I’m a single woman, 37, who wasn’t able to celebrate Easter other than to have an online conversation (and shed tears) with the man I love.
He’s 39, legally separated, and co-parenting two young children. He joined his kids and his ex-wife for Easter dinner, and then, taking precautions regarding COVID-19, he said he felt that he shouldn’t see me in person.
He said he was protecting me from any exposure to the virus that we couldn’t rule out.
I met him a year ago. We dated casually for about six months, then started having weekend sleepovers.
As the medical experts’ instructions about the virus got more serious, we were both no longer going to offices, and working instead at our own separate places.
But the weekend plan changed as his children were no longer in school and he spent more time with them at his former home, or they slept at his apartment.
Their mother insisted that he couldn’t have the children stay there overnight anymore, because she knew he sometimes had other “guests.”
I get it, that she has to protect the children. But we have a relationship to protect too.
We’re already social distancing by working apart. We’re not old people nor have serious health conditions.
The children are home with their mother, not at day care or school.
Is he just getting involved again with his ex-wife? Is she taking advantage of the situation to ease him back into a marriage?
(She didn’t want the break-up at the time and blamed his “restlessness” and work ambitions. He’s more laid-back now but that’s partly my doing and partly his being out of her constant “family-first” lectures).
How can we, as a couple who aren’t yet living together full time, deal with the current restrictions on our lives?
Am I overreacting because my only living parent is in another country with his own second family?
Alone on Easter
It’s tough to be alone on meaningful occasions.
But it’s far tougher to err in judgment about how to protect yourself and the people most important to you, and even others in your life.
Most difficult is to be responsible for contracting the virus or passing it on, when there are ways to prevent that from happening.
Your boyfriend is in an awkward position. He wants to maintain his place and role in his children’s lives, and he’s taking precautions to do so.
Presumably, his ex-wife is doing the same, albeit using the control she has from the home base for the children.
Is she going too far?
Not in a pandemic.
If you and this man have developed a strong bond between you, both should be able to keep the relationship viable through this crucial period of at least several more months.
Yes, I think your distance from your father increased your sense of emotional isolation. You can work on that by reaching out to him online. Now.
He’s in or close to a more vulnerable age range, especially if he’s had any illness that affects his general health.
This is a time for re-connecting, getting to know his second family if possible, and building bridges to having a “family” support system of your own.
Appreciate your boyfriend’s situation and his attempt to protect you… and his kids.
In time, you’ll know the true strength of what is still a relationship-in-process, while you both try to strengthen your sense of security about it.
I'm a woman, 65, separated 20 years, whose love partner (2009 to 2011) died from a brain tumor.
I don't trust men who play games and lie. I'm a grounded, secure, confident, honest, loving, down-to-earth country girl.
I recently went on a date. We had good chemistry and flirted. Then he ghosted me (probably for someone else).
What am I doing wrong? How can I correct my reserved attitude? I'm not desperate to have just sex but want a soulmate.
What Am I Missing?
You’re missing ending up with the wrong man… and that’s a good thing!
That “ghost” probably did move on to someone just for sex. When a jerk like that finds all those good traits in you, he runs, knowing you’ll want someone with character, honesty, and decency.
Not all men lie or play games. But it takes time, patience and being yourself to find love. You already know that. Be yourself.
Tip of the day:
These critical times that carry serious health threats, require great patience, understanding and trust, especially in still-developing relationships.