Help! I Suspect I Know Why My Wife Has Been Acting Like A Lunatic In Public, But She Won't Admit It
This is an advice column.
A note to readers: The person who sent me this letter is a longtime paying subscriber to my Substack. I am incredibly grateful to my paying subscribers, and I want him to get his money’s worth, so this is long! It also might seem a little harsh at points, but I think he knows—and I hope you know—that harsh is my love language. I don’t get a lot of advice questions directed to me specifically—despite my many pleas! See the bottom of the post for the address!—which is why this column is normally me answering letters published in other places, but if you are a paying subscriber and you send me a question, I am going to think about it a lot! I am going to treat it the way I would if a friend I know in real life asked me for advice, and I was both (a) certain that friend wasn’t a little baby who couldn’t take the truth and (b) trying to make it have appeal to a broader audience. (If you want private advice that I don’t turn into content, become a founding member, and I’ll give you my Signal number and help you find a good place to dispose of a body.) You’re more than welcome to be mean to me in the comments, but please don’t be mean to the writer or each other. Xoxoxo, Ben
Dear Calm Down,
My wife and I don’t have children. She was very clear when we got together that she didn’t want children. I was open to the idea. I still am, but I don’t need to be a father. I’m perfectly satisifed getting to share my life with this woman I love so much.
Recently, she developed a tendency to remark on other people’s children in public. She’ll tell strangers how adorable their kids are or how cute their baby is. These aren’t people we know. I find this behavior bizarre and, frankly, embarrassing. I am not an idiot. We are in our mid-30s. It is possible that this is a sign that she has changed her mind and wants to have children, but when I asked her if we should talk about having kids, she said no. She insisted that she still doesn’t want to have children.
What’s going on? How much should I push her on this?
—Husband Open To Anything
Dear Husband Of Debatable Openness,