Dear Jess: Can I ask guests to keep their kids in check at my granddaughter’s wedding?

Can I ask the parents to take the children out of the church if they're misbehaving?

Q. My granddaughter is getting married soon and has invited several friends with children who can be very noisy and unruly. Can I ask the parents to take the children out of the church if they’re misbehaving? I don’t want the ceremony spoiled for the rest of us.

A. Gorgeous Grandma, I understand your worries about noise in the church, especially as it is such a special day for you and your family. However, it’s never wise to intervene during the service as it will make you and the other guests focus on that rather than enjoying the ceremony.

Talk with your granddaughter in the lead-up to the wedding and suggest that her friends and their kids have an area to sit at the back of the church so they can duck outside if/when they get noisy. Once you’ve had that chat, don’t think about it again. Seat yourself right up the front, soak up the joy and love of such a happy day, and sing your heart out.

Q. I’m 19 and have never had a boyfriend or any sort of romantic relationship. I feel self-conscious about it, especially now that I’m at university and many of my friends are either in relationships or have had them. How do I stop feeling embarrassed when the subject is brought up and it’s assumed that I have at least some experience with men?

A. Darling Girl, I wouldn’t want to be 19 ever again. It is such a tricky time as you can easily feel isolated and not part of the group. Obviously it’s easy for me to tell you not to worry, that you have plenty of time, that your whole life is ahead of you and there’s no rush! (Although I know I was in a hurry when I was younger.)

If anyone gives you a hard time, simply say, “I’m too busy for a boyfriend.” I’m also a big believer in using humour to defuse situations, so why not say, “He’s overseas studying to be a marine biologist, Michelin-starred chef and Nobel Prize winner!” You deserve that and more, my love.

These answers are simply my views, and I am far from perfect. I struggle through some days better than others with the help of my family, cats, chocolate and antidepressants. Unfortunately, I cannot personally reply to questions.

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