posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Mrs. Ivan and I need new insurance on our home and autos. I'm in Oklahoma, and trying to dodge the "Actual Cash Value Endorsement" scam. I'm really looking for help in research: looking for best value/best coverage for the dollar, of course. Any recommendations as to research avenues?Like everyone else in the world, we hate our insurance company. But there has to be one out there that is better, we believe. We need help from the hive mind...

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Is anyone familiar with practices/policies/laws/cases surrounding mandating a pregnancy test either in the medical environment or in other cases? I am interested in anecdotes, personal opinions, as well as pointers to articles or other resources.Here's what got me thinking about this: I'm female. Recently I was being prepped for surgery. The nurse asked me if I had had a hysterectomy or tubal ligation. I said that I had not had either. They told me that if I had neither, I had to submit a urine sample for a pregnancy test. I protested, and said that I did not have sex with men. This explanation wasn't satisfactory. I was told I had to take the pregnancy test. Considering my dread of the upcoming event, I complied. What was especially upsetting to me was that I would be taken at my word that I did have a hysterectomy, but not that I was not sexually active with men. I also felt my privacy had been invaded (a feeling that I know was unfairly heightened by the fact that everyone in the pre-op room -- the patients and the nurses -- were male). After Googling a bit, I learned that doing across the board pre-op pregnancy test is considered good practice. Listen, I can see why. I can see that my humiliation is less important than baby human. I can also see that no one wants to end up dealing with a medical malpractice suit. But it does seem like perhaps the hospital's fault could be absolved by having the patient sign a statement that they did not require a pregnancy test for stated, valid reasons. This has got me thinking about other, far more problematic scenarios where women are asked to submit to pregnancy testing. Googling reveals that the shittiness and illegality of mandating pregnancy testing in the hiring process, but are their other arenas in which this has come up? And has this happened to any MeFites?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I have multiple independent variables that I want to stratify my sampling across, but the result would be way more strata than I can sample. Is there a way to stratify across different character states for each independent variable without creating strata for the interactions of each? Example inside.In my example I have independent variables Color (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple), Shape (square, round, sinusoidal), Size (small medium large), and Flavor (apple, banana, grape). If I tried to stratify my sampling across each of these I would get 162 strata. My population is only about 1,000 individuals though! I can't pull 30 samples each from 162 strata. In fact, there may not even be any large square blue grapes (for example). I don't really care about the effect of the possible interaction between the terms though. Can I design a sampling regime that would make sure I get a randomly selected 30 of each color, 30 of each shape, 30 of each size, and 30 of each flavor, but not try to get 30 of each combination of color, shape, size, and flavor? Why is this a bad idea? Or if it's not, is there an established way of designing such a sampling regime?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Humans and Neanderthals had sex. But was it for love? "Did modern humans look over there and see a Neanderthal and say 'hm, not bad?'" Maybe.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
I need a divorce from what's left of my family. I just can't figure out how to do it. The ending is the part I always thought would be easiest, but it turns out to be worse than the waiting part was.So, a few years ago I posted a question about what to do about my brothers when my father eventually passed away. TL;DR - My brothers have never really been my brothers, not as far back as I can remember - they've been examples of what not to be, and that's the extent of our relationship. My entire life, they've been unemployed practicing alcoholics who have saddened, angered, cheated, terrified and thieved from my parents and others without ever giving anything back. My older brother at least used to be a warm and gentle person -- but since his stroke 15 years ago or so, he's been extremely volatile, verbally abusive to everyone around him, and extremely paranoid. My father died in April, intestate. I've been dealing with the emotional, financial and logistical fallout ever since. I handled the funeral costs, adopted my father's dog, and did what I could financially to give my brothers some time to figure things out. They should have been able to last longer than this with what they had. But they squandered it, and now their time and money has almost run out. I don't have anything left to give them; I'm in debt now myself, thanks to the trip home when my dad got sick and later, the cross-country transport of the pup. I want to disentangle myself from my brothers permanently, but I don't know how to do it. I can change my name and my phone number, but I can't change my address, and they know it because they had to mail me things when my dad was still alive - he couldn't get to the mailbox/post office himself. I live all the way across the country, but it's not inconceivable that my middle brother could find a way to get here, and I find that thought scary on many, many levels. My brothers have never been connected to me on social media, or even aware of me having a social media presence. So I think I'm safe enough there. I've always used pseudonyms and nicknames online, not my real name. I'm sure a PI could find me in about five minutes, but I don't think my brothers are tech savvy enough to do so (and can't afford a PI anyway!) I would need to change/delete a couple of my email addresses, but I'm okay with that. I guess my questions are: Is this even a thing it's possible to do? Will any of it make any difference, if I can't change my address? What else do I need to do to successfully vanish from their lives? Do I need to do anything legally to relinquish any claim on my dad's house and whatnot, so I am at least not blocking them if they manage to sell it? Do I say anything to them before I vanish? A goodbye, anything? And if I can manage to vanish, how do I handle the guilt of having done it? I've always had a bit of an empathy problem, and find it way too easy to imagine them feeling helpless and scared and alone. I feel sick just thinking about it, and I'm already feeling sick about all the things I never managed to do to make my father's life any easier. I won't threadsit (much) but can answer questions if I've left anything vital out.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Hi Mefites I'd like to be more graceful in the way I greet my coworkers. Maybe I'm making the problem bigger than it actually is but... it's bugging me recently! I don't like the way I greet people, especially in my workplace. Reasons below :1st - I'm deaf and my pronunciation isn't wonderful. I know I don't pronounce the word "hello" (it isn't hello per se, my language isn't English) very well. It's as if I were saying uhhlloww, I guess :) I'm not terribly ashamed by it but I really hate pronouncing this word. I often end up saying the equivalent of hi if I'm close enough with said co-worker or I say hello in English, which is acceptable in my workplace but not perfect perfect. 2nd - I'm not great at eye contact. I have an (over) fixed gaze when people are talking to me, due to lip reading, but on first encounter in the morning it seems impossible for me to make any kind of eye contact... I'm an enthusiastic, expressive person but not when I say hello... I think I come off as... I don't know, cold? As if I weren't happy to greet my co-workers, which isn't true! The way I greet people isn't the way I want. I want to be able to make eye contact, smile, say hello / hi / whatever + co-worker name enthusiastically. Oh and to add a level of complication : in my workplace greetings happen this way : men - men shake hands, men-women kiss on each cheek, women-women kiss on each cheek. I'm a woman and not always confortable with kissing co-workers, but whatever, this cannot change (I KNOW). 3rd - I'd love to be able to say "hi + name". I think adding the name after the greeting adds a level of warmth I'd like to convey (but tell me if I'm wrong!) and for some reason I don't manage to do it, except for the closest co-workers... How could I practice this? Speech therapy isn't really an option because 1- time 2 - I've spent 20 years here, if it were possible for me to pronounce hello correctly I would be able to by now... How do I gain some grace when greeting someone? Should I practice in front of a mirror? Video tape myself (ugh)? Other? Thank you in advance!

