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Wake-up call prompts questions about life, marriage

Published: Friday, March 28, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT

Dear Abby: I have been married almost 4 years. Recently I had some medical problems that were my wake-up call. I'm fine now, but I no longer am willing to wait for "someday."

I decided to try some new hobbies, one of which is skydiving. I had said for years I'd never do it because I'm afraid of heights. But I have changed my mind, and for me, this is a big deal.

When I asked my husband what he thought, his response was, "I'm not spending the day just to see you jump out of an airplane." Talk about disappointing!

I have always "gone with the flow" when he has wanted to do something. I know he doesn't want to go skydiving, but all I wanted was his support, and maybe someone to take a video or pictures.

His response has left me wondering about a lot of things. I have had enough of his negativity. He doesn't do anything except stay home. I guess I expected him to be excited for me, or to say he didn't want me doing it. The first is what I would have preferred. Now I'm not sure where I go from here. – Disappointed in San Diego

Dear Disappointed: I hope you realize this letter isn't about skydiving, but your husband's refusal to help you celebrate your new lease on life.

A successful marriage is one in which a couple ideally grows TOGETHER. If your husband is unwilling or unable to do that, then "where you go from here" is to first ask him if he's willing to talk to a marriage counselor with you. If he's not, then schedule some sessions for yourself with a licensed professional and discuss the circumstances that led to your "wake-up call." It will help you rationally – and unemotionally – decide how best to enjoy this gift of life you have been given.

Dear Abby: You have addressed cellphone etiquette in your column before, but in this day and age it bears repeating.

We attended a meeting for parents and students last night at our child's high school. Inevitably, a cellphone rang, which can happen to anyone. The ring was quickly silenced.

A few minutes later, another cellphone started ringing. Rather than mute it, the parent answered it and proceeded to have a conversation during the meeting while a school staff person was making a presentation. It wasn't a long conversation, but it wasn't quiet either. The parent was sitting in the back row – he could have easily slipped out to have this "important" conversation.

Thanks for letting me vent. It was extremely annoying and rude. Now I know why his son has no common sense. – Annoyed in Iowa

Dear Annoyed: At most events an announcement is made beforehand that cellphones should be turned off. If there is an interruption, an experienced speaker will pause until the interruption ceases. From your letter, I assume that isn't what happened last night.

Children learn manners and common sense by watching their parents. If consideration for others isn't modeled for them, they don't learn it.

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.

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