Ask Olga!

Olga Gives Relationship Advice for Common Problems and Crisis Events

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I need some advice. My friend is making me turn prematurely grey. We often watch movies on Thursday night. When they end late and she is driving home, I ask her to text me when she arrives safely. Three out of four times, she does but when she doesn't I get really worried. I usually send a text to ask if she's ok. Most of the time she responds. When she doesn't she tends to shoot me a casual text the next morning to say that she's fine, which bothers me. I'm afraid that if something ever does happen, I'll blow it off as her typical behavior. Am I just being nutty? Angie


Dear Angie

Nutty? No.

Cowardly? Maybe.

I’m not one to cast aspersions on practical safety measures. I think that asking a friend who drives home alone after dark to text upon arrival is perfectly reasonable.

It’s a small request and when made, it should be honored.

If your friend has sent you the casual am text more than once, after letting you worry, either you weren’t that worried or you were afraid to confront her.

I suspect that you’re having a hard time figuring out what worries you more, speaking up to your friend or potential late night hazards.

Angie, sweetie, go to a mirror. Turn around and see if you can identify your backbone. Once you find it, use it. Let your friend know that you ask her to text because you care about her. When she doesn’t respect your request, she doesn’t respect you. Her behavior is selfish.

It’s ok with her if you worry for a while, she’ll get back to you in the morning? What is that?

By not having said anything the first time, you gave her the green light to do it again. Have a talk with her about this before your resentment begins to fester and harm your friendship.


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My wife is driving me crazy. She calls me at work at least 5 times a day. We just moved for my job and she doesn't know anyone here. The calling is getting to be a problem though. The guys on the desk are starting to make fun of both of us and when I have to deal with something quickly she doesn't understand that I need to go right away. I love my wife and I don't want to hurt her feelings. How should I handle this? Oscar


Dear Oscar

Lucky for you, it’s backbone Wednesday and I’m about to introduce you to yours.

Your wife moved with you to a new place where she has no friends. She must love you. She’s also probably lonely and bored. That’s perfectly normal. You can help encourage her to find activities and new friendships.

You can’t keep your lip zipped while she makes an ass out of herself by calling you 5 times a day at work for coffee talk. Obviously, you bring home the bacon. The feministas will hate this but you need to man up.

Work time is work time. If she really needs to talk to you about something important, she should certainly call but you can’t afford to chit chat. Also, and this is important, when you say you need to go, you need to go. That’s it. No discussion.

The only appropriate answer is, ok bye.

That may seem cold at first but you’ll find that you both appreciate the clarity of language. Just understand that if she tells you that she needs to go, the same rules apply. You can always touch base later but by allowing each other to disengage without question or fanfare, you establish trust and respect.

One last thing, when you ask something of your partner, be ready to offer something back. Take some time with your wife to investigate activities that she might like. You two will be fine. Moves are hard. They just take some to get used to.


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My boyfriend has been really hurting my feelings lately. I'm afraid he's going to dump me. He complains about everything. When I make dinner, he gets mad if I don't clean up immediately. When I dress casually he asks me if I want people to wonder why he's with me. If I fall asleep during a late night show, he gets mad and wakes me up. When I ask him why he's being so nasty, he says that I've had too much caffeine and that I'm wound up. That makes him angry too. I don't know how to make him happy anymore. What can I do? Erica


Dear Erica

What you can do is leave him. Why would you want to be with anyone who treats you so badly?

Everything that you’ve said makes him sound like a nightmare. The worst remark was probably the one in which he says that people will wonder why he’s with you. That crosses the proverbial red line.

It’s a tough call though. This man is on a mission to undermine your confidence.

You can’t possibly be happy living with someone who criticizes you day and night.

Erica, my pretty, you need to improve your self esteem. Talk to your friends or your family. If you need additional support, you can find a therapist to talk with on a short term basis.

Your situation, as you describe it, isn’t good. Your boyfriend sounds angry and abusive. Instead of worrying about how to make him happy, focus on your own happiness.

You deserve far better than your current bargain and relationships like this rarely improve.

Good luck, Erica.


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I have a crisis and I need your help. My husband just bought a speedo and he wants to wear it this weekend. Our friends are hosting their annual Memorial Day pool party and my Prince Charming wants to make a splash. He's been working out at the gym lately and he looks good but does anyone really look good enough for a speedo? I don't want to hurt his feelings but this can't happen. What should I do? Sheena


Oh Sheena

You aren’t kidding. When your husband plans on wearing a speedo in public, you’re at defcon 1.

Ordinarily I’d tell you to bite the bullet and let him know for once and for all that speedos are simply not ok. Not now, not ever.

You can go that way but if that’s too bold for you, you can try one of two other options.

You can tell him that his bathing suit is just too much cat nip for other ladies and that you can’t take it. If you manage to pull that one off with a straight face let me know. You will be the first.

Alternatively, you could contribute to the disappearance of the nylon. If he really loves that thing though, he might just buy a new one.

Look Sheena, if you want to save your summer, you’re going to need to fall on the sword. Burn it, hide it or discuss it. It doesn’t matter which you choose but whatever you do, don’t let your husband wear a speedo on Memorial Day.


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