Dear Abby: Lonely man during holidays should reach out to others

Dear Abby: I became estranged from my family after I came out as gay. I am OK with it and don’t really care anymore. The problem is, besides having no family, I have no friends either. I always had difficulty making friends, so I found it more comfortable just hanging out at home by myself.

I have come to accept the absence of friends as my reality. I try to do fun things by myself, like seeing movies and eating out, but the holiday season is tough. Most people look forward to it, but I dread this time of year. It only makes me more aware of how alone and lonely I am.

I don’t like to go out by myself during the holidays because most people are out with family and friends. Can you suggest some things I could do for the holidays instead of staying home and watching TV by myself? – Holiday Hurting

Dear Holiday Hurting: Start calling some of the charitable organizations in your area and ask if they can use an extra pair of hands during the holiday season.

A sure cure for the blues is to reach out and do something for someone who needs a helping hand. If you try it, you may meet like-minded people and start some friendships.

Dear Abby: My wife of 37 years is a perfectionist. I am not. I try to help around the house, but she always comes afterward to “correct” my mistakes and make things “perfect.”

Two examples: I make the bed; she remakes it. I cut the grass; she recuts it.

This doesn’t bother her one bit; she gladly does all the work. Further, she’s busy ALL day. We never have a chance to talk. When we do, it is always trivial.

I am retired and find this disconcerting. When I try my hobbies, she’s all over me, so I quit them. Most men would trade places in an instant, but I’m just unhappy. I try to golf a lot. – Unhappy Hubby

Dear Unhappy Hubby: Has it occurred to you that your wife may suffer from OCD, and that’s the reason everything has to be “perfect”? It appears the only thing that isn’t perfect is your marriage.

Perhaps it’s time you talked to her about how her obsession with perfection makes you feel – because from where I sit, it comes across as a passive-aggressive putdown. Unless she’s willing to recognize that what she’s doing isn’t healthy for your marriage and consider professional help, nothing will change.