Dear Abby: Discussing sex life with ex is the final straw for wife

Dear Abby
Jeanne Philips

Dear Abby: I have been married for 19 years now. A few years back, I came to know about my husband’s platonic relationship with his old girlfriend. She lives in a different state and is married.

My husband has long chats with her every day about everything, including our sex life. I confronted him and asked him to end their relationship because knowing that he wants me to do something in bed because his friend does it bothers me a lot. He promised at the time that he wouldn’t talk or chat with her anymore, and I trusted him.

A few weeks ago, I discovered that he still chats with her every day, and he changed her name in his contact list to hide his relationship. I feel cheated on, and I want to end this marriage. Please help me. I don’t want to make a wrong step.

Jeanne Phillips

—Betrayed in Florida

Dear Betrayed: A couple’s sex life is supposed to be private. Your husband and his supposedly platonic “friend” have both betrayed the trust of their spouses. That he would expect you to do something in bed that he knows she is doing is substituting your body for hers, and frankly, it strikes me as another form of cheating. Obscuring her name in his contact file illustrates that he has no intention of ending their relationship.

You feel cheated on because you HAVE been cheated on. It will continue as long as you allow it. Because you’re afraid you will take a wrong step, start quietly gathering all the financial information you can and talk with several lawyers before deciding which one will work hardest to protect your interests and proceed from there.

Dear Abby: Due to COVID shutting schools down, my employer is now allowing staff to bring their kids to work if they don’t have alternative child care. I bring my 8-year-old, and I have seen many other kids around. Most of them are well behaved and don’t cause any problems.

However, we have a new employee, “Michelle,” who has started bringing her 4-year-old with her. The child, I’ll call her Autumn, is in her mother’s office, but she’s so loud, she can be heard all the way across the building! I thought surely Michelle would close her office door and contain Autumn’s “jolly” voice inside her own area, but she seems perfectly happy to let her daughter make as much noise as she wants.

I don’t understand this. Other parents make sure their kids behave and act appropriately. What can I do to let Michelle and my supervisor know that while yes, she can bring her child with her, it’s still her responsibility to make sure the kid isn’t creating a distraction?

—Tired of the Noise

Dear Tired Of The Noise: I do not think it would be prudent to talk about this with Michelle, which is sure to make her defensive. You should, however, inform your supervisor that because Michelle’s door is left open, her daughter’s “jolly” voice is creating a distraction. If it has been causing a problem for you, the chances are it is doing the same for other employees and reducing productivity.

Dear Abby: My 14-year-old son, “Jeff,” received word that one of his friends was killed in a tragic ATV accident a week ago. His only experience with death before this was a sick great-grandparent we were able to say goodbye to.

Jeff and I are close, and I have let him know that however he needs to grieve is OK. He says he’s “good.” I am concerned that my son is taking the loss harder than he lets on.

Jeff and his friend loved team sports and were in the same group for summer workouts. Jeff has been to only one workout since his friend’s death. I know this is recent and he needs time, but I also know the physical activity and the camaraderie would be good for him.

I’m trying not to smother him or project my own grief onto him (we are a tight sports community), but I’m unsure what to do. Can you offer some advice on how I can best support him?

– Grieving, Too, In Oregon

Dear Grieving, Too: When a tragedy happens to someone in a teenager’s circle, the friends sometimes pull together to support each other. Contact the coach of the team to which your son and his late friend belonged. The surviving team members may need help and possibly grief counseling. If that isn’t necessary, the coach may be able to offer the boys other constructive outlets for their grief or provide you with suggestions.

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