DEAR HARRIETTE: One of my friends is extremely interested in photography. She is taking a class and wants to do a photo shoot with me. I am in the middle of moving, and she told me that she doesn't mind and would love to shoot me in my childhood bedroom. What she didn't pick up on is that I DO mind the timing of this photo shoot.
She has a deadline, but I need to pack up my parents' house. She already told me she'd be angry if I canceled on her because of her final grade. -- To Cancel?, Cincinnati
DEAR TO CANCEL?: I have learned that it is essential that you stand up for yourself, even if that means that your friends aren't happy sometimes. You can do so while still expressing support for your friend. Tell her that you appreciate her interest in photography and would be happy to accommodate her at another time, but that you will not be available to do the photo shoot within her deadline period. The end.
If she continues to pressure you, stop talking about it and turn your attention to the work before you. Your job is to complete the packing of your parents' home, which is a monumental effort. If you honestly feel that you cannot handle the added stress of incorporating a photo shoot into the mix, stand your ground.
I will add, though, that having your family home and bedroom documented before you leave it forever could create beautiful memories. Sorry to throw a wrench into it, but this is worth your serious consideration before you close the door.