Annie's Mailbox - 7.30.12
Posted: Monday, July 30, 2012 8:00 pm
By: By Kathy Mitchell & Marcy Sugar
The Messenger 07.30.12
Dear Annie: My husband spends too much time on the Internet and then gets upset when I say so. Several months ago, I caught him talking to a woman online, and I’m worried it’s happening again. In spite of my suspicions, however, when I’ve checked his activity, I see nothing. (I realize he could be deleting things.)
Last night, we went out for dinner, and we weren’t in the door five minutes before he was standing in the bedroom with his tablet in his hands checking his email. When I tell him I’d like him to spend more time with me instead of his computer, he gets angry. What can I do? — My Husband Doesn’t Listen to Me
Dear Listen to Me: Are you objecting because your husband is addicted to his computer or because you think he is using it to cheat? Our concern is that he becomes angry when you broach the subject. This defensiveness is a way to protect his behavior. If you simply want more of his attention, first determine whether you are being too clingy, and then find effective ways to distract him. However, if you simply don’t trust him, that is a more serious issue, and we recommend counseling — with or without him.
Dear Annie: I used to have a lot of friends, and then I went through a major depression. I tried not to lean on them too much, but I did need to talk. I was universally abandoned. I was no longer fun. I was too frightened and depressed to go out. I couldn’t listen endlessly to their problems anymore. I wanted them to listen to mine. But I was careful not to suck the life out of them. In fact, some friends never knew I was depressed.
So, here I am with 350 Facebook friends from high school, college, work and church. Yet none of them calls. I saw these same people through multiple calamities. They will respond if I contact them, but that’s it. They are happy to like my Facebook status or comment on a photo, but no one invites me anywhere.
When I was at rock bottom, I often contemplated suicide. I sought help and got medication and counseling and am better. I’m sure if I died, these same people would show up at my funeral and say wonderful things about me.
If anyone sees themselves in this, please check out your roster of friends and show some friendliness. I sure could use some. — Lost in the City
Dear Lost: We suspect that when you went through an extended period of staying home, your friends developed the habit of enjoying themselves without you. You’ve made great steps in recovery, but might not be high on their list of social contacts. And please remember that 350 Facebook “friends” do not equal one or two real-life supportive friends.
You will need to make the next several moves, inviting people to go out to dinner, a movie, an art exhibit, a fashion show, whatever appeals to you. Once they remember how much they enjoy your company, things will improve. And if these friends continue to be distant, it’s time to find some new ones.
Dear Annie: I’d like to weigh in about having flowers at funerals. My mother was adamant on this subject. She always told me that if I couldn’t bring her flowers when was alive, she sure didn’t want them when she was dead. So my brother and I gave her flowers whenever we could.
At her funeral, we had a single red rose on her casket. It was her favorite flower. I’m sure the people attending the service thought we were being cheap, but I felt we kept to her wishes. I’m sorry about the florist’s loss of income, but my mother’s preferences were much more important. — Chattaroy, Wash.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column.
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Annie's Mailbox, Dear Annie