DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I woke up recently vomiting, with wicked stabbing pains to my abdomen. I needed to go to emergency. I woke my husband and he said -- get this -- "If it isn't life-threatening, drive yourself. I'm too tired." I started to cry, and phoned my neighbour, who came immediately. I was in serious medical trouble by the time I got to the hospital. Since then I can't shake the feeling I'm falling out of love. I notice he drinks every day, he's a VLT addict and, at 32 years old, this overgrown party boy says he's "too young to slow down and have a baby." We are in our early 30s. Every day I feel more distant and I won't sleep with him. He's furious, calls me "the ice princess," and threatens to see other women at the bar. I don't know where to go with this anymore. -- Gone Stone Cold, North End
Dear Cold: Under that ice, you're either boiling mad, or in a growing state of indifference. Go see a counsellor alone, and express everything you can get out -- scream, yell, cry. Can't afford that? Put on some music, and start writing about your feelings -- all of them -- and let yourself cry. Pencil writing is more conducive to emotional writing than computer keys or pens, and lying on your stomach with your head in the pillows encourages crying. Then make lists of pros and cons under these headings: Husband, Lover, Friend and Father to My Children. Weight them as to importance. You'll be amazed at how this clarifies your situation. Frankly, you're too old to let this marriage continue if you don't think he measures up as a father and life partner. Another consideration? Three of the clear deal-breakers for marriage, to my mind, are abuse, adultery and addiction. He's scoring two out of three.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: My mother delights in calling me baby nicknames like Droopy Drawers and Pookie, in front of my girlfriends and I am in my mid-20s. I was taught to respect my elders but Mom isn't respecting me. I'm surprised because my mother said her sisters used to do this to her, and she hated it. How can I stop her? If I complain, she tells the girlfriend I'm a baby and have no sense of humour. -- Annoyed, St. Boniface
Dear Annoyed: This is a form of bullying, so fair play has already gone out the window. You've tried to stop her the usual ways and it hasn't worked. Advise her that the next time she pulls this trick, you will have a few of her old nicknames ready to fire back. Then call your aunties and get the goods.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I hate the kid who sits behind me in school because he is always bugging me. I asked the teacher if I could move and she asked me why. I was scared to tell her why, so she didn't move me. If I tell her why and she lets that kid know, I could get beaten up. -- Scared to Tell, Winnipeg
Dear Scared: Teachers are experienced with this; it happens many times in a teaching career that students ask to be moved. Tell the teacher and say clearly you're afraid of being beaten up by this kid and that teacher will know how to work things so it looks like it's her idea, not yours, to move you.
Questions or comments? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or send letters c/o Miss Lonelyhearts, 1355 Mountain Ave. Winnipeg R2X 3B6