The Northern Territory news Fri 12 Jul 2013
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www.ntnews.com.au Friday, July 12, 2013. NT NEWS. 37 P U B : NTNE-WS-DA-TE:12-JGE:37 CO-LO-R: C-M Y-K Strength and courage needed to end love triangle of heartache After 16 years my husband says he never loved me. What should I do? DEAR BOSSY: My husband of 16 years recently met up with a woman that he had an affair with over 20 years ago when he was married to his previous wife. Apparently the old spark is still there and they are in love. He says he has never loved me, maybe as a friend but thats all. We have a young daughter, and I asked him why he wanted a child with me if he didnt love me, and he said because he doesnt believe in abortion. This woman lives in another state and is currently breaking up with her husband, so is not readily available. My husband wants us to live together as usual until our daughter has finished schooling (for her sake, he says). The thing is, after all the nasty stuff he has said to me, I just cant even bear to look at him, never mind live with him for the next seven years. I still love him and always have, but cannot go back now after all the things he has said. Help! BOSSY SAYS: When someone you loved so long gives you a kick to the face theres not much left but heartbreak. You can console yourself knowing someone so lacking in sensitivity (why tell you he never really loved you?), doesnt deserve your devotion in the first place. Your husband needs a massive reality check if he thinks he can continue to live with you for the next seven years while he puts away his mistress on the side. And how long will she be willing to play second fiddle, while he pretends happy families with you especially once her marriage ends. These sorts of arrangements can work when people are willing and in the absence of strong feelings of loss or betrayal. But both people need to want to be in the marriage. Your husband is telling you he wants to be with someone else. But for convenience he wants the marriage to go on. But its not at all convenient for you is it? It requires you to swallow your pain and continue to live in a loveless marriage. It conveniently prevents you from moving on. You know the answer to your question. Strength and courage are the order of the day. Take a weekend away to at least get some perspective and how to move on. I think you know it wont be into some cosy love triangle with your husband and his lover. Husband sayswomen too old to be sexy at 40 Got a question? Ask Bossy. No-holds barred advice from our agony aunt Kate de Brito . . . advice your friends are too polite to give A reader is concerned her husband doesnt find her attractive the older she gets Are women over 40 still hot? DEAR BOSSY: I have a problem with my husband. We met a long time ago, back when 40 seemed like an impossible age to ever reach. We are married now and have a young son. My problem is that my husband doesnt find 40-year-old women attractive. In fact, he shudders at the mention of women that age being sexual or attractive, eg he says Elle Macpherson is way too old to be attractive. He, however, is 45 and completely convinced that he only looks 25. He does still look great but just like Brad Pitt, another great looking guy, he does not look 25. I am four years younger and not doing too badly myself in the ageing department (so far anyway!). He first started making comments about 40 being too old for a woman when he turned 40. Not being 40 yet myself I called him on it but didnt take it too seriously, thinking it was just him being a bit nervous about turning 40. However, it is getting worse and it is really starting to bother me. If I bring it up he says I am taking it too seriously and jokes that Ive got a couple of good years left. I know men are said to find 25-year-old women the most attractive regardless of their own age, but I am worried that this is a little more serious than that and will eventually mean the end of our marriage. Our sex life, which was all the time until I was beginning to show when pregnant, is already fairly minimal, which I know is common for a man in his mid forties. I guess my first red flag was that he said it was gross, to have sex when I started to show, another thing that really shocked me and he tried to joke about. It picked up again when I went back to my normal size a few months after giving birth and now sits at about once a month. I really thought I married a sensitive lovely guy so these revelations are a real blow after all these years. By the way, I havent gotten fat, stopped dressing well or wearing makeup, started wearing old lady underwear or knitting. Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time, the Old Bird. BOSSY SAYS: Look, he probably is still the sensitive, lovely man you married. But hes also turning into a bit of a middle-aged dick. Take heart that it might just be a stage. I know you say your husband thinks hes Brad Pitt, but I reckon hes starting to feel the grip of his declining years. Deep down he knows even if he was on the market all those nubile young bunnies would probably not be interested in a scraggy old punter like him. Your husband probably criticises older women because hes trying to convince himself hes still young and attractive and could do better than those boilers on TV. Hurting your feelings probably isnt intentional. Hes not a woman, so he doesnt understand the sting of being told hes fading into insignificance, at least as far as looks are concerned. Im not going to crusade about how women tend to be sidelined as they get older, I think that happens to men too. As a society we are incredibly ageist. But I will say women carry a particular burden when it comes to looks. And of course women can be just as hard on other women. Ive heard women tear apart ageing female celebrities simply for the crime of looking (gasp) old. I expect you are sensitive on the issue of age. Youre not Robinson Crusoe there. But I wonder whether you are taking your husbands comments too much to heart; reading far more into them than is really there? And I wonder whether this has to do with where your marriage is right now. I wonder whether you are still adapting to the changes that come with starting a family. Sometimes when couples go from two to three, or more, there can be a slight growing apart as a couple. This is natural. Children take up a lot of space. In the past youve always felt secure about your husbands affection and attraction. It was a given. Now, you feel off balance. Youre second guessing whether he thinks youre over the hill and unattractive now youve turned 40. I cant tell you your husband wont leave you for a younger woman, but I can say his comments about boilers do not predict that he will. If anything, they may suggest he is comfortable enough about you and comfortable enough about your feelings for each other to tease you about things like that. You should probably also give your husband as good as you get. I suggest standing beside him and peering at the side of his head until he asks you what youre doing, then say: I could have sworn I saw some hair growing out of your ears, old man. That should do the trick. SEND your problems to ntnews.com.au By emailing Ask Bossy you accept your question may also appear on the Ask Bossy blog. Questions cannot be answered privately.