Life Advice



Annie's Mailbox: Devastated in Virginia

Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar on

Dear Annie: I am a 69-year-old woman from a small town and will be celebrating my 50th wedding anniversary this year. The problem is, two years ago, I found out my 69-year-old husband was having an affair with a 20-year-old.

Although I can remember being suspicious of "Ralph" at least once in the past, this was the only time I had proof he actually was being unfaithful. (I found a letter the girl had written to him.) I don't know how long this business was going on, but I assume it started at the same time Ralph stopped being intimate with me.

I confronted Ralph with the letter, and he told me the affair was over. However, if I bring it up even now, he is still very quick to come to this girl's defense, and I can tell she still is often on his mind. Even though he insists he has stopped seeing her, I suspect he hasn't, because I am pretty sure he is in love with her.

Considering the enormous age difference, I don't know what they could possibly have in common, other than sex. We have some money in savings, and I am afraid this girl has ulterior motives and may trap Ralph by becoming pregnant.

I am losing the love I once felt for this man. I try hard not to let my emotions show to my family, because how in the world would I explain this to them? I can't even explain it to myself. Should I keep on pretending everything is fine and ignore this affair, or should I see a lawyer? -- Devastated in Virginia

Dear Va.: We can't tell you whether or not to stay with Ralph, who apparently is desperate to feel young again. Only you can decide if he's worth it. But see a lawyer anyway, to be sure you are protected, legally, should he leave you.

It would be helpful if you could convince Ralph to come with you for some sessions with a counselor. If not, please go without him so you can make the decision that is best for you.

Dear Annie: I have a wonderful opportunity to join my grown children and young grandchildren in another state. I would love to do this.


I am not crazy about the city I live in, although I love my job and most of the people I work with. I want to be honest about leaving to be with my family, but I also do not want to be let go before I am ready.

How do I go about finding another job in my new location, and when do I let my current employers know I will be leaving? -- Mimi

Dear Mimi: Find out if your business has a policy about the amount of time required to inform them before you quit. If you think your bosses would be understanding, or if you must train someone to take your place, you might want to let them know sooner. Meanwhile, check the want ads and online listings in the city in which you are planning to reside. Ask your family to check out local advertising and "Help Wanted" signs. It's even possible someone at your current job has connections that would be useful. Good luck.

Dear Annie: My friend, "Scott," always turns our conversations into something sexual, whether he's talking about someone he has slept with or describing various sex acts. He tends to get rather graphic when he does this, and it flat-out irritates me. It's nearly impossible to hold a normal conversation with him. Based on this, could he be considered a sex addict? -- Had Enough in California

Dear California: Maybe, but there would have to be more to it than talking. Scott's verbal preoccupation could be masking an inadequacy or insecurity about sex. Regardless, if you don't want to hear this conversation, tell him to stop, or walk away. No one is twisting your arm to keep listening.


"Annie's Mailbox" is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar. This column was originally published in 2016. 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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