I’m a woman, 22, who’s still very close with my first boyfriend from age 13. We dated openly in high school, but he cheated on me once. Next day, he was very apologetic and promised it wouldn’t happen again, but it did years later.
I was very angry but got busy with college and wouldn’t see him for six months. He came back to me full of apologies and we’ve returned to being best friends.
Now, I’m working and dating someone and so is he. I like the guy I’m dating but very recently things have changed. My old boyfriend says that we’re at a turning point and he’s very scared that if we don’t make a decision right now, we’ll lose the chance at what we always said we wanted… to be together forever.
He wants to buy me a ring and get engaged. We would both have to tell our dating partners right away. I’m overwhelmed, excited, but also scared, what should I do?
A Bride or Not?
Stop seeing the guy you’re dating and explain why. It’s unfair to have him hanging on while you’re making this decision. Explain that you’re not sure and you don’t want to be swept away by the proposal, but you have a long history with your old boyfriend.
However, don’t rush to accept the proposal. Despite the excitement of the ring and the planning, they aren’t as important as what your real feelings are about being married to this man for years ahead.
Think about having children with him, making a life together. Also, talk to your parents, and anyone like a wise relative whose advice you truly respect or a leader from your faith, not just your girlfriends who might just be excited about it all.
If you take time and truly get in touch with your innermost feelings, you’ll make the right decision.
My ex-husband’s dating a terrific woman. She cares about my kids and is respectful to me as their mother. She even told me that of all the people she’s met through him, she likes me the best!
It’s hard to know how to handle this new “friendship.” Naturally, I want amicable relations between her and me if she’s going to be in my children’s lives.
The problem is that I no longer want to see my husband socially, unless it’s a family-related event with the kids.
Frankly, I’m no longer that interested in his opinions and stories as I’ve heard them all and am tired of his need to dominate conversations. His girlfriend may find them interesting and admire him - which is what he wants - but I’m past pretending.
How do I reconcile wanting to avoid social involvement with my ex, unless it’s necessary? How do I maintain a pleasant/honest relationship with his new girlfriend without bad-mouthing her boyfriend or answering questions about why we ended our marriage?
Awkward New Friendship
Be gracious and friendly, but be discreet. Do NOT tell her the personality aspects of your ex