Adapted from a recent online discussion.
Mother's matchmaking friend tells daughter to get a nose job
Va.: I've got a new one for you. My mother's friend has taken to sending me online dating profiles of men she thinks I would like. In one e-mail she included: "I am going to step over the boundary right here and say something that I shouldn't but I think it would help you. You have a cute figure and beautiful eyes but you have to do something about your nose. The size and the mole on your nose are keeping men from seeing you as attractive. It is such a common surgery and it would improve your looks greatly. Find the best doctor in your area and just do it. I think this will help you, I really do. Please see this as me wanting to help you; I think your life would have been better had you done this right after high school." I'm 43, never been married but have dated many attractive men. How do I respond to this?!
Not responding at all is a legitimate response. Silence is the best way to make someone squirm.
That is, if a person has the capacity to squirm, and it's possible this particular specimen doesn't. So, it's your call. Is there an outcome you want here — for example, for her to stop e-mailing you, or apologize, or spontaneously combust? If so, then a terse e-mail stating your wish (or simply, "Wow") would be appropriate.
If you want her out of your in-box, too, block her address and enjoy the her-lessness that ensues.
Anonymous: Re: Nose job: How about "Thanks for the advice, but I wish you had told me before I paid a plastic surgeon to enlarge my nose and add a mole." Jerk.
Carolyn: Or, "enlarge my mole and add a nose."
This reminds me of a Zach Galifianakis line — that he was looking to have his teeth darkened.
Significant other claims to want to get married but hasn't asked
Washington: Do ultimatums about getting married ever work out?
For instance, if you both agree you want to get married, and when you ask why a proposal hasn't come, you are told, "I just haven't gotten around to it yet." (And the person is on the record as wanting to ask, and doesn't want YOU asking.)
It's not MARRY ME OR ELSE, it's, Come on, get around to it. What do you think?
Carolyn: Person is: withholding something s/he knows you want; admitting s/he has no good reason for withholding it; and denying you any access to the controls of this thing you want. So I think if s/he is your definition of Prince/ss Charming, then a happy ending is unlikely anyway, so lob all the ultimatums you want.
Otherwise, I'd suggest you start — today — making your own choices about your own life, and stop letting people jerk you around.
Anonymous 2: Re: Marriage ultimatum: The "asking" thing is an overrated remnant of another worldview. Make a mutual decision. Together. No knees, no sticking a ring in someone's face, no surprises or staging, etc. Just decide, and go together to get a ring . . . if you think you need one.
Carolyn: Choir: Amen, thanks.