Dear Amy: I’m gay and in a long-distance relationship with my partner/boyfriend. I live in a city on the East Coast and he lives in a city on the West Coast.
I visit as often as I can, but until we can live together, we’re not monogamous.
I don’t hook up much, but I believe and accept that my boyfriend does. However — this creates a problem these days: I suspect he’s still hooking up even during this pandemic. (I’m not).
He won’t ever talk with me about his “other” sex life (he does discuss this with his local friends, however). I don’t know where or how to begin, because I know I’ll only get denial from him.
What can I do about him staying safe these days, given I don’t really know what he is doing, and he won’t say?
To me, staying safe means not hooking up at all, and I don’t think he’s willing to do that. — Worried
Dear Worried: Your relationship is imbalanced. From what you write, it sounds as if you’re the guy who gets on a plane to travel across the country. You are the partner who discloses honestly what you are doing, how you are feeling and who you are hanging out with (at this point, nobody).
Your guy doesn’t sound compliant — to any particular social, ethical or relationship construct.
If he wanted to be emotionally intimate with you, he would answer your questions honestly, risking a conversation he obviously does not want to have. Instead, he would rather communicate with his local friends and keep you in the dark.
You cannot keep him safe. You can only try your hardest to keep yourself safe. The coronavirus is not the only virus you risk contracting if you physically reunite with your boyfriend. (Always practice safe sex and get tested for STDs.)
I hope you will find someone geographically and ethically closer to you. Your West Coast guy does not sound like a good bet for a long-term, serious, loving and monogamous relationship, which sounds like what you ultimately want.
Dear Amy: My in-laws want to see my 2-year-old daughter.
Due to COVID-19, my husband and I said we would bring her to their house if the visit was outside.
My mother-in-law is in poor health, has dialysis and was recently in the hospital and rehab. We want to keep her — and us — safe.
She declined this option and said maybe another time.
My husband has never really said no to her during the 16 years we’ve been together. This is weighing on him.
She is not a mother/mother-in-law who interferes much in our lives. She just wants to see her youngest grandchild — but online visits seem to be fine for the other grandchildren.
My parents (who are in their mid-70s and in good health) now watch our child sometimes. Daycare in our state has been closed for more than two months, and my husband and I have both been working from home.
Asking my parents for help was my husband’s idea, but I worry that allowing one set of grandparents to see her while the other set doesn’t will have repercussions for some time to come. What do you think we should do? — Klueless in Kentucky
Dear Klueless: It sounds as if you live nearby your in-laws. I think you should take your daughter to their home. Your husband should call and ask his mother to come to the front door at a specific time. He can tell her, “We’re going to do a drive-by visit, because we miss you.”
Bring a sign (“love you, Nana”) that your daughter can hold as she waves to her grandmother from a safe distance away.
This is the best you can do right now.
You could also send your mother-in-law a care package containing photos and your daughter’s handprint — little mementos that she can touch and keep, as reminders that you care and that you hope to be together soon.
Dear Amy: You were WAY too nice to “Cold Feet,” whose future in-laws were challenging, high-maintenance types.
I would have told her to quit being an obnoxious brat and learn some people skills.
It’s been said, “A woman marries a man thinking he’ll change. A man marries a woman thinking she won’t change. They’re both wrong.”
I don’t even want to think about what this gal will become once she’s married. — Disgusted
Dear Disgusted: Hopefully — if she follows my advice — it won’t come to that.