Dear Annie: I am an alcoholic, in recovery for five months now. Recently, I asked my parents to help me because I have limited desire to do anything. I do not know why. I know that I should have more motivation. This blew up into a heated argument (AGAIN), and I now despise my parents. I have put them through a lot, I am the first to admit it, but when is it enough already? I never wanted to be this way, but I don't feel that I need to be reminded of my shortcomings every day. Maybe it would be easier if I just died. They have other sons to make them proud. — Misunderstood Son
Dear Misunderstood: You are enough — full stop. Keep reaching out to your parents seeking approval and you'll come up empty-hearted. Take some space from them, especially as you're still in the early stages of recovery. If you've been struggling with this disease for years, it may take a while before your family is able to trust you again. That doesn't mean they don't love you.
It's phenomenal that you have five months of sobriety under your belt. That is a huge achievement. Consider incorporating therapy into your recovery. (There are even some counselors who specialize in sobriety.) Keep taking it one day at a time, and trust that the rest will fall into place as it should.
If you think you may harm yourself, I implore you to call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
Dear Annie: This is in response to "Kathy with a K," who wrote to you about not being able to find anyone quite her type to date. You told her it was one thing to have a type and another to have tunnel vision.
When I was in graduate school and too busy to be looking for a relationship, I met a guy one day, talked with him for a while, and thought, "He's OK, I guess, but he's definitely not my type."
This year we will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary, and he is the love of my life. We share many interests, but each of us also enjoys activities in which the other is not involved. Is he perfect? No. But neither am I, and it takes a lot of tolerance and forgiveness and laughter from each of us to maintain a healthy marriage.
By the way, he is younger than I — something I never considered a possibility for my "ideal" mate. I am glad I didn't let preconceived ideas rob me of a wonderful husband. — Grateful Georgia Girl
Dear Grateful: Happy anniversary! Here's to going against type and winning.
Dear Annie: I have only one quarrel with the writer about National Heart Month. The general public — including medical doctors — is woefully uneducated about the benefits plant-based foods can have on heart health and general well-being. As Dr. Kim Williams, former president of the American College of Cardiology, points out, "There are two kinds of cardiologists: vegans, and ones who haven't read the data." I highly recommend your readers watch "Forks Over Knives" (featuring Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn) and James Cameron's "The Game Changers" to get the real scoop on a healthy lifestyle. — Heart-Healthy 30-Plus Years
Dear Heart Healthy: Both documentaries present very strong cases for plant-based diets' positive impacts on health, especially heart health.
"Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie" is out now! Annie Lane's debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]