If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
DEAR HARRIETTE: I recently won a large sum of money in a lawsuit. I told only the two people closest to me: my mother and my best friend. I expressed to both of them that I wanted to keep this news a secret to protect my safety and my money. Not long after I told my best friend, I found out that she had told a mutual friend of ours about the settlement. I’m furious with her. I expressed how serious I was about keeping my secret. She’s very apologetic. I’m not sure if I can forgive her for what she’s done. How do I handle this? — Big Mouth
DEAR BIG MOUTH: Point the finger at yourself first. You are the one who told your secret. Your best friend couldn’t have told anyone if you hadn’t told her. Sure, you needed to share it with someone, but apparently so did she. That’s the tricky thing about secrets. There’s almost always that one person you feel the need to tell, which pushes you to break the rules.
Can you forgive your friend? Yes. Should you recognize that you need to establish different boundaries for different types of information? Definitely. Further, if people try to sidle up to you to ask for money, you can ignore them. It is not theirs for the taking.
What you may want to do is work with a financial planner to figure out the best strategy for leveraging this pot of gold so that you will have it for the long haul.
DEAR HARRIETTE: People seem to be out and about a lot more these days. I have been going out, too, and I am still wearing a mask. Sometimes I’m the only one, but I don’t feel comfortable yet taking it off when I’m around a lot of people. I notice people giving me strange looks, but I think I’m doing the right thing. COVID-19 is still around. Two of my friends have it right now for the second time, and one of them is really sick. Do I need to say anything when people give me the side-eye? I still want to wear my mask. — Keep on the Mask
DEAR KEEP ON THE MASK: You are right that businesses, governments, public places and private entities have relaxed mask mandates. These days, masks are not required in most places but are still encouraged in certain situations. You have every right to wear a mask wherever you want to wear it. Well before there was COVID-19, some people wore masks to protect themselves and others from germ transmission. I remember seeing many tourists from Asia wearing masks and learned that, for some, their countries had already experienced an epidemic, and they had adopted this practice as a standard safety measure.
You must do you. What makes you feel safe and comfortable is what you should practice. Don’t worry about how people look at you. It doesn’t matter. Also, be sure to get boosted so that you are as protected as possible.