DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I recently went camping with my husband and met another couple who seemed very nice. We invited them over to our spot for dinner and got into the cocktails. After the sun went down, the woman invited me over to see their set-up and I was surprised to see wall-to-wall mattresses in the large tent. She took my hand, looked directly into my eyes and said, "We'd be happy to share this with you and your husband tonight, if you're into it." I was so shocked my mouth opened and closed like a guppy, no words coming out. Finally I said, "Are you asking me if we're into swinging?" and she said simply. "Yes, I am." I turned on my heel, and went back to the fire all messed up inside. I didn't relay the info to my husband until later, and he was strangely quiet about it. Now, I think he may have wanted to try it! That's making my stomach go round. I feel worried, like maybe he doesn't think I'm enough, after an offer like that. Please help.
--Scared of Swinging, St. James
Dear Scared: Be brave! Open the topic. Whatever fears you have are larger than the reality of a talk with your husband. You have already jumped to a lot of conclusions, because he was silent (just as you were, at first). You've pictured him having sex with the other couple, judged yourself as "not enough" and are probably if he'd like to push you into swinging. Preface your big talk with a warning you've been feeling insecure since his silent reaction. Don't pretend to be ultracool. You don't need to hear the details, such as what he thought of the other woman's body (unless it's uncomplimentary, of course!) If all he's been thinking about is the part where he's swinging with the other woman, sober him up by exploring the rest of the scene. Ask him how he'd feel about getting naked with another man in the tent. And ask him how he'd feel about your having sex with another guy. He might be horrified at that idea, though excited at the thought of another woman coming on to him. That's a common fantasy for married men. In fact some guys mentally undress a whole busload of women on the way home from work every day. That doesn't mean they want to cheat on their wives, but they may be pretty wound up by the time they get home.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I took money from petty cash at work and replaced it three days later and no one noticed. So, I stole more for the weekend and no one said anything, except today I suddenly got assigned a job where I don't handle money. It was a demotion, for sure. Do you think somebody noticed or am I just being paranoid? Should I quit this job before I get called upstairs and accused?
-- Nervous Stomach, Downtown
Dear Nervous: You got to change your evil ways, baby. You obviously aren't aware of hidden cameras which are often trained on employees handling money. Though you think nobody saw you take the petty cash, the camera may have picked up both thefts and both returns. It's wise to quit and find a job elsewhere before they charge you and remove you. This time look for a position which doesn't involve temptation.