DEAR ABBY: I'm an American soldier serving in Iraq. When I went on leave for two weeks to see my family, I found out that my wife had posted a profile in a chat room on a public Web site. When I asked her about it, she denied it. When I showed her what I had found, she confessed.
I wouldn't have been upset, but she lied to me -- besides, the profile presented her as single. It included a picture and information about how she looks and what she's "looking for." This has really put a dent in our marriage. I can't trust her, particularly from over here. She claims it was a one-time thing because she was bored.
I don't want to leave her and my three daughters, but now I have no trust in her whatsoever. It's tearing me up inside. Everything she does I question, and it's wrecking our marriage. I want to trust her, but what should I do? Please help me. -- SSG HURTING IN IRAQ
DEAR SSG HURTING: Until your tour of duty is over, your most important priority must be your own safety. That means you must develop tunnel vision for a while and think of nothing but yourself and your mission. For now, accept what your wife says. Time and distance can do strange things to people's relationships, and there is nothing more stressful than what both of you are experiencing right now.
If your daughters are being well taken care of, accept that for the time being. When your tour of duty is over, there will be time to deal with this -- through marriage counseling or spiritual counseling. So listen up: Please trust me and stay strong.
DEAR ABBY: When I was a student, I was encouraged to further my education. I hold two bachelor of arts degrees plus extensive training in emergency services. To my dismay, however, having an education has been a problem, not a plus, for me in my employment.
People tell me I am "overeducated" for the job I so dearly love. It didn't bother me until I took a new job that required both my college degree and my technical training. One co-worker complained that my education "intimidated her" so much she "felt she couldn't do her job." Our supervisor said it was my fault that she was lashing out at me.
Since then I have moved away from that city. I have asked several friends about the "intimidating education factor" and was told it's also the reason I'm still single. I know that having an education is important, and I don't understand why it's having a crippling effect on my life. (I'm not pompous about my education. People have asked and I've told them.) What I don't tell them is I have a "genius" IQ, but it apparently shows when I talk. How do I cope with this? Is it me, or the society we live in? -- OVEREDUCATED IN THE SOUTH
DEAR OVEREDUCATED: Although I have never met you face-to-face, I can tell you with some certainty that it isn't the society we live in. So, that leaves "you." The problem isn't that you are "overeducated." It may be something to do with your personality -- the way you present yourself and the way others perceive you. I have met "brilliant" people whom I would describe as intellectual super-athletes. Some of them are socially adept and make those around them feel comfortable, regardless of their level of education. However, some of them are not. You may fall into the latter category.
I would recommend that you now invest in a different kind of "education" -- the "University of You." In other words, find a psychologist who can help you figure out why, with so much to offer, you are not able to fit in. It will be money well spent.
Good advice for everyone -- teens to seniors -- is in "The Anger in All of Us and How to Deal With It." To order, send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $5 (U.S. funds only) to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)