cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: I am a gay man. My friend "Brian" and I have known each other for 10 years. We dated for a while, but realized we are better off as friends. We have lived together for the past several years and are now considering getting married because my job has better benefits. My question is, is a marriage of convenience legal? -- GOING TO THE CHAPEL?

DEAR GOING: Marriages of convenience have been happening since the institution of marriage was invented. That said, however, this is a question you should address to a lawyer to make sure that if you decide to marry Brian, you'll be going to the chapel instead of going to the hoosegow for insurance fraud.
cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: I'm in my early 30s and recently met a very attractive woman my age. We are planning to get married. She wants us to be married as soon as possible because she has been divorced for the last seven years.

My problem is, she's extremely secretive about her past, especially the period between her divorce and our meeting. I have been open with her about my past, but when I ask about hers, she refuses to discuss it and says it has nothing to do with our relationship.

I have a feeling there may be something nasty she's hiding. I'm afraid I'm heading into a trap, but my love for her makes it tough to consider breaking up. Am I being too demanding? -- CONCERNED GUY IN THE SOUTH

DEAR CONCERNED GUY: If your intuition is screaming that your girlfriend's desire for a hasty marriage could spell trouble in the future, you should pay close attention to it. It is not "too demanding" to want to know what one's fiancee has been doing for the last seven years. Under no circumstances should you marry this woman without first talking to a lawyer, who I am sure will suggest doing a background check and/or drafting an ironclad prenuptial agreement.
cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
Note: I changed the subject line a little to make it less pejorative. I'm also kind of stuck on the trigger warning, so I'm just going to call it a general clusterfuck and point to the subject line.

Points to subject line )
minoanmiss: Minoan lady watching the Thera eruption (Lady and Eruption)
[personal profile] minoanmiss
This is the one which sent me on today's Advice Column Adventure. Another doozy. Abortion in this country, good grief. Read more... )
cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: I am sure this issue affects many people, but I have not seen it addressed in your column. Oftentimes married partners are separated by many years in age. Eventually the older of them has to enter a long-term care facility due to a mental/physical defect.

Even though the bond and love that kept them together over the years still exists, the younger still has physical and emotional needs that can no longer be met by the older spouse. What are the ethics in the younger one having a "friend with benefits" to address those needs, if it's done discreetly without causing embarrassment and humiliation to the older spouse? -- FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS

DEAR FRIENDS: This is a highly personal decision that no one can make for anyone else. While many readers may disagree, I see nothing wrong with taking care of yourself as long as you remember you have a moral obligation to support your spouse "'til death do you part." To me that means visiting and spending time with your spouse every day to ensure his/her needs are taken care of in a compassionate and diligent manner, and to let the person know he or she is loved.
cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
Note:Making a judgment call on the second trigger warning there.

Verbal abuse and victim-blaming )
cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
[personal profile] cereta
Dear Annie: For the past year, my wife, "Janie," has been getting hot flashes. She is always broiling in the house while the rest of the family freezes. She insists on keeping the temperature at 70, while the rest of us are most comfortable at 74. She recently purchased warm slippers for everyone and suggested we wear long sleeves.

Annie, I like to wear T-shirts and walk barefoot. I work long hours, and when I come home, I like to shed most of my clothes. I pay the mortgage and should not be freezing in my own home. Our family doctor said the hot flashes could last for years. I say she is disrespectful to all of us. She says I am insensitive. We are at an impasse.

I found out she is looking for an apartment. I love my wife and beg you to help us before it's too late. — Upstate New York Where It's 20 Degrees Outside

Dear New York: You think you're uncomfortable? Imagine how your wife feels with an internal thermostat that periodically sets her on fire. The U.S. Dept. of Energy recommends that your home thermostat be set at 68 degrees in winter (78 degrees in summer). You can warm up more easily than your wife can cool down.

We recommend a compromise. You offer to be comfortable in sweats if she will speak to her doctor about medication to control her hot flashes or visit a health food store for more natural remedies. A pair of slippers and some hot cocoa seems a small price to pay to save your marriage.
cereta: Barbie as SuperSparkle (Barbie doubts your commitment to Sparkle)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: I've been with my husband for five years, but we've been married only for a year. He told me a few months ago that his ex-girlfriend said he is the father of her child. We did a home DNA test and it showed he is not the father. In spite of that, my husband insists he still wants to take care of the child. I don't know what to do. Please help. -- THROWN IN NEW YORK

DEAR THROWN: It appears that what your husband wants is to maintain a close tie to the child's mother, because that is what will happen if he takes financial responsibility for her child. Tell your husband you want to discuss this with the help of a professional mediator, preferably a marriage counselor. If he refuses, talk to an attorney because you may be needing one.
cereta: Classic silhouette of Nancy Drew (Nancy silhouette)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: I'm 57 and have been married for 25 years. My husband has retired and is ready for me to do the same. I enjoy my work, and I am delaying my retirement because he wants to move to another state.

Abby, all I can think about is how I will be forced to start all over with a new church, new doctors, new friends, etc. That's incredibly stressful for me, and I don't want to do it. It takes me a while to warm up to people, and I don't do it easily. To me, it would not be an exciting adventure.

