DEAR ABBY: In today’s world, there are people who apparently cannot exist detached from their cellphones. In case you are wondering — yes, I do have one, but I use it only for emergencies, not idle banter.
If I’m trying to hold a conversation with someone and he/she is playing with an electronic toy, I get up and walk away. It’s obvious to me that my company isn’t worth the person’s time, so neither is theirs. If I am in a restaurant and people start texting, I get up and go and leave the person with the bill. (Of course, I make sure I have eaten first.) In other words, I show them the same amount of courtesy they have shown me, which is none.
What do you think of the statement I’m trying to make? — OVER IT IN PATERSON, N.J.
DEAR OVER IT: Has it occurred to you that the person may not realize why you walked away? You could communicate your message more effectively if you spoke up when your companion reached for the cellphone and SAID you’d prefer your visit not be interrupted because you feel it is rude.
DEAR ABBY: About a year ago I caught my otherwise loving, loyal and well-providing husband checking online porn. I have trust issues that he knows about. I feel violated and hurt. He says, “Everyone does it.”
I take great pain to maintain my appearance and my body. Although I’m almost 50, many consider me to be “hot.” He lies about a lot of little things, but he seems to love me. My question is, is that enough? Do all men REALLY fantasize constantly?
Since I started menopause, I want him all the time. It is such a relief to know I can’t get pregnant again — it is a time of renewal for me. Then I caught him online.
How would he feel if I were looking at younger men? Instead of a wonderful opportunity for us to discover our real selves again, I constantly wonder what he’s “really” thinking. Should I cut my losses or focus on the positive? This has hurt me so much I can barely stand it. — BETRAYED IN FLORIDA
DEAR BETRAYED: Porn is easily available, and many men look at it without it being a danger to their marriages. And yes, they do fantasize often. If you can, it might be helpful to encourage your husband to discuss with you his reason for doing it. It may have nothing to do with you, and more to do with issues of his own.
Before you let this ruin a perfectly good marriage, it might be helpful for you to talk with a therapist about your trust issues and what they stem from. The therapist may recommend joint counseling with your spouse, and you should consider that, too.
You have a right to the kind of fulfilling marital relationship you desire, but it won’t happen unless there is honest, open communication and understanding between you and your husband.
DEAR ABBY: I have a dilemma. I deliver mail to offices daily and I never know how to answer when they thank me. It seems like “You’re welcome” isn’t appropriate because it’s my job to bring the mail.
How should I respond? Should I say “You’re welcome” or just “Have a nice day” or something else? — WANTS TO BE POLITE
DEAR WANTS: I appreciate that you want to be polite, but you are overthinking this. “You’re welcome” and “Have a nice day” are both appropriate responses when someone thanks you.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.