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
I'm looking for software to create an online membership management system for a club. The system needs to be accessible to officers but not to members. What do you recommend?I help manage a club that has no budget. We have previously relied on, essentially, an excel spreadsheet accessible to 1 person to handle our membership management (have they paid dues, contact information, etc.). This is not really working, and I'm looking for a way to put this information online so all of our officers/leadership can access the information. It's not important for members of the organization to have access to anything that would be on this membership management site. It's only important that our leadership can access this. We already have a wordpress site, so we would love to have something that integrates with that. CiviCRM looks perfect, but it appears to be incompatible with our webhost. Other options I've found seem to be too focused on creating gated access to website content or generating sales. We don't need that. Because we don't need to create tiered access to a website, perhaps, wordpress integration is not important. This is what I would like the software to do: keep a list of members and their contact information; keep a record of when they paid dues; keep a record of when/if they need to renew; make all of this accessible to multiple users online (our club leadership); free (or low one-time cost). We don't need to send renewal reminders to members. That might be nice at a later date, but it would be great if we could turn off renewal reminders. Integration with paypal would be nice, if we decide to automate the signup process and membership renewals. We do have some events each year, so maybe handling ticket purchases for those would be good, but again, we already have a system set up to do this. Sending out emails to members might be nice, but we have something to do that already, too. Basically, we just need a way to keep our membership records online and available to our leadership so it's not just controlled by one person.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
I've read all of the MeFi threads about Puerto Rico and I'm trying to figure out if an excursion to Vieques makes sense for this trip. So many people have told us to visit Vieques (and MeFi seems to confirm this), but it seems a bit expensive to get there ($400 for two people is expensive for us for a flight). I'd also like to get some opinions on whether Vieques is worthwhile for a 2 or 3 night stay, as opposed to spending more time elsewhere in Puerto Rico and saving Vieques for another trip?We just booked a trip to Puerto Rico for one week in November (Wed-Wed). Initially, I'd wanted to spend the whole week, or at least some time in Vieques, but the cost of the flights seem to make it cost prohibitive. We've found a great place to stay in San Juan for 4 days, but I'm trying to figure out what to do with the latter part of the week. We'd like to do something relaxing and beachy and beautiful. It seems like flying between SJU and Vieques is the most expensive option and out of our price range (searches showing 150 each way). Flights out of SIG are more like 75/ per person each way, but that would still be a considerable expenditure for this trip. The cheapest flights I could find are out of Ceiba and cost around $36/person each way, but we'd have to get ourselves there and back from San Juan. I'm trying to determine if that hassle is worth it. I'm also not sure that I'm looking for flights in the right places because I keep hearing how cheap and easy it is to get there. Everything I've read says to avoid the ferry, and since we're on a tight timeline, I'm thinking that we don't want to spend that much time and effort. I'm inclined to just not worry about Vieques for this trip, but nearly every person I ask for PR travel advice says that we must go to Vieques. I'm feeling really torn about whether to try and make it happen. As an alternative, I'm thinking about spending a few days in Rincon. Is this a viable alternative?

