DEAR ABBY: My husband, “Mason,” and I have been married for 10 years. We have a beautiful 7-year-old daughter and have just found out we are having another girl. The day we learned her gender, Mason dropped a bomb on me. He said that he’s not in love with me anymore and that it has been eating at him for a while. He said he was too scared to tell me sooner.
He won’t talk to anyone and doesn’t seem to want to fix it. We both came from broken homes and had always agreed not to do that to our kids. But I can’t act like everything is normal under the same roof.
He says he’ll stay at his brother’s place at night after our daughter goes to sleep. He’s at work before she’s up for school anyway. We agreed that if she wakes up at night and calls out for him, I should tell her he got “called in to work.” Please give me some advice. — Broken in Nevada
DEAR BROKEN: By the age of 7, your daughter is old enough to recognize tension between her parents. She is also aware enough to comprehend that her father is no longer living there if he’s spending his nights elsewhere, particularly if he intends to carry on this charade for any length of time.
You say your husband “won’t talk to anyone,” but he owes YOU some straight answers. If he hasn’t been in love with you “for a while,” he shouldn’t have fathered a second child with you. Would his feelings be different if the baby you’re carrying was a boy? Could there be another woman involved? Your husband owes it to you and those children to act responsibly and at least try to save his marriage. Running away is not the answer.
In the meantime, my advice is to talk to a lawyer and take your cues from her or him about protecting yourself and your children financially. Doing so does not mean you “must” file divorce papers, but you will have someone who isn’t emotionally involved looking out for your interests.
DEAR ABBY: What should a single, straight woman do if she is attracted to and interested in a man she is “pretty sure” is gay? What should she do in the same situation if he is openly gay? Should she ignore her feelings? Tell him? — Attracted to Him in Washington
DEAR ATTRACTED: If the woman tells her gay friend how she feels, he may be flattered, or it may make him uncomfortable. That’s the risk she takes. As to whether she should ignore her feelings, if she wants a romantic partner who can reciprocate her physical attraction, she will have to concentrate on finding someone who is straight. Trust me on that.
Right to be together?
DEAR ABBY: A friend of mine, “Fran,” died nine years ago. Prior to her death I had little interaction with her husband, “Dexter.” As a matter of fact, when I met Fran, she was divorced, but she and Dexter reunited.
Dexter and I are now in love and are planning to marry. He is 66, and I am 61. A lot of people feel it is wrong for us to be together. Your thoughts, please? — Going for Happiness in South Carolina
DEAR GOING: “A lot of people” are unhappy in their lives and judgmental. They sometimes poke their noses into matters that are none of their business. If you and Dexter want to be happy, avoid the naysayers as if they have a virus, because the kind of ill will they spread is contagious.
Write Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
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