Dear Annie: This past year has been hell in my marriage. My husband has gone out of his way to mistreat me. It has been eight years since we have had sex. He claims it's due to a physical problem, but that's not true. I once spotted him fondling a female guest during a dinner prayer and getting excited.
He told me I repulse him and that's why he won't do anything about his sex problem. I asked him to leave, and he refused, saying he'd let the house rot to the ground before I'd get it. So I moved out. He gave my cell number to our preacher and church members and told them he could not live without me. After receiving calls threatening to have me publicly removed from their membership, I went back to him.
We went to our deacon's house for dinner last week, and he told them how he stayed home to take care of me after I was in a car accident, listing all the sacrifices he made on my behalf. He failed to mention that the reason he could stay home was that he had been fired from his job for sexual harassment -- his third offense. The church thinks he is wonderful and I am the bad guy.
I am not looking to destroy his reputation. I just want to get away from him before he further ruins my life. He has even lied to our children, saying I left because I have a boyfriend on the side. They believe him. What can I do? -- I Am So Sad
Dear Sad: Your husband is a bully who is counting on the fact that you won't defend yourself. Stop worrying about his reputation and consider your own. Please tell your children and the deacon the truth about your situation, and ask for their help. Counseling would be a good first step, with or without your husband, through your church or via your doctor's recommendation.
Dear Annie: A friend and I met at a restaurant to have dinner with a few close family members. One of the attendees is an insulin dependent diabetic. Just after ordering, while seated at the table, this person raised his shirt and injected himself in the stomach with insulin. It was unexpected and not the dining experience my friend and I expected to share.
I will be dining out with this person later this summer. What should I do or say to avoid a repeat of that unappetizing start to a meal? -- Lost My Appetite
Dear Lost: Unless these things can be done so discreetly that no one notices, it is best to inject insulin, insert contact lenses, brush hair, floss teeth, repeatedly blow one's nose, apply makeup, etc., in the restroom instead of subjecting your tablemates to your personal requirements. Some diabetics find this enormously inconvenient (and we can't blame them if the restrooms are unclean) and expect others to be tolerant. If your friend is one of those, we suggest you either avert your gaze and make the best of it, or tell the others to go ahead and order because you'll be arriving late.
Dear Annie: I was compelled to respond to "Worried Mom," who complains about her 22-year-old son's antisocial behavior while he is studying for the MCAT.
I remember very well studying for the MCAT. I spent every waking hour of the weekends at the library so I would not be disturbed. I studied nonstop all week. My friends worried when I left events after only 30 minutes. My parents saw me rarely.
The MCAT is a purposefully difficult exam. It weeds out those who are not serious about medicine as a career. Doctors sacrifice their personal lives for their patients. I recommend the parents do their son a huge favor and leave him alone. If he doesn't get into medical school due to insufficient study, he will forever regret his laxity. -- M.D. and a Happily Married Mother of Two
"Annie's Mailbox" is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar. This column was originally published in 2017. 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.