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by Abigail Van Buren

Wife of Man Who Plays Field Is Considering Making Trade

DEAR ABBY: I have been married to "Robbie" for 25 years. He has had numerous affairs during most of our marriage. His most recent one has devastated me.

Robbie tells me he is in love with another woman -- but that he also loves me. Robbie is a good provider. I have everything I want or need. We are set financially. I have considered leaving him and starting over, but frankly, it scares me. I feel that he is staying because he doesn't want to "lose everything." I know in my heart he wants to be with the other woman.

We have been through counseling. I thought things were OK, but they weren't. I saw the signs again.

Now my other dilemma: I'm not sure I'm in love with Robbie anymore. I'm not sure if the reason I don't leave is because of him -- or the financial security. If I stay, I'm not sure I can forgive or forget again. I know if it's not this woman, there will always be another and another.

Should I stay, or hold my head up high and go my separate way? -- HANGING ON IN INDIANA

DEAR HANGING: You are asking intelligent questions. However, no one can answer them but you. Since marriage counseling couldn't resolve the problems in your marriage, it's time to talk to an accountant and an attorney to determine the financial reality of what separating from your husband would be. Armed with that information, you can then ask yourself whether your life would be better with or without him and arrive at a logical conclusion. This may be a new beginning instead of a sad ending. I wish you the best of luck.

Read more in: Marriage & Divorce

DEAR ABBY: I was going through my dear mother's Bible recently looking for my aunt's date of birth. As I opened it, I discovered one of your columns -- a "recipe" submitted by Maxine D. Mother had clipped it without the date, but I believe it was from May 1961. The recipe was for happiness. That recipe is as timely today as it was 40 years ago. Perhaps you might reprint it for those who missed it before.

Interestingly, on the back of the recipe is an ad that advertises submarine sandwiches made with three meats, four sandwiches for a dollar. Can you believe it?

In April 1961, Mother was 48 years old. I have been without her for 20 years this year. -- JAN ROLLINS, CARROLLTON, TEXAS

DEAR JAN: Thank you for reminding me of the recipe for happiness. You're right -- it's due for a repeat. As for the ad offering four submarine sandwiches for a dollar -- my, how times have changed! They cost $4 to $6 per sandwich today. I wonder how much they'll cost in another 40 years. Read on:

RECIPE FOR HAPPINESS

Take 2 heaping cups of patience

1 heartful of love

2 handsful of generosity

Dash of laughter

1 headful of understanding

Sprinkle generously with kindness

Add plenty of faith and mix well.

Spread over a period of a lifetime

And serve everybody you meet.

Dear Abby is written by Pauline Phillips and daughter Jeanne Phillips.

For an excellent guide to becoming a better conversationalist and a more sociable person, order "How to Be Popular." Send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $5 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Popularity Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in the price.)

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