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Should I have told my hijabi classmate a bit of her hair was showing?I moved to Sweden recently, and almost half of my classmates in the Swedish course are from Syria, mostly muslims. Today, at one point, I looked at one of the women and realized a strand of her hair was peaking from under her sheila. This is the first time, in the three months we've shared a classroom, that I've seen her hair, so it's clear it wasn't intended. I thought about letting her know (we were sitting close enough that I could have whispered or gestured discretely and nobody would have noticed) but I didn't know if having some hair out would be that embarassing, or if being made aware of it would have been more embarassing. Eventually she moved to sit with a friend of hers, and about 15 minutes later when she left the class her hair was fully covered again, so I guess the friend told her or she noticed it. I'm a woman, but from a non muslim and non arab country, and we are aquantainces, not friends. However if I ever have a wardrobe malfunction that threatens my notion of modesty and she noticed, I would like her to tell me. Muslims of metafilter: I understand every person has different levels of comfort about certain things, and she also could have interpreted any inappropriate or awkard behaviour in my part is having no idea, but generally speaking, would it have been ok, or even a good thing, for me to let her know that her hair was showing? Thanks.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Sabrina Gonzalez joked to her dad, who works at Costco, that he should get one of their giant teddy bears for his five-month-old granddaughter Madeline Jane. Never joke to a new grandpa.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
I have multiple myeloma (bone marrow cancer) and though I want to do everything possible to regain my health, I'm not a fan of the military metaphors people use. Several studies have found that people who use military metaphors have more trouble with making changes that might prolong their lives. Can the hive mind come up with better ideas?This piece also brought up some interesting points (you don't say someone won a battle with a car accident - and this person doesn't really feel like she "beat cancer" either). Also, I will be beginning chemo soon, and I know that Dr. Bernie Siegel (who may be too woo for some) found that people who viewed chemo as helping them, as revealed in their drawings, seemed to do better than people who saw it as poisoning them. I have always tried to stay away from the medical establishment as much as possible, and right now, I picture cancer treatment like I"m falling into the jaw of some huge metallic monster/robot/dragon, and I want to have more positive images. I already have the app "Whip Cancer." I know about the book "Illness as Metaphor." I am already a fan of Kris Carr. One image that seems closer to what I'm looking for is viewing the chemo as being like PacMan eating the cancer cells. I think a cleansing image rather than a fighting image might work better for me. I also read something about thinking of "lost health" as being like "lost car keys." You can look for them - you don't have to walk home. Some types of "positive thinking" seem really fatuous to me - this is not going to be an easy thing to get through, and I know it. Barbara Ehrenreich has written that the endless pink that greets breast cancer patients can be infantilizing and ignores men with breast cancer - and women who don't identify with the hyper-feminine (though if it's helpful to some people, that's great). Yet I am trying very hard to stay optimistic and I really do believe that there is a mental game here that will help me deal with what's coming and give me the best shot at long-term remission. Also, I will likely live for a long time yet, and I am not interested in thinking about accepting death at this point. So given my blizzard of snowflakes, does anyone have some ideas? Thanks.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
What I Pledge Allegiance To. "I am a black Mississippian. I am a black American. I pledge to never be passive, patriotic, or grateful in the face of American abuse. I pledge to always thoughtfully bite the self-righteous American hand that thinks it's feeding us. I pledge to perpetually reckon with the possibility that there will never be any liberty, peace, and justice for all unless we accept that America, like Mississippi, is not clean. Nor is it great. Nor is it innocent." -- Author Kiese Laymon, Professor of English and African American Studies at the University of Mississippi Also by Dr. Laymon * How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America: A Remembrance * My Vassar College Faculty ID Makes Everything OK * How they do in Oxford. NPR on this essay: "Laymon, a Mississippi native, made a promise to himself as a child that he would never say the nation's pledge of allegiance at any place that prominently displayed the Confederate flag — a promise he had to finally break this fall when he attended his first football game at the University of Mississippi. Ole Miss is a storied football program with a messy racial past and that is completely awash in Confederate symbols. The team's name is the Rebels; its mascot, up until very recently, was "Colonel Reb"; the Confederate flag takes up a full quadrant of the state's official banner, which is waved around triumphantly by fans at the team's games. Laymon casts an ambivalent eye on that imagery — what kind of self-respecting black person plays for and roots for a school where Rebel flags wave excitedly? — even as he finds himself swept up in a game in which the Rebels demolish a visiting team by nearly 70 points. It's a great, thorny exploration of the sacrifices we make to belong to a community." Previously on MetaFilter * How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America: A Remembrance * Kiese Laymon may be the best writer and curator in a generation

