Every Wednesday: I never fail to be disgusted with advice columns. I am unsure why they still get paid to do what they do. As always, I am in awe when it comes to awful examples like Dear Prudence and Dear Abby. The columnists seem to get rewarded for giving you bad advice. I think that people get terrible advice from them. I don’t blame anyone that calls advice column responses garbage. I use my postings to correct these responses and help society by being an utmost asshole, (as always, a hat tip to Aaron Clarey at Asshole Consulting).
Consider this piece from Ask Amy’s column (courtesy of Arcamax) from March 3, 2021:
My husband of 13 years is having boundary issues with a colleague. They became close when he had a depressive episode last year and confided in her instead of me. He said a lot of things to her that made me uncomfortable, including comments about our relationship and our finances.
I read his messages and have proof.
I confessed to him that I read his messages, and we talked about it. He said that he no longer considers her “a friend.”
I am still reading his messages because I don’t trust him, and today I read a reply from him to her where he said he would “love to see her.” He hasn’t told me about it. Hmmm. They aren’t friends? I don’t believe him.
We have a close and intimate partnership otherwise, and I never make him feel unsafe with his issues.
I know they don’t have a physical relationship, but I am sick of being lied to and don’t understand why he can’t just be open with me.
We both have therapists but can’t afford therapy together. I feel like I’ve already done the nuclear option and now I don’t know what else to do. I also know what I am doing is very bad, but I can’t just stop, knowing all this. What now?
You are right to be concerned about your relationship. His drifting toward a co-worker is very unhealthy. It is beyond the red flags of an emotional affair.
He is having issues at home and in his personal life that he feels like he can’t discuss with you. Decent evidence lies in what you had mentioned in your letter, specifically your snooping and reading of his messages.
In the worst sense of irony, he is correct to say that he shouldn’t be talking about them with you. He should be talking this over with a close friend or a therapist, preferably a healthy male friend in his life that shows stability.
You should push him to undergo healthy lifestyle changes to include exercise. He needs to return to his mental professional or counselor right away. If he is lacking healthy male friends, I would encourage him to find them. He needs to find better things to focus his energy on.
(Although I am not a lawyer or a mental professional, his work sister connection can end with heartbreak for him. He is at work to work, not to go to therapy. He easily can end it more depressed and feeling worse when his friend turns out to be something unhealthy for him. It is also stepping over professional boundaries and stomping a huge personal bylaw that men should observe: Don’t sh*t where you eat).
I do think that you need to go to therapy alone yourself. You are not 100% healthy enough to be the care taker that you think you are. You do not have the ability to see what you can do to help with the situation. You are a part of the relationship too. The weight is not carried by him alone.
I do wish you luck but I would put the darts down before you think that you don’t have rings on you too.
I don’t imagine that I will have a shortage of emails to answer. I would love to start doing this for anyone that sends me an email. If this is you; email us at email@example.com
If you hate advice columns; I don’t blame you. If it isn’t soft people giving advice; it is someone trying to justify acting like an insensitive asshole. Till next week.