Posted: Thursday, May 21, 2009 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: My husband is on all of these Web sites — Classmates, Facebook and Reunion — trying to reconnect with old friends. But it seems he’s only connecting with women from his old high school. This strikes me as a form of cheating. He has a cell phone, and I am sure he gives the girls that number. He pays the bill so I never see it. He insists he’s doing nothing wrong, but why is he only contacting women? He also lies about where he goes, so I suspect he’s meeting up with someone or, at the very least, having cybersex.
He is in his late 40s and we have four children. It breaks my heart that I don’t turn him on anymore. He has no interest in being intimate with me. Every time I try to get close to him, he says he’s too tired. I lost 40 pounds, and he never once told me how good I look — and I look very good. I’d be willing to wait for the midlife crisis to be over if I knew he’d come around. He says he loves me, but I think he’s pacifying me until he can find someone better. My trust in him is gone, and it is breaking my heart. Should I put on my walking shoes or hang around hoping he will grow up? — Brokenhearted
Dear Broken: Some men grow up, some don’t, and there’s no way to tell in advance. If your husband has stopped being intimate with you and is constantly chatting online with female friends, he is undermining the marriage whether he is cheating or not. Tell him your relationship is at risk and you want him to come with you for counseling. As always, if he won’t go, go without him and get a handle on this.
Dear Annie: A few years ago, I lent money to a friend who had fallen on hard times. He moved out of state to find work, but called to say he had not forgotten his debt and would pay me as soon as he got back on his feet.
A lot of time has passed and he has not sent any money. Mutual friends have gone to visit him and come back with stories about how he has established a good life in his new location. My patience is running out. I am tempted to tell our mutual friends that he has rebuilt his life at my expense but don’t want to look like a fool for trusting him or come across as a whiner. Should I just write this off to experience, or should I expose him for the rat he is? — Poorer but Wiser
Dear Poorer: It takes time to re-establish oneself, and the reports you are hearing may represent your friend’s success in pulling himself out of the muck, but not enough to spare the money to repay you. However, he should certainly be making some effort in that direction. If someone asks you point-blank about loaning him money, you can say he is a poor risk. But instead of besmirching his reputation, contact him. Say your mutual friends have reported that he is doing well and you think that’s wonderful. Then remind him of the loan and ask what kind of repayment schedule would work for him.
Dear Annie: I work in a dental office, and my co-workers and I have a better solution for “Gagging Patient,” whose orthodontist has bad breath.
Instead of talking to the dentist directly, the parents should speak to a discreet staff member who can let the orthodontist know of his offensive breath without divulging the names of those originating the complaint. This way, they don’t have to deal with the awkwardness that might arise on every subsequent visit the girl has. — S.B.
Dear S.B.: Your solution is better than ours. Many thanks.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to email@example.com, 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 5.21.09