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Husband working at strip club gets dressing-down from wife

• Nov 16, 2015 at 12:00 AM

DEAR ABBY: My husband works as a bouncer at a strip club. I was OK with it at first, but then he started making friends with the dancers and waitresses. They exchange phone numbers, and he talks to some of them late at night when I'm sleeping. I get upset and jealous that these women are getting his time. It causes fights. What should I do? — WIFE OF A TEXAS BOUNCER

DEAR WIFE: Is your husband placing these calls, or are the women calling him? Tell him you feel they are a threat to your marriage and ask why the calls happen after you have gone to bed.

It's possible the conversations are innocent. The women may relate to him because his job makes them feel "safe" with him. Many co-workers converse after work. Because a woman works in a strip club doesn't mean she's a predator.

However, because the timing of these calls bothers you, ask him if he would have them call before work rather than afterward when you would like him in bed with you.

DEAR ABBY: I host holiday dinners and always invite my husband's side of the family as well as mine. Each time, my brother's wife, "Arlene," asks if my husband's family will be there, and says if they are, they won't attend. They are the only ones who don't show up; all the rest of my family does.

When I asked Arlene if she has a problem with my husband's side of the family, she said no, she just feels we don't pay as much attention to her when there is "so much family."

I have tried having separate dinners, but as the years have passed, it has gotten harder to cook two Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter dinners on separate days. After 30 years of this, I'm tired of having my feelings hurt and trying to please my brother and his wife. How am I supposed to respond when she texts me telling me that if it's just our family they'll attend? — TIRED OF IT IN IOWA

DEAR TIRED: You are too kind. I wish you had asked this question 30 years ago because, if you had, I could have spared you a lot of grief. The next time your self-centered sister-in-law pulls that stunt, send her a text saying, "Sorry you can't make it. We'll miss you!" Then add a smiling emoji.

DEAR ABBY: My daughter sent out save-the-date cards for her wedding next year. Many of our family members live out of state and abroad.

Save-the-date cards were also sent to my co-workers. When the wedding happens, I will have been gone from that company for three months. Does sending the card obligate us to invite people who will then be my former co-workers? — UNSURE IN FORT LAUDERDALE

DEAR UNSURE: Yes. If you don't send an invitation or an explanation, your former co-workers may feel they were asked to save the date not because they were considered friends, but that it was a bid for more gifts for your daughter. And they wouldn't be wrong.

DEAR ABBY: When reading letters in your column concerning breast cancer, my heart goes out to every single person who has ever been diagnosed with this terrible disease. I have no respect for any man who cuts and runs when his wife is diagnosed with cancer.

But what do you think about a woman who is diagnosed and whose husband remains with her through the fear and worry, the chemo, radiation, hair loss and all the follow-up? A husband who worries constantly for her and whose biggest fear is losing his wonderful wife, and after all this — she leaves him for another man?

It has been more than seven years. I'm asking for feedback in the hope that people can view this issue not just from my perspective, but also from the afflicted loved one's perspective as well. — STILL WONDERING

DEAR STILL WONDERING: A diagnosis of a life-threatening illness can make a marriage stronger or it can destroy it. While I'm reluctant to attribute a reason for what your wife did without hearing from her, I can't help but think that she left because the cancer made her realize how short life is and, as much as you loved her, the marriage wasn't a fulfilling one for her.

How sad for you, and I'm truly sorry. Because it's clear you haven't yet been able to get beyond what happened, you could benefit from discussing this with a licensed psychotherapist.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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