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Is there any reputable evidence that going to bed on a full stomach is bad for you, healthwise?This cropped up in an online discussion where several posters made the assertion that it was bad for you, health and weight wise. The main cite for this appeared to be a study which suggested that those who ate before 5pm only lost weight faster. I've been googling but, as with anything to do with healthy eating, there is a fair amount of misinformation and woo kicking around.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Does anyone know the name of this actor, who plays a member of the national security team in a Presidential briefing in s7e15 of the show: 24? Thanks in advance!!

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
How can I address the following problems with the YouTube Kids app: (1) no whitelisting, (2) no downloads and (3) stability problems? The solution can be another app that offers similar control over viewing, or any other tips or configuration options, but the end result must be suitable to put in the hands of a young toddler. Thank you!

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
We just moved into a pretty much total landscaping blank slate house and I'm planning my gardens to start putting in in the spring. I want to place a heavy emphasis on native plants, so I've been taking pictures on my runs through local parks. Inside: name those wildflowers!(Click on the images to embiggen.) Plant One (Tall, light pink small clustered trumpet-shaped flowers) Plant Two (Medium height, small purple flowers, spear-shaped leaves) Plant Three (Tall plants with medium-sized yellow flowers with yellow centers) Plant Four I seem to have accidentally deleted my pictures of but it's a medium-height plant with deep orange unclustered snap-dragon-shaped flowers if this sounds familiar to anyone. Thanks in advance! Also thanks to anyone who wants to share links to their favorite places to purchase native flowers and seeds.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Will Smith was Eazy-E before Eazy-E was Eazy-E. [slTheRinger]

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
For example: The Alchemist, Celestine Prophecy, Sophie's World. Any others?

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
I recently started a new job, and quickly realized it was a big mistake to accept the position. I'm searching for other opportunities but don't know what I should say to my references about the situation.I relocated for a new job at Company A about a month and a half ago, and things aren't going as well as I hoped. My actual job responsibilities are OK, but I just can't see myself getting used to the office culture and location. After realizing that this position probably won't be a good long-term fit, I've been applying for jobs back in my previous city. I'm starting to get requests for interviews, but am stumped as to how to explain the situation to my references. My references know I'm working at Company A, and I'm worried that my plans to jump ship after a couple months will cause them to think I'm unprofessional and flaky. Normally I would never even think about leaving a job before one to two years, and feel kind of ashamed to admit things aren't working out so well here. How do I explain this to my references in a way that is professional and doesn't make them less enthusiastic about providing a strong reference for me? Would it help to give details about why I'm looking to leave, or is it better to be vague about the reasons? Also, I've been omitting Company A from my resume entirely. Should I tell my references this? I don't want to seem deceptive, but I'm also wouldn't want them to mention anything about Company A during a reference check. Any other tips on what to say would be greatly appreciated!

