Help Me Stay in My Crap Marriage!

Dear Dategirl,

My husband isn't abusive, but I don't love him. I don't even like or respect him. He's a Republican (which I knew getting into things) and not very smart, to put it mildly. We have a 7-year-old on whom he dotes, while ignoring the 5-year-old. I try to make up for the difference as best I can, but the little one knows his daddy doesn't care. I suspect my husband has a girlfriend and I am not bothered by it, because at least that means I don't have to feign interest in his tiny pecker.

I'm staying married because I know that the alternative is worse. My single girlfriends are either lonely, fat, or dating one unsuitable jerk after another. I can't do that. I must have been a serial killer in a past life, and this marriage is my karmic comeuppance. Any suggestions for making it more bearable?

—Bitchy Bride

Dear Buzzkill,

I'm still trying to decide whether your letter depressed the fuck out of me or actually managed to piss me off. I'm torn, but I think you managed to accomplish both in two short paragraphs. For one thing, this whole tragic-single-lady line of thinking is bullshit. My single girlfriends are pretty much all amazing, successful, and fun. In fact, my friend Diane Mapes was just named one of Seattle's most fascinating singles by Seattle Magazine. So yeah, you sound like you're doing much better than her.

I've been lonely in a relationship and lonely out of a relationship, and I can tell you firsthand that being lonely in a relationship is far worse than being single. Because when you're unencumbered and feeling forsaken, there's always the possibility that you'll meet someone. You're going out, you're making things happen. You can call a friend or try online dating. You go to the movies or pet your dog until the feeling passes, which it always does.

And even though you don't have anyone to call "Smoochy," at least you're not sitting home with some ball-scratching schmo you loathe who mistreats one of your children and furtively texts his girlfriend behind your back. You're not stuck sleeping next to someone who repulses you, counting the hours until he goes back to the office or mistress. You have self-respect.

Then there are your kids. Not only are you modeling pretty much the exact opposite of a healthy marriage, one of them gets coddled by Daddy, the other ignored. Do you plan on paying their therapy bills for the rest of their lives? Because someone should. I'm sure you've told your husband that his behavior is completely fucked, but the fact that he continues playing favorites means Daddy should be done-zo.

I don't see the point of staying in your shitty marriage for one more second. It's hurting you and fucking up your children. And when your main reason for staying is that you're afraid you'll get fat if you leave, you need more help than an advice columnist can offer. You need therapy, possibly some prescription medication, and a big dose of perspective and reality.

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