My daughter’s having her quinceañera in May. I’m going crazy planning, but that’s not my dilemma. El problema is that her father, my ex-husband, wants to come to the fiesta and the mass. I have no beef with that, but he wants to bring his current wife, who used to be a good friend of mine. Their affair, which led to our divorce, devastated me and although I’m over it now, I still harbor a lot of anger towards that woman. I do not want her near the fiesta at all and, since I’m paying for everything, I feel I have the right to decide about the guests. My daughter doesn’t want la otra there, either, but my question is, should I tell my ex not to bring her, or should I just get over it altogether?
—Stress Tess in Indiana
Dear Stress Tess:
I see no problem here. One unshakeable truth is that he who pays the piper calls the tune, or as we say around these here parts, she who pays the mariachi calls the corrido. If both you and your daughter don’t want la otra at the party, just say so. The husband/father who abandons his family to run away with his wife’s best friend and contributes nothing to the quinceañera forfeits his right to the first dance with his daughter. Traditions should change according to the times. So I say, enjoy your fiesta and you and your daughter do the first dance together—it’s your party and you do as you want to.
—Mambo on, D