DEAR AMY: My wife and I met when we were 20. We’ve been married for 15 years. We have two wonderful young children. Our issues started four years ago when my wife accused me of cheating with a co-worker. She admits she knows there was nothing going on, but she thinks I was emotionally in love with my co-worker. My wife and I fought about this for more than a year; she was physically abusive to me and threatened to kill herself — but the drama ended when I got a different job. I stopped caring as much about her and didn’t show my appreciation and love, but we still had a functional marriage, traveled a lot and had many happy moments. A couple of months’ back she discovered that her father is cheating on her mother. Also, two of her close relatives died of cancer, and she recently started working. Now she is determined to divorce me, and I’m devastated. I’m trying to prove to her how much I love her. Is there any chance I can win her back? — Forlorn Husband
DEAR FORLORN: Your description of your wife makes her sound unstable and abusive. Falsely accusing you, physically abusing you, threatening suicide and now leaving you: You can’t just bounce back from these things.
Nor should you.
Marriage counseling for the two of you and therapy for her might have helped when she was acting out, accusing you of adultery and making your life miserable until she got what she wanted and you left your job. Instead, it seems that rather than working things out, you simply tried to move on.
But moving on doesn’t work, unless you’ve resolved your challenges.
At this point, you should accept that a separation might be best for everyone.
Living in the midst of this much drama and discord is not good for your children. Therapy would help you to put some of this in perspective. I hope you will gain the insight to see that trying to win back the love of someone who has been so abusive to you is not a healthy choice.
DEAR AMY: I’m writing my resume, and I am really on the fence about including a job I walked out on. I graduated from college in 2014, and a few months later I got my first job as a medical assistant. I worked there for 10 months and only missed one day due to illness. The office manager was a bully to me, and I was not treated with any respect by the doctors. I was yelled at and cursed if I made a mistake. One day, after weeks of busting my behind for them, the office manager yelled and threatened me in front of my co-worker over something I did not do. I had enough and walked out. I have never done that before. Now I am unsure if I should include this job on my resume because I’m sure I will not get a good reference. This could cause me to lose a job opportunity. You are not supposed to say anything negative when doing interviews. Please give me some advice on this. I just want another job and don’t want this to hurt my chances. — Worried Worker
DEAR WORKER: A resume is essentially a marketing document. Everything listed must be true, but you can omit experiences that aren’t essential or germane to your current search. A job application, however, is another story. If asked to list all previous employment, you should.
If you don’t include this job on your resume, then how else will you account for your time, post-college? Ten months of working in a medical office is not inconsequential.
Even if you don’t list this job, you must still find ways to describe it which aren’t uniformly negative. If you could generalize this job as “a learning experience,” or say, “I stuck it out for 10 months but ultimately it was a bad fit,” it might help put a less-than-horrible spin on a horrible experience. Walking off the job (and disclosing that you’ve done so), won’t make a prospective employer excited to hire you.
DEAR AMY: I like the advice you gave to “Gay but not Happy.” In addition to the resource you mentioned, I’d like to point your young reader to a couple of additional resources. One is the CDC’s LGBT Youth Resources page. The other is one that my LGBTQ friends highly recommend: the GLBT National Help Center, which offers a range of tools. Thank you for tackling this issue so openly. — An Ally
DEAR ALLY: Thank you for the recommendations.