DEAR ABBY: I have just found out I’m 10 weeks pregnant. Both sets of parents are overjoyed — it’s their first grandchild — and I’m happy because this was the plan all along. My husband wants kids, and this is our first baby.
My husband isn’t the kind to wear his heart on his sleeve. I have tried to involve him in appointments and classes, but he seems uninterested. He has expressed no emotions, even when he saw our first sonogram. It makes me feel sad and lonely. When I ask him if he is happy about the pregnancy, he says yes, but it’s hard to tell.
What can I do? His reassurance does not feel genuine. This is supposed to be a milestone, the next chapter of our lives. — Preg-O in Arizona
DEAR PREG-O: While your parents and in-laws are overjoyed, and you are excited at the prospect of the baby, it is possible that your husband may be overwhelmed at the reality of becoming a father and the responsibility it entails. Not all men are good at expressing their emotions, particularly emotions that they think might be “unmanly.”
Instead of depending upon him to reassure you, try reassuring HIM about what a wonderful father he is going to be. If you do, you may find that as your pregnancy progresses, his level of excitement will increase.
DEAR ABBY: I’m a junior in high school and plan to go to college. When I brought up the college subject with my mom and told her the one I want to go to is out of state, she got upset and said she would never see me. She keeps suggesting colleges that are in-state, but none of them are ones I want to go to. Shouldn’t it be my choice about where I want to go? As you can see, I need help. What should I do? — Ashley in New York
DEAR ASHLEY: Continue discussing this with your mother to see if there might be more to her concerns than separation anxiety. If the reasons include worry about finances, talk to a counselor at your high school about scholarships that can help to pay for the college of your dreams.
DEAR ABBY: My husband curses nonstop. He wakes in the morning with an “f-ing this” or an “f-ing that.” He does it as he goes into the kitchen to get his coffee. I can’t stand it.
I have asked him repeatedly to stop. He was never like this when we were younger. Over the 20 years of our marriage, he has become worse and worse. Now he’s a nonstop “f-ing machine.”
My neighbors have complained to me about it. They have children, and when he goes outside, it continues. How do I get him to tame his tongue? — Married to Mr. Eff-Ing
DEAR MRS. EFF-ING: Is your husband unwell? Could his problem be related to stress or a form of dementia? If the answer is no, then let me point out that men who are happy in their jobs and their lives do not act this way.
Men who are considerate and care about their wives’ and neighbors’ sensibilities usually try to accommodate them if asked nicely. Your problem may not be your husband’s tongue as much as it is his attitude, and until he realizes that only he can change it, there is nothing you or anyone else can do to fix him.