When a couple is dating, both parties are looking at the actions and language the other person uses and demonstrates to decide if that person is right for them. That’s why many people dress and act their best while on a date – they know they are being judged. If someone doesn’t behave well on a date, you can just imagine how she or he will act when they get to know you better in a relaxed atmosphere. Remember years ago, when I wrote about someone I had dated once, and it was mainly because he insulted his siblings and played nasty joked on his grandmother who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. This wasn’t his best behavior. Nothing he said shined a bright light on him. And if this is what he did to his own sister and grandmother, how would he treat mine? How would he treat me if I did something that bothered him? This was a one-and-done date.

Newlyweds and even couples married for decades have complaints about their in-laws: “His mother is too pushy. Her father doesn’t think I’m good enough. His mother is critical of everything I do.” But what if your in-laws or soon-to-be in-laws don’t accept the fact that you and their child are engaged? What if they keep collecting resumes and keep calling shidduch references even after you’re engaged, after it has been posted in Instagram, and after the vort has taken place. What then?

Columnist Note: I may have used the title of this article before, but I couldn’t think of another that would fit as well. Well, I did, but I used them all! It’s hard work naming a column! You want it to be catchy, to intrigue people... So here is the title, like it or not :).

There were two topics that were never discussed in my house while growing up: age and money. My sister and I never asked how old our parents were. We never questioned our grandparents if they were 200 or 50. I don’t know if we were told once not to ask people their age because it was rude or what the reason was; we just didn’t. My parents never discussed salaries, raises, or expenses in front of us either. Soon culture and society taught us that it was tacky to discuss finances of and to others. Never did I question friends or relatives when they would drive up in their new car and ask them how much it cost. I never asked how much anything cost even as I matured. It wasn’t my business.

It is great to have one friend or a small group of close friends with whom you can share good and bad times, who always support you and have your back. Some refer to friends as their “Sister from another mister” or for men, “Brother from another mother.” They are as close as close can be. But sometimes a friend has to know his or her place. They may know you as well as they know themselves, because for 15 years you have shared everything with them. But they are not you and you are not them. Even best of friends need to respect boundaries, no matter how good their intentions are.