Q: My husband and I have been together for eight years but married only a few months. It took him a long time to finally marry me, and it ended up that I was the one to propose.
I am 30 and he’s 39. I know he loves me. I have always expressed that I want children and he did, too. I have been off birth control and keeping track of my cycle, but now he doesn’t want to make love. When I try to get him in the mood, he always finds an excuse. I told him he has had plenty of time to let me know if he doesn’t want children.
I love him more than anything, but I do not want to miss out on being a parent. This is a deal-breaker. I am getting older and I don’t know what to do. — Future Mommy in Wisconsin
A: Settle this now by asking your husband directly why he is either unwilling or unable to perform in the bedroom. You are entitled to an explanation, because he may be having second thoughts not only about starting a family, but also the marriage. If he has changed his mind about having children, talk to a lawyer because you may be able to get an annulment.
Q: I have a friend who is in the Navy. We have been friends for a year and a half but have never met in person. He’s 19 and I’m 17. We Skype at least once a week.
He has fallen for me and doesn’t know what to do because he’s in an arranged marriage he doesn’t want to be in. He doesn’t know the girl, doesn’t know what she looks like or even know her name. All he knows is she lives in Russia.
I have fallen for him, too. He is going through with the marriage only because his grandparents did it. I thought I would ask for some advice on what I should do. — Miss Confused
A: Are you sure this person is who he has represented himself to be? “Because his grandparents did it” is not a good reason to go through with a marriage to a stranger. If his story is true, it appears this young man’s family has his future mapped out for him, and he isn’t independent enough to resist.
If you continue this Skype romance, I see nothing but sadness ahead for you. You would be happier if you found someone closer to home, someone whom you can meet in person.
Q: I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I say yes to everything! I say yes to people I don’t even want to. I agree to plans that override those I have already made. Then I have to lie my way out of events and other stuff I don’t want to do or never had any intention of ever doing. I need help. It’s ruining my life. Please, please help. — Can’t Say No
A: What’s wrong is that you are trying to be a people-pleaser. The problem with making promises you can’t keep is that eventually you will become labeled as a flake when you don’t follow through.
If you’re afraid you won’t be liked if you take the risk of just saying no, you are mistaken. People will respect you for standing up for yourself and drawing the line, as long as it’s done politely. An example would be, “I’d love to, but I already have plans.”
Write Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.