Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Dad Will Fund Rehearsal Dinners, but No Drinks

DEAR ABBY: My three sons are all engaged and plan on being married over the next three years. Their mother and I are separated and will be splitting the cost of the rehearsal dinner.

I told the first one to be engaged that while I will pay for the rehearsal dinner, I will not pay for a bartender or alcoholic drinks. I have been in emergency services for more than 35 years and have seen firsthand the effects of alcohol too many times. I no longer drink socially because of it. Although I explained this to my sons as they grew up, they have chosen to drink socially as adults. It is their choice, and I accept it.

The fiancee of my second son to be married has sent us a price quote from a venue that includes costs for a bartender. (The total is more than twice that of the first son's.) I plan to discuss this with him, but I'd like your opinion: Am I wrong to make this stipulation, given the fact that this is "their" event? -- TEETOTALER IN THE SOUTH

DEAR TEETOTALER: You are not wrong. You made that stipulation to Son No. 1, and in fairness, you should do the same with Son No. 2. While it will be his and his fiancee's event, and you are generously paying for the dinner, you are under no obligation to pay for their booze.

Read more in: Family & Parenting | Holidays & Celebrations | Health & Safety | Money