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Complaints are irrational

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Updated: March 14, 2013 6:11AM



Dear Annie: My brother, “Jay,” and his wife have an adopted daughter, “Anna,” who is now 3 years old. We adore her.

Jay and I recently got into an argument. He said they were angry that we didn’t call Anna on her birthday. I was surprised by this, as we had already wished her a happy birthday in person, with a gift and a card at her party a few days prior to her actual birthday.

In addition, Jay said that they were angry that my husband and I didn’t take time off of work to be at the courthouse to celebrate the “official” adoption six months after Anna was born.

We told him at the time that we couldn’t take time off of work and would celebrate with them at their home, which we did. At that time, Jay said it was fine, but now, it apparently wasn’t good enough.

Annie, we celebrated Anna’s adoption multiple times — right after her birth, at her baptism, when we gave them a baby shower and then at their home after the courthouse. I reminded Jay of these things and told him we love Anna and don’t like his implication that we don’t care.

Are Jay’s expectations reasonable? Should we call Anna on her birthday even when we’ve already celebrated with her?

Can’t Keep Up

Dear Can’t: Attending Anna’s birthday party and giving her a gift was sufficient. It’s also lovely to call on the actual birthday, but it is not an obligation. The rest of Jay’s complaints are irrational and self-centered. We don’t recommend arguing with him. He won’t see things your way. Placate and ignore.

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