Hello Claire, I run a small business which is mostly creative-driven. I’ve worked hard and landed myself some great press coverage that I’m very proud of. However, I just found out that one of my vendors is using my business’s press coverage and photos of my designs on their own website. That would be fine, except they aren’t giving me credit! I reached out to them several times to ask that they simply mention my business in the photo captions, but they aren’t answering me. I don’t necessarily want to lose them as a vendor, but this needs to be made right! How do I get credit for the work without destroying my relationship with this vendor?
Hi Claire, I have a teenage daughter, and like most parents of kids that age, I am struggling to relate to her. She has wild mood swings, she’s embarrassed to be seen with me, and she is on her phone more than she’s not. But the worst part is actually talking to her – she uses bizarre slang and crazy references, and I can barely decipher what she’s saying. As it’s rare for her to say anything at all to me, I feel like I need to learn the lingo of today’s kids. Could you please help me out and explain what some of the current slang phrases mean?
cordially, Claire – you can be a professional and courteous coworker and you can be one of santa’s elves, but you can’t be both
Dear Claire, I have a workplace situation that I’m not quite sure how to handle. I’m Jewish, and the guy in the cubicle next to me is Christian and VERY into Christmas. He decorated his desk with bright lights, put up a giant Christmas tree that partially blocks the entrance to my cube, and he plays Christmas music at top volume, all day long. He is also a big believer in the war on Christianity and complains about it every chance he gets. Now, I actually love Christmas, and I have no problem the decorations and enthusiasm, but the constant music, enormous tree, and frequent rants are beginning to affect my work. I don’t want to sour my relationship with the guy, as we work so close to one another and he is generally a great cube-mate outside of the holidays, so how do I ask him to tone it down nicely, without coming across as the angry non-believer?
Dear Claire, I play golf with a friend once a month. He’s a pretty nice guy and an excellent golf partner, but his political views are basically the exact opposite of mine. I try to avoid talking politics with him in an effort to keep our golf games light and friendly, but he has recently decided to run for local government. His platform represents everything I disagree with, which he knows, but he has appealed to me as a friend and asked I put one of his campaign signs in my lawn. How do I tell him no without losing him as a golf buddy and friend?
Claire, I am writing you with a very serious problem, and I truly hope you can help me. My 17 year old son just came out to me. That’s not the problem, the problem is that our family is tends to be homophobic, and they might not react well to his coming out. I want him to be who he is, but I don’t want him to lose his relationship with our family. Please help me manage this situation!
Dear Claire, I am a teenage girl living in Augusta, Maine. I like hanging out with my friends, watching movies and playing with my dog. I like school, and my favorite subject is history. A week ago, my best friend and I were hanging out at her house, and she started smoking a cigarette. I want to tell my mom and I want my friend to stop smoking, but I don’t want to get her in trouble. What should I do?
Hello Claire, I’m writing to you in the hopes that you can tell me what to do about my wife. She and I have a great marriage! We are happy together, we support each other, and I’m proud to call her my wife. However, there is one thing about her that I just can’t get used to – she dresses super slutty. She has a good body, but she just doesn’t know when she needs to tone it down. Her dresses are all tight, her skirts are all short, and her shirts are all low-cut. It was fine when we were younger, but it’s starting to bother me. She wore a crop top to my grandfather’s funeral! What can I do to make her dress more ladylike without hurting her feelings or damaging our otherwise perfect relationship?
Dearest Claire, I hope you are well. I want to ask for your help on an ongoing problem I’m having with my best friend. We hang out all the time, and for the most part we have a great time together. But she has no table manners at all. She chews with her mouth open, she doesn’t use a napkin, and she always picks up the wrong utensils. I know that I should look past this, because she’s such a great person and friend, but it’s embarrassing, and I feel like I can’t take her to any fancy restaurants. Please tell me what I should do to either fix the problem or move past it myself!
Dear Claire, I am a new(ish) mother of a beautiful two year-old girl, and I have never been happier! My daughter loves to go to the park, and normally I love to take her! But lately, there has been another mother hanging out at the park that has completely put me off of it. She also has a two year-old daughter, and our kids love to play with each other – the only problem is that I hate her. She is so judgmental and critical of my parenting skills that I always leave feeling sad and inadequate. Intellectually, I know I am doing a good job, but she is so vocally negative that it makes me doubt myself and I find myself discouraging my daughter from playing with hers. How do I ignore her so that our kids can remain friends?