Posted: Friday, May 1, 2009 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: I have been married for 25 years and have a 17-year-old son. My husband, “Jesse,” is having an Internet affair with someone he met on the casino boats. I have been secretly reading his messages to her for over a year. He says it’s just “Internet chat” and denies anything is going on.
I have proof Jesse is meeting this woman, and that he has given her money, a camera and offers of help because I have copies of his messages. He once asked her to get a hotel room, but she declined and said he was too pushy. When I try to talk to him about this emotional affair, he gets furious. He says I am snooping and sarcastically suggests he wear an ankle monitor so I can track him. He lies to me and to her, as well. He told her he lost his wife to cancer four years ago. It’s unreal.
I am jobless (but looking) and need to get away from him, but I have nowhere to go and no money to do it. I also don’t want to move and take my son out of school and away from his friends.
Jesse is a gambler and loses money that we need. Nothing I say to him makes a difference. He gambled away our tax refund. I hate him and my son hates him, too. Please help me. I am so depressed. — Without Hope in Indiana
Dear Indiana: You could use some perspective while you consider your options. Please don’t transmit to your son how angry you are with your husband. He should not feel obligated to take sides.
You should contact Gam-Anon (gam-anon.org) at P.O. Box 157, Whitestone, NY 11357. Then check to see whether your state offers job training and placement assistance for women in your situation. You also can contact the YWCA in your area to see whether they offer any programs that will help you, including counseling.
Dear Annie: As the weather warms, motorcycle riders will happily mount up and enjoy the road. I understand the desire to ride without a helmet, to have the wind in one’s hair, to reject the laws that mandate helmets against your will. But statistics show there is a dramatic difference in outcomes for motorcycle accidents where the cyclist was wearing a helmet and where he wasn’t.
My friends who work in hospital emergency rooms have told me their hearts sink when they hear that an incoming accident victim was a helmetless cyclist. They do their best, but so often it’s a matter of stabilizing the victim until the family can decide whether to donate their organs before turning off the machines.
I ask that cyclists think of the heartache their family and friends will suffer. And if that’s not a sufficient argument for you, then sign your donor card. My mother was the lucky recipient of a kidney from a person who did not wear a helmet. She grieved with the family that so generously gifted his organs to her and others. — Card-Carrying Donor in Evanston, Ill.
Dear Evanston: We hope all motorcyclists will read this letter — tape it to their bikes — whatever it takes to remind them to wear a helmet.
Dear Annie: The letter from “Not Burly About Kimberly” hit a note with me.
I, too, go by my full name, Pamela, and when someone shortens it to Pam, I let them know that I don’t care for the nickname. If that doesn’t work and they call me Pam again, I address them by a completely different name. When they correct me about their name, I tell them, “My name is Pamela. You’ll get used to using it.” That usually fixes the problem. — Pamela
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 5.1.09