DEAR HARRIETTE: Someone who I don't know and who is not a Facebook friend sent me a request, asking that she be put in touch with one of my Facebook friends. When I suggested that she find my friend on Facebook, the writer gave me major attitude, saying, "If I could've found her on Facebook, don't you think I would have thought of that?"
When I responded with a bit of retaliation, asking the writer about her attitude, she lit into me further. I responded one more time, asking why she was being so rude when she was trying to get something from me. She didn't write back anymore.
Am I wrong to think it was inappropriate for someone I don't know to ask me to share someone else's contact information? She gave me no indication of who she is or what she wants with my contact. I'm so tired of experiencing random rudeness from people who want my help. In the end, this woman wrote me a nasty note telling me how unhelpful I was when I could have been supportive to her. -- Facebook Friend, Atlanta
DEAR FACEBOOK FRIEND: Some people feel entitled to whatever they want, regardless of how they go about getting it. You were not wrong to withhold information about one of your sources from someone you don't know. The power and value of relationships has much to do with how well you protect them.
I'm sorry you had a rude interaction with someone using social media, but I'm not surprised. Anonymity sometimes allows people to behave in extreme ways because they think they won't be found out. Chalk this up as an experience with someone who either was never taught how to engage others politely or who just doesn't care. In either case, reach out to the friend she was looking to meet and warn her about this person.
DEAR HARRIETTE: I am a fashion lover, and I am known to have expensive tastes in clothing. There is only one problem: Because of all my extracurricular activities, I don't have time to work. So currently I have no source of income. I really dislike constantly begging my parents for money. It's uncomfortable and unfair to them. What can I do to suppress my shopping habit? -- Stylishly Broke, Syracuse, N.Y.
DEAR STYLISHLY BROKE: Wake up, dear one. It makes no sense to spend money that you don't have on anything, including fashion.
How can you suppress your habit? For starters, avoid going into stores unless you are able to "shop look," as my mother used to call it. If you can't look at items without buying something, don't put your foot in the door.
It's time to reorder your priorities as well. Evaluate your extracurricular activities. Is there something you can curtail in favor of a job? You will never be able to afford your style habit if you don't have the money to pay for it.
You also may want to look into a 12-step program where you face your shopping habit and figure out how to be more balanced about your current obsession.