I have told him I don't want to do this and why. He responds that if I want to visit my friends I can always "hop on a plane." He said he's tired of the cold and wants to move. All I can think about is having to sell our home, buy another one, learn a new area, make friends, find a new church. I have all of that here. Maybe he should be a snowbird? -- DON'T WANT TO START ANEW

DEAR DON'T WANT: If you and your husband can afford two places, perhaps you should both be snowbirds. It couldn't hurt to rent a place for a few months to see what life would be like in a new community. That's what I recommend to readers who contemplate making a drastic change -- such as relocation -- in their lives. If you do that, you might find that the "natives" are friendly and the community is congenial. However, if that's not the case, it could help you to avoid making a costly mistake.
cereta: Nightwing is pretty (Nightwing)
[personal profile] cereta
DEAR ABBY: Recently, my wife and I went dancing with my friend "Dick" and his wife. While I was in the middle of a conversation with Dick, my wife kept trying to interrupt. She even laid her hand on my arm to try to get my attention. I ignored her and told her later she had been rude to try to interrupt my conversation. She thinks I disrespected her and our marriage by putting conversation with my friend above her. This happens often when the four of us are together.

Am I being insensitive to my wife's feelings? We frequently disagree, but we have been married 44 years. Your input would be appreciated. -- ALWAYS A LOVING HUSBAND

DEAR LOVING HUSBAND: It is generally considered rude to interrupt someone when he or she is talking. The next time your wife does it, stop and ask her what's so important. (Could it be that the band is playing your song?)

However, if you have been droning on with your buddy for a long time, she may simply be craving some attention. If that's the case, perhaps it would be better if you saw Dick on a one-to-one basis without the wives around. That way you won't be interrupted.
minoanmiss: (Default)
[personal profile] minoanmiss
Q. After a recent family gathering, I received a series of disturbing e-mails through Messenger on Facebook from my brother-in-law of 19 years.

First, he stated that he would like to “talk apart from family gatherings” because he wanted to “get more of a feel for who you are as a person.”

At first I thought that was nice, but he then went on to state that there is more to life than “constant surveillance, restriction, etc.,” noting that “everyone needs a safety valve sometimes.”

He later noted, “I have carte blanche from my wife to do whatever I want, as long as I don’t bring home any surprises.”

Even though he implored me not to “blab it around town,” I’ve shared this with two women friends and my husband.

They all think, as do I, that it’s a pick-up, and very odd and strangely aggressive.

I, for one, am trying to figure out how I led him to think this would be OK with me.

His wife (my sister-in-law) is an angel, but is fiercely protective of him. I think she would just be mad at me and my husband if I told her. I have not responded at all to these messages, however, there will be family gatherings this fall and now I don’t know how to behave. Can you make any suggestions? Perhaps I’m reading this incorrectly?

Bewildered


A. You should make two assumptions: That this is a come-on, and that you have not done anything to lead this man on.

Your brother-in-law is being rude, ridiculous, and disrespectful.

You should respond to him (not his wife), saying, “I find these messages very unwelcome and would appreciate it if you would direct your attention away from me. I see you as a family member, along with your wife, and I don’t wish to communicate privately with you.”

If he continues (other than to acknowledge receiving your message), and certainly if he ramps up his aggression, you should screenshot his communication and forward it to his wife.
cereta: Amelia Pond (Amelia)
[personal profile] cereta
Q. Marriage possibly ending: I have been with the same guy for six years, married for one. He has two sons from a previous marriage, and she is not in the picture. If it is relevant I’m a male too. My husband has asked me if I could accept his moving into his own apartment for a year because he has never been on his own. He says he doesn’t want us to break up, just live apart for a while. The boys would stay with me in our home, and he would take them to spend the night every so often. We would also have a weekly date night just to keep our relationship “on track.” He married his ex right out of high school, and they had children right away, so he really hasn’t ever been on his own. I have not given a response other than asking a few questions. Truthfully the idea makes me mad as hell and I just want to tell him to leave if you want and take your damn brats with you! Then I calm down and realize I can’t live without him and the boys. Or maybe I can. I feel this is unbelievably selfish of him, but I kind of understand. But the boys have already been abandoned by their mother, how would this plan affect them? I am so confused, and hurt. Help!

A: I would resist the urge to take your (extremely understandable) frustration, hurt, and confusion out on the kids by referring to them, even facetiously, as “your damn brats”; whatever happens between you and your husband, I hope very much that you can see his children are not responsible for his behavior. What troubles me the most is his request that you take over primary custody of his children so he can have a bachelor pad. It’s one thing to suggest living apart from one’s romantic partner; it’s quite another to abdicate daily responsibility toward your own children just because you’ve never lived in a studio. I might have more faith that your husband was trying to suggest a genuine, radical-yet-loving change in your living situation if he weren’t also asking you to become his children’s primary caregiver—it sounds to me that what he is asking is for you to become the father he no longer feels like being, while you get to see him for one date night a week. If he wants a divorce, that’s one thing, but what he’s offering is a homemade custody agreement that puts the burden of daily caregiving almost entirely on you. That’s not “keeping your relationship on track”; that’s abandonment. What he’s proposing is selfish and cruel, and you are right to reject it. Tell him that his plan is unacceptable and that you will not consider it, and hold firm. If you two end up divorcing over this—and you may—you should figure out a custody agreement that benefits the children first, and your husband’s desire to live in a loft second.

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