- Advice for your Everyday Life
Section: abuse, relationships 

Dear Ann Landers,
I am engaged to a wonderful man I have known for four years. "Dudley" and I plan to be married next summer. He is a kind soul and a perfect gentleman. Everything was great until a few weeks ago, when Dudley started to hit me while he was asleep. The first time, he punched my rear end with his fist and then stopped suddenly. Last night, he hit me in the stomach twice. Both times, I woke him up and expressed astonishment. He was completely unaware of what he had done. When I asked him why he was hitting me, he said he had no recollection of doing it and wondered if maybe I dreamt it. Well, Ann, I was definitely not dreaming. Dudley did indeed hit me. I asked if he perhaps dreamed he was in a fight, and he said it was possible, but he never remembers his dreams. I find this hard to believe because I remember mine. I am truly concerned that Dudley has a subconscious wish to hurt me. Please tell me how to handle this. -- Bruised in Dallas

Dear Bruised,
It sounds as if Dudley is a mighty restless sleeper. I doubt that he wants to hurt you. He could be dreaming about a schoolyard bully or a boss he hated years ago. You would, however, be safer in twin beds. The important thing is that he doesn't hit you while he is awake.

"Expect trouble as an inevitable part of life and repeat to yourself, the most comforting words of all; this, too, shall pass."
-Ann Landers