DEAR ABBY: Recently, our state became one that allows same-sex couples to wed. My partner, "Alex," and I have been together for 18 years. We had planned to be married last spring, but a death in the family put our wedding on hold.
When I found out about the ruling, I expected Alex to be excited and suggest we go ahead and marry. To my disappointment, he didn't seem to care. He hasn't mentioned marriage once, and when I bring it up, he's quiet and doesn't respond.
We're older, and because of health issues we don't have an active sex life. I'm wondering if my relationship with him has been downgraded to "roommate" without me realizing it. Do I push this? Do I let it alone and settle for what I have now?
I feel like I'm too old to start over, but I have to admit that suddenly feeling like the relationship I thought I had may be an illusion has me very depressed. -- LET DOWN IN ARIZONA
DEAR LET DOWN: The most important ingredient in any relationship is communication, and you and Alex have been together long enough that you should be able to level with each other. His reluctance to move forward may be something as simple as a case of cold feet. It could also be that he's had a change of heart and doesn't want to be married. Not all gay people do.
I don't think it would be pressuring him to calmly ask if the idea of being married is something that no longer interests him. If this level of commitment is what you want and he can't give it to you, you deserve to know.