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Looking for examples of science/weird fictions that deal with 'zones': intermediate or parallel realms - often forbidden - beyond the normal sphere of law or reason....of course there's 'Stalker' or 'Roadside Picnic' & echoes in the 2010 film 'Monsters' and Jeff VanderMeer's recent 'Southern Reach' series. I'm thinking of Samuel Delaney's concept of the 'paraspace' too, though these are always accessed through some technological prosthesis. Any other ZONES?

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
Over a 10-year period, humans on average revert other human's edits on Wikipedia three times. Bots are more energetic: on English Wikipedia, they revert each other an average of 105 times. From the original paper by Milena Tsvetkova, Ruth García-Gavilanes, Luciano Floridi, and Taha Yasseri: We find that, although Wikipedia bots are intended to support the encyclopedia, they often undo each other's edits and these sterile "fights" may sometimes continue for years. Further, just like humans, Wikipedia bots exhibit cultural differences. Our research suggests that even relatively "dumb" bots may give rise to complex interactions, and this provides a warning to the Artificial Intelligence research community.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
[Difficulty Level: Australian Higher Education] I've just started a new part-time job, as a technical officer in a higher-ed performing arts institute. My single-occupant office, tucked away behind a loading dock behind a theatre, doubles as a soldering/technical maintenance workshop.When I was shown the office by my counterpart from another campus, i was shocked and dismayed by the state that the previous occupant had left it in: broken stuff in piles, cable offcuts and litter, tools scattered all over the office, great snowdrifts of papers, things shoved willy-nilly into whatever shelf space would fit. Like something out of a World's Worst Hoarders show.I rolled up my sleeves and set to trying to tidy up, but each thing I threw out or put away revealed more chaos: desk drawers with invoices, stationery, tools and parts shoved in; old tissues, food wrappers and packaging; vendor catalogues ten years or more out-of-date; two filing cabinets full of... just stuff. To make matters worse, there are personal items: clothes, an old towel, and pictures by (I imagine) the previous occupant's child(ren?) stuck everywhere with stickers and tape. And when I finally got the least-broken filing cabinet open, there's a drawer full of out-of-date snack foods and opened bottles of tomato sauce, unwashed dishes and cutlery. The office seems like it's never been vacuumed, there's dust, roach traps and rat baits everywhere, a spaghetti of un-test-and-tagged cables running all over the office to various un-test-and-tagged devices (one of the key tasks in this role is testing and tagging of electrical devices...) The guy who was showing me around told me "oh, feel free to get whatever storage you need from Bunnings and tidy up. You can submit a claim to be reimbursed." Of course, I'd have to spend my own money and my own time to do that! I'm already feeling a bit freaked-out by a new and unfamiliar job that demands skills I don't really have (and I told them at interview that I don't have!) and I really feel like cleaning up someone else's mess as well goes a fair way above and beyond what I should be expected to do. Complicating matters further, the previous occupant is not only still employed at the college, he is now teaching in the department and is therefore my superior (although I report directly to the head of department). Any advice would be gratefully received.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
How WWE's Greatest Female Wrestler Disappeared by Jason King Previously on Metafilter: Chyna's obituary post from this past April.

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
We are getting married- yay! We live in NYC and are planning to stay for at least 5 years and hopefully forever. I've read past threads and other info about prenups and I think we could go either way. The big question is handling inheritances.The main reason we both thought of a prenup is that I am about to receive (before we get married) an inheritance from a grandparent (in the $100-400K range). However, New York is an equitable distribution state, meaning that this inheritance would be considered mine in the event of a divorce. We do plan to use it on a down payment for an apartment where we would both be on the title. In the long term, I probably stand to inherit more than he does in the future though I expect nothing with aging parents, rising cost of care etc. Other details: I make 40% more than him but for a number of reasons I could see that leveling out in the next few years. I also have 2x as much student loan debt. I do not foresee us divorcing! He is previously divorced, done with alimony, and that was all handled in a friendly way. Should we divorce, I would expect to split everything except inheritances, and gains from inheritance-related investments. These are meaningful but not millionaire-making sums of money, which makes me think we don't need a prenup. TL;DR do New York's laws make it so a prenup isn't really necessary for us?

