I’m in love with a man who has a true mental disability.
He won’t wear condoms. He has two kids and doesn’t want any more.
Our relationship blossomed with sex coming first and now we’re working backwards.
He’s terrible with money and has used me for money, and somewhat for sex, although it was mostly consensual. I've never had sex this good in my life.
He’s funny, kind, and giving, but he holds back from me. I don’t think he’s ever been in a serious relationship before and he has a hard time holding hands and doing little things.
I’ve been married twice, and am used to someone doting on me. He’s very handsome and personable, and I get jealous.
We want to get a place together, but he won’t say if the kids will be a part of our lives, as they’ve never been a part of his life.
Though he suffers from mental illness, so do I. We take our meds and are at our best, but underneath it all, I don’t know if he’ll cheat on me.
I recently slept with two other men he knows and he’s okay with that. But I can’t share him.
We’re both in hospital awaiting discharge and looking at two-bedroom places. I only want to be with him now.
Can you help me seek clarity?
Since you’re both in ongoing treatment, it’s crucial that you discuss these emotional issues with a counsellor.
Otherwise, they can disturb the balance you need to live together effectively and happily.
Example: A double standard on cheating – you can, he can’t – usually doesn’t work.
Also, discuss before you move in together, whether his kids are to be involved. And agree on a birth control method, soon.
Be open in counselling about your need for affection, and your tendency to be jealous. Those traits can cause hurts and blow-ups unless you both understand how to handle them.
My son is in 7th grade. His school had the kids clean, and vacuum classrooms and carry trash cans of water downstairs and out of the building when a pipe broke and flooded their classroom.
A teacher fell down the steps doing this.
It went on for two weeks as they couldn’t find the source of the leak.
The school didn’t tell us; the kids did. They’re also pulled from recess to load deliveries into the fridge for lunches.
We pay lunch ladies but the kids are also pulled from recess to sweep the cafeteria.
How do I address this without putting my son in a bad spot? He's well-liked and a great kid. Recess is important and their break. They’re not staff.
Parent vs. School
There’s power in numbers. Get a group of parents together who feel as you do.
But before you proceed, make sure enough students (separately) describe the demands on them the same way. Take notes.
Then send a letter to the school principal, as well as to the head of the school board, listing your complaints.
Example: A single involvement of the children in a clean-up task, so long as it didn’t involve heavy lifting or danger, could be too-easily rationalized as a “life lesson.”
Be clear on your position. Repeated use of the students in these tasks, is wrong. So too is repeated interference with their recess time.
If you have enough numbers, you should be able to use the students’ quotes without naming them so that no one child is singled out.
FEEDBACK Regarding the new mother’s hostility over her baby niece’s similar name (April 23):
Reader – “I can't believe the mean-spiritedness of this woman toward her relatives.
“What makes her think she has the exclusive right to any name?
“In our large Italian family we have: two Alyssas, two Elizabeths, two Luisas, two Connies, two Idas, an Anna and a Hannah, two Matthews, two Andrews, two Eugenios, and the list goes on. That’s just on my side!
“Most are first cousins.
“We also have adorable twins who died a few days after birth; a couple of children with life-threatening illnesses; and that list also goes on.
“The miracle of birth is only surpassed by the bigger miracle of so many children coming into this world miraculously healthy.
“Ms. "Stolen Name" should thank the deity to whom she prays (or her "lucky stars") for the safe arrival of both of these little girls.”
Tip of the day:
If already dealing with medication and counselling, ask guidance for emotional issues that can upset the balance.