Ask Amy: Advice for the Real World

DEAR AMY: My husband is active-duty military. We move quite often. There is a Facebook page dedicated to the military spouse community in most locations. They are great resources for newcomers with numerous questions.

Upon introducing myself to a new group online, I’ll typically receive several friend requests from group members. I am not at all comfortable adding virtual strangers to a Web page that I reserve for close friends and family to keep up with my doings across the country.

I have gained a few wonderful friends from these adds, but I have also ended up deleting and therefore causing bad feelings in what can be a very small community. 

A tactful way of dodging these requests would be much appreciated. — Military Wife

DEAR WIFE: Simply tell the truth: “I use my personal Facebook page only for very long-term friends and family members, but I am enjoying communicating on the group page. It would be better for me to exchange email addresses — if that works for you.”

DEAR AMY: I’ve been in a relationship with my boyfriend for about 10 years. I love him dearly, but a few months ago I started an affair with one of my co-workers. It started out as harmless flirting and kissing, but then it went further. We were sexually intimate twice. My co-worker is also in a relationship.

He recently moved away (family matters), and now I can’t stop thinking about him.

I love my boyfriend, but I’m tired of the way things are going — no marriage, he’s not working and I don’t want to go through this for one more year.

I’ve told my boyfriend how I feel numerous times. He swears he’s going to change, but I don’t see any improvement.

Should I tell my “buddy” how I feel or just leave well enough alone? What should I do about my boyfriend? — Love or Lust

DEAR L OR L: My advice to you really doesn’t have much to do with the two dead-end relationships you are considering.

After 10 years of stasis, your boyfriend will probably not change — not enough, anyway.

You can say whatever you want to your affair partner (I suggest being honest), but he will not leave his other relationship and move back to be with you.

Your efforts should be directed toward your own personal development. Your choice to deal with your frustration by having an affair is a common and very cowardly way to behave. To change your future, you are going to have to be more engaged in improving your own life without these men in it.

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Follow her on Twitter @askingamy or “like” her on Facebook. Amy Dickinson’s memoir, “The Mighty Queens of Freeville: A Mother, a Daughter and the Town That Raised Them” (Hyperion), is available in bookstores.