Dear Annie: My 25-year marriage is falling apart. My husband’s 40-year-old daughter, “Sally,” has been living with us for eight months. She occasionally buys a few groceries, but otherwise pays nothing. She does no work around the house. I’ve asked her to help clean the shared bathroom. She says she doesn’t think she should have to do any cleaning because she doesn’t mess anything up. She uses the bathtub more than we do and has all kinds of junk in there. She says her father also has stuff in there, so it’s my job to clean it. I refuse.
Meanwhile, my husband says Sally is right. He agrees that she shouldn’t have to do any work around the house because she has a full-time job. (We are retired.) She also never cleans up after herself in the kitchen and doesn’t help with the dishes after eating the dinner I cook.
This is causing major problems between my husband and me. He isn’t interested in counseling. What can I do about Sally? — A Sad Marriage
Dear Sad: If Sally has a full-time job, she should be paying rent. If she won’t pay rent, she should contribute to the household by helping with the housework, groceries and cooking on a regular basis. The fact that you are retired doesn’t make you her servant. Tell your husband HE can clean up after her.
Your real problem is that your husband doesn’t back you up, and he puts Sally’s preferences above yours. The goal should be to get Sally out of your house as soon as possible. It is not healthy for any of you if she remains dependent on Daddy.
Dear Annie: I am in an abusive marriage. There has been some physical abuse along with verbal, emotional and mental abuse. It has gone on for three years, and I think about leaving every day. I cry all the time.
I have tried to be a good wife, but nothing I do is good enough. I have talked to a couple of counselors, and they tell me I need to get out. I want to, but I don’t have any money (he has seen to that) and I have no place to go. I don’t have any family or friends close by to stay with.
I’ve been in contact with the local women’s shelter a couple of times, but right now, they don’t have any available housing. How can I leave if I don’t have any money or a place to go? I just don’t know how much longer I can hang on. — Crying
Dear Crying: Please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline (thehotline.org) at 1-800-799-SAFE (1-800-799-7233). The people there can help you figure out how to protect yourself and prepare to leave this relationship. In the meantime, don’t hide your situation. Let others know what is going on, including your family members and trustworthy friends. When you are able to leave, you will need their support.
Dear Annie: This is in response to “Maybe It’s Not Just Hormones.” I was married for 22 years, and our sex life was strictly for my ex. It was hard to enjoy intimacy with someone who was constantly jealous and didn’t trust me — and he had no reason to feel that way. He was the only man I’d ever been with.
I have been divorced for 18 years and was done with men. But a friend suggested online dating sites, so I recently signed up and met a nice gentleman. I realized I needed to have sex with another man to see what genuine intimacy was like. Well, let me tell you, I am so satisfied I cannot describe it. He says I am an excellent lover.
I am 60 years old and never thought I would enjoy sex. Now I know anything is possible. — Enjoying Life
“Annie’s Mailbox” is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar. This column was originally published in 2017. To find out more about Classic Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Creators Syndicate at www.creators.com.