Life Advice



Annie's Mailbox: Husband has Emotional Affair

Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar on

Dear Annie: Please comment again about emotional affairs. My husband says this is a bunch of malarkey.

He has been hanging out quite a bit at a local establishment, which is owned by a woman who is rather flirtatious. She can get the men who come there to do little favors for her, and this includes my husband. I also know that he has been confiding in her and telling her details about some problems in our personal life that I would like kept quiet in the community. I believe the conversations he is having with her are the ones he should be having with me.

Many times when he comes home after seeing her, he hardly speaks to me for hours because he is all "talked out." He says that there is nothing going on and that he is true-blue for me. But I am uncomfortable with the amount of time he spends there.

I have asked him to stop going, and he has cut back from seeing her four times a day to just once. But it is still every day. He reads your column daily, so maybe you can comment again about emotional cheating. In my eyes, it is as bad as sexual cheating. -- Angie

Dear Angie: Your husband thinks that if there is no sex, there is nothing "going on." But if he is turning to another woman to find emotional support and complain about his marriage, he is shortchanging you, his life partner, and could begin to care too much about her. We have said before that giving your emotions, your heart and your innermost thoughts to someone other than your spouse is a form of cheating. It creates a bond with a third party, allowing that person into your marriage.

But the fact that this woman is a flirt doesn't mean she is interested in your husband, so try not to overreact. Instead, let your husband know that this close friendship is undermining your trust in him. He needs to keep those conversations less personal. If the two of you are having problems that need working out, please talk to a professional together.

Dear Annie: We have 5-year-old twins. A year ago, there was an argument in the family, and their uncle left town. Our kids were close to their uncle and still remember him.

The problem is, our son still asks about this uncle. We have told him that the uncle moved to another town. What is the best way to explain that his departure may be permanent? We don't think we will ever see him again. -- Missing Him


Dear Missing: You don't know that this rift is permanent, so there is no reason to give that impression to your children. At this age, they simply wonder where their favorite uncle went. Saying he moved to another town is accurate and appropriate. You don't need to give details. If your son asks when his uncle is coming back, simply tell him you don't know. Because that is the truth. If you don't bring up the subject, your son will eventually forget about him. How sad for all of you.

Dear Annie: This is in response to Overlooked,t the grandmother who was left out of her grandson's wedding pictures.

My husband and I have been professional wedding photographers for 25 years. In recent years, there has been a trend to spend all the wedding money on the showier aspects of the event and have either a friend or a discount photographer at the wedding. Often, this produces disappointing results, such as out-of-focus images and, in this case, missing pictures of important people. Unfortunately, you can't get that day back to reshoot.

I don't believe that the bride and groom intentionally omitted the grandparents. But I do believe they should have hired an experienced professional. -- D.


This Classic Annie's Mailbox column was originally published in 2015. To find out more about Classic Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at



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