DEAR NATALIE: I've been invited to a close friend's child's wedding. There are a few factors involved in my decision too attend. The wedding is four hours away in northern Pennsylvania in the middle of winter. The only people I will know there are the parents of the groom. I am concerned about the possible weather conditions at that time of year. There is a hotel nearby that has rooms available, but the rooms are very expensive, out of my comfort price zone. What should I do? -- UNDECIDED
DEAR UNDECIDED: You have two options. You can go, spend the money, meet new people and be a part of your friend's child's special day, or you can send a really nice gift from the bridal registry and RSVP your regrets. It doesn't sound like you really want to go - weddings can be weird enough, more so if you don't know anyone and are stuck in a random location overnight - but I would weigh it out. Is this the type of friend who will be understanding if you decide not to go, or will you hear about it for the rest of your life? If you think all will be well, remove the burden from your shoulders and stay home. But, if you think your friend will be offended, you may want to start saving your pennies!
Natalie's Networking Tip of the Week: What are your goals? Share your aspirations with someone you trust who can give you good advice on how to bring them to fruition. Until we speak it out loud, it doesn't become real, and we can't make it happen if it exists only in our minds.
Please send your relationship and lifestyle questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet them to @NBSeen. You can also send postal letters to Natalie Bencivenga, 358 North Shore Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
(This column was originally published by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.)