I’ve fallen in love with a woman in another country. I’m mad about her, she’s incredible. I look forward to every message she sends me, but what am I supposed to do?
She lives so far away, I need to meet her. I live in Kansas City and she lives in France. I speak some French, she speaks some English, we just meet halfway, combining the two and oddly enough it works for us.
She’s suggested I come to see her over the summer. I just wonder if I need to stay when I get there. My whole body is alive when I think of her.
Despite our languages and our time zones, we speak to one another and she speaks to me in such a way that I’ve never experienced before. What should I do?
Muddled With Love
If you’re that besotted through an online relationship, you must meet her, but would be unwise to make plans to stay ahead of that meeting.
This isn’t just about having an up-close look at her, or the excitement of physical touch. It’s the only way to know who she is in the real world, and for her to know who you are.
You’d need to spend a couple of weeks, see where she lives, meet her family and her friends, and spend time sharing her daily routine.
That means not just having a romantic get-away visit alone together, surrounded by a holiday setting and ease.
Book a hotel near her home for the first couple of days (you can move to her after you both feel comfortable, if that’s what she offers).
You need to know a lot more about each other before you move yourself to a country where you know little of the language or way of life.
Meanwhile, during your online messaging and chats, ask some questions to help you plan your trip. Examples: Does she live alone or with family? Is there an ex-boyfriend or husband who’ll be in the area and what’s their relationship now? How will her family feel about your visit?
Some French lessons will help, too.
I live in a very nice suburban development where my two kids have plenty of playmates and can wander safely around the neighbourhood.
The problem is with a nearby neighbour. Our kids are best friends so she doesn't have a problem asking for favours.... many of them!
She’s always out shopping and running late for things and calls me in a panic asking if I can drive her kid to his tennis lesson or chess club because she won't make it back in time.
Once she asked me to pick up milk for her when I said I was going to the supermarket. I don't mind doing these things occasionally but it's happening more and more often.
Am I too nice?
She’s taking advantage of you. Being “nice” is who you are. But your annoyance shows you don’t appreciate her presumption that you’ll pick up wherever she slacks off.
She doesn’t need serious help (in which case you’re probably the person who’d willingly provide it). She needs to know there are limits.
For the sake of the kids’ friendships, introduce them gently. Since you now know her kids’ schedules, alert her ahead that you’re going to be busy at that time for several weeks.
Also, don’t mention your own errands to her. She sees them as an invitation for her to add to your list.
My three best friends all have depression/anxiety. Sometimes they send me really cryptic messages that scare me.
When I ask if they're okay, and if they want to talk, they often don't respond.
It's causing me great stress and depression/anxiety of my own. I don't know what I’d do if I lost them, but I don't know how much more of this I can take. I don't know how to help them, or myself.
Despite your caring, you’re NOT expected to be responsible for people with ongoing depression and anxiety. These are serious conditions requiring professional treatment and monitoring.
You’re already helping, by listening when they’re open to talking. If you feel very concerned, have the number or website of a distress phone line available and urge them to make contact. If you sense a crisis, call an ambulance.
You should also have a health check about how this is affecting you.
Tip of the day:
Meet your online long-distance love in person and check out his/her real world.