DEAR ABBY: I have been in a relationship with a wonderful man for two years. He’s a minister. He and his late wife traveled around the world to spread the message. I come from a less conservative, more spiritual background. I attend an interdenominational church that accepts everyone. My views on politics also differ from his. He constantly quotes the Bible and believes that if I don’t follow the Word of God daily I will go to hell. I was Pentecostal baptized when I was young, but I don’t believe in that anymore and his constant preaching is exhausting.
I am a strong woman and I have expressed what I think of it. He’s the best man I’ve ever been with. He is kind, considerate, loving, helpful and loves my family. I’m recovering from Guillain-Barre Syndrome and he has helped me walk, helped out in the shop and has been so good to me. I’ve mostly recovered now and everything would be perfect except for politics and religion. is there hope for us — DISCORDANT IN COLORADO
DEAR DISCORDANT: Successful relationships (and marriages) are based on communication, mutual respect, and boundaries. This man may say that you’re going to hell if you don’t live the word of God every day–I’d like to know exactly what he means by that–but if you’re uncomfortable quoting chapters and verses repeatedly when you’re with Living with him must be a different kind of hell.
While some couples are able to negotiate their political and religious differences, please remember that these are two issues that lead to the failure of many marriages. It would be wonderful if you could find a compromise. But if this man cannot accept you for who you are and cannot try to change you, keep him as a friend and nothing more.
DEAR ABBY: I am a gay man who has been in a relationship with “Jake” for 42 years. We’ve had many difficult relationship challenges, but we’ve always stayed together and recently got married. Our current problem is the thermostat. Jake is cold when the temperature is below 75 degrees in summer. I suggest he wears more blankets or clothes to stay warm as all I can do is throw off all the blankets and lay there sweating. He insists I’m being unreasonable for wanting a cooler bedroom. I know sleep experts recommend sleeping temperatures in the 60 degree range. I can handle warmer temperatures, but 75°C is hot! How can I let him know that he can tuck himself in for comfort while I can’t tuck anything in? — HOT IN SOUTH CAROLINA
DEAR HOT: You have already rationally communicated with your husband. Offer him the option of using a dual control heating pad or electric blanket to keep warm at night. The other option would be to sleep in separate bedrooms. You need your sleep and so does he. When people are sleep deprived, they are not at their best, regardless of the temperature.
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.