Hus­band’s ‘bou­quet’ dev­as­tates wife

The News-Times - - ADVICE/GAMES - Jeanne Phillips Write to Dear Abby at P.O. Box 96440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069 or dearabby.com

Dear Abby: Just months be­fore our 30th wedding an­niver­sary, my hus­band told me he doesn’t love me and never wanted to marry me. I am be­yond dev­as­tated. I feel I have wasted the best years of my life. We have two beau­ti­ful daugh­ters who are my ev­ery­thing.

When he re­vealed this news to me, it turned my life upside down. I don’t know how to process it or what to do. I have spent years beg­ging him to be more af­fec­tion­ate and lov­ing. I al­ways as­sumed he just didn’t know how to show love. It never crossed my mind that he has never loved me. I feel naive, be­trayed and robbed.

Hope­less In The Mid­west

Dear Hope­less: When your hus­band handed you that “bou­quet,” was he an­gry or ine­bri­ated? It is hard to be­lieve that a man would stay mar­ried for 30 years to some­one he didn’t love and didn’t want to marry in the first place. (Shot­gun wed­dings are long out of style.)

Re­visit that con­ver­sa­tion with him, and if he tells you he meant what he said, you are jus­ti­fied in feel­ing the way you de­scribe. The questions then be­come are you bet­ter with him or with­out him, and what are your le­gal rights in the state in which you and this man live. (Not re­fer­ring to him as your “hus­band” was not an over­sight.)

Dear Abby: I re­cently left my job and flew across the coun­try for an in­tern­ship on a small farm to learn about sus­tain­able farm­ing. I have been here a week. I have met some awe­some peo­ple and have been hav­ing some fun with them in my free time. How­ever, I’m now hav­ing sec­ond thoughts.

This is hard, phys­i­cal la­bor, and my liv­ing con­di­tions are a lot more rus­tic and com­mu­nal than I was led to be­lieve. There is no elec­tric­ity in our quar­ters, and we cook our meals out­side on a propane stove. Also, the in­tern­ship is un­paid, and I’ll have to pay to take a summer class.

While I feel I am ben­e­fit­ing from this ex­pe­ri­ence, I miss my old job (which I can get back) and the more com­fort­able life­style. Do you think I need to give this in­tern­ship more time? Across The Coun­try

Dear Across: You signed on for the in­tern­ship for a good rea­son — to learn. Hav­ing done that, it will be not only ed­u­ca­tional but also char­ac­ter-build­ing to see it through un­til the end of the summer. This isn’t for­ever, and the lessons you learn may last a life­time. Dear Abby: My 15-year-old son has dif­fi­culty ex­press­ing him­self and keeps things bottled up. You of­ten ad­vise peo­ple to seek coun­sel­ing. Could you please ad­vise me about how to be­gin that process and how to find the right fit and per­son for one’s in­di­vid­ual needs?

In­volved Parent In Vir­ginia

Dear Parent: Start by ask­ing your doctor to re­fer you to a spe­cial­ist who works with ado­les­cents. The com­pany that pro­vides your health in­sur­ance can also give you some referrals.

Af­ter you and your son meet the can­di­dates, it is sim­ply a mat­ter of choos­ing a ther­a­pist your son feels com­fort­able talk­ing with.

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