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posted 4 days ago on metafilter
A good friend has alienated me and several other close friends due to her compulsion to tell us how much she spends on things. She's quite wealthy but seems to have forgotten that not everyone has her kind of money to spend on luxury items. Should I talk to her about it? Or is this an issue of insecurity I need to keep working on within myself?When L and I first met in our early twenties, she endeared me to her with her sweetness, loyalty, and reliability in a time of crisis. She also always had a tendency to put her foot in her mouth and could be maddeningly, cluelessly self-absorbed and self-congratulatory, but no one is perfect! I have adored her for nearly 12 years. Recently L has been promoted several times at her lucrative job and now, after years of barely making ends meet, she earns a LOT of money. This has caused some new and unnerving problems. When L began racking up a lot of disposable income, she lost sight of the income disparity between herself and others. She would often beg to go out for drinks or order expensive take-out food during my lean times and I would repeatedly have to remind her that I couldn't blow $100 on trifles. Often she would insist on paying for the entire evening and I was forced to firmly decline, which was awkward and embarrassing, OR she would convince me to acquiesce, which was even more horrible because I felt like I was her plaything for the evening. To her credit, she sensed that I didn't like being put in that position and backed off of this tactic. However, she still talks ad nauseam about how much things cost . She often phrases it in a "can you believe how much X was?!" which is frustrating, because X frequently = non-essentials like shoes, vacations, cab rides, hotel rooms, etc. The self-congratulatory aspect of her personality has become quite prominent, as she justifies these purchases as proof of her professional success. While I'm not a dummy and would expect her to be able to buy much more expensive things than I can, I get anxious and depressed when she names these lavish prices. The other complication is that L can be extremely generous with her money, and often buys sweet gifts that she knows I would never buy myself. I am touched by the thought she puts into these purchases but also feel complicit in her spending. I feel stuck between wanting to refuse the gift and not wanting to hurt her feelings. I find myself resenting her, dreading our interactions together, and comparing my own comparatively moderate lifestyle to hers. It's a really terrible feeling. I dislike myself and I dislike my good friend. I was recently in therapy and discussed L and the feelings she induced in me. My therapist helped me understand why I feel the need to relentlessly compare myself to her, and clarified how my own history of growing up impoverished has contributed to this reaction. I have made progress in being kinder to myself (and, at least in my head, to L), but the resentment hasn't disappeared. Every time L and I hang out, she mentions an extravagant purchase she's made and once again I'm left feeling deflated and inferior. I have other friends who are equally or more wealthy than L who do not induce these awful feelings, so I do think there is something specific about L's behavior that really irks me. Our other friends have told L about how her conversations unwittingly make them feel uncomfortable and resentful. Her reaction is often a mixture of genuine cluelessness, compunction, and defensiveness. Sometimes she understands how she is behaving insensitively and sometimes it goes completely over her head. None of these conversations have generated much improvement. What's left are several friendships where people feel ambivalent towards her and yet don't know how to address it. The event that precipitated this question is that L and her husband are now buying a house and the price-dropping has hit a fever pitch. It's exhausting to maintain a straight face while she chatters on about custom Amish-built bookshelves and artisanal countertops or whatever. I want to feel happy for her but instead I can barely withstand the onslaught of conspicuous consumption. I hate that I feel weary and on-edge instead of happy for this new development in her life, especially because she has been supportive and ecstatic when I have achieved my own exciting milestones. I don't know how to broach this conversation with L myself, or if it's even appropriate. I have never breathed a word of my own feelings about her behavior, and I think she'd understandably feel blindsided after years of friendship in which I've pretending everything was fine. Additionally, I don't want L to feel like she can NEVER talk about money, as it's a pretty universally relevant topic for friends and I have certainly brought up my own financial stressors to her. I am also seriously considering that this is mainly an issue of insecurity that I need to work on within myself, with a therapist, anywhere that is not my friendship with L. How would one even draw such a line? If you and a friend faced such a strain in your interactions, how did you approach it, if at all?

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