DEAR ABBY: I'm struggling because my stepson has chosen to get married on my birthday. I have been his stepmom for 18 years. It feels like a punch in the chest. My in-law family members are saying things like "OMG, how do you feel about that? I can't believe you're going to let that happen. It will no longer be your special day."
My feelings are deeply hurt. My husband says it's no big deal and I shouldn't let it bother me. But every time someone asks me about it, I feel hurt, and when I'm finally by myself, I cry. I don't know what to do. I need someone's help. Is what my stepson is doing bad etiquette, a slap in the face or no big deal? -- BIRTHDAY GIRL IN ILLINOIS
DEAR BIRTHDAY GIRL: That your stepson would be married on your birthday isn't a slap in the face; it's a compliment. If you like his fiancee, consider her to be the ultimate birthday present. I'm surprised anyone would imply, as your in-laws have, that their anniversary would create any kind of conflict. Think of it this way: Your stepson and his new wife will never forget your birthday.