Dear Amy: I have been with my boyfriend for more than six months now. He is the sweetest and greatest man I have ever dated, and I want to spend my life with him.
I make more money, have a great home and I'm an extremely independent person. Because I followed this path and am a few years older (29 vs. 26), I am concerned that he won't ever "grow up." I feel like he is still chasing this wild childlike fantasy of being in a band and going on short tours.
He has never asked for money and does odd jobs, so I am never paying for all of our expenses. I do probably spend more on us, but I make more, so I'm totally OK with that. However, once upon a time, I would not have tolerated dating someone with ambitions that didn't follow a "normal" path.
We've talked about taking the next steps for our future, including marriage, but I'm not sure how he can expect those things to happen without getting a full-time job and letting go of the music fantasy life.
While I've seen a little progress, things aren't necessarily going quickly in the direction I want.
Am I settling on him because he is an awesome person and treats me like a queen? Or am I being a brat by wanting more stability and growth from him?
-- Worried Girlfriend
Dear Girlfriend: What you seem to be doing is looking at your adult partner and branding him as a child because he doesn't want what you want. He wants to be a musician, and the life you describe -- working temporary jobs and gigging when you can -- is the musician's life.
You should proceed in this relationship with a clear objective for each of you to get what you want in life.
If nothing in his life changes, would you still want to be with him? Are you willing to be the steady financial backbone while he continues pursuing the life of an artist?
As long as you see being with someone who treats you like a queen as "settling," and someone who wants to be a musician as a childish fantasy, you won't be able to accept his life choices, and this doesn't bode well for your long-term future.
Both of your paths are legitimate, and all that's left is a question of basic compatibility.
Dear Amy: Recently, my husband came down with the flu. During his illness, he moved into our guest bedroom, so that I could sleep without being awakened by his coughing.
My husband has always seemed to need less sleep than I, and has always gotten up at least two hours before I do (we are both retired). But he also needs a nap in the middle of the day, something I never do.
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His sleep time may be shortened due to me: I have bouts of insomnia, get up two or three times a night and, even in my sleep, I do a lot of tossing and turning. I've often said that sleeping with me must be like sleeping with a cricket.
Amy, we love each other dearly. But since he's been sleeping in the guest bedroom, he is getting more and better sleep, even while ill, and so have I.
I am torn. I love sleeping in the same bed with my husband, but currently it doesn't seem to work. Sleeping in separate rooms doesn't feel right emotionally, but I'll admit I love getting a good night's sleep.
What should we do?
Dear Insomniac: Several recent studies show how vital sleep is for a person's health. Of course, emotional closeness is also very important to your marriage.
One solution might be for you to start out together, and then for you to change beds and retire to the guest room after the first time you awaken at night. I'd welcome hearing from readers who have faced this challenge.
Dear Amy: "Active Traveler" was upset because her obese traveling companion couldn't partake of the full experiences during their international travel. And now Active was concerned because another obese friend wanted to join them!
She should bring both of these friends along on her next trip. Then the two obese women can entertain each other and Active can enjoy her own more active choices.
Dear Reader: "Active Traveler" was trying to maximize her own traveling experiences. Doubling down on this problem hardly seems like a solution to me.
(You can contact Amy Dickinson via email: email@example.com. Readers may send postal mail to Amy Dickinson, c/o Tribune Content Agency, 16650 Westgrove Drive, Suite 175, Addison, Texas, 75001. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or "like" her on Facebook.)