DEAR HARRIETTE: My husband is excited about the possibility of marijuana being legalized in more states and, ultimately, throughout the nation. He loves to smoke weed, and he constantly reads up on its medical benefits. He is a complete believer in weed; I am not. I used to smoke when I was younger, and I know it can make you lethargic and unproductive. While I don’t want people to get arrested for smoking it, I don’t want to champion its legalization. When I said this to him, he asked if I thought that alcohol makes people lethargic and unproductive. I had to answer truthfully -- it does. He thinks if alcohol is legal, marijuana -- which has more benefits -- should be, too. The thing is, in my own house, my husband often smokes early in the morning before going to work. He has no medical issues. He just likes to be buzzed. While he does a good job at work, he does little to nothing at home to help, especially if he has been smoking. I see the effects of it firsthand, and I don’t like it. -- Weed Frustration, Chicago
DEAR WEED FRUSTRATION: It sounds like your issue is not at the ballot box but in your own home. Rather than talking to your husband about legislation -- which is its own issue -- talk to him about quality of life and how his smoking impacts your family. You are not likely to get him to quit smoking, but you may be able to get him to consider when he smokes. Tell him that you need his help around the house more. Ask him to consider not smoking until he completes his chores. That principal is good for people who drink as well. Pretty much anything that can alter your mood or be a distraction should not be engaged when you have work to do. Make an agreement with your husband that there will be no TV, no alcohol and no weed during chore time. See if he will agree.
DEAR HARRIETTE: I have an uncle who I always thought of as a nuisance. He’s always complaining about something. Now that I am getting older, I realize that his complaints are probably real issues. He suffers from obesity, diabetes and other ailments. It frustrates me that he won’t exercise or change his diet. It almost seems like he wants to die. I want to inspire him to take up healthier habits. For example, I have had to change my diet because I was told I am pre-diabetic. Do you think if I tell him my story and invite him to exercise with me that he might consider it, or will he be offended? -- Sick Uncle, Raleigh, North Carolina
DEAR SICK UNCLE: It’s good that you have developed compassion for your uncle. It is always easier to communicate with people when you have a softness in your heart toward them. It’s a great idea to confide in him about your own health and what you plan to do about it. Let him know what your doctor recommended. Talk about the added exercise, and invite him to take a walk with you. That’s the easiest way to get someone moving. A walk and talk may be a perfect way to get your uncle up. The added bonus is you two may get closer.
(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to email@example.com or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)