Dear Amy:

My husband and I had a disagreement over what I felt was a normal request for a wife to make.

He was starting a new job and had been given the directions to the location of the job site. (He works in construction.) I asked him how to get there, and he stated that he hadn't even looked at the directions yet.

We both knew the general vicinity of the job, but I wanted to know exactly how to get there.

Later that evening, I asked if he had looked at the directions yet and he said he would check them in the morning before going to the job. They were in his car. I asked if he would go get them so that I could look at them. He acted offended, but he did go take a look at them. He came back in and spouted the street address of the site, which gave me no more information than I already had. I wanted to see the driving directions.

He argued that I could have waited until the next day because he could tell me where the job site was when he got home. I find his cagey behavior and defensive reaction to my inquiry odd and hurtful.

Should my inquiring be considered meddling or intrusive? As his wife, don't I have a right to know where my husband's job site is located?

Was I way out of bounds?


Are you your husband's mommy? Did you need the exact driving directions in order to deliver him a fresh-baked pie on his first day?

I gather that the answer to both of these questions is "no," so why couldn't you wait for your husband to come home to tell you all about his first day on the job -- including where, exactly, the job is located?

When people work in various job locations (as I have frequently done), sometimes you just don't feel like thinking about the particulars of your new work site until the day of the job dawns, after you have had your morning coffee.

I'm with your husband. He is a big, grown man -- competent and trustworthy enough to operate heavy equipment and skip across an I-beam.

Give him a break.

Dear Amy:

I've enjoyed your columns about the cure for saying "shut up."

I've got one for you.

My daughters are 18 months apart. They often would complain to my wife about each other. She cured this with a stroke of genius. She would not accept a spoken complaint from either one; they had to sing it.

It was just impossible for the girls to complain without all three of them laughing the complaint away.

Bob in Philadelphia

I love this cure and intend to try it out immediately.

Write to Amy Dickinson at or Ask Amy, Chicago Tribune, TT500, 435 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, Ill. 60611.

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