Hus­band spends hours on­line with a woman — his sec­ond cousin

Chicago Sun-Times - - ENTERTAINM­ENT - DEAR ABBY Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Con­tact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069.

Dear Abby: Three months ago, my hus­band ran into a sec­ond cousin he hadn’t seen in 40 years. They were close for a short time dur­ing high school and saw each other a cou­ple times after that.

I was not aware un­til re­cently that he had looked her up on so­cial me­dia and has been com­mu­ni­cat­ing with her ev­ery day since then. I didn’t think much of it when he did tell me — un­til one night when he stayed on the com­puter with her un­til 3 a.m.

He has lied to me about the num­ber of times he has been on­line with her and, if she calls or texts, he tells me it is some­one else. She sent him pic­tures — which I saw — yet he de­nied re­ceiv­ing them. One time he for­got to sign off on a mes­sage he sent and, of course, I read it. To my shock, he was con­fid­ing a lot of things he has done while mar­ried to me that I was unaware of. It hurt me deeply, and I told him so.

Re­cently I was in the hos­pi­tal. When I called him a cou­ple of times at night, he claimed he didn’t pick up be­cause he was “tired.” I found out later he was on the com­puter with her.

I have asked him more than once why this re­la­tion­ship is so pri­vate, and he says they are just friends. But when I asked to see some of the things he has writ­ten to her, he re­fused to show me. I said fine, then I will ask HER. Well, he blew up!

When I told him it hurts me that he spends so much time with her in the evening, he didn’t give an an­swer. Am I over­re­act­ing? If so, can you please tell me how to set­tle down and deal with what is hap­pen­ing? Cousin Trou­ble in the Mid­west

Dear Cousin Trou­ble: You are not over­re­act­ing. It’s time to do what you said you were go­ing to do — call the woman and ask her what has been go­ing on. After she fills you in, ask your­self if you still want to be mar­ried to a man who has cheated on you emo­tion­ally and prob­a­bly phys­i­cally.

If you feel there is any hope of sav­ing your mar­riage, of­fer your hus­band the op­tion of see­ing a mar­riage and fam­ily ther­a­pist to­gether. How­ever, know­ing he has no com­punc­tion about ly­ing to you or any re­spect for your feel­ings, you might pre­fer to sim­ply con­sult a lawyer about what your next steps should be.

Dear Abby: I am an 18-year-old woman. My par­ents are di­vorced. My fa­ther says I should be out hav­ing fun and I owe no ex­pla­na­tions to any­one. My mother, on the other hand, is very strict. I re­spect her wishes and don’t do what most peo­ple my age would do. I try to be very care­ful with what I say in any con­ver­sa­tion with her, but it al­ways ends up with her very an­gry to­ward me. I want to live my life or at least try to. What do I do? Clue­less Teen in Texas

Dear Teen: An 18-year-old should be care­free and en­gaged in self-dis­cov­ery. But peo­ple of ev­ery age are hav­ing to hun­ker down and cur­tail their so­cial ac­tiv­i­ties these days be­cause their lives could de­pend on it. And as to ow­ing no ex­pla­na­tions to any­one, un­til you are self-sup­port­ing and on your own, you WILL have to be ac­count­able.

Your mother may be feel­ing in­se­cure be­cause her daugh­ter is now a young adult rather than her lit­tle girl who needs pro­tect­ing. She may also be re­act­ing to the “ad­vice” your dad is dol­ing out. You are go­ing to have to fig­ure out what trig­gers your mother’s anger dur­ing those con­ver­sa­tions and find a happy medium.


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