DEAR ABBY: Two years before he met me, my husband of four years did something I found morally repugnant: he advertised a prostitute. When he committed this act, he was going through a dark period in his life. He divorced a woman who cheated on him, left him for another man, raised his young son and struggled with tremendous feelings of insecurity.
He told me all this while we were together and I figured I’d get over it eventually. But almost five years into our relationship, it still haunts me and makes me question his character. I hate that he was capable of something like this no matter what he went through.
I tried therapy and we tried couples therapy – nothing helped me move on. He says that’s not the type of person he is now, but I just can’t separate the man who did that horrible thing from the man I fell in love with. Are some actions so terrible that they stain a person for the rest of his life? Are we doomed? – WRESTLING WITH IT IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR WRESTLING: Your husband has been honest with you from the beginning of your relationship and has been, I suspect, a loyal partner. As you say, he was under a lot of pressure when that happened. I can’t name a single person who hasn’t made a mistake in the past, myself included. Use some common sense and stop judging your poor husband for his one “slip.” Please Give him the freedom to find a woman who will appreciate him for who he is.
DEAR ABBY: My spouse and I are retired. I thought we’d spend our retirement doing things together, but all she wants to do is sleep. It’s not uncommon for her to stay in bed for two days at a time, only getting up to go to the bathroom and have a drink. She does not help with housework or other household chores.
I asked her why she sleeps so much. She tells me she doesn’t know why. I took her to her doctors and they ran tests. Physically, there’s nothing wrong with her sleeping so much. This leads me to believe that she is on prescription drugs to be able to sleep that late. When I asked her if that was the case, she said no.
My wife was sexually abused as a child and is currently being treated for depression. Her doctor and I wanted her to see a psychiatrist, but she flatly refuses. I have spoken to her several times and have told her that I am unhappy with the impact this is having on our marriage. She doesn’t seem to care.
I’m considering a breakup. Do you think this is advisable? Or do you have any other ideas? I love her very much and being apart is not what I want. She deserves all my efforts to help her before I just don’t care and give up. – FRUSTRATED IN INDIANA
DEAR FRUSTRATED: Losing interest in things someone used to enjoy and sleeping “two days in a row” are classic symptoms difficult, chronic Depression. It may have been triggered by her retirement.
Your wife should definitely talk to someone. If not a psychiatrist, then certainly a psychologist working with a psychiatrist who will prescribe medication if necessary. You and your doctor should insist, as your wife appears to be very ill.
Dear Abby was written by Abigail Van Buren, aka Jeanne Phillips, and founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.