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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: I can't believe that "Sleepless in New Jersey" complained because her husband woke her at 4 a.m. to say goodbye before leaving for work.

My husband also gets up at 4 a.m., but I am right by his side -- fixing his breakfast, packing his lunch, kissing him goodbye, making sure he starts his day off right. A hassle? Sure it is, but I do it because my husband sacrifices for our family each day by working at a job that requires him to get up early so I can stay at home with the children.

I have three young children to take care of, a home-based business and many other things I give my all to each day. I am sometimes tired and do occasionally nap. My husband is able to come back in the afternoon, and the rest of the day is family time.

It sounds to me as though "Sleepless's" husband is doing anything he can to make her pay some attention to him. Any book on divorce will tell her that if she doesn't fulfill her husband's needs, he'll find someone who will. She may find that if she thinks less of herself and puts forth more effort for her husband, she may no longer need separate bedrooms. -- HAS A GREAT MARRIAGE IN INDIANA

DEAR GREAT MARRIAGE: I received a slew of mail regarding that letter, and reactions to it were all over the map. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: "Sleepless" should thank God she has a husband to "disturb" her at 4 a.m. to offer a loving goodbye. How I wish I could be disturbed once more. My husband, my love, was robbed and shot to death at our family business last Feb. 23 at 6:10 a.m. It happened right after he telephoned me to say, "I just called to tell you how much I love you."

You don't know what you will miss until it is taken from you. You may print my name. -- CAROLYN IVEY, MARION, ALA.

DEAR CAROLYN: Please accept my deepest sympathy for your tragic loss. My heart is with you. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: "Sleepless" said she and her husband have separate bedrooms because his snoring keeps her awake. My husband is also a snorer. He has sleep apnea. Our saving grace is a breathing machine (CPAP) that allows him to get enough air. Yes, it makes a bit of noise -- nothing like snoring -- and is a bit unromantic. But we've adapted, and we both get a good night's sleep. I suggest her husband check with his doctor. -- CHARI IN OCEANSIDE, CALIF.

DEAR CHARI: An excellent suggestion. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: My husband of 21 years snored loudly, too. We had separate beds, and he always left for work without breakfast or a kiss from me. Today he shares his life with another woman -- his new wife. He had minor surgery to correct the snoring and lost some weight. He's a happy, healthy man.

For all those women who feel inconvenienced by their husband's needs or minor flaws, I have three suggestions: (1) Prepare to support yourself financially; (2) remind yourself not to miss a man's love, touch and companionship; and (3) send him my way. I'll take him! -- READER IN CLEVES, OHIO

DEAR ABBY: "Sleepless" needs to get a grip! If she feels she's abused, tell her to talk to a battered woman. -- HACKENSACK, N.J.

DEAR ABBY: Tell "Sleepless" to purchase a night-light so her husband can see her when he kisses her.

I wonder who the "abuser" in that marriage really is. Didn't she say she locked him out of the bedroom so he wouldn't wake her? -- AWAKE AND IN LOVE IN ILLINOIS

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