Annie's Mailbox The blame for affair belongs to husband
Dear Annie: I must respond to "A Discarded Wife," who was married for 33 years when her husband left her for another woman. I am a former "Other Woman" and am surprised how you pounded on the character of the OW and didn't say a word about the husband. The blame for the affair should fall squarely at his feet.
No one can "steal" someone's spouse if they don't want to go. "Discarded" asked, "Don't you have any compassion, respect or dignity?" When I first met her husband, I had all the compassion in the world for her. Then I experienced her whiny manipulations firsthand, and a lot of that compassion vanished. She is not totally innocent in the breakup of her marriage. I carry my head high. I am not ashamed.
The ending to my story is very painful. Most married men do not leave their wives for the OW. After three years, my love was persuaded back to his wife by threats of financial ruin and her efforts to turn their kids and grandkids against him. I am now the discarded one because he didn't have enough backbone to follow through. So the wife "won" and got to keep her husband, her home and the illusion of being a happy couple. All of society rallies around her. The OW is never spoken of again. There are no counselors clamoring to help me recover.
Who is really to blame for this mess? The husband, who first betrayed his wife, then also crushed my spirit. I will never again involve myself with a married man, not out of compassion for his wife, but to protect my own heart. Former Other Woman
Dear Former: We understand you are hurting, and yes, of course, the husband is primarily at fault, but you don't get off so easily. It is wrongheaded to think a wife's "whininess" is a good reason for you to break up a marriage. And it is delusional to think he went back to her solely because she "manipulated" him. She may be less than wonderful, but if he wanted you enough, honey, you'd have him.
Counseling doesn't have to be specifically targeted to "Other Women" in order to be helpful. Please look into short-term assistance so you can get your emotional life back in order and seek out men who are both available and worth your time.
Dear Annie: I am a highly skilled secretary in my late 40s. After several years with my employer, I am out of a job due to a takeover.
I've sent out dozens of r & eacute;sum & eacute;s and have had many interviews, and I do not understand the lack of common courtesy from employers who won't make a follow-up call. I realize no one wants to tell me, "You are the most qualified, but we are giving the job to the boss' niece," but I would rather get bad news than think I missed hearing from them. Am I being overly sensitive? Anna in Lansing, Mich.
Dear Anna: No, this actually is a common complaint from job seekers. Very few prospective employers bother to notify the applicants that the position has been filled. If you don't hear back within a week of your interview, by all means, call and ask if a determination has been made. We hope you find something soon. (And it might help to give them an e-mail address.)
Dear Annie: "Bored in British Columbia's" complaint that he lacks a sexual relationship with his wife is not unusual. Many men are singing the same song.
My husband and I struggled with our sex life. He wasn't interested in the evenings, and I wasn't interested in the mornings. After more years than I'd like to admit, we discovered that the midday rendezvous was just perfect. It entails coming home from work during the day when the kids are in school or away from the house. I'd suggest Mr. Bored give it a try. K.R.
Dear K.R.: Couples often don't consider that their libidos may be on incompatible circadian rhythms, but it's not unusual. Thanks for the suggestion.
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