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Family Urges Bride to Choose Flaky Cousin as Maid of Honor

DEAR ABBY: I have an extremely difficult decision to make. I recently got engaged to the love of my life. However, with this comes the decision of who should be my maid of honor.

Until a couple of years ago, the choice was obvious -- my cousin. Over the past couple of years, though, we've become distant. She's an extremely flaky person and can't be counted on for much. Now, I also have a best friend who is always there when I need her, but we've been friends for only a couple of years.

My immediate family says I should still ask my cousin to be my maid of honor because her feelings will be hurt if I don't. Abby, I don't want to give such a special title to someone I can no longer depend on. She has hurt my feelings countless times by not being there. She shouldn't get the honor just because I've known her forever. Please help. -- STUCK AT A CROSSROADS

DEAR STUCK: Talk to your cousin and also your best friend. When you do, remind your cousin there are serious responsibilities that go along with being a maid of honor and ask if they would create a problem for her. Tell her that if it's too much for her, she could be a bridesmaid. If she says she wants to be maid of honor, give her the chance. However, if she flakes even once, ask your best friend to step in.

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