My hus­band still re­mem­bers the one that got away

Austin American-Statesman - - AUSTIN360 DAILY - Dear Abby Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abi­gail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069.

Dear Abby: I have been mar­ried for 14 years to a man who had two failed mar­riages. I never felt in­se­cure in my mar­ried life un­til I read his an­swers to a Ya­hoo An­swers poll that asked, “Do you dream about the one that got away?” and, “Have you found the love of your life?”

My hus­band re­sponded that he thinks about her very of­ten, es­pe­cially on her birth­day and Valen­tine’s Day. To the other ques­tion, he replied he had found the love of his life, but the re­la­tion­ship had ended in di­vorce, which he ad­mit­ted was his fault.

I know he was talk­ing about his first wife. I feel so sad and in­se­cure. Now I must deal with the fact that on Valen­tine’s Day his thoughts are with some­one else. How can I get over this? I no longer be­lieve him when he says he loves me be­cause I have proof that he hasn’t moved on yet. I can’t be­lieve he said that even now he still thinks about her. Please help.

— Sad Heart in San Jose Dear Sad Heart: Your hus­band posted those thoughts on a pub­lic fo­rum? Rather than feel hurt and in­se­cure, you should be fu­ri­ous. How would he feel if the per­son an­swer­ing that poll had been you? (Of course, you would have had bet­ter judg­ment.)

By now it should be clear to you that you did not marry a rocket sci­en­tist. You have my sym­pa­thy be­cause his first mar­riage has been over for nearly two decades and he — along with his ob­vi­ous short­com­ings — are no longer her prob­lem, but yours. How­ever, your pain may lessen if you look at the bright side: He treats you well 363 days a year, and many of the women who write to me are not so lucky.

Dear Abby:

I have been in­volved with a man in a long-dis­tance re­la­tion­ship for two years. I care about him very much and I be­lieve he cares for me.

Things were go­ing great un­til he was dev­as­tated by a down­turn in his busi­ness. He had planned to move here, but was un­able to sell his home. We used to see each other ev­ery two weeks, but no longer. It has been al­most two months. He calls once a week, but noth­ing else.

We have been close and he has shared his life, his wor­ries and per­sonal in­for­ma­tion with me. I haven’t pres­sured him and I don’t need a com­mit­ment now, although I would like one some­day.

Abby, he seems to be drift­ing away. Is it OK to write to him, email him, send en­cour­ag­ing notes once a week and con­tinue to sup­port him? Is it too much to ask for more fre­quent com­mu­ni­ca­tion from him? I have of­fered to travel the 1,000 miles, but he has evaded my of­fer. I’m not ready to walk away. We have been great to­gether and this is dif­fi­cult for me. Ad­vice?

— Hold­ing On in Coastal Cal­i­for­nia Dear Hold­ing On: It’s fine to be sup­port­ive, but don’t over­whelm him right now. You may have to let this play out in its own time. Your friend may have re­treated be­cause he’s con­cen­trat­ing his en­ergy on re­viv­ing his busi­ness. He may be lick­ing his wounds or he may have met some­one, which is why he dis­cour­aged your visit. That he still calls you is en­cour­ag­ing.

Be­cause you have known him for two years, I rec­om­mend you sim­ply ask him if he’s met some­one else. If the an­swer is no, it will put your mind at ease. But if the an­swer is yes, at least you’ll be clear about what hap­pened.

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