DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: Up at our cabin at the lake, I can’t stand my retired husband with me 24-7. This happens every year. I usually find a way to send him home after two weeks, and he generally seems glad to go.
This year he said he wasn’t going home when I was hinting it’d be cooler in the city for him (especially considering the weight he’s put on).
Then, all of a sudden, he got a phone call in his bedroom and shut the door. He came out and started packing and said he was going home and he’d see me at home by September 1.
What? Usually, he stays home a week or two and golfs with his buddies and then comes back up to the lake on weekends. Something seemed fishy, so after half a week I called the home phone and then his cellphone, and then both during the night. No answer. Was he sick?
I phoned the neighbour who said he’s around during the day, looking the same as usual. But, she added in an odd voice, his car isn’t there at night. I drove home right away and arrived after supper. No sign of him and his car. No answer on his cell either. He got home at 10, the next morning! I was up half the night, waiting for him.
He wasn’t even apologetic. "Well, you don’t want me, so what did you expect?" He said he was ready to vvbreak up, confessed he was "falling in love" with another woman. I told him I wouldn’t let him go, because we are legally wed.
He said "Watch me!" and left for her place. He must have been drunk! He’s never defied me like that before. What now? I’m furious and she’s not getting him!
— His Legal Wife, Winnipeg
Dear Wife: You don’t own your husband, and you’ve been treating him like an unwanted dog every summer ("Home to the kennel for you! I’m tired of your butt at the lake.")
It’s totally legal for him to leave and start the proceedings on a divorce. Asserting your ownership of him only drives him further away. You don’t act like you want him living closely with you anymore, and this other woman may really want him. Their relationship may or may not be serious at this point, but he obviously has a new place to stay for now, and perhaps to live.
He may also have seen this woman other summers when you hinted at him to head home from the lake, and he was just fine with going. He possibly saw her throughout the year as well.
Do you still have a sexual relationship with your husband? You mentioned he has his own bedroom at the lake. You can bet he’s not staying the night at the other woman’s place to watch TV — unless she’s just a close friend.
It’s time to have a long think about whether your relationship with your husband is actually just a habit now, and no longer a loving marriage for either of you.
If you want to fight for him, you’ll have to stay home from the lake and try to get him to go to marriage counselling with you. If he’s serious about the other woman, he may not go to any counselling sessions with you at all.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I’m in love with two guys at once. First, my boyfriend of two years, who is the same age as I am. He’s the sweetest, kindest person in the world. He’d do anything for me. In fact, sometimes it kind of makes me guilty the way he caters to me.
The other guy is older — in his 20s — and works for my dad, and he’s the opposite. He teases me and calls me crazy names like Squirt — because I’m tall! He’s really strong and funny and hot-looking. I’m sorry to say he has a girlfriend his own age. I dream about him at night, and the dreams are so hot. I don’t know what I should do about loving two men at once.
— Double Trouble, Brandon
Dear Double: You don’t have to choose between these two men, because neither guy is the long-term answer. You need to free yourself to find a guy who is a combination of both. The younger man who adores you and caters to you is more like a friend who has fallen in love with you — but it’s one-sided.
On the other hand, you have a romantic movie-star crush on the attached older guy who teases you and doesn’t kowtow to you. Be careful what you do to try to win him.
Put the two half-loves together and you’d really have an exciting candidate. From now on, be more careful with the dangerous word "love" in your mind as it creates pressures and dilemmas you don’t need.
When real mutual love comes along, you won’t have to ask yourself anything; you will just know.
Please send your questions and comments to email@example.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.
Each year, the Free Press publishes more than 1,000 letters to Miss Lonelyhearts and her responses to the life and relationship questions that come her way.