I’ve known this man for eight years, as a customer. He always seemed to look out for me. He financed my vehicle, and helped me relocate my business.
He’d always offer his advice, as a friend and my mentor. I'm 45; he's 70. We flirt and banter constantly.
He's been married for 50 years, and has had a mistress for 25 years. He feels obligated to care for her because she originally left her husband for him, but he didn’t leave his wife for her.
Five months ago, he and I crossed the line. He says he loves me and has never felt like this towards anyone. We have so much fun together, I keep him young.
However, he sees and has sex with the mistress once a week. He initially lied about it, but I raised it, and he was honest.
He isn't leaving his wife. I don't want him to. I insist that he omits the mistress, if we’re to continue. But he worries that if I decide he's too old, he’ll have no one.
He’s with me daily, even sees me after dinner with his mistress.
Am I just another toy for him? He says he loves us both. What do I do?
No wonder he doesn’t want to give up anyone in his happy life – a wife to maintain home and laundry; a mistress for weekly sex, dinner, and no nagging; and you, young enough to be around when he needs more care.
I understand that you feel loved, special, essential to his well-being… but for how long? There’ll always be the wife, and the mistress.
Dumping her now would be cruel. He may resent you for it. He’s lied before, and may still fit her into his schedule.
Think this through very clearly. You’re in the prime of life. Ask yourself why only this man with an established female entourage, makes you feel special?
My girlfriend of four years and I broke up. She’s Catholic, I’m Sikh, and she wants to raise Catholic kids. We didn't speak for four months.
My parents, not knowing about her, suggested an arranged marriage. I agreed from pressure.
But my girlfriend and I got back together. She said I must choose. I want her. I don't care about the religion part anymore.
I told my parents and they said they’ll disown me if I back out of this marriage. I want to be with my love, but I’ll be sacrificing my family, and embarrassing them within our community.
Take your girlfriend out of the discussion temporarily, and help your parents face this reality: You’re not an honest candidate for an arranged marriage. It’d be unfair to any woman for you to go ahead.
You want a love match. Even if you break up again, you’ll be drawn to love, and have little commitment to your arranged wife.
Arranged marriages can and do turn out very well, BUT both parties have to believe in the concept at their core. You don’t.
It’ll be less awkward in the community if your parents say you’re not ready, not “mature enough.”
A bride’s parents should hopefully agree you’re not the best choice. It’ll mean you and your girlfriend holding off on being public for another while.
Meantime, discuss the religious implications more thoroughly so you make sure you really can handle 1) your parents’ disapproval, and 2) your own comfort level about future children.
My best friend’s racist, sexist, and jokes about people. But she has no one else. Even her family dislikes her. She has low self-esteem, calling herself ugly and fat. What can I do?
Explain what she’s doing wrong. No one likes someone who mocks individuals and badmouths groups. Say that only being positive about herself and others, will attract friendships.
FEEDBACK Regarding the university student who had an affair with her professor (Sept. 18):
Reader – “I’d bet that, although the affair felt unique and personal for her, she’s NOT the first student with whom he’s had a brief relationship.
“And that he’s repeated the pattern of returning to his wife when she "finds out" or when he’s ready to end the affair.
“I’ve known about many similar situations.
“It’s enticing when an older, intelligent professor shows interest and makes someone feel special, so I understand her sadness.
“You're right - she needs to move on.”
Tip of the day:
Love rarely survives long-term in the midst of ongoing complicated and competing relationships.