Wife’s veganism has become a third party in marriage

Published 8:09 am Friday, March 22, 2024

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DEAR ABBY: My wife and I have been teachers since 1999. We married in 2011. She became vegan in 2017. It helped her beat diabetes, which I love. However, she’s pure vegan for animal rights and listens to vegan podcasts all day long after teaching and on the weekends. I mean all day, EVERY day with earbuds in. I have to say, “Knock, Knock” to even talk with her.

Right now, she’s listening to podcasts and messaging vegan people on social media and doesn’t even realize I’m typing. I love my wife, but I can’t escape the frustration of not being able to have a conversation with her about anything. 

We have no kids together, but I raised her son from 7 years old. He moved to live with his dad because of her obsessions with work and veganism. I love her, but the fridge is filled with kale. Should I stay, or should I go? – AFTERTHOUGHT IN OREGON

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DEAR AFTERTHOUGHT: Tap your wife on the shoulder and ask her to remove her earbuds. When she does, give her an earful. Tell her you love her but you need a partner who is willing to be more of a companion than she has become. Tell her you shouldn’t have to ask permission to talk to her because of her preoccupation (obsession) with her podcasts. 

If you want food in the house that isn’t vegan, go out and buy some. And if she’s unwilling or unable to accept and adapt, try marriage counseling before calling a lawyer. The marriage you have described is not a happy one, or you wouldn’t have written to me.


DEAR ABBY: I’m growing concerned for my grandparents. They are in their late 80s and homebound. Recently, a new tenant moved into their garage apartment. They LOVE her. The rest of the family is suspicious of her. She has no job and no car and has never paid rent. She frequently spends the day with my grandparents and recently “helped” them change all their usernames and passwords to something more “simple and easy.” 

My grandparents live on Social Security. They have no savings, and I don’t believe they have a will. From my perspective, they are setting themselves up to be robbed, abused and left high and dry by a crook disguised as their friendly tenant. 

Is this worthy of an Adult Protective Services investigation? My grandparents guilt the rest of the family by saying, “At least our tenant comes over often, unlike the rest of you.” (I live three hours away). Do I need to mind my own business? They aren’t suspicious at all. – DUBIOUS IN TEXAS


DEAR DUBIOUS: An investigation is not an accusation. The relationship your lonely grandparents have with this tenant is unusual. Contact APS, inform them about what’s going on with your grandparents and let someone there decide whether your concerns are worth following up on. Better to be safe than sorry.


Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.


Good advice for everyone – teens to seniors – is in “The Anger in All of Us and How to Deal With It.” To order, send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $8 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby, Anger Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)