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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I have been married for three years and love my husband dearly; however, I'm very close to leaving him. Why? Because I feel invisible. I'm a good wife and do everything within my power to make him happy, but when he comes home from work, he greets me with a "hi" -- then he greets our three dogs with petting and words of love. This infuriates me! It's so painful I have to leave the room.

As of three months ago, my husband decided he sleeps better without me, so we've been sleeping apart. I know he works hard at his job, and it's important for him to get a good night's sleep, but that's no excuse for his behavior toward me. Our sex life has practically come to a halt. I expressed my feelings to him, only to be ignored. When I get affectionate with him, he pushes me away saying, "Not now, honey, I'm too tired."

Abby, I don't claim to be the perfect wife, but the house is always immaculate and the laundry is never piled up. I make hot meals daily and our pets are well-groomed and cared for. I am not drop-dead gorgeous, but I get my share of looks and remarks. I will not seek what I need from other men, but I won't spend the rest of my life in a marriage that consists of domestic duties and nothing more.

My husband never misses your column. Hopefully, he'll see my letter, realize how hurt I am, and change his ways. Sign me ... DESPERATE FOR ADVICE IN NEW JERSEY

DEAR DESPERATE: For the sake of your marriage, it is imperative that you find out exactly what happened three months ago that changed the dynamics of your relationship with your husband. He is behaving like a selfish, insensitive clod. Before you walk out, tell him how you feel and offer him the option of marriage counseling.

DEAR ABBY: Law enforcement officers and their actions have been and always will be targets for criticism, skepticism and controversy. Two of the most newsworthy topics involving law officers are the use of physical force and deadly force on criminals. It is easy for the general public or the media to second-guess what was right or wrong. They have hours or days to do it -- while an officer has only seconds. The stakes are high on the street. Hesitation or a wrong decision may very well cost an officer his/her life. This brings me to a recent letter you published:

"Wayne in Santa Rosa, Calif." said he thinks cops should carry tranquilizer guns instead of firearms. Well, Wayne, in our "Wild Kingdom," the animals -- a.k.a. car-jackers, armed robbers and drug dealers -- carry guns. REAL guns. And they do not hesitate to use them on innocent people, as well as on cops. The animals you see on "Wild Kingdom" are potentially dangerous because they are instinctively trying to protect their lives or the lives of their offspring. The "animals" we deal with are predators -- preying on innocent, honest citizens, and they are dangerous because they choose to be.

Abby, it's obvious that Wayne is ignorant of how violent these people can be, and how quickly a situation can turn on an officer in any given situation. I can only suggest that he get a job in law enforcement, because I'm sure his outlook on tranquilizer guns would change.

Law enforcement can always use good advice on how to improve. Most of us and our bosses welcome good advice. But tranquilizer guns? I'm 30 years old, have been a cop for eight years, and I thought I'd heard it all. -- CPL. DONALD PALLISER, ST. TAMMANY PARISH SHERIFF'S OFFICE, COVINGTON, LA.

DEAR CPL. PALLISER: Be patient. By the time you're ready to hang up your firearm, you'll have heard more.

For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more attractive person, order "How to Be Popular." Send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, Ill. 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)

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