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Annie's Mailbox

Ask Amy column

Q. Over the weekend, I uploaded photos from my recent wedding to Facebook so that our guests could enjoy them (we own the digital rights). All of these images are simple, pleasant shots of guests sitting at their tables — nothing embarrassing or inappropriate.

A short time after I posted them, a friend sent me a private message on Facebook requesting that I remove a picture of her and her husband sitting at their table. She said she preferred not to have her photograph on the Internet for others to see. I respect that some people don’t want to risk strangers seeing their picture and took it down.

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After I took it down, it suddenly struck me as odd that this friend would communicate this with me via Facebook. I thought it was surprising that someone so cautious about the Internet would even have a Facebook account. Out of curiosity, I clicked on her page. I didn’t see any content. The only thing there was her profile picture — of her three children smiling for the camera!

I find it shocking that someone so opposed to having her own picture on the Internet would purposefully post pictures of her children instead!

What do you think about this?

A. I think you are choosing to be shocked about something that is not at all shocking.

If your friend doesn’t want her photo posted on Facebook, so what? Why do you care? Maybe she is getting jowly or doesn’t like her haircut. Maybe she is an international jewel thief. If she doesn’t mind having her kids’ photo on Facebook — again, so what?

You seem determined to brand this friend a hypocrite and catch her in some sort of double standard. You were accommodating to her (well done!), and now you need to move on.

Q. My spouse and I have a 21-year-old son. He is our only child. He graduated from high school in 2010. He spent his first year of college on academic probation and failed every single one of his classes. He then moved back home and got a full-time job at the same fast-food restaurant he worked at when he was in high school.

He has since taken a few community college classes, passing with C’s and D’s.

He is now taking management classes at the fast-food restaurant and one online class.

He spends all of his free time playing “World of Warcraft” online — and seems very content.

As parents, should we encourage him to further his education or to seek different employment? Or do we simply let him grow up on his own?

I know things could be much worse; I just wish he had more motivation.

A. Your son isn’t setting the world aflame, but if he has a full-time job, is taking management training and additional college classes, then he’s doing middlin’.

A disadvantage of his living at home is that he is experiencing some normal young-adult issues — and being scrutinized by his parents. One thing to strategize about would be for him to move out and be self-supporting.

If his online gaming means he doesn’t have any real-world friends or if it interferes with his ability to put in a full day’s work, then he has a time-management (or possibly more serious gaming) problem.

You should urge him to realize his own goals, even if they are more modest than you would like, and let the growing-up part of his life continue.

Send questions by e-mail to askamy@tribune.com or by mail to Ask Amy, Chicago Tribune, TT500, 435 North Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611.

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