Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy
I’ve been married for six years and I’m currently expecting our first baby, something that we’ve been looking forward to for the last few years. Recently, my husband was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder 2 and the months following the diagnosis he become verbally and emotionally abusive towards me. He even randomly called a real estate agent behind my back to get my house assessed (I bought the house before I met him and I have no intention of selling as the mortgage is only $450 and will be paid off within another year). Once he realized I would not be selling, he moved back in with his mother, four hours away from our home.

His mother and I don’t get along, although I had tried many times in the past (before we had married), but my efforts were always thwarted by her drug addiction and her inability to stay on medication (she, too, is bipolar). My husband is also in recovery (eight years clean and sober – he got into rehab after we met) and I often worry that he might slip when he’s with her. My husband planned on living apart from me until he got himself sorted out with medication and therapy, and under a doctor’s advice it was best that we didn’t share a living space because the stress he was causing me was enough to hospitalize me.

He has been away less than a week. We were talking every day and things were looking up. I felt like he was on the path back to becoming the person who I love. But yesterday, out of the blue, he called and said that he didn’t want to come back. He said that he wanted to start over and when I asked why, his answer was that I was greedy for not wanting to sell my house (I suspect he wants me to sell to get him out of debt for overspending during his mania) and the town I live in makes him depressed. The only thing that would make him happy, according to him, is for me to sell and move into his mother’s apartment, or for us to separate.

His new plan to start his life over is to quit his cushiony, well paying job here, live with his mother, and her new boyfriend (they’ve been together for three weeks) will get him a job at the local mine. I have serious doubts that he will get that job – or that he will even enjoy manual labour. I feel that his mother might have even influenced him to think that the diagnosis is wrong.

My head is swimming. I am heavily pregnant and I was so excited for the future. I had thought this was a bump in the road and with time, therapy, and medication we would get through this. But now he feels that his happiness is hinging on him living with his mother. I feel like the carpet has been ripped out from under me. Just the other day we were talking like everything was normal and making plans for him to come to the next ultrasound.

He still wants to be involved with the baby, but now I am scared what sort of influence he and his mother will be on the child. What should I do? If he finally comes to his senses should I accept him back? Or should I try to untangle my life from his, knowing that he might not follow through with his treatment or even be swayed by his mother in the future? I tried to appease and offered to sell my house and move to another town together, but he firmly wants to live with his mother. -Pregnant and Heartbroken

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This week in the forums we’re discussing:

Ex-girlfriend Advice Needed

My husband looks at other women – now men look at me! Help!

Not inviting dad for family weekend

“My Insecurity Is Killing my Relationship”

This whole Trump situation just gets worse and worse everyday

Anyone going on awesome dates?

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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at [email protected].


Saying “I love you” — the when, the how, and the “what’s taking so long?” of it — is one of the most asked about topics in letters I receive from readers. Ten years ago I wrote something that went viral about how women in heterosexual relationships shouldn’t say “I love you” first. I was writing for a website at the time that valued clickbait above just about everything else, and this seemed like a natural lightening rod. It was, and I got both a lot of heat and a lot of love for that post. My feelings have evolved over the years (and I’m also not so concerned about clickbait!), so today I say: Life is short; tell people you love them (but, you know, maybe not on the first date…).

I remember the fist time Drew and I exchanged “I love you’s”: [continue reading…]

My boyfriend is 30 and I’m 25 years old. I come from a Middle Eastern background, but he is white. My problem is that I don’t know how the rules of proposal and marriage work here. We’ve been dating for over a year and my parents are asking for an update every month. You see, by our standards the guy should propose by six months and I don’t know how long people date here before a proposal, so I don’t know what to tell my parents. (He is 30, after all, and by my culture’s standards, I am like a 30-year-old too).

He knows I expect a wedding and he has even taken me to pick out rings so he can have an idea of what I like, but that was five months ago. On occasion he brings up how expensive rings and weddings are. On those occasions, I’ve chosen to ignore his comments. He also seems to have this phobia that women will take his house and money. I once asked him what’s one thing he wants to tell me but feels like he can’t, and he said, “Can I ever trust you with my credit card?” I was shocked to hear that because I rarely shop, always try to save money for my future, have a great credit score, have no student debt, and am working toward a doctorate degree (which will take me two to four years) while planning to work full-time after graduation. I’m not the type of girl who’s looking to leech off some guy.

Last weekend on a double date we were congratulating a couple on buying their first condo and I said hopefully that that’ll be us in five years. He said: “Who’s this ‘us’ you’re talking about? Are you buying me a house?” I said: “I can buy myself a house; I only need 10% downpayment.” He said: “That’s great. Can I live in your house too?”

I would’ve gotten up and left, but it was a double date and I didn’t want to be rude. I’m getting some scrooge vibes, but I might be wrong. Is there any way I can know if he’s ready for the financial commitments of marriage?

Is this how easy-going white men are? A Middle Eastern guy would be too proud to show he’s struggling financially. They also often take initiative in most steps in the relationship. I feel like I don’t know what I should expect from my guy.

Can you please tell me how I can school him? I feel as though I’ve been Rosie sunshine for too long. — Done with Rosy Sunshine

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My husband asked his brother to send a picture of his new girlfriend of five days, “Jezebel,” and Jezebel decided it would be better to send a video instead where she was holding the camera and staring at it the whole time and sticking her tongue in his mouth. It was only four seconds but it’s just like, really, bitch? WTF. I don’t like the girl already as I find it disrespectful to send G-rated porn to my husband. I’m offended.

It’s not a big huge deal but I’m mainly mad because my husband responded, “I like her.” He says it’s because she’s being nice to his brother, but she’s not being nice to me. He said he thought the video was weird but mostly gave her praise, which I feel is disloyal to me, since Jezebel sent my husband a slutty stare-in-the-camera video while trying to be sexy to my husband. I feel like my husband should consider me and tell her that’s weird, or tell her to keep the bedroom videos to herself (jokingly but seriously). He could have said anything but “I like her.”

The whole thing is so rude to me, and my husband never has my back; if I insist he say something, he will say it in a way that makes me look crazy instead of handling it by respecting me while still being cool with his brother. Now I feel like this stupid little thing has divided us even further as I never catch him being loyal or standing up for or praising me, EVER, in 12 years. I want him to think of me and stand beside me on things. Is it even worth making my point if I do it politely and, if I do, how do I do that? I’ve already expressed my feelings about it to my husband and I guess I want him to agree with me and say, “Yeah, what the heck?!” I want the girl to know not to do that again; I’m just so pissed off about it.

Am I wrong? Is my husband wrong? And what, if anything, should be done? I’m 37, he’s 39, we’ve been married 12 years, and we have not had a happy marriage. All things that break a marriage have been done in our marriage from affairs to losing a baby. I’ve held on, he’s kind of stuck around barely, and I just don’t think he will ever get it. I feel so alone and disrespected, left out, and back-stabbed. My husband is a narcissist, by the way. So really does this dumb point I’m making even matter? I’m going out of my mind, spinning my wheels. — Disrespected By a Jezebel

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