Dear Amy: I wanted to share my opinion about the “independent” woman she was offended when her compatriots visited her vacation home, cleaned it up and made some repairs.
My sisters and I always complained when my mother did something for us. One day my father said four words that clicked forever and changed, “Just say hello.”
Wow. This moment was magical for me.
If you don’t have to prove to others that you are in control, you are in better control.
When my parents visited, I learned to stop taking control and enjoyed whatever they were doing. My dad would have flown across the country with his basic toolbox and my mom would have brought him stuff too, including gloves! They really liked having projects in advance for them!
Now that they can’t travel, I have memories of the projects and their activities around the house.
I wish I could continue to call on my parents to come over and enjoy their company while having fun on small projects!
Thank you for pointing out that refusing to help does not prove adulthood! Those who love to give need people who are willing to accept. It’s a beautiful dance.
Dear Blessing: It is kind to allow others to show their love through “acts of service,” as long as they do not show their love through their lingerie drawer.
Dear Amy: I think my husband may have an alcohol problem, but I’m not sure how to help him.
A great dad to our young toddlers and a devoted husband to me. But as soon as the kids go to bed, he starts drinking beer. He drinks all night and I often wake up alone to sleep on the floor in the basement.
He is never sick or angry. It does not “blacken”. It doesn’t abuse or hurt me in any way, but this behavior seems unacceptable.
He tells me he is depressed and hates his job, but he feels a duty to take care of us even though I work.
I want you to feel like you can leave your job and change if you’re unhappy, but you don’t seem to be willing. I asked him several times to talk to a counselor, but he won’t.
I’m afraid my daughters think this behavior is an acceptable coping mechanism as they get older. You are also worried that it will negatively affect your health if you don’t stop.
I don’t want to leave him, but I’m not sure I’ll endure this for long.
Lost but still in love
Dear Lost: The first thing you need to do is contact an Al-Anon group (or other “friends and families” support group) to share your story, burdens, and questions with people who have been on a path full of these challenges.
One thing you can learn is that if you find that your husband has fainted on the basement floor, leave it there (and don’t lead it to bed). You can wake up alone on the basement floor, you might wake up.
He shares with you the feeling of depression. Unfortunately, alcohol is depressing, which will make everything worse for him. Obviously, drinking it has a huge impact on your home life, and I think your toddlers are becoming more and more aware of their father’s problem.
Yes, your husband needs to initiate a job search. Your depression is likely to make you feel paralyzed; his inertia can also be red herring, which gives him a “reason” to stay exactly there to continue drinking.
It would not be wise to leave your job until you find another job because many hours spent at home can increase your drinking.
You need to take care of yourself and your children. If this situation is unbearable (I could imagine it could be), then do everything you can to temporarily break away from it. He should not martyr his family for his addiction, but should recognize his own weakness to force him to stop.
Dear Amy: – Are you sensitive or reasonable? he wondered if his 10-month relationship with his boyfriend was a good guardian.
You wrote, “If a relationship really clicks, you feel happy, not as a messy first draft.”
I read this to my wife and we both loved it.
Dear Happy: Well, I’m a writer. I know a thing or two about the messy first sketches.
You can email Amy Dickinson at [email protected] or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. Follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook as well.