Sense & Sensitivity by Harriette Cole

Reader Questions How to Handle Begging

DEAR HARRIETTE: A woman I know from a social club I belong to complained all last year about her husband in graphic and rude terms. Now they are divorced -- no surprise. What is odd is that she has started talking about how mean he is and how he doesn’t give her all the money that he promised. She calls him ungrateful and on and on with the negativity. I can’t help but wonder what she expected. She talked about this man like a dog. Now she’s acting like the victim. I’m not so sure. I do know that I don’t want to get caught up in the discussions about their marriage. I don’t want to take sides, especially since I doubt that I would take hers. What can I say when she starts complaining about him? -- Messy Divorce

DEAR MESSY DIVORCE: It is never good to get involved in the details of other people’s divorces. Rarely is the uncoupling handled in a loving, respectful way. Typically, hurt feelings run rampant and nasty words are flung about. When your friend asks your opinion, tell her you do not want to be involved. Even if she urges you to take sides, tell her you want to remain her friend; therefore, you plead the fifth. No comment on her marriage. Period.

(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)