On top of that, my cat had a bumpy recovery after surgery and her anxiety since has been really difficult for me to manage. She gets upset if I even leave a room she is in.
I am gone 12 hours a day. I fail to give her the attention and care that she needs.
Several months ago my fiance told me that ultimately I would have to find a new home for her because it clearly wasn't working for everyone.
I didn't want to admit to him that I had already seriously considered rehoming her.
I know it's petty, but I want to give conditions before I agree. My conditions are that he has to get rid of his saltwater fish. If we ever consider getting pets, I want the final say.
The guilt of giving up this cat is crushing me.
Even if I find a better home for her, saying goodbye to my cat will rip me into pieces.
How do I navigate this?
Always a Cat Lady
Always a Cat Lady: According to you, you have not provided this cat with the home she deserves to have. You are gone for 12 hours a day and have not successfully dealt with the cat’s extreme anxiety. These unfortunate conditions are reason enough to find a different home for this cat.
If your fiance is allergic, I don’t see how you could place the blame so squarely on him for not wanting to live with a very high-maintenance, unhappy, dander-producing animal. His allergy is not his fault.
Do your fiance’s fish give you hives, get into everything or yowl whenever they are alone? If so, then the cat and the fish are somewhat equivalent. Otherwise, not so much.
Your fiance should be patient, understanding and kind toward you, and should help you to find a better home for your cat.
If your motivation to get rid of these fish is to force your fiance to give up his pets because you are giving up yours, then you might not be ready for marriage.
Marriage is about respectful compromise. Compromise doesn’t mean demanding that your partner must lose if you are losing.
You should not have the last (or only) say when choosing your next pet with your partner. You two should decide together and should share the responsibility of animal stewardship as evenly as you can.
Dear Amy: You asked readers what they call a gift that the gift-giver likes but the recipient does not want, need or like.
In my family this kind of gift is known as a "sidesaddle." An example might be if a father gives his infant daughter a big-screen television, or a wife gives her husband a juicer that she wants.
The story is that my great-grandmother once gave her husband a sidesaddle for Christmas.
Of course, he could not use it, but she wanted it. And she got it!
Faithful Readers: Your great-grandfather could have used the saddle, of course, but it might not have complemented his outfit.
I called this phenomenon an “Aunt Betty,” but I far prefer the “sidesaddle.”
Let it ever be thus.
Dear Amy: You are answering lots of questions about DNA testing lately. DNA testing is becoming more accessible and popular, and it is creating problems because people can be contacted by DNA matches.
Please point out that it is possible to "opt out" of this option and to keep your DNA results private.
DNA Tested: There are several companies offering DNA testing, and each seems to offer a different way of handling client privacy. In one, users are offered an option to “opt out,” in another, opting out is the default setting, so users must choose to “opt in.”
Regardless of this, it is possible that DNA matches can find one another through social media if they are connected with a match who has not chosen a privacy option, leading to other family members.