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by Abigail Van Buren

Comments on Her Hair Color Make Wild Child Feel Blue

DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been married for 26 years. I love him, but he's a terrible listener. He's not that way with everyone. When we're out socializing, he's a good conversationalist and a polite listener. It's when we are home that he never lets me finish a sentence. When we're alone, I can't express a complete opinion or thought without being interrupted halfway through a word or sentence. He just cuts me off and starts talking on the subject.

I'm an intelligent woman with valid opinions, but he would rather hear the sound of his own voice than mine. How do I get him to let me speak and not interrupt? -- SILENCED IN ILLINOIS

DEAR SILENCED: Is your husband controlling in other aspects of your relationship? If not, the problem may be that you have been together so long he thinks he knows where your sentences are going, so he responds before you complete your entire thought. One way to handle this would be to tell your husband how patronized it makes you feel when he does it. Another would be to interrupt him by saying, "Excuse me! I wasn't finished talking." Or, "You finished my sentence, but that wasn't what I was going to say. What I meant was ..."