Dear Abby: I hate our town and want to leave, but husband won’t budge

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DEAR ABBY: I’m a newlywed, and my husband and I have just hit a big roadblock. I hate the town we live in. I always have. The only reason I’m here is because of him, but I have always been very clear about wanting to move.

I lost my job, and the market around here is terrible, which has pushed the idea of us moving to the forefront. I don’t expect us to go anywhere now, but it is becoming crystal clear that this place isn’t going to get me far.

My husband is a teacher, but between terms he has the option to leave. When we married, it was with the understanding that we would eventually leave, or so I thought. Now he’s talking about how if I want to move, I’ll be going without him because he’s happy here, and he’s happy to stay forever.

I feel like the rug has been pulled out from under me, and I don’t know what to do. I love my husband, but I love myself, too. I will never be happy here. I’ve tolerated it for five years, and I’m miserable. How am I supposed to compromise on an absolute? We can’t both move and not move. — YEARNING TO FLEE

DEAR YEARNING: Your husband should have been honest with you from the beginning about his feelings and ties to the community. Because you know you can’t be happy there — and he has indicated that he plans to stay — I think you should do whatever makes you happy and thank your lucky stars there are no children involved to complicate matters.

DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend has been hanging out with a group of “friends” since college. He is now 41. The women in this group are unfriendly toward me. They don’t say hello or goodbye or even acknowledge my existence when I am around them. I have talked to my boyfriend about this time and again, and he defends their behavior. He says I “lack empathy.”

We have been dating for a year and a half, and I realize the other “friends” he surrounds himself with are as bad or worse. (They are heavy drinkers, drug dealers and drug users, and have low morals, poor values, etc.) When I give him examples of how these people treat him poorly and treat me rudely, he brushes it off, saying their behavior and comments don’t bother him. What gives? — LOOKING FOR INSIGHT

DEAR LOOKING: What “gives” is this: Your boyfriend is comfortable with these people because he is LIKE them. If he had higher self-esteem and was more highly motivated, he wouldn’t be hanging out with those losers. He’d form friendships with people who live healthy lifestyles, have gainful employment, high morals and better values. That you would spend a year and a half surrounded by a group like this tells me you must be desperate for company.

DEAR ABBY: I am 24 and being married soon. My fiance thinks I’m a virgin, but in reality, I am far from it. We have been saving sex for marriage — at least that’s what he thinks. I don’t know if I should keep this to myself or tell him. Please give me your expert advice. — BRIDE-TO-BE

DEAR BRIDE-TO-BE: Solid marriages are built on trust. What do you think the fallout will be if this man finds out he has been lied to all this time? He will never again believe what you tell him, and who could blame him? The time to level is now, BEFORE the wedding — and if it’s a deal-breaker, que sera, sera.

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 or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

To receive a collection of Abby’s most memorable — and most frequently requested — poems and essays, send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds), to: Dear Abby — Keepers Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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