Call & Times

Man facing divorce mulling a reunion with his first wife

- Jeanne Phillips

DEAR ABBY: I was married to a wonderful, beautiful woman when we were much younger. We got married because of an unplanned pregnancy. After some years, we both had grown in different directions, and we divorced. We remained friends even after I remarried.

I’m now in the early stages of my second divorce because I am lonely in a marriage where there’s no communicat­ion or intimacy. I have tried working things out; my wife isn’t interested, so I have given up trying. We no longer have a physical bond, but I refuse to lower myself to cheat to fulfill my needs.

I find myself drawn to my first wife, and I know she feels the same. While I’d like to see how life as a single guy of 55plus would be, I also want to date my ex. We have a child together, and we have more in common now than before. Can a second time around really work? Or should I first play the field once I am divorced?

—WORKING BACKWARD IN CONNECTICU­T

DEAR WORKING BACKWARD: Because you didn’t mention whether your first wife also remarried, I will assume that she didn’t.

If you wish to date her – and the feelings are mutual – there should be nothing stopping you. HOWEVER, your idea of playing the field before committing again is wise. I have said before, and I’ll repeat it for you: If you and your first wife decide to remarry, it would be a good idea to get premarital counseling together to ensure that all the issues that drove you apart the first time have been resolved.

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been married 20 years. He is now on vacation in Thailand with his best buddy (without me again) for the third time in as many years.

After doing some research, I have discovered that this place is a major sex tourism destinatio­n also known as “Sodom on the Sea.” My husband says he stays away from all the hanky-panky and goes there only for the beach, the food, the culture and “guy time” with his best friend. My girlfriend­s all tell me I am foolish and naive. Am I?

—SUSPICIOUS IN THE MIDWEST

DEAR SUSPICIOUS: I have my opinion, but not knowing your husband, I’m hesitant to accuse him of being an adulterer. However, you know him pretty well by now. (I assume that having researched your husband’s chosen vacation spot, you have seen your doctor to be checked for STDs.) My questions to you would be – in your heart of hearts – what do YOU think? And if you agree with your girlfriend­s, what are you prepared to do about it?

DEAR ABBY: Many years ago, my wife and I decided we would help each other write our obituaries. I know this may seem macabre, but when she died a few years ago, after 48 years of marriage, it was less stressful to just fill in the date and age. What do you think?

—PRACTICAL UPSTATE NEW YORKER

DEAR PRACTICAL: I think that if it worked for you, other readers might consider it. Many people wonder what will be said of them after they’re gone. This way, they can add or delete as they wish.

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 www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

For everything you need to know about wedding planning, order “How to Have a Lovely Wedding.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Wedding Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

BIRTHDAYS

Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron is 86. Actor Stuart Damon is 83. Tony-winning playwright John Guare is 82. Financial writer Jane Bryant Quinn is 81. Actor David Selby is 79. Singer-songwriter Barrett Strong is 79. Football Hall of Famer Roger Staubach is 78. Movie director Michael Mann is 77. Rock singer Al Kooper is 76. Actress Charlotte Rampling is 74. Racing Hall of Famer Darrell Waltrip is 73. Actor Christophe­r Guest is 72. Actor Tom Wilkinson is 72. Actor-comedian Tim Meadows is 59. Actress Jennifer Jason Leigh is 58. Actress Laura Linney is 56. Rock musician Duff McKagan (Velvet Revolver) is 56. World Golf Hall of Famer Jose Maria Olazabal is 54. Actor-comedian Chris Parnell is 53. Rock singer Chris Barron (Spin Doctors) is 52.

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