Boyfriend's Laziness in Academics Is Bothersome Dear John: It bothers me that my boyfriend, "Austin," is having trouble finishing up his undergraduate degree. I don't care as much about the diploma as I do his lack of energy in finishing what he has already started. I know Austin is highly …Read more. Marriage at a Dead End Dear John: My wife "Linda" and I are approaching our 19th anniversary. We are at a dead end in our relationship. We are both in our mid-40s, with high-pressure professional careers: Linda is a director of human resources, and I am a professor of …Read more. Ex-Husband Paying More Attention to New Family Dear John: My ex-husband "Ruben" got married one year after we divorced. We have two boys ages 16 and 20. The older son doesn't have much to do with his father. Our younger son sees him about once every month. After dating this woman for two months, …Read more. Great Guy Pal Needs to Come Out of His Cave Dear John: Recently I reconnected with a great guy pal. Our relationship goes back about 20 years, and we are both recently divorced. We were emailing and talking for about six months. He is introverted and definitely goes into his cave periodically.…Read more.more articles
Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus
Dear John: I don't know how to be happy again. I'm a 44-year-old woman who has raised my two children without a mate. It's been like this for the past nine years. I guess money keeps me at work seven days a week in my own business, but I really hate my job, as does my oldest son, who lives with me. We make just enough money to provide for the necessities. My kids are concerned because I don't laugh anymore — and I used to be the one who made everyone else laugh! I have very few friends that visit. My evenings are sad and lonely. How can I be "me" again? — All Alone, in Gaithersburg, Md.
Dear All Alone: The cause of your depression is that you are a very sensitive, giving person who shares much of herself — but is making little time for herself. By doing this, you forfeit your ability to feel what you really want, and you cannot anticipate a positive future.
To overcome this depression, you must begin to believe again that the love and support you need are available to you. Trade childcare with a friend or family member, at least once a week, so that you can go to a gym, a bookstore, a movie — in other words, so that you can indulge in an activity that gets you out of the house and feeds an interest you have. Also, take the time and effort to find a therapist with whom you can discuss these feelings of despair. This will help you view your situation from a new direction. You do have needs. By getting away and having new experiences that nourish your soul, you may once again connect with your true and positive self.
Dear John: My wife is 42 and a really beautiful woman. She is rare in the fact that she makes clothes look great on her instead of the other way around.
Dear Loves Her: Your wife's insecurity about her weight is based on some deeper issues she has with self-esteem. The need to be perfect usually begins in childhood, when children assume they must be perfect in order to make their parents happy. If at this formative stage they do not receive the positive message that it is OK to make mistakes, lasting feelings of inadequacy will be the result. Rather than love their accomplishments, perfectionists are rarely good enough for themselves. You are doing the right thing by reinforcing the fact that she looks great. Now, take your support one step further: Remind her that her beauty is not the first or only reason you and others love and respect her.
To bring this message home, list other traits and accomplishments — any acts of generosity or kindness, her sense of commitment to any heartfelt issue, recently completed projects — that make her a special person. In time, she will realize there is more to her than meets the eye.
John Gray is the author of "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus." If you have a question, write to John in care of this newspaper or by e-mail at: www.marsvenus.com. All questions are kept anonymous and will be paraphrased. To find out more about John Gray and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2007 JOHN GRAY'S MARS VENUS ADVICE
DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.