Earlier this week, the comments from readers about a resumed love affair between two married people in their 70's (Oct. 27 column) weighed in heavier on disapproval of their affair, than on appreciation of their enduring love for each other.
So many of you responded in total, that here are more views, some very personal:
Reader - "The letter is haunting me. My mother has Alzheimer's (as does the husband of the female of these lovers).
"I am trying to picture this: My dad visits her in the care home. He says, "Dear, I had an affair 20 years ago that lasted seven years. She's a really lovely lady, maybe you remember her?
"Well, since you are stuck in here and don't remember much anymore, I thought that I would start up the affair again. Yes, she's still married. It's okay, right?" Hmmm.
"The most striking thing about that woman's letter is that she doesn't ask for advice, Ellie, but instead questions whether your readers would condemn or encourage her. When is it okay to have an affair with a married person when you are also married? I think she's actually seeking permission.
"Some, I'm sure, will say go for it. Perhaps it's time to look in a mirror and ask for forgiveness, not permission."
Reader - "I don't think the husband was as romantic to his wife as he was to the lover. My husband sure wasn't, during his many affairs. I looked the other way, though was always suspicious, but I was too weak to move on, by myself.
"Those two lovers are SCUMBAGS in my book. You shouldn't go through with a relationship/marriage with someone and spend all your time, energy, and conversations with someone else.
"I'll bet the husband was all spent when he got home and was too tired to discuss his day, much less make love to his wife. The poor woman and the poor children who missed out on so much because of that affair!"
Reader - "I recommend they keep seeing each other while living apart, until his spouse dies (she has health issues, we're told). Her spouse who has Alzheimer's won't know the difference since he's institutionalized, and she should keep visiting him.
"Life is short: let them be happy.
"When my father was in a nursing home, I met several elderly people who had few visitors but discovered love with another patient. If the spouses found out, they demanded that the home's administrators keep them apart. I thought it very sad, especially since the people complaining weren't giving time or love to their relative."
Reader - "Their passion doesn't justify the affair. The risks taken, and betrayal of trust towards their own spouses, suggest extreme selfishness of both.
"Either marry each other, or end it. If you do marry, I'd say you deserve each other."
Reader - "I believe they did the right thing by staying with their spouses. Remember the old phrase, "the grass always looks greener on the other side."
"Who's to say life would be any more exciting after ten years with the other guy (from the affair)? Also, just because the original spouses are now having health problems, doesn't make it right to give up on loyalty!
"What if the shoe were on the other foot, how would one feel if a spouse, after all those years together, left you in a retirement home for someone else? Alzheimer's or not!
"If they can stay friends without going any further, then keep the friendship. If not, be there for your spouse, for better or worse."
Reader - "I've been married for 15 years. My husband, a kind-hearted man and good husband, was having an affair. I found out four years ago, and for the kids' sake, I forgave him; a year later I discovered he was still seeing her.
"We separated for two years but he wanted to come back home, and we went through counselling. I truly loved him unconditionally, and believed him when he said he loves me too and wants to work on our marriage.
"We got back together. And then I found another email. The pain is unbearable.
"Affairs are not justified. The marriage is a lie, when there's no honesty or trust between them. I don't believe that people who have affairs are bad people. But there's always a choice, and maybe your happiness does come first. Then leave with dignity and then pursue other people. But don't continue to live a lie."
Tip of the day:
Affairs spark controversy for everyone involved.