Can love leap over all barriers? Age? Culture? Language? The stuff of life columnists Pam and Shaun Collins tackle “The case of the concerned buddy on the topic of his friend’s mail-order bride-to-be.”
Is it a blunder or a bonus? You decide and tell us what you think!
OK then. With a week to go before Memorial Day in the US and into the Victoria Day long weekend now in Canada we’ve got crossing international borders on our minds…so on to the QUESTIONS:
Q: No joke, my buddy has gotten himself a mail-ordered bride. We’re both retired and both single (I am a widower, he was divorced.) We both joked about finding a woman this way, but I’ll be, he up and got himself a young gal from the Philippines.
She’s sweet, seems to like him, but I just don’t know what to say. Apparently they wrote back and forth for a couple months and then he up and flew her here. Now he wants me to be his best man, but I just don’t see this working out.
He’s 60 and if she’s 30, you could knock me down with a feather. Do these things work out? Should I get involved at all? Seems like it might be too late at this point. Should I just keep my mouth shut and enjoy the lumpias?…………………..and now the answers….
HE SAID: There is no one size fits all solution here, as every friendship and relationship is different. I try really hard not to judge others for how they chose to live their lives as long as it doesn’t unduly affect others or me. Having said that, he is trying to make you a part of this by asking you to be his best man – the bottom line is, if this bothers you, opt out of the ceremony, but don’t expect him to ship her back because you don’t want to stand next to him on their wedding day. It will likely end your friendship with him, in that they will feel awkward around you and thus not spend time with you in the future.
For what it’s worth, I don’t see this relationship working either, but I’ve seen stranger things happen. Don’t change who you are to make anyone else feel more at ease around you, but try to let people live their lives as they want to if you can. If you think you can accept them for what they are, then I suggest you suck it up, be his best man and let nature take its course; but if you think you will never feel comfortable around them, you just need to be honest with them and find someone else to hang out with. Best of luck in both this situation and your quest to find that special person for you.
Intermission: Time out to adjust your tie, refresh your lipstick and prepare to make a good impression. Also, heeeere’s 10 Facts about Mail Order Brides, FYI.
SHE SAID: My dearest, closest friend and I have certain unspoken rules about our friendship. We have known each other since we were babies and we love and truly respect each other. If you truly respect your friend, then you must respect his choices.
The only time you should get involved in judging or “advising” your friends is if (1) They are on the roof and getting ready to jump (literally or figuratively), in which case and you may need to “talk them off the ledge”; or (2) they ask.
If he hasn’t asked you, and he appears happy, it is his life to live. At 60, he’s in the last few decades of his life. Whatever brings him joy, short of committing a crime, is really not your concern. You asked if these things ever “work out.” Depends on your definition of working out.
Granted, it’s not the most conventional marriage and clearly her reasons for marrying your friend were different than his reasons but if they are “mutually supporting,” and they are both fulfilling a need, then let it be.
There may be a point when he comes to you and tells you he has made a mistake. Be there. Listen. Help him however you can. Until then, be a friend. Be as involved with him as a friend as you have been and, by all means, enjoy the lumpias.
What do YOU think? Would you do it? Which country appeals to you as a source of love from a long distance? Tell us in the comments box below.
Hey there! Did you know… mail order brides came to America first in the 1800s to help open up and settle the country?
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