DEAR HARRIETTE: My ex-boyfriend is mad because I did not invite him to my son’s graduation. They were close during the four years that we were together, but we broke up two years ago. I am seeing someone else who will be coming to the graduation. My ex says that I should reconsider because the event is about my son, not me. The two of them have maintained a relationship even after we broke up. I always thought that was nice, especially considering that my son’s dad is not around, but I don’t know how to handle having my current boyfriend and my ex together at my son’s graduation. They have met but don’t really know each other. What should I do? -- For My Son
DEAR FOR MY SON: Talk to your son and ask what he wants. It is his graduation, after all. Who would he like to be there at this momentous occasion? Ask him, and listen carefully to his answer. He may surprise you -- and you need to be ready for it. For example, he may want your ex by his side and not your current boyfriend. Whatever he says, find out his reasoning for his answer. Talk to him to discover what his heartfelt wish is for this important occasion in his life. Feel free to share your concerns and thoughts. Talk it through together.
When you have made a decision, let the invited guests know that your son wants them to celebrate with him. Honor his wishes even if that means you have to have some tough conversations with loved ones. If your ex is serving somewhat like a dad figure to your son, do not deprive him of this moment of celebration if your son wants it.