscience has been bothering you, so this is why you are sending the note. You can print the note out from a computer printer so that your handwriting is not present.
This will at least give this boy’s parents notification of what might be possibly true, and it should at least spur a conversation between these parents and their son. Even if this rumor was untrue, the boy will likely only get a discussion like the one your own father had with you. And if what you heard was in fact true, your actions might be crucial toward protecting this boy and his friend’s safety.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.