DEAR ABBY: My husband recently began carrying on his phone conversations on "speaker mode" when he got his new cell phone. As a result, I end up hearing most of his conversations in our small house or while we're driving in the car.
Often, while he's talking to his mother, I have overheard her tell him to keep several things she has said to him secret from me. She has no reason to do this, as most of the things she asks him to hide from me are inconsequential and have nothing to do with me. Occasionally, she even confesses to him that she went ahead and did something I specifically asked her not to do -- especially in matters concerning our children.
This situation has left me feeling angry and hurt, especially since my husband feels that his mother is doing nothing wrong by asking her son to keep secrets from his spouse. While my husband made vows to me, I can't help but feel as if he thinks it's the other way around. I feel like my mother-in-law's behavior, and my husband condoning it, has put a strain on my marriage. Am I wrong to feel this way? -- ANONY-MRS. IN MICHIGAN
DEAR ANONY-MRS.: Because your husband is carrying on his conversations with his mother over a speaker phone, it should be obvious that he is not trying to hide anything from you. Your mother-in-law is playing a childish game with her son, who should have put an end to it many years ago by simply saying, "Mother, I don't keep secrets from my wife."
However, if you are wise, you'll choose your battles carefully. As things stand, you are fully aware of what your mother-in-law is up to. And if I were you, I'd keep it that way.