Dear Amy: I have been married for over 20 years. Seven years ago, my husband withdrew a large amount of cash, went on a business trip, and started cheating on me with prostitutes.
I also found out that he has been on many porn sites throughout our marriage. I hoped he would stop and come back to me. He did not. We filed for divorce.
It has been on again, off again, and we have tried to divorce three times. Each time at the 11th hour, he says he wants to stay together. And each time, I say yes. After the last try three years ago, he swore he was done "with that lifestyle." At the same time, he gave me an STI.
Two years ago, I was diagnosed with Stage III cancer. The odds are not in my favor. This particular type of cancer has only a 12% five-year survival rate. I am unsure what to do. I don't think I can ever really trust him again. I am worried he is just waiting for me to die to inherit my money so he can start up his sordid "lifestyle" again.
We have two adult children who live close by. We purchased a retirement home 90 miles away. I'm not sure I want to move there, away from my children, away from my friends, away from the hospital where I continue to be monitored.
I assume my husband is hiding texts, porn sites, who knows what, on his phone that I can't access. I really have no idea what our financial situation is. He may be hiding hundreds of thousands of dollars. I think that I must do the same! But due to my health, I've stopped working and have no income — only savings.
If a friend came to me with this story, I would probably tell her to leave her husband, but what about health insurance or dying alone?
What's your advice? Should I divorce him and stay closer to my children, who are in college but may move away when they graduate? — Sad in Silicon Valley
Dear Sad: It's time to Thelma and Louise the heck out of this.
I think you should find an amazing attorney with forensic accounting expertise, explore where your marital money has gone, legally secure the maximum amount you can, and commit yourself to living the life you want to live, the way you want to live it.
In short, dump the bum. Free your mind, and the rest will follow.
You should not leave your own community, friends and children in order to move 90 minutes away and be isolated with someone you don't trust. Your lawyer will advise you about keeping your health insurance through a COBRA plan. This could also be a negotiating point in your legal separation.
Commit yourself to your medical treatment, and to your healthier and supportive relationships. Show your children what a resilient, emotionally brave and adventurous person you can be.
Dear Amy: I have a sensitive nose, and skin problems relating to strong detergents, fragrant dryer sheets, perfumes, etc.
I belong to a social group where a couple of ladies have laundered their clothes in a strong detergent. Amy, it literally takes my breath away.
I don't want to quit my social life, but I am hesitant to mention this to these ladies.
I'm sure I'm not the only one affected by this problem, and just want to make people aware they might be offending others.
Any suggestions? — Nosey
Dear Nosey: Which do you think would be better: quitting this group suddenly and without explanation, or at least attempting to explain your situation, in hopes that — even if these other women didn't change their detergent, they would at least understand what you are going through?
I wouldn't describe this as "I have a sensitive nose and skin," but more as an extreme chemical sensitivity.
You could say to the group: "I have a favor to ask. I'm extremely sensitive to strong detergents, fragrant dryer sheets, and perfumes. I'd like to ask if people would be willing to go fragrance-free the day of our meetings, so I don't have a reaction?"
The rest will be up to them.
Dear Amy: I know you've been taking heat for coming down hard on the liberal parents whose child used the "n-word" at school. Maybe I'm the only one, but I appreciated it when you told them to "stop anchoring to your own victimhood."
Give me a break. — Big Fan
Dear Fan: This has been one of my less-popular takes. Thank you for your support.
You can email Amy Dickinson at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to Ask Amy, P.O. Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.