Dear Ready: The hickey is not the issue; it's a symptom. Your relationship is in big trouble. Rather than blowing sky high and breaking up your home in one bout of finger-pointing and hellish name-calling, book an emergency appointment with a relationship counsellor and suggest that. You can get an appointment within 12-24 hours if you try a half dozen counsellors.
Dear Miss L: I'm a stay-at-home dad. I love my son and wouldn't change the situation. However I find myself getting quite bored in terms of not being around any other adults. I have joined activities outside the home with my son and met other parents. But it's the part of "making friends" and going out with other couples. My idea of going out would be with another couple who has children maybe to a movie or the park, or dinner with our kids -- something family-oriented. I have acquaintances on Facebook who have kids but I don't want to seem like a loser and start asking them. I'm shy and so is my wife. We re nice people and get along great with others but it's the part of, "Hey you wanna go do something?" that I just can't seem to get out. Even inviting people over would be nice... but I just can't seem to do so. It's the whole "what if they say no?' or they don't really want to, but agree just to be nice. That bothers me. -- Stay-at-Home Dad, Winnipeg
Dear Stay: Wow! You have all the bases covered. No one is getting invited out by you and your wife EVER, because you won't take a chance. Realize most of us feel a little uncomfortable the first time we invite people over, but we do it. So stage a bigger event, and take the pressure off yourselves. To hedge your bets, have a neighbourhood block party at your house to celebrate the snow when it arrives. Invite lots of people over with their kids for an early potluck and cartoons and a movie for the kids after dinner -- really funny ones. If half the people you invite come, that's enough. You and your wife don't have to initiate anything verbally. Just deliver fun invitations -- not in envelopes but colorful sheets of paper so people see it's not more junk mail. Ask people to phone and RSVP with a yes or no and be welcoming, not apologetic, when they call on the phone.
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