DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have attended several weddings lately where we have waited up to an hour and a half for the bride and groom to arrive at their own reception. Can you enlighten me because, frankly, I am … ONE CONFUSED GUEST, LEWIS CENTER, OHIO

Sometimes there is a delay between the wedding ceremony and the reception so the wedding party can be photographed. Rather than being confused, use your imagination. These days there could be many reasons for a delay – the limo ran out of gas, someone’s zipper stuck, the bride went into labor….

According to Emily Post: “Any delay longer than 30 to 45 minutes becomes excessive, unless (the) invitation included a starting time for the reception. … If there is likely to be a considerable delay, be sure that guests will be served beverages and hors d’oeuvres while they await your arrival.”

DEAR ABBY: I teach at a privately owned after-school center. Recently, my boss asked me if I had any friends who could teach an extra class one day a week. I have a friend, “Cheryl,” who I know would be great for the job. She’s very smart and has past teaching experience.

I told my boss I would introduce her to Cheryl. What I didn’t mention is that Cheryl is transgender. She was not born a biological female. I don’t feel it is my place to disclose that to my boss. However, I was shocked when Cheryl said she wouldn’t tell, either.

I understand my friend’s desire to be recognized as a woman. But I feel that I would be deceiving my boss if neither of us told her. I’m not entirely sure whether my boss, the other teachers and the children’s parents would approve of Cheryl. I don’t want to be blamed for not being truthful. If Cheryl doesn’t reveal that she’s transgender, should I? – NERVOUS IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

Please do not allow yourself to be distracted by your friend’s gender status. The question isn’t whether Cheryl was born a woman. It’s whether she can be a competent teacher. When all is said and done, what’s going on between her ears is far more important than what’s under her skirt. Jobs working with children require background checks. It’s not your responsibility to be the town crier.

DEAR ABBY: I have received an invitation to a graduation party and a note was enclosed. It read:

“If I don’t hear from you by the 25th, I will not be able to include you. This invitation is for those addressed, and no one else. Seating is limited. Please do not ask for ‘to go’ containers, as all the food will be going home with us. This is a very special day for ‘Mary’ and a lot of planning has gone into it. There may be people you would rather not see or talk to, but please remember it is about ‘Mary’ that day and no one else. If any of this makes you uncomfortable, please do not feel it necessary to attend.”

What do you think of this, Abby? – STUNNED IN MASSACHUSETTS

DEAR STUNNED: It appears this family has many members who are clueless about basic good manners – and that includes the person who sent the invitation. Obviously, these people have been taken advantage of in the past and are trying to prevent it from happening again. Because you have it in writing that if “any of this” makes you uncomfortable you are free not to attend, I think you should take the person at his or her word and stay home.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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