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Dear Abby: Woman abused as child needs help to overcome her hang-ups

Dear Abby: I am a 46-year-old woman with PTSD due to a history of physical abuse, mental abuse and incest that I experienced as a child. I’m proud to say that it has not been repeated with my four children.

My childhood history has made me want sex only if I am in control or if I am role-playing rape. It has caused a big problem with my fiance. I want this scenario all the time, and unfortunately it’s unhealthy. I’m not sure how to go about healthy sex with him. He is 10 years older than I am and not interested in “different” sex practices.

I love him very much and don’t want to mess up this relationship because of my sex issues. Can you advise me how to handle this? – Role-Playing in St. Paul

Dear Role-Playing: If you haven’t discussed the reason for your sexual issues with your fiance, you need to explain the reason for them. From your letter, I am guessing that you never had counseling to help you resolve the abuse to which you were subjected. If that’s correct, I am advising you to contact RAINN (Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network; rainn.org) or a local rape crisis organization and ask for some help now. The counselors are specially trained to help victims of various kinds of abuse, and the place to start resolving your issues would be there.

Dear Abby: It’s that time of year when you print your gift ideas for seniors column. When my dad was alive, he, like many others, was on a fixed income. Among his pleasures was watching ballgames and keeping up with current events. So I contacted his cable company and arranged to pay his cable bill for a period of time as a gift. This can be arranged for any increment of time to match the gifter’s budget – from one month to a year. It allowed Dad to enjoy his TV and have some extra spending money that would otherwise have gone to paying the cable bill. – Rosemary in Pennsylvania

Dear Rosemary: You are a good daughter. Thanks for sharing your idea. It’s a thoughtful one, and I’m sure my readers will thank you for the suggestion.

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.