DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: Every Saturday afternoon my wife says she’s going out to play bridge with her three friends.
I ran into one of her card-playing friends this week and asked her how the weekly bridge game was going, and she corrected me. It’s every two weeks! Ohhhh… that’s not what my wife’s been telling me.
So where is she going on the off weeks? I’m scared to ask. We almost broke up four years ago when she found out I had a "friend" on the side. She left me, and it was the most horrible seven days and nights of my life.
Then she came back both barrels blazing, and I thought we worked it out… or did we? What should I do? I’m no angel, and I know I owe her one, but I’m going crazy here. Please help!
— Fearing Her Revenge, St. James
Dear Fearing: Tell your wife about running into her friend, who spilled the beans. If she wanted to get back at you, then she needs to know she was successful — so she can stop. Tell her how horrible you’re feeling. Maybe this will even the score between you.
She came back to you before, so she must care, but she may not have entirely forgiven you. Perhaps she felt your cheating opened the door for her. Hopefully you two can call this ridiculous competition off!
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: My husband is the greatest man on Earth. I love him deeply. My only fear is he’ll die and leave me alone. This fear has compounded with the COVID, and this year my fear has become a trauma.
I’ve started having panic attacks if he comes home late thinking he died in the traffic. I fuss over his health, to the point where he actually yelled at me yesterday: "I’m 51. Stop treating me like a decrepit old man!" Then he said: "Go see a shrink, for God’s sake! I’m sick and tired of you fussing over me like an old hen." He put on his boots, and just before leaving he looked me straight in the eye and said: "Where’s the happy woman I married? I don’t see her in this house anymore."
God knows he’s much healthier than I am. What should I do?
— Worried Sick, Transcona
Dear Worried Sick: Obsessive worrying about a loved one’s safety can’t save their life, but it can kill a relationship. Your husband is warning you, so your biggest worry should be losing him, and soon!
To give your husband hope you’ll change, thank him right away for expressing his feelings bluntly. Then promise him you are going to take his advice and see a therapist. They may also be able to prescribe something to settle down your anxiety enough to allow you to work through the problems in your behaviour, address the origins and learn how to cope.
Explain the situation to your physician first. If the waiting list is too long for a psychiatrist, a psychologist could help you. If you need medication, your physician can prescribe it.
Please send your questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org 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.