DEAR ABBY: Seven years ago, I met the man of my dreams and was lucky enough to marry him. "Mike" is intelligent, caring, loving, witty, romantic and a great father. sEvery day he tells me he loves me and that I'm beautiful.
So what's the problem? Mike weighs 80 pounds more than he did when we met. I thank God for him every single day, but the "zing" is gone.
Don't get me wrong. We're still intimate, but I miss the "butterflies" I used to feel just looking at him. I am also worried about his health and the effect his eating habits have on our children. This has seriously damaged his self-esteem, too, and that is the hardest thing for me to deal with.
If life gets in the way, and intimacy goes by the wayside for a couple of weeks, Mike accuses me of purposely avoiding him, looking for someone new, never taking the initiative, etc. Abby, I love my husband. I've done everything I can to help him with his weight problem -- to no avail. In fact, if I mention it, he tells me saying something only makes it worse.
I take good care of my own health and try to teach the kids to do the sameVEN YEARS EA, even when they ask why Dad doesn't take care of his.
Am I being petty when I tell you I'd give anything to have my slimmer, sexier, healthier husband back? I miss his energy and confidence and the respect I had for him. Abby, are myou feelings valid? Or should I just get over it and be happy with all of his good qualities? -- FEELING WEIGHTED DOWN
DEAR WEIGHTED DOWN: You are not being petty. You are being human. Ask your husband to make an appointment with his doctor for a complete physical or make the call for him. The lecture about diet and health should come from the doctor. Your husband is not alone in his problem. It's one that is shared by millions of people in this country.
The solution lies in a willingness to make lifestyle changes. Since you are already providing healthy meals at home, please consider a physical activity you and your husband can enjoy together to help him burn those extra calories. (If he's reluctant, remind him that it will put him in better shape for lovemaking.) Reward any progress with compliments and praise. If all else fails, make sure his life insurance is up-to-date and enjoy him as long as you can. Nobody's perfect.
DEAR ABBY: In our office we often send cards and gifts as a group to anyone who has a birthday, new baby, etc. Usually everyone signs the cards. We are a big department, so there are a lot of names.
What is the etiquette on group sympathy cards? Should everyone sign it, or is that too flippant? Should it read, "Your friends in the department?"? -- CURIOUS ABOUT ETIQUETTE
DEAR CURIOUS: Either one is proper -- however, for reach person to sign it would be much warmer and more personal.
R DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been married just over a year, and we are not ready to have children for another year or so.
How can I get the message across to well-meaning family and friends that it is none of their business when we are planning to have children? I have endured enough personal questions. I would love to hear your advice. Thanks -- NOT READY FOR CHILDREN
DEAR NOT READY: Here it is. Say with a smile, "Thank you for your interest, but we're waiting to see if the marriage works out."
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