Posted: Monday, June 23, 2008 10:30 pm
Dear Annie: My wife and I have been together four years. During this time, I have been followed by detectives, watched by her friends and had some of my employees paid by my wife to “keep an eye” on me. I have been investigated by her children and am not welcome at her family functions.
My wife has called and visited my old girlfriends and checked with my ex-wife to see if I am still in contact with them. I’ve had my computer examined and my wallet gone through. There are times when she claims someone has been in our bathroom because the towels were out of place.
Annie, absolutely nothing is going on. I have been faithful since the day we met. I want to spend every moment with her. Her actions have been very painful, but I love her, so I’ve put up with this abuse, hoping time will cure her ills.
She recently filed for divorce. However, we still live together as man and wife and here’s the real twist: Now she trusts me and is completely at ease with our relationship. She says because we’re getting divorced, it no longer matters what I do. She wants us to live together, and if we decide to get married again, we can.
After all the detective work, wouldn’t you think she’d realize there’s nothing to find? Is this some kind of mental illness? I know she won’t go to counseling because I’ve asked. I would like to understand her better. — Soul-Searching in Florida
Dear Florida: Your wife sounds paranoid, which is indeed a form of mental illness. Is your reputation with women so abysmal that you aren’t trustworthy? Have other men cheated on her so often that she can’t believe any man could be faithful? We’re not sure what you love about this woman, but we don’t recommend remarrying her without counseling. Frankly, we hope you have your bags packed so you can get away quickly.
Dear Annie: My daughter leaves for college in the fall. Many years ago, you printed a lovely poem called “Hold Fast the Summer.” Can you reprint it? — Carmel, Ind.
Dear Carmel: With pleasure. Here it is:
Hold Fast the Summer
By Mary W. Abel
Hold fast the summer. It is the beauty of the day and all it contains.
The laughter and work and finally the sleep. The quiet.
Oh September, do not put your weight upon my mind.
For I know he will be going.
This son of mine who is now a man — he must go.
Time will lace my thoughts with joyous years.
The walls will echo his “Hello.” His caring will be around each corner.
His tears will be tucked into our memory book.
Life calls him beyond our reach — to different walls.
New faces, shiny halls, shy smiles, many places.
Greater learning — he must go.
But wait, before he leaves, be sure he knows you love him.
Hide the lump in your throat as you hug him.
He will soon be home again — but he will be different.
The little boy will have disappeared.
How I wished I could take September and shake it, for it came too soon.
I must look to the beauty of each new day, and silently give thanks.
Dear Annie: This is for “Isolated Wife,” whose husband stopped drinking. I once had an alcohol counselor tell me that when my husband and I quit drinking on our own and became reclusive like “Isolated’s” husband, we had not only dried out but we had dried up. He said if we’d gone to AA, we would have received the support we needed. Your advice was right on. — A Reader
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, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611. 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.
Published in The Messenger 6.23.08