Annie's Mailbox: Trying To Build a Better Life in the Midwest
Dear Annie: I am a married woman in my early 60s. My husband and I have been married for 35 years. We get along fine most of the time. He is a good man and a good provider. He can be opinionated at times, but he loves his family and friends.
The problem is his constant need for sex. During our early years, I went along with it, but he would want sex at the most inconvenient times, like when I was all made up, dressed and ready for work. He has a high sex drive, and I do not.
After years of trying to satisfy him, I am at the age where sex is neither important nor enjoyable. Sometimes, it is downright uncomfortable. I do it occasionally, for his benefit, but I really don't like to.
I do love my husband and show him in other ways. How can I tell him that I don't enjoy this part of marriage anymore without hurting his sense of manhood? -- Trying To Build a Better Life in the Midwest
Dear Trying: You are never going to convince your husband that sex is something he ought to do without. Part of that involves his sex drive, but we suspect another part is a need to control. Still, if you love him and want to remain married, we hope you will try to accommodate him on occasion, in which case, please talk to your doctor about how you can make sex more comfortable. You also can take your husband with you to the doctor so he can better understand what you are going through, and then reach an accommodation that is acceptable to both of you.
Withholding sex because you (and only you) are no longer interested can damage your marriage, making your husband unhappy and depressed or, worse, making him feel justified in looking for someone else to fill the void.
Dear Annie: Is it OK to plug your cellphone into an outlet at a restaurant, grocery, department store, bar, apartment building hallway, etc.?
I work in a restaurant, and people are constantly unplugging lights and other electrical appliances in order to charge their phones. They don't bother to ask permission before moving tables or to ask what they are disconnecting. Should owners add a "charging fee" to those who want to use their electricity?
What is the proper way to handle these inconsiderate thieves? -- Mrs. Watts
Dear Mrs. Watts: Most establishments don't mind if you plug into any available outlet, although it is always polite to ask first. But disconnecting lights or other appliances is not acceptable unless expressly given permission to do so. As for a "charging fee," owners must decide whether asking patrons to cover any increase in the electric bill is worth losing customers and creating ill will.
Dear Annie: You have suggested it is important for a host to find out about any serious allergies that guests may have. I have allergies to shellfish and nuts. I can go into anaphylactic shock simply by eating something that was cooked in the same pan as these foods or cut with the same knife.
But I believe the problem is my responsibility. When invited to a meal, I explain the issue to my host. If it creates a serious problem (she was planning on lobster), I simply decline graciously and suggest we meet another time. If it is buffet or wine and cheese, I tell my host that I will need her to indicate what is safe for me to eat. I turn it into a joke, saying, "It could otherwise be a more exciting evening than either of us planned."
I have found people very willing to share exactly what a dish contains and how it was prepared. I would hope my guests would afford me the same courtesy. We can't expect others to take responsibility for our health. -- Not Too Concerned Host
This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2014. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.