Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: Separation may help wife gain clarity

Q: My husband wants to separate/divorce because of many issues that we have. He feels they are mostly my fault.

I'm not perfect but usually I only react badly if he gets angry at something I didn't even register, or if he insists he knows what I mean when I'm saying something else and trying to explain.

Anyway, I already apologized and took all the blame for the sake of the marriage, but he still wants to separate. I think we have communication issues and have begged for years to go to therapy. He refuses.

How hard do I try? Do I throw myself on the floor at his feet (figuratively), shower him with kindness, even if he doesn't give me the same? Or do I accept what he has decided and move on?

We don't have any children, so it's not that complicated, and also I'm tired of being berated for being "disrespectful." But when he's not angry things are good, I think!

When is it Trying Too Hard?

A: It's common for people to think separateanddivorce, all one thing, but they're two different things. Separate (think), divorce (let go).

Why not agree to the separation — since it seems to be coming anyway, whether you want it or not — and see how you feel after you adjust to it?

Who knows, after a few weeks of breathing air with the anger and criticism filtered out, you might find yourself more enthusiastic about a divorce than he is. You just said he "doesn't give me" kindness. Game over, no?

If your marriage isn't as unhealthy as you made it out to be here, then the solitude, focus and clarity permitted by your separation will help you repair your communication from your two different homes.

Either way, trying to heal is something you fully control, so start taking good care of you. A dynamic where one spouse pushes all blame onto the other is a textbook formula for your abuse. Drop your plea for couple's therapy, please, and start going just for you.


Tell Me About It: Play up challenged child’s strengths

Q: One of my children has a challenging personality. Within my family, we are aware of it, and deal with it, and love him oh-so-much. As he is getting older, I can see how the outside world (teachers, coaches, neighbors) favors him less than my other...
Updated: 10 hours ago

Tell Me About It: DNA results reveal 52-year-old secret

Q: I am in the middle of a growing crisis in my extended family because of revelations from a DNA match. After getting my results, I was contacted by a woman looking for her biological family. It quickly became apparent she was the child my sister ga...
Published: 02/20/18

Tell Me About It: Don’t expect help from careless grandma

Q: My mother moved to be closer to us when we had a baby, who’s now 2. She’s not responsible with him. She gives him anything he points to and grunts. Just in the past month, this has included a lighter ("He doesn’t know how to use it"), garden shear...
Published: 02/19/18
Ordinary dogs take to the Derby Lane greyhound track for the Mutt Derby

Ordinary dogs take to the Derby Lane greyhound track for the Mutt Derby

Some stopped midway, some turned around and ran the wrong way and some dashed to the arms of their owners as more than 300 average house pets took to the track at Derby Lane on Sunday for the Mutt Derby. The popular fundraiser for the Jaycees died o...
Published: 02/18/18

Tell Me About It: Doubts creep in to six-year relationship

Q: I have been with my partner for six years and have just graduated from college. I love my partner and could see myself happily married to them for the long haul. However, I am beginning to feel wistful about never having dated anyone else — or kis...
Published: 02/18/18

Tell Me About It: Vacation opens dialogue about money

Vacation opens dialogue about moneyQ: My girlfriend and I just went on our first vacation together. I thought it went well, but after we were home she told me she felt I had been cheap because I wanted to split all costs 50-50.I think cheap would be ...
Published: 02/16/18
Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Feb. 19-25

Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Feb. 19-25

Gasparilla Distance Classic: One of Tampa’s best known road races returns to downtown, with a 5K and 15K Saturday and an 8K and half marathon on Sunday. The chief attraction is the 15K on Saturday, which takes runners out and back along the man...
Published: 02/15/18
Updated: 02/18/18
Dance Moms star Chloe Lukasiak to appear at Florida State Fair on Saturday

Dance Moms star Chloe Lukasiak to appear at Florida State Fair on Saturday

TAMPA — Chloe Lukasiak will take on a different role than she is accustomed when she stops by the Florida State Fair this weekend.After all, the 16-year-old Pennsylvania-native and resident rose to fame on Seasons 1 through 4 of Lifetime’s reality te...
Published: 02/15/18

Tell Me About It: Past eating disorder affects food choices

Q: My wife refuses to change her diet and grocery shopping to accommodate my health needs and those of our kids. Everything she gets is processed grains and sugar. My doctor recently recommended losing weight, and exercise won’t cut it. But because s...
Published: 02/15/18
Top things to do this weekend: Florida State Fair, Mutt Derby at Derby Lane

Top things to do this weekend: Florida State Fair, Mutt Derby at Derby Lane

GO, DOG, GO: Mutt DerbyOne of the most hilarious days at the races is Sunday, when ordinary house pets get a chance to run on the Derby Lane greyhound track. Mutt Derby registration begins at 11 a.m., but you can register in advance at greyhoundpets...
Published: 02/14/18