DEAR HARRIETTE: I have always been a night owl, but now it’s catching up with me. I stay up late watching lame TV shows, and then I can hardly get up in the morning to start my day. I know this is crazy, but I haven’t been able to break the cycle. My husband and I have been on the outs recently, and I think that’s how it started. Rather than going to bed when he does, I stay up late and basically avoid him. Now, it’s backfiring. I can’t get up in the morning. I’ve been late for work a few times. I’m exhausted, yet I can’t seem to change my pattern. -- Night Owl, Richmond, Virginia
DEAR NIGHT OWL: You have to deal with the fundamental issue before you -- what’s going on in your marriage. Avoiding that elephant in the room has your schedule all twisted with unnecessary distractions. It is unhealthy for you to continue down this path.
While it may seem scary and daunting to approach the crisis in your marriage directly, you owe it to yourself and your husband to do just that. Consider engaging a marriage counselor to help you out. A professional may be able to point you in a direction that will make it easier for you to talk about your issues with your husband and come to some clarity about what you need to do. Be sure to tell the therapist about your sleep issues, too. I think they are all related.
DEAR HARRIETTE: Do you remember those spam emails that circulated a few years ago from Nigerians "princes" who claimed they wanted to wire millions of dollars into your bank account? Well, I just got one from a Russian making the same claim. It is obvious to me that this is a scam, but it also makes me uncomfortable. I wonder how these people got my email address and who else they might be scamming when it works? The promise is unbelievable. They will wire millions in your account if you send a small amount of money to them along with your bank account number. I know that there are lots of people out there with money problems. When you are desperate enough, you could make the mistake of falling for one of these crazy scams. Is there anything I can do as one who received this solicitation? I would love to help if I can. -- Be the Solution, Atlanta
DEAR BE THE SOLUTION: Unfortunately, scam artists abound, and they do catch some unsuspecting people who think that they are about to get an unbelievable deal. When something seems too good to be true, it usually is. You can report the message as spam to your provider. You can also file a report at ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)