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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Tell absent hubby you miss his calls

Kathy Mitchell/Marcy Sugar

Dear Annie: Six years ago, I married “Richard.” He is a wonderful, caring, good-looking man. We returned from our honeymoon to find out he had lost his job. The next three years were a roller coaster, and he finally found employment 18 months ago.

Richard has to travel out of state a great deal. He currently rents a home with four other co-workers. It’s about three hours away, and he comes home on the weekends. After work, the guys meet up for dinner and a couple of beers.

The only demand I place on Richard is that he call home and check in once he gets settled for the night. I work a long day and have a 10-year-old and three dogs at home. Sometimes, Richard doesn’t call. If I don’t hear from him by 10 p.m., I phone, but it often takes two hours of trying before he answers. He’ll say he was sleeping. When I ask why he didn’t call as promised, he claims he was tired.

The miles between us take away any control I have to check the possibilities. Richard says I’m overreacting and being childish. I have asked what has him so preoccupied that he neglects to call, but he can’t give me an answer. How should I handle this the next time it happens? – Hands Tied in Michigan

Dear Michigan: Richard may avoid nightly phone calls because he is “otherwise engaged,” but more likely, he is tired and reluctant to deal with what’s going on at home. Don’t wait until the next time. When Richard comes home for the weekend, schedule a quiet chat. As sweetly as you can manage, tell him that you look forward to his call all day, and when he doesn’t phone and you can’t reach him, you worry. This makes you stressed, makes him resentful and, over time, will eat away at your marriage.

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