By Kathy Mitchell
and Marcy Sugar
Dear Annie: I am down to my last nerve with my husband of 30 years. He has turned into a lazy slob I can no longer tolerate.
Last year, “Evan” worked a total of three weeks. It was the same the year before. He has taken one shower in the past four months, which was also the only time he changed his clothes.
I work a full-time job, and Evan sits in front of the TV all day long. He is unmotivated and does not care that I am struggling to pay the bills. He also appears to be a hypochondriac, but refuses to see a doctor for any of his supposed symptoms.
I think my only option now is a divorce and to not worry about what happens to him after I leave. What are your thoughts?
Disgusted and Tired of Being Used
Dear Disgusted: Healthy individuals do not suddenly turn into unwashed lumps after 30 years. Is Evan depressed? Does he have anxiety issues? He needs medical attention. If he is too listless to arrange it, tell him you are going to make an appointment for him to see the doctor, and then accompany him. Make every effort to address this before walking out. It sounds like he needs help.
Dear Annie: Six months ago, my husband and I drove several hundred miles to attend his niece’s wedding. Our gift was a three-piece china serving set bought at an antique shop during a visit to a small lakeside town. We were inspired by the quaint, artsy atmosphere, and we really liked the ivory color trimmed in gold and the holly design in the filigree border. We imagined it would be used during the holidays in years to come and would be a reminder of their wedding day. It was in perfect shape, and the cost was comparable to what we have spent in the past for other nieces and nephews.
However, instead of receiving a thank-you note, we received a box in the mail. Inside was our gift, broken, along with a letter written by my husband’s brother. The letter said that the bride and groom had no idea what the gift was and that a simple card of congratulations would have been more appropriate than the “yard sale item” we gave them. He accused us of being inconsiderate, tasteless and insulting.
The bride and groom are college graduates, over 30 and own their own home. We sent letters to both of them and to my brother-in-law explaining that our good wishes were sincere and no offense was intended. Did we make a mistake by giving a pre-owned gift that we loved?
Wedding Gift Nightmare
Dear Wedding Gift: No. Guests can give whatever they choose, although it is considerate to make it returnable. If the bridal couple doesn’t like it, they must still send a proper thank-you note and not chastise the giver. The father of the bride has no business getting involved at all. We assume the china arrived broken, and this may have been the source of the problem. But even so, your brother-in-law was unconscionably rude.
Email your questions to anniesmailboxcomcast.net, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045.