Too Much Hubby

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:

My husband finally agreed to go to couples counseling, a month before
retirement, so we had only the three visits covered by his Employee
Assistance Program in which to discuss the imminent changes that will
make his upcoming retirement tolerable. These have to do with
communication, scheduling, alone time, expectations about when I will
and will not be available, and a host of issues that have plagued the
marriage for years, not soon to be exacerbated to what I fear may be
an unbearable degree. I love the guy, but living with him is hell. The
counselor, who was great, gave us a list of homework assignments
that focused on how to talk to one another, how to make plans, and
what to do if we felt like hitting one another with a frying pan. It is all
coming unraveled. What can we do?

Too Much Hubby

Dear Too Much Hubby:

Go back to counseling. It is not magic. And any marriage that has
been plagued with problems for yours but still endured is worth the
investment of time and money that will be required. Virtually every
counselor will accept private pay clients, if the post-EAP cost is not
covered by your medical insurance. If you like the person, and if the
issues are just beginning to be addressed, you are far better off
sticking with it than letting them slide and then having to start over

Talk to the counselor by phone if possible, or take part of a session to
lay out an affordable three-to- six month plan. That should identify not
only the timing of schedules but get both of you to agree to sick to
agreements made in sessions, at least until the next session. Make
changes one step at a time, and give yourself two weeks to let them
become habit, to help each other to stay committed to the newly
inspired marriage. Change could become a fun new addition to your