FEEDBACK Regarding the wife who distrusts her husband because he loves someone else (despite no sexual relations with that person) and still wants to stay married (Oct. 21):
Reader – “I’m in the same boat. My wife is the only person I’ve ever been with sexually. I care about her deeply. She’s family.
“I’ve never been passionately in love with her as I was with one woman I dated before her.
“I now feel for my co-worker more deeply than I’ve ever felt before.
“I can read my co-worker so easily and we have so many shared interests and experiences.
“How can it be possible to love someone you’ve chosen to not marry or have sex with? For me, the answer is that I don't want to hurt my wife.
“I would never physically cheat on her. I’d break up with her first, if I felt that’s where my relationship was going to go.
“I didn't have sexual relationships with the other women I’d dated before marriage because I don't believe in doing so in the first year of dating.
“I'm unsure about my future. I know that mention of my feelings would have my wife experiencing the same distrustful feelings as “Devastated Wife” in that Oct. 21 column.
“I know that I’m staying with my wife because a logical pros and cons analysis, and my value system, says I should.
“However, if my soul-mate were to be in a car accident tomorrow, lose her husband, and was paralyzed, I’d divorce my wife to be with her and help look after her son.”
Ellie – Your future depends on what your wife can accept, should this “secret soul-mate” connection ever become known (and it likely will).
Me? I’d say, No thanks. I’d rather be on my own than with a husband who considers me like an admired second cousin.
Frankly, I think you should clarify your emotions rather than tuck them all into a sealed box, under pro-and-con labels.
So rational, but so conflicted.
If you’d truly only divorce your wife to be a hero to your co-worker should tragedy strike her, then your “love” for her seems like an escapist dream.
I suggest you stop playing out two different versions of your life. Seeing a therapist on your own can help you recognize the realities you’re now avoiding.
You care for your wife, but you love your co-worker. You’re giving each only a half-loaf. And you may all end up with only regrets.
Reader’s Commentary Regarding the man who wants to “fix a mess” of dating two women (Oct. 20):
Reader – “He’s a person who needs a give-take balance in a relationship. He wasn't receiving from the first person. His giving was met with lack of "return" from her part. (He "felt lonely and unappreciated."
“But he felt needed through "building up" the other woman. It wasn’t only self-serving. This other person benefitted from it, and now wants to give back with love.
“He doesn't sound that callous to me (for wanting his first love instead.) "I feel sick and guilty" is an indication that he’s conscientious.
“He needs to see the bigger picture and act fast, in order not to prolong his unintentional deception.
“His lack of courage is putting everyone in more hurtful trouble in the future. When one no longer has feelings to reciprocate, it’s the kindest move to stop letting the second woman’s expectation continue.
“Whatever blame there may come, he needs to own up.”
What do I do about this girl in school who’s following me everywhere. I don't want to be her friend.
Be sure of what’s going on before you react wrongly.
IF her “following” you feels threatening, tell your teacher or a school official the details of how she’s making you uncomfortable.
However, if she’s only trying to be friends, consider why you don’t want that.
Maybe you think she’s uncool, that your other friends won’t accept her in your group. That reaction, along with similar ones from your friends, can be considered “bullying.”
It’s not a cool label for you to allow yourself.
Schools are determined to stop social isolation from happening to some students and you could get caught in their policy against bullying.
Instead, let her talk to you. Listen. If you find common interests, say so. Otherwise, be polite and say you’ll see her around.
You’ll be showing true leadership.
Tip of the day:
Juggling a logical marriage with an emotional passion can leave everyone involved empty-handed.