Dear Annie: More and more at sports events, I have sat next to men who have “man-spread” their legs, actually having thigh and knee halfway into my seat space. I find this very uncomfortable. They don’t seem to understand that their thigh, knee and foot are in what I would consider my personal space.
Could you suggest a manner in which I could get them to move without sounding like a cranky old woman? Other men have suggested I place my knee and thigh against theirs and push laterally, without saying a word. I’d prefer a verbal suggestion, quietly mentioned, but what is your best suggestion? — Needing Some Space
Dear Space: Confidence is key. If he’s bold enough to invade your personal space, you can be bold enough to ask him to stop. “Excuse me, would you mind moving your legs out of my space?” should do the trick. No need to overthink it.
Dear Annie: I have been married for almost 24 years and have known my husband since high school. Throughout our early 20s, we would break up every once in a while, but it would be a short period of time and then we would be back together.
We pretty much were together most of the time until we decided to get married. We never really talked about our past relationships but have been having some deep conversations lately. I knew he dated other women, and he knew I dated other guys. When I dated the other guys, I never got to the point of actually having sex with them. I recently found out my husband had sex with other women before we were married. I am crushed.
I know this is from a long time ago, but it makes me feel sick to my stomach thinking about him having sex with other women before we were married. He has been the only guy I have ever had sex with. All this time, I thought our relationship together was special because I thought I was his only one. I feel different about him now that I know this. I think if I would have known he was having sex with other women back then, I might not have kept going back to him. I guess I was naive.
I did tell him it makes me sick to my stomach thinking about him having sex with other women. I know this was from a long time — so long — ago and I can’t change the past, so I am wondering if I am overreacting. Should I talk more to him about how I am feeling? Any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated. — Unknowingly Naive
Dear Unknowingly: If you deemed your relationship with your husband special purely because you thought you were each other’s only sexual partners, your bond isn’t as strong or unique as you think. There are plenty of other factors that go into a successful marriage that are far more important than who your husband slept with in his early 20s — when you two were not together.
To make it another 24 years, you can’t look toward the past. Everyone has a history, and this is your husband’s. Forget the baggage; you can’t change it. What’s important is that you are the one he chose then and continues to choose now.
“Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to email@example.com.