Dear Annie: My husband really is a wonderful man. People describe me as patient, easy-going and positive. I’m happy — except for my marriage.
For years, I’ve been bothered by the same three issues: I crave affection, but my husband is content to have sex once a month and I feel rejected when asking for more.
Second, I feel suffocated at times because of his insistence that he always have his own way — although I have been more forceful recently in putting up a fight.
Third, I am very lonely. I have a full-time job and come home to be a parent and do most of the household chores alone. My husband is never here. He is a workaholic.
When I express my total frustration, there will be short periods where he is mindful of my needs, but it’s only temporary.
My husband insists we need the money he brings in, but I’d rather do without the extras he buys so I could spend more time with him. He thinks I have a pretty good life and should be content, and that all marriages have issues. Am I expecting too much? — Sad Wife
Dear Wife: It is not expecting too much to have your husband’s affection more than once a month along with some co-operation with the house and kids. However, you cannot make him become something he is not, especially if he doesn’t see a problem. This is what counselling is for.
A competent counsellor will help him understand why his behaviour is so frustrating for you, and you can learn how to cope with his limitations. He also should see his doctor and have his testosterone checked.
Dear Annie: “Larry in Bakersfield” is correct that writers commonly misuse the abbreviation “i.e.” (id est) in situations for which they should use “e.g.” (exempli gratia). But his definition of “i.e.” was incorrect.
The abbreviation “i.e.” introduces a clarification of the preceding word or phrase, whereas “e.g.” introduces an example of it. Thus, one might write: “Skyscrapers, i.e., very tall buildings, sometimes have nicknames, e.g., ‘The Empire State Building.’” – Grammatical Fussbudget
Dear Fussbudget: Thanks for the additional clarification. When we printed that letter, we had no idea so many readers would be interested. Our knowledge of Latin is limited to E Pluribus Unum, veni, vidi, vici and whatever pops up in the crossword puzzle.
Read on for more:
From Round Lake Beach, Ill.: I’m sorry, but your Latin expert has misinformed you. “Nostra culpa” does not mean “we’re sorry.” It means “our fault,” which is not the same thing.
Connecticut: “Larry in Bakersfield” sent you an informative letter clarifying the difference between “i.e.” and “e.g.” However, in his explanation, Larry was grammatically incorrect when he said that i.e. “infers” a list of items. He meant that i.e. “implies” a list of items. A speaker implies, a listener infers. When something is implied, it is suggested without being stated outright.
When something is inferred, the listener is in control of drawing a conclusion. So when Larry uses i.e., he’s implying (or suggesting) a list of items. I infer what that list is.
East Coast: I laughed as I read the letter from “Larry,” who scolded you for the misuse of “id est” vs. “exempli gratia.” I am a medical editor, so those terms get tossed around a lot in my work. I tell people I remember the difference by thinking “e.g.” is “for egg-zample.”
Canada: I had to chuckle when I read the letter from “Larry in Bakersfield” about the difference between “i.e.” and “e.g.” Now we know why Latin is a dead language. – M.W., Canada
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.