Shunned After Suicide Dear Annie: Recently, our 18-year-old son chose to take his life soon after his high school graduation. Now we are left trying to pick up the pieces and move forward. We live in a small community, and everyone is well aware of what happened. Our …Read more. Call Child Protective Services and Stay the Course Dear Annie: I love my in-laws to pieces, but it bothers me that they are too nice. No one who lives in their household pays for anything. When my husband and I lived with them, we always helped out, but now that we've moved on, my in-laws are having …Read more. Many, Many Wrongs Don't Make a Marriage Right Dear Annie: I have been married to "Phil" for 15 years. Between the two of us, we have eight children. Our youngest is still in school. The problem is, I'm not happy anymore. I've made mistakes, stupid ones, including flirting with other men. Phil …Read more. Term Limits for the Long-Term Bachelor Dear Annie: I recently married a man who has never been married before, although he lived with a woman for 15 years. They never had children, and "Vic" cheated on her for years. He paid for everything, and she had a free ride. He essentially paid …Read more.more articles
Did this Jokester Turn on a Dime?
Dear Annie: Two years ago, I married "Tim," who is in his mid-30s. I moved more than 1,200 miles away and left my family, friends and a great job to be with him. I had no debt and used all the proceeds from the sale of my home to have a nice wedding celebration. Tim didn't have to pay a dime.
The problem is, he works all the time, his days off are usually when I am working, and our bills exceed our income. He doesn't mind that a bit. He also can't have a normal conversation. Everything is a joke. From the time we wake up until we go to bed, it's like a bad comedy show. And it's his way or no way. If we do something I prefer, he sits and pouts. He never gives me a compliment and is not affectionate at all. I am now sleeping on the couch because he hates to be touched, even in his sleep. We never have passionate kisses. Sex is rare. Cuddling is out of the question. There is nothing physically wrong with him, but he always has some excuse for not being intimate.
Tim is a nice, kind man, and I know he is not cheating on me, but I simply cannot live like this any longer. I feel as if I am living with a buddy instead of a husband. I am now in the process of moving back to my hometown. What do you think of all this? — Confused
Dear Confused: If Tim showed these traits while you were dating, we don't understand what you expected when you married him. But if not, it's possible he was looking for money, stability or someone to fill the role of "wife" so people would stop asking why he was single. Since you are packing, Tim should care enough to go for counseling with you. Otherwise, it seems you're better off without him.
Dear Annie: I have integrity, and I work hard, pay my bills and value my family and few friends. The problem is, in many ways, I am not smart. I try to make good decisions, but the ability to do so just isn't there.
When I make mistakes or do something stupid, I am embarrassed. I keep to myself due to previous rejections. People simply aren't interested in me. Counseling isn't the answer because I have a phobia about talking to professionals.
Do you have any advice on getting through life without beating yourself up every day for not being more intelligent? — Not So Smart
Dear Not: Plenty of brilliant people make poor decisions, and no one becomes your friend solely because you are smart. You sound like a perfectly normal, intelligent person who feels inadequate whenever you screw up. We all do. The difference is, you are so afraid of making a mistake that you undermine yourself and don't feel comfortable in your own skin. This fear and discomfort are what people respond to. Relax. No one gets it right all the time. The ability to make good choices is not magic. It's experience and the willingness to learn from your mistakes.
Dear Annie: I am an active, attractive 55-year-old widow and can tell you why "Alone in Casper" can't find a life partner just from the tone of his letter and the fact that he's been divorced twice. He sounds critical and controlling and expects his partner to be a cross between Pamela Anderson and Miss America. I've seen a bunch of guys like this, and they whine that there are "no decent women around." — Rockford, Ill.
Dear Rockford: It is not unusual for both men and women to have unrealistic expectations of the type of person they should attract. Unfortunately, it makes for a lot of unhappy people.
Dear Readers: Today is Mother-in-Law Day. Call yours and tell her how much you appreciate her. (We hope you do.)
Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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