DEAR ABBY: I have been with my boyfriend, "Simon," for a year and a half. He's a good person, but my problem is I suffer from insomnia and have a hard time staying asleep. It is extremely frustrating -- not to mention lonely -- lying in the dark. I start to think about crazy things and it scares me.
If it gets really bad I wake Simon up, but he doesn't understand. He starts going off on me for waking him, to the point that I'm reduced to tears. Then he goes back to sleep.
What should I do? This is a disorder that is going to be with me for some time. Simon doesn't seem to care despite my numerous attempts to explain it to him. I know people hate being awakened from a sleep, but he's my significant other. Isn't he supposed to help me out? -- ANXIOUS IN ANCHORAGE
DEAR ANXIOUS: Of course he should. However, because he is either unwilling or unable to offer the emotional support you need to help you through your night terrors, you are going to have to help yourself. That's why I'm recommending you talk to your physician about a referral to the nearest sleep disorder clinic. You need to understand and overcome whatever is keeping you up, because both you and Simon need a good night's sleep to remain healthy and effective during the daytime.
DEAR ABBY: My fiance and I are being married in about a month. Some friends in another country (who don't speak English) offered to design and give us our rings as a wedding gift. They asked whether we wanted white or yellow gold, and we specified white or a combination of both -- but not yellow by itself.
Yellow gold is what my parents used to wear -- and they had a terrible relationship and an even worse divorce.
The rings arrived and they are beautiful, but they are yellow gold! I'm assuming something was lost in translation. I know a marriage isn't about the rings, but I had my heart set on wearing ones unlike my parents'.
I don't think anything can be done at this point, and I don't want to raise an objection about such a generous gift. Have you any words of wisdom to help me overcome my hang-ups and this silly feeling of disappointment? -- FEELING SHALLOW IN SUNNY CALIFORNIA
DEAR FEELING SHALLOW: Your parents had a rotten marriage, but their rings had nothing to do with it. We create our own symbols and attach meaning to them. Instead of allowing the gold rings to remind you of your parents' unhappiness, why not let them serve as a reminder of what's important in a marriage so you won't make the same mistakes they did? And if that doesn't work, consult a jeweler about having them plated.
DEAR ABBY: Is it rude to put salt on your food before you have even tried it? My husband was terribly offended when I blurted out, "Try it before you season it!" -- NADINE IN ONTARIO, CANADA
DEAR NADINE: Yes, it is rude. And it's interesting that your husband became so defensive, because usually it's the person who cooked the dish who is offended. The polite thing to do is to first taste the item before deciding to correct the seasoning.
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