January 21, 2010
Dear Amy: I have been married for 17 years and we have two great kids, ages 9 and 11. I fell out of love with my husband several years ago. I have not told him this because I don't want to hurt him, and I don't feel right about ending the marriage right now because it would hurt the kids. But every day I have an ache inside me because I know I'm not happy in this marriage. I would be willing to try counseling, but we actually get along fairly well. I'm torn between sparing my family any pain and my secret sadness that I'm not living an authentic life.
November 19, 2009
Dear Amy: I have been living with my paramour for almost three years. We are both in our 50s. He is still married, despite a lengthy legal separation. He often says it is "time to do something" about that, but that is as far as it goes. I want more than just a roommate, plus, if something happens to him, I'm stuck financially. I love him dearly, and he says he loves me too. But I find myself wondering -- am I all alone in this relationship? How do I broach this without sounding needy and greedy?
December 13, 2009
Dear Amy: My mother has suddenly turned against drinking. I am hosting a 60th birthday party for myself. My mother will not go if there is one glass of alcohol served. How I should handle this? Julia Dear Julia: You are not the cause of your mother's distress, but you should do your best to reassure her without letting her unreasonably control you. You should also make sure her health is stable because she doesn't sound completely rational. I suggest you lovingly dodge dwelling on this.
March 14, 2010
Dear Amy: My buddy and I have been good friends for more than 20 years, but recently one of his country club pals said some nasty things about me. My friend, "James," was present, and he is still on very friendly terms with his neighbor. I asked him about this, and he said he has a right to be friends with each of us and not take sides. Shouldn't a friend stand up for his good friend? Barry Dear Barry: I agree with your friend that he has a right to be friends with whomever he wants.
March 2, 2010
Dear Amy: We recently learned that my husband would likely be laid off within a month. My husband is devastated; in addition to the impact this has had on his professional ego, he feels he's letting his family down by not being able to support us until he finds another job. I have tried to reassure him that this is a chance to get a job he will love. His paycheck is not what makes him the amazing father and husband he is. Is there anything else I could do? Concerned Wife Dear Wife: One unfortunate aspect of the current unemployment situation is that men are losing their jobs at a disproportionally high rate.
March 4, 2010
Dear Amy: My husband and I have been married for 24 years. He does business development for a large firm. He is involved in numerous community groups, explaining that this is how he builds relationships and clients. He is home Sundays and two or three evenings each week. When home, he spends hours responding to e-mails and reading Facebook sites. I feel lonely when I see the great relationships he maintains with others, whereas all I get is a tired, stressed and distant husband.
February 22, 2010
Dear Amy: My mother is a beloved member of our family. Because Mom is so great and such a fun person to be around, whenever one of my siblings or I travel with our families, we will often invite Mom and pay her way. My father, who has no interest in coming along on these trips, has a problem with this arrangement. He says that we are being disrespectful and that we are treating Mom like a glorified nanny, especially if we take her up on her offer to watch the kids one night so we can go to dinner with our spouses.
January 10, 2010
Dear Amy: In this age of Republican vs. Democrat in almost all phases of government, the stress of relatives being of the other party and attending tea parties, disrupting town halls and marching on Washington has strained family relationships. I know we are all different and have the freedom to choose, but I feel as if these are personal attacks on me, so I have deleted all conservative friends from my Facebook account. There are a lot of people with these feelings in both parties -- any suggestions on how to deal with it?
March 15, 2010
Dear Amy: A 16-month-old toddler relative has screaming tantrums when she cannot get her way. When this happens at home, the girl's parents call a "timeout." Being in a public place poses more challenges. Someone suggested that the person who was with the toddler should strap her into her car seat and wait outside in the car until she was done screaming. However, this little girl is strong and stiffened her body to avoid sitting in the seat. Any ideas? Wondering Dear Wondering: As much as I dislike the idea of one person physically controlling another, there are times when adults do need to restrain or simply force a young child to yield -- when their basic safety or well being is at stake.
March 18, 2010
Dear Amy: I am a sophomore in high school. I recently reconnected with a friend I was close to last year. Over the summer, our friendship sort of fell apart. This year, he has found new friends, and our brief talk the other day was the most contact we had in months. He has gotten into partying. He shows up high to school almost every day. He is also on academic probation and has gotten more detentions than I can count. His parents don't really care about any of this.