Dear Annie: My fiance and I became engaged a year ago. He has many good qualities: He is really sweet most of the time, and he is a good provider. He takes me on nice trips and buys me lovely presents. He even rubs my feet and cooks for me.
However, there are three bad qualities that give me grief. Like all couples, we argue now and then. But about once a week, we stay up all night arguing and can't get to work the next day. He hangs out at the casino into the wee hours of the morning. Last week, he came home at 5:30 a.m. He says he does it just to make me angry. Two weeks ago, he left on Sunday afternoon and didn't return until Monday morning. Then he wonders why I don't trust him.
The other problems are that he drinks heavily and he likes to gamble a lot. I've prayed that God will allow him to be the man I need and deserve. When we first started dating, I didn't see any of these signs. I knew he frequented the casino, but it didn't seem so bad.
Now he says he will work on coming home so late if I stop fussing. I told him if it happens again, the relationship is over. But he refuses to stop gambling. Can he possibly change? Please help me. I love this man, but I must be insane to put up with this mess. -- Vicki in Vegas
Dear Vicki: You are engaged to a man who is unlikely to change just because you want it and pray for it. Please don't lopsidedly balance minor good points (he rubs your feet) with major difficulties. Gambling is an addiction. Is he in debt? Does he have enough money to keep losing it at the casino? Drinking is a different addiction and can affect his health, as well as your safety. Staying out all night is a trust issue, and arguing all night is totally unproductive.
It is always a mistake to marry someone and expect him to change. That rarely happens. Please look into Gam-Anon (gam-anon.org) and Al-Anon (al-anon.org) for a better understanding of his behavior. Before marrying him, be sure you have a full report on your joint finances. And we strongly urge you to get premarital counseling. Your fiance sounds like an oncoming train wreck.
Dear Annie: A few months ago, you printed a letter from "Marie," who was looking for nursing home and assisted living facilities for family members who live out of state.
You provided information only on nursing homes. For information on assisted living residences, please suggest that your readers contact Argentum (formerly the Assisted Living Federation of America) at argentum.org, or write us at 1650 King Street, Suite 602, Alexandria, VA 22314. -- Richard T. Moore, President, Massachusetts Assisted Living Facilities Association
Dear Richard Moore: Thank you for this additional valuable information. We hope any of our readers who are searching for an appropriate residence will check this resource.
Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to anniesmailboxcreators.com or write to Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. You can also find Annie on Facebook at Facebook.com/AskAnnies.
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