Dear Readers - I asked: Is a past seven-year extra-marital affair justified as enduring love, because the lovers are re-united in their 70s - both still married, though her husband's now in a nursing home (Oct. 27 column). Interestingly, after many responses, the critics outnumber the romantics:
Reader - "Not many people manage to find one enduring love in their life and these two found TWO! As long as your partners are taken care off - GO FOR IT! Why not live the rest of your lives in joy when you're given that chance? Those who truly love you, should be overjoyed for you, and encourage and support you!"
Reader - "Absolutely not. How can you be "loving and respectful" of your husband/wife and children, and having an affair for seven years?! How would they feel if they knew? It hurts... it hurts a lot. They were not wrong to stay in their marriage, but should now, again, stop contact with each other.
"They should've done that when they started having feelings for each other 20 years ago."
Reader - "When will women learn? She was a fool then and she's a fool now. He's perfectly happy with his wife, his family, and his home. All he wanted was a little "extra-marital adventure" which she provided."
Reader - "This lady is looking for external validation and that's not really going to do her any good. We each have our own truths to live and she (and he) need to do their own soul-searching and figure out what's the right thing for them individually, and discuss what the results mean to their situation.
"Generally, a significant deception (an affair) in a primary relationship isn't a healthy situation.
"She's looking for an excuse not to do soul-searching, so that if this (renewed affair) doesn't work out she has someone else to blame rather than herself."
Reader - "Apparently, their spouses treated them both well so didn't deserve to be lied to. The lovers didn't tell the spouses because they valued their marriages and knew they'd have to choose. Meanwhile, he wanted to be with his wife more than he wanted to be with her.
"Now, the wife's medical problems shouldn't be used to get her to consent to something she wouldn't have agreed to years ago. As for the husband with Alzheimer's', when a spouse can no longer recognize or remember their spouse, and sex has stopped, one owes them care, but can feel free to seek companionship elsewhere."
Reader - "Like many "cheaters," the writer and her lover have judged each other to be "good people", all the while keeping their ongoing indiscretions secret.
"She's been living a lie for a long time, and never had the courage to speak the truth to her husband and family, which needed to be done on day one to retain some modicum of "good person" status for herself, and any show of respect for her family."
Reader - "I'm wishing this was my story. I'm 71, married 51 years, and my husband's favorite pastime is yelling at me.
"Did I ever think I'd find myself in this situation, at this age, having worked alongside him for 30 years? We're not rich but we are not poor, so foolish me for thinking I'd be travelling over the winter months, but this isn't what he wants to do.... just scream at me. Please tell this person they were so lucky to find love, so they should wallow in it at any age."
Reader - "Their spouses are at such a senior age, with compromised health problems, that one wonders if an affair would really matter to them.
"However, they DID once make promises to their spouses "for better or worse," (which means their past affair was wrong).
"To rekindle this affair completely (including sexually), is just an all-around bad idea. If it meant that much to them both, 25 years ago, why didn't they throw all to the wind, follow their hearts, and insist on being together completely? Something was holding them back.
"It tells me that it was just the intrigue of the "Affair." So leave it alone. Don't destroy families now. Remain good friends, talk and text every day, enjoy coffee times, in fact spend time together as old friends and leave it at that.
"You need to ask: Is it worth the destruction that a relationship now could cause?"
Tip of the day:
An enduring love affair brings personal joy, but don't expect others will approve.