Ask Amy

Wednesday, October 21, 2009 at 10:45pm

DEAR AMY: I have been dating "Donald" almost two months.

Everything seems to be going great.

We met through online dating.

After about three dates, I took my profile down because I liked him and wanted to see where this relationship would go.

Donald kept his profile up.

We have talked about it briefly, but because we have not been dating for very long I feel slightly uncomfortable having a serious talk about this.

He had not been online in almost a month, and then out of the blue he signed on again but has not been on the site for a while now.

I know in my heart of hearts Donald is not seeing anyone else, but it hurts me to see that he signed on.

I don't know what to do. Do I continue to date him and keep checking up on him?

Do I just stop checking to see if he has been on the dating site? Or do I talk to him about this — and if so, how?

I worry that because we have talked about it briefly before, if I bring it up again I am going to sound crazy and insecure. When is the right time to have "the talk"?

— Uneasy

DEAR UNEASY: You do sound crazy and insecure. I don't believe you are crazy, mind you — but you should trust yourself and Donald enough to enjoy the dating experience. Leave the crazy at home — there's plenty of time for that later.

In my view, you should not have taken down your profile so quickly, but it's your profile and your choice to manage it however you wish.

Donald has the same right.

Please stop checking up on him.

If you two develop an exclusive relationship — certainly if you choose to become sexually involved, then you should have "the talk."

Online meeting sites provide great tools for people to meet their matches, but the whole idea of dating someone in person means that you should get to know the person slowly and carefully.


DEAR AMY:
My wife of seven years still has our 3-1/2-year-old son sleeping between us. What is the usual cut-off date for a child to sleep in his own room?

— Wondering Dad

DEAR DAD: Whether a child sleeps with you — and when the child should stop sleeping with you — depends on cultural practices and parental preference.

I'm of the opinion that babies should start sleeping by themselves and in their own spaces when they start to ease off of frequent nursing, which usually happens well before they are a year old. Sleeping independently ensures that young children get the rest they require.

If your domestic sleeping arrangement is interfering with your ability to get a good night's sleep or enjoy your intimate relationship with your wife (and how can it not?), then it is long past time for your son to be in his bed.

If you are interested in moving your son to his own bed, your wife will have to be fully on board. A consistent and calm approach will make the process much easier for all of you.

A book I like, which offers a practical and respectful middle ground on the issue of children and sleep, is Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, by Dr. Marc Weissbluth (2005, Ballantine).

Weissbluth points out how important a child's sleep habits are to the whole family.


DEAR AMY: "Older and Maybe Wiser" was a woman who received diamond earrings from her husband that were the same as the ones his buddy gave his girlfriend.

Many years ago when I was a relatively new bride, my husband bought me a green chenille bathrobe for Christmas that was exactly the same as one he gave his sister, the only difference being the size.

I guess this is part of what makes some gifts extra memorable!

It is good that I did not then know that there was also a small wooden stepladder in my Christmas gift future!

If I were ever to receive diamond earrings from my husband, I would be over the moon.

— Ever Hopeful

DEAR HOPEFUL: Posting this column on the bathroom mirror may make your Christmas wish come true. Fingers crossed!

Send questions via e-mail to askamy@tribune.com

Filed under: Lifestyles