Dear Abby: I have been dating the most amazing man for the past 11 months. As we approach the one-year anniversary of the day we met, this "perfect" man is showing some not-so-perfect traits. I was unlucky in love for many years until he swept me off my feet. We have both become extremely close with each other's respective friends and family.
He's everything I have been searching for in a life partner and husband. But when he drinks, he confides his deep fears of dating me and enumerates each and every one of my relationship insecurities—nagging, anxiety, loneliness, etc. The next day he acts like nothing happened! He swears up and down that it was the alcohol talking and he doesn't mean any of the harsh words he spoke the night before.
Should I believe him? Please don't let me be the naive girl traveling down a dark rabbit hole.—Self-Conscious Girlfriend
Dear Girlfriend: Your "amazing" man appears to be a loose-lipped lush. Not knowing him, I can't guess the degree to which he blacks out when he's been drinking. Some alcoholics don't remember what happened the night before. Others simply don't WANT to remember, so they claim amnesia.
Regardless of how you feel about him, for your own well-being, draw the line and tell him he needs to stop drinking. If he's as alcohol-dependent as I suspect he is, he will give you an argument or an outright refusal. And that's your cue to tell him if he wants a future with you, he will have to make a choice.
Dear Abby: My in-laws are angry that I have declined to host them over the holidays this year. My husband is never helpful. When company comes, he sits on his mobile phone while I do everything. I told his parents I can't have them over because all the responsibility falls on me. My "no" should suffice, but my mother-in-law hopes to argue me into hosting.
We don't have children because I knew I would end up raising them alone. I don't want the in-laws here "hinting" that they need us to help them when my husband won't lift a finger.
I recently became disabled, and my in-laws keep pressuring me to share my diagnosis with them. They think I should cheerfully do all the work of hosting them as a way to fight my disability!
They are extremely nosy. I am now blocking her calls. I know they will spend their time here trying to get a look at my medications and any financial information left out. What else can I do?—Unmerry in Louisiana
Dear Unmerry: You should all try to achieve a workable compromise, if that's possible. Ask your MIL if she's prepared to take some of the responsibility off your shoulders if she and her husband visit. Suggest they stay in a hotel or motel rather than burden you. And your husband (their son) should back you up on this.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
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