DEAR ABBY: I have been married almost two years and am having problems with my wife's male friends. She has never had a lot of female friends, and she has had physical relationships with some of her male friends in the past.
We have had several arguments over her relationships with these men and my inability to trust them. I agree with her on that point; however, I would feel awkward if she confided in a male friend if she and I ever got into a tiff.
I am really troubled by this. I believe it opens a window of opportunity for the guy to make advances when she's at a low point. I recently was forwarded an e-mail from one of her male friends that referred to her as "Sweetie" and "Puddin' Pop." Is that right? Should I confront her on this? What should I do? -- UNEASY IN MILWAUKEE
DEAR UNEASY: Do not "confront" your wife, but do discuss your feelings with her. That you are uneasy about her continuing a relationship with old lovers is understandable. However, to expect a woman who has always related better to men than to women to forgo friendships with men seems unrealistic.
It is important that you evaluate what is (or isn't) going on with your wife that has aroused your insecurities. "Sweetie" and "Puddin' Pop" are familiarities, but they're a far cry from "My Darling," or something more explicit. I know several people who call everyone "Sweetheart," "Honey" or "Sweet Pea." I suspect it's because they aren't very good at remembering names.
Please talk this out with your wife. You married someone who had a life before she met you. Neither one of you was born yesterday. She was honest with you about it. Trust her unless she gives you reason not to do so.