Best Intentions

Dear Auntie Em,

I have a friend who has really bad dandruff. I’m not sure if he is aware of it, but it has become clear that others have noticed. All my friends and I are afraid to tell him about it, because we don’t want to embarrass or upset him.

However, we all agreed that if it were us, we would want someone to let us know. Basically, we just don’t know how to go about telling him without it being super awkward, or if we should even tell him at all. What do you think?


Best Intentions


Dear Best Intentions,

Now is not the time to flake out on your friend.

My darling third husband, Javier, was quite fond of hair gels. Each morning after his shower, he’d pomp and fuss and comb and lather. The ritual seemed to stretch for hours. And still — he suffered from a dusting of…scales.

I decided it was best not to say anything — until one night when, after a few gin and tonics with our couple-friends, I said, “Honey, won’t you come make it snow like that girl in The Breakfast Club?”

He was horrified. He didn’t speak to me for days, and he wouldn’t go out with our friends for weeks.

My suggestion: Say something sober and kind, before you slip and make a distasteful joke. Humor can bring levity to all kinds of situations, but only after you’ve addressed the issue. Sit him down, explain your reasons for sharing, and spill. If he’s worth his weight in conditioner, he’ll buy a bottle of Head & Shoulders.

Shed your fears!

Auntie Em