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Dear Abby: You can’t have your matzoh and eat it, too: choosing between love and religion

Dear Abby: I have been with my fiance for four years. He is 32, I’m 23. He is Catholic and I am Jewish. When I met him, I wasn’t particularly religious, but since planning a trip to Israel and after studying under a rabbi, I have become more religious. I now keep kosher and try to be as close to Orthodox as I can.

I eventually want an Orthodox Jewish home and for my children to be raised Jewish. But every time I try to discuss this with him, he nods his head and says in a sarcastic tone, “Uh-huh.” I don’t think he understands how serious I am about becoming Orthodox, even though I live the lifestyle now. How can I ensure that he will live and raise our children in an Orthodox Jewish way before I walk down the aisle and it is too late?

– Keeping Kosher in New York

Dear Keeping Kosher: Your fiance is behaving as if he thinks you are going through a phase rather than making an actual commitment to becoming Orthodox Jewish. If he had any interest in raising his children in the Jewish faith, he would have shown it by asking questions and trying to learn more about what that would entail.

I won’t mince words with you: The only guarantee I can offer that your children will be raised Orthodox Jewish would be for you to marry a man who feels similarly.

Turn up the ‘thermostat’

Dear Abby: My wife is the best thing that ever happened to me. After 34 years together – 28 of them married – she is still the love of my life. How can I express this to her? I have done the usual things over the years: candy, flowers, presents. I give cards, but I am not a wordsmith. Do you have any suggestions on how I can convey my love to this wonderful woman who I call my wife?

– Speechless in Ohio

Dear Speechless: You don’t have to be a wordsmith to say “I love you” when she awakens in the morning and repeat it as she goes to sleep each night. Flowers, candy and presents are demonstrations of your love, but just as meaningful can be something as simple as holding her hand when you walk together and turning up the thermostat when she’s chilly – even if you aren’t.

At least she’s asleep

Dear Abby: My wife of 37 years is calling out another man’s name and moving her lips in her sleep. I don’t recognize the name and I believe it might be someone she works with. Should I be concerned?

– Sleepless in Texas

Dear Sleepless: You should be curious, but sleep-talking is not necessarily indicative of romance. If you haven’t already, ask her who the man of her dreams is. She could be mumbling the name of an old boyfriend from high school or that of a beloved pet from childhood.