DEAR ABBY: Our friends "Andy" and "Corinne" live out of state in Michigan. We visit them about twice a year. Our visits are planned weeks in advance. The last three times, on Saturday night they hosted a "swingers party."
The first time it happened we thought it was a joke, until the guests — after "tossing back a few" — started picking partners. We saw them begin to caress one another, then start going into other rooms and outside. One of the attendees came on to my wife. We informed him we're not swingers. His response? He told us it was OK to "watch" the first time or two.
Abby, we're not prudes, but we feel uncomfortable visiting these friends. We now return to our bedroom when the swingers arrive. In contrast, when Andy and Corinne come to visit us in Tennessee, we have dinner, play cards and go to church on Sunday.
We have spoken to them about this. They tell us they "keep their relationship fresh" this way. We don't want to lose them as friends, but we don't know what to do. Can you help?
— SATISFIED WITH EACH OTHER
DEAR SATISFIED: I'll try. Because you like Andy and Corinne every other day of the week when you visit them, schedule an outside activity — dinner and a movie, a play — anything that will get you out of their den of iniquity on Saturday night. Either that, or leave for home on Friday.
DEAR ABBY: After 13 years of marriage, my wife has stopped wearing her wedding rings. First she said her fingers had shrunk and her rings kept falling off. Then she claimed that the "golf club had bent them." Now she refuses to wear them out of spite because I told her the rings are a sign of commitment, and I feel she's "advertising" that she's not married.
Am I reading too much into this? In many ways she is still a dutiful wife, but this ring thing is becoming an issue. Any pearls of wisdom?
— FEELING INSECURE IN MIDWAY, GA.
DEAR FEELING INSECURE: Your problem isn't the "ring thing." It's that your wife is lying to you and acting out of spite. It is very important that you quickly get to the root of what's really bothering her because the rings are only a symptom of an underlying problem.
DEAR ABBY: My wife leaves knives lying around our house — and not just on countertops. She also leaves the dishwasher wide open and then goes to take a shower.
We have a 4-year-old son who is curious about everything. I have tried to no avail to get her to understand that what she's doing is dangerous, but it turns into a fight, or she says I'm scolding her and treating her like a child.
Please help. I don't want anything to happen to our son, and I can't seem to get my wife to pay attention.
— WORRIED SICK, RICHMOND, VA.
DEAR WORRIED SICK: She may be careless, or she may have some kind of disorder. Your wife really should be evaluated to determine what's going on. If she resists the suggestion, please remind her that if her child is hurt by a sharp object left lying around or within his reach, he will probably need to be taken to the emergency room. And the doctors there will be required to report his injury to the authorities — even if it doesn't kill him or maim him for life.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.