DEAR ABBY: My heart is breaking for my friend who was married just a month and a half ago. She and her husband went on a two-week Mediterranean cruise for their honeymoon. They have not lived together since then. Her husband says he loves her, and I know she loves him, but he has no immediate plans to live with her! She’s heartbroken and is planning an annulment. What advice do you have? – THROWN IN MARYLAND
DEAR THROWN: I wish you had shared a few more details about their situation. I’m surprised your friend wasn’t aware of her husband’s feelings before she married him.
However, as sympathetic as you are about her situation, my advice is to be there for her to lean on but refrain from giving her advice. She’s going to have to figure this out for herself. Some couples do better if they live separately. But if what her husband has in mind was a surprise and is unacceptable to her, she is doing the right thing.
DEAR ABBY: I’m not sure if anyone else has this problem. My husband is constantly grabbing me, either my breasts or my crotch. It’s day and night. We have been married almost 40 years, and I am sick of it.
If I say something, he says, “Oh, I bet the guys you work with would love to be touching you!” Not once have my co-workers ever implied such a thing. I just don’t understand! Any suggestions on how I can make him understand I hate this? – GROPED OUT WEST
DEAR GROPED: Your husband may consider what he’s doing as foreplay or regard you not as a person but his property. Touching someone in this manner without consent could be considered sexual abuse. His comment about your male co-workers may be a back-handed compliment, but why you are sick of hearing it is understandable.
If he doesn’t understand after 40 years that you dislike what he’s doing, it’s because he doesn’t want to, and your feelings are unimportant to him. A marriage counselor may be able to help you get through to him. If he won’t go, go without him.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.