Driving an issue

Annie Lane

Dear Annie: My dear neighbor “Susie” and I attend the same exercise class twice a week. She wants to alternate who drives to the class, but neither she nor her husband is a good driver. He has vision problems and had an accident, and she is a nervous driver, as well as a nervous passenger, calling out whether it is OK to proceed at an intersection. I really don’t want her to be the driver. How do I diplomatically tell her that I would prefer to drive or meet her at exercise classes without hurting our relationship? — Perturbed Passenger

Dear Perturbed Passenger: People tend to get defensive about their driving skills, so you’ll need to sugarcoat this bitter pill as heavily as you can. Bring it up at a calm time, not when you’re in the car together, and present the issue as being more about you (e.g., “I get carsick easily if I’m not driving”) than her. Tell her you’d prefer driving to the classes. If she reacts poorly, give her time to cool off, and start driving on your own. You cannot continue riding with unsafe drivers simply out of guilt.

Editor’s note: Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com.