I don't know a solution to your problem but can i suggest upgrading to Microsoft Essentials. Free downloading and gives an option to only install the email component if you wish.
I'll try your suggestion. It's just so weird. One of the Microsoft techs screwed all of this up for me, I believe. I granted one of them remote access to my computer for another issue and ever since, life with Outlook has been a disaster. Calling again yields no results unless I want to pay an astronomical price for something the tech screwed up in the first place. Those Microsoft techs...may the fleas of a thousand camels nest in their armpits.