DEAR ABBY: Rekindled marriage stumbles back into familiar territory

Dear Abby: I met my husband when I was 13. Our relationship lasted through high school and college, and we were married for 20 years and had three children.

Our marriage eventually fell apart, and we divorced seven years ago. We always attended our children’s events together and stayed connected as each child left and our oldest got married. We both dated others during this time, and I met someone I loved more than anyone before. But that relationship fell apart due to his infidelity.

Two years ago, my ex-husband and I began our relationship anew. We went to counseling and everything was going well. We bought a house together and are living with our youngest son. But, we have fallen back into the same old pattern. My husband is rude to me and our son. He’s also annoying, and repeats the same conversations over and over. I no longer have any physical attraction to him.

At this point in my life (I am in my 50s), I don’t want to go back out in the dating world, but I miss the companionship and attention I found. Our youngest son is a senior this year and will be going to college. I still own a house, and I could return to it, but because he put my name on the new house, it would be a hassle. — Struck Out Twice

Dear Struck Out: If your partner’s repetitiveness is new behavior, get him to his doctor for a thorough physical and neurological examination, because there may be something happening with his health. If that’s not the case, you two may need more relationship counseling to bring you back to the place you were when you reunited.

If counseling fails to achieve the desired result, you will then have to decide what’s more important to you — staying in a loveless relationship or gambling on living a different life and possibly being alone. This is a decision you must make for yourself.

Dear Abby: I have a friend I grew close to a few years ago. After she moved away, we saw each other only occasionally. I have come to realize that I’m no longer interested in the friendship. She focuses mostly on herself, and I no longer enjoy her company.

I started communicating less and less often with her in an effort to let the relationship fade away, hoping the distance would allow for a more natural break. It has been a few years since I have communicated with her, but she continues to email, text and contact me on social media. I have not responded. Should I have handled this differently? I didn’t formally say goodbye, largely because I didn’t know what to say to end it. — At A Loss For Words In Illinois

Dear At A Loss: Because such a long time has elapsed since you were close, I don’t think any “announcements” are necessary. If her messages and posts annoy you, simply block them.

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

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