DEAR ABBY: When my husband, "Ken," proposed three years ago, he had a steady job with an income twice as high as mine. He was laid off before our wedding, but we went ahead with the marriage. After our wedding, Ken was unemployed for another year before finally finding a minimum wage job. After one year at that job, he was fired. He has since found another minimum wage position.
I am a young teacher. We live in an expensive part of the country. We struggle every day to pay for groceries, gas and other essentials. I wasn't raised to expect many frills in life and I am frugal, but there are certain things I always assumed I would have -- a house of my own, children, a savings account. If I stay with Ken, I don't believe these things will ever be within my reach.
In all other ways, Ken is a wonderful man and I love him with all my heart. But is there ever a time when love isn't all you need? -- SECOND THOUGHTS IN ASHEVILLE, N.C.
DEAR SECOND THOUGHTS: You and Ken have hit a rough patch early in your marriage, but millions of Americans are even worse off -- out of work and have given up trying to find any.
When you married Ken you promised each other "for richer or poorer." This recession won't last forever and, in the meantime, you have a wonderful man you love with all your heart. Whether that's enough or not, only you can answer. But if you trade in this model, there are no 100 percent guarantees that the next one will be able to give you all you need, either. You may find that in order to get all you need, you'll have to do it on your own.