Dear Amy: My wife and I have been married for 13 years. We both recently turned 40.
Before she got married, she had always said she wanted to have two children. I wanted that too!
We’ve put this off for a few years to get in a good financial position.
Her younger sister had two children and the inevitable questions started flying about when we would have children. It was mostly a question I considered rude, so I didn’t answer it.
Over the years my wife has gone from saying “We have dogs” to “We don’t want kids” without ever having a conversation between us about it because she regularly avoided that talk.
In more recent times she has told others that we don’t have kids because I don’t want them, which couldn’t be further from the truth.
She is now convinced she is too old to have children, and bringing up the idea of adoption is mocked as she believes these children are “trouble.” She has said extremely derogatory things about adoption.
This has created a huge rift in our marriage, and I don’t know if it can be fixed because she is unwilling to go to couples counseling, meet with adoption agencies to actually get factual information, or discuss it.
Am I unreasonable to think that her shift in thinking, without talking about it, is unfair to me?
Dear Husband: First, to address your wife’s attitude towards children available for adoption: she is wrong.
She clearly doesn’t want to be a parent. She may throw up all kinds of false roadblocks on the path to parenthood, but the answer is clear.
Your wife refuses to address deeper issues, try to resolve them, or even discuss them with you.
This is an extremely important and primary issue. How this is resolved will affect the rest of your life in profound ways.
I strongly recommend that you find a counselor yourself. It will be challenging and very helpful to go through your history and reveal your deep feelings about it with a neutral and compassionate person.
Single men can raise and adopt children. This is legal across the country, and while it’s still relatively rare (compared to single women adopting), if your marriage is collapsing at this point, I suggest you consider adoption.
Dear Amy: I am a woman of 32 years. I spent my 20s in a serious long-term relationship.
After we broke up, I took a few years to “sow my wild oats” and to figure out who I am without him.
Now I’m looking for something more than “friends with benefits.” However, the last few men I’ve met and gone on dates with, as healthy as they seemed on online dating sites (since that’s my main way of meeting men), were really just looking for hookups.
I want to find a life partner. I’m chatting with a great guy I met online and we have a date scheduled for later this week. But I’m nervous we’ll meet and he just expects more than a date. I’m over that. Like I said, I want a real relationship.
Can you give me some advice on what to do or say on a first or second date to take it in that direction without scaring the guy away?
Best Start Over: I especially suggest listening a lot. As you’ve no doubt experienced, people tend to reveal themselves (and their intent) when you finally meet in person.
It’s valid to ask someone outright what they’re looking for. If they’re fresh out of a relationship, they might be in their own phase of sowing oats.
You could say you’re looking for a long-term, committed relationship. The only phrase I can think of that prospects might find “scary” on the first or second date is if you’re referring to “the tick of my fertile uterus.”
Otherwise, if guys are afraid of your own genuine intentions, then it’s best you know early. Forward!
Dear Amy: “Exhausted” reported that on Thanksgiving night she received a lengthy email from an “awakened” friend who attacked the concept of Thanksgiving and ruined it for her.
Thanks for saying, “If just learning someone else’s opinion is ruining your vacation, then you should rethink your vacation.”
Dear fan: People who are stuck in their own views often find it tiring to admit that others are stuck in theirs.
You can email Amy Dickinson at [email protected] or write a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.