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My friend Cheryl can be described as the eternal optimist. Her 'glass' isn't half full- it's overflowing! She always looks at the bright side of everything; an admirable trait, except in one instance- her marriage. Cheryl is a wonderful wife and mother. Ross is inattentive and aloof. He does not participate in family life. He's never attended a back to school night, teacher's conference, sports matches or games or neighborhood events with his children. Cheryl says his demanding job doesn't afford him much free time. Her friends have suggested he should make his family his priority, but she insists Ross does the best he can.

Last month a mutual friend saw Ross dining at a steakhouse in the city with a young, attractive woman. She said they were drinking, laughing and interacting in an inappropriately intimate way. She told Cheryl what she had witnessed, and was astonished to hear Cheryl make yet another excuse for Ross' behavior; citing the fact that he often is obligated entertain his clients. He was away on a business trip on Mother's Day this year. He told Cheryl to go to London Jeweler's to pick out something for herself before he left, but failed to call her to wish her a Happy Mother's Day. She said he was in China, and was probably thrown off by the time difference.

How often do we hear from neglected and mistreated women that they had no idea their marriage was in jeopardy, until they are blindsided when their husbands "suddenly leave"? I believe all the signs are there, but they choose to look the other way. The issues in Cheyl's marriage to Ross should be dealt with and not ignored. My friends think she is oblivious to the dire situation, but I'm not so sure. I'm certain she hears and knows what's going on, and hope she can confront it here and now!

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