DEAR ABBY: My husband of 10 years is in the process of retiring from the military and is now re-evaluating "procedures" and "policies" of everything -- including our marriage. I'm trying to respect his needs in an effort to help him make sense of things. However, there are times when I feel some of his new rules are hurtful or harmful and need to be negotiated or evaluated. (By the way, in general, I do not encourage or support the idea of "rules" in marriage aside from fidelity; communication should be the rule in my opinion, but I digress.)
His latest rule is that I need to be covered when getting ready in the morning ("It's not proper to be so comfortable naked, and if you respect me, you would do as I ask"). He said he thinks I look amazing now, but then he added: "Think about when you are your grandmother's age; you won't be pleasant to look at."
As his partner, I feel we should make each other feel comfortable in the buff, and it's harmful to ask our partner to cover up for any reason in the sanctity of our home. We have no children and live alone, and I have always gotten ready in the mornings this way, behind closed doors, where no one but my husband can see me. Abby, can you guide us to resolution on this matter? -- NOTHING TO HIDE IN GEORGIA
DEAR NOTHING: As a military man, your husband is used to rules and structure, which are necessary in that environment. This, however, is civilian life. Before allowing him to make any more rules or institute a change in dress code (undress code), allow me to "guide" you directly to the office of a licensed marriage counselor because, unless there is something you have omitted from your letter, your husband is a mile off base.
DEAR ABBY: My mother and her brother are buried in a family graveyard. He is on the upper side. It was understood by both families that I would be buried next to my mother when I died. My uncle's grandson recently passed away and, without saying a word about it to our family, my cousin had him buried next to my mother. She said the space beside my mother was more desirable than the one on my uncle's side.
I'm so upset I can't sleep, and I don't know if I should pay to have the deceased moved to my uncle's side of the graveyard or just let him lay there. I feel beyond betrayed, and I will never speak to this vile woman again. She said I am overreacting. Am I? -- CAN'T SLEEP IN THE SOUTH
DEAR CAN'T SLEEP: While your feelings are understandable, and I don't blame you for being upset, to let this take over your life would be a mistake. It couldn't hurt to inquire at the cemetery about having your cousin's corpse moved, although I'm not sure it can be done without the consent of his next of kin. If moving his body is not possible, please remember that when you are gone, your spirit will join with your mother's regardless of where your earthly remains reside.
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.