My Indecisive Wife

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Dear Joel,

My wife Susan can’t ever make up her mind. If I ask, “Would you like to go out for dinner?” she says, “If you want to.” If I ask “Chinese or Italian?” she says “Oh, it doesn’t matter” Hot coffee or iced? Chocolate or vanilla? Paper or plastic? I think you get the picture. It’s maddening. Why does she do this and how can I get her to make a decision… any decision?

Bob, Toms River

Dear Bob,

It’s been my experience that people who have a hard time with decisions do it for two main reasons. Either they are afraid to face the consequences of their choice (everyone hated the movie you picked) or they are real pleasers. They would rather forfeit their preferences to keep you or the group happy. Which is she? If she lacks confidence then make if fun. Say, “Tuesday is Susan day. Whatever Susan picks will be the right choice,” and make her stick to it. The pleaser type may require a little acting, because they REALLY want you to be happy. Show them that even if their selection was a dud, you enjoyed trying something new, and that you’re looking forward to doing it again. And end the day with a sweet word. There is a third group that truly doesn’t care about anything, but I’m sure that’s not Susan. Remind Susan we all make hundreds of choices a week, and no one ever gets them all right. You picked Susan and her picks will be fine with you.

Joel Markel

Write to His radio show, “Preferred Company” airs Monday through Friday from 8 to 10 a.m. on and 1160 & 1310 WOBM-AM.

If you or anyone else is in need of home health care, call Preferred at 732-840-5566. “Home health care with feeling.

Joel Markel is President of Preferred Home Health Care and Nursing Services Inc. serving all of New Jersey in adult, senior and pediatric home health care.”