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I’ve been married for 53 years but I don’t trust him with my sister

Marriage Advice
woman in pain

Dear Coleen,

I have been married for 53 years and have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

During every social occasion I’ve ever attended with my husband, he’s abandoned me and gone off with some floozy. I’ve screamed at him and tried to talk to him, but nothing changes.

I have never behaved at all in a fashion to embarrass him. I’m a pretty woman with a brain and should have done something about this before I passed my sell-by date.

When I had cancer, my elder sister stayed with us to do her sisterly duty (she has never liked me) and I suspected something happened between her and my husband.

I used to be knocked out with chemo and, one afternoon, I could hear them whispering downstairs. I made my way down and he ran out of the living room while she stayed behind. I asked him later what was going on and he said nothing. I had to focus on getting better so Iet it go.

Since then, whenever she comes here, he remembers he has a wife and decides to have a sex life.

Then, a few months after she’s gone, he goes off the boil again.

I had been so busy with moving to our beautiful dream home, I pushed all this to the back of my mind.

But for the two years we’ve been there, it’s felt like I’ve been living with a brother.

Then my sister (I call her the tsunami) decided to visit – and my husband started acting like a 20 year old. I should mention that in 1961 my husband took my sister to the pictures just once before he started dating me.

She told him she couldn’t carry on seeing him as her boyfriend was coming home from India.

She never lets me forget I was his second choice. I feel anxious all the time and worry my cancer will return.

Coleen says

I’d love to wave a magic wand and take away your anxiety and sadness.

I think the problem stems from you letting it go on for 53 years.

You’ve been through so much in battling cancer, so you are a strong woman. It’s never too late to say, ‘It’s this way or forget it’ if you want to stay married to this man.

Start by telling your sister you’d like to see her the next time she’s over, but she has to book into a hotel. If she wants an explanation, be honest.

Tell her you don’t trust her around your husband and you think she’s jealous of your marriage, which I think she could be. Take some control.

She’s made you feel second best for 53 years. You’re not.

If that date at the pictures had been so good, they’d still be together. If you feel deep down that you can’t carry on in your marriage, then don’t stay because you think it’s too late.

You’re not getting any physical affection or emotional support from him, so what will you miss? It sounds like you regret wasting so much time on him. But you don’t have to waste any more.

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