Dear Amy: I have been married for 23 years to a really nice guy who has always been very private.
We haven’t had a good physical relationship in a decade due to his medical issues. I assumed he had just lost interest, and I almost gave up.
We seem to be getting close to a corner for a more loving relationship, but there was just something annoying about me.
I noticed he was talking on his phone a lot. Last year, he created an account on Twitter.
He said he doesn’t care about talking to people.
I decided to take to Twitter, and found that he was sharing his life story with 75 random people. His resume looks like a dating site. He did not mention that he is married.
Then two women noticed that he had one-on-one conversations with them. One seemed to ignore him, but with the other, they were in contact 8 to 12 times a day.
He sent her a meme about the cartoon bunnies “doing it” on a humping day and made some inappropriate comments. He shared a lot of his private life, including things I didn’t even know he cared about.
This created a huge problem for me.
He said it was just a random guy and he didn’t even notice her photo or bio, which is totally sexual.
Am I making a big deal out of this?
It doesn’t help that these women are twenty years younger than me.
Dear widow: Anyone can attach any avatar or photo to their social media profile. (One of them is a giant donut.) Anyone can pose, pretend, or create an alternate breath, as your husband seems to have done.
The woman he’s communicating with may not be a woman – or anything she claims to be “it.”
And in this sense, your husband is right: these people are really “random”.
Many people create “voices” on social media that may be unfamiliar to family members. It’s a great space to try jokes, express opinions, or come up with things that might surprise people who know you personally.
The “randomness” of the connection makes it seem like a safe space to create a version of yourself that is more assured of seeing the flawed person who knows you.
Your husband wants to flirt and flirt.
Now that you’ve found this out about him, I hope you can use this episode to encourage more communication between the two of you.
Ask him how he feels if you’ve been flirting or exchanging sexual banter with strangers. Ask if he could bring some of that energy into your marriage.
Dear Amy: I have an etiquette question.
I recently graduated from a local community college (after 27 years of consistently taking classes) with a degree in studio art. My classes were fairly informal, with teachers being called by their first names.
Now that I’ve transferred to a university for a BFA, I was wondering if I should call my teacher “Professor ____.”
Classes are small in size, with 10 or fewer students.
I guess I’m asking because I know I’m older than three of my professors, and I’ve always been learning to use respectful nicknames.
Dear Kara: I vote for “Professor”, unless otherwise directed.
Age is immaterial. (I say this with my personal knowledge that if you keep working long enough, you will simply be older than anyone else.)
One reason to use this title may be that each time you do so, you will be reminded of your hard-earned status as a student heading towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
You’ve advanced far enough to be taught by certified experts in their field, who have earned honors (your community college professors did, too—and express their own preferences).
Regardless of credentials and professional titles, “teacher” and “student” are the highest calling any of us can follow. our end!
Dear Amy: “Sick of everything” described their extreme isolation due to the pandemic. I don’t quite agree with your advice about getting “tips on your toes” back into the world.
I am older and have underlying health problems. I am very careful and would not risk being around people who are not immune. I walk with other people who have been vaccinated, socialize outside, and go to the library.
My health comes first
Dear First: The things you do are exactly the kind of things you’ve advised you to “sick of everything” to do. You’re on your fingertips out into the world, and it looks like you’re doing a pretty good job.
You can email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a message to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.