DEAR ABBY: My wife prefers that I write the letters to our children and relatives. Although she writes a delightful letter, she lacks confidence in her ability to punctuate and spell correctly. I enjoy writing, so I don't mind performing this task for both of us.
For many years I closed the letter, "With love," followed by "Mom and Dad" or both our first names. Last year I decided this was not correct. Although my wife occasionally suggests thoughts that I include, I am the one who generates most of the thoughts and takes the time to write them. Therefore, I started closing my letters, "With love from both of us," followed by "Dad" or my name. This angers my wife. She insists that I sign "Mom and Dad" or both our first names. I insist that she is welcome to add a postscript to my letter and sign it or write her own letters.
My wife wants the letter to be from both of us, but I feel I should sign my letters with my name because they contain my thoughts. Am I being hardheaded? -- THE LONE WRITER, RICHLAND, WASH.
DEAR LONE WRITER: Yes. I empathize with you for wanting recognition for the work of art you have created, but it's a little late to begin asserting your individuality. I'm sure your children and relatives know who is really putting the words on the paper, so for the sake of harmony in the household, continue to sign your letters, "With love, from Mom and Dad."
In almost every marriage, the spouse with the stronger skills will assume responsibility for various chores -- the gardening, balancing the checkbook, wardrobe coordination, etc. That's what makes a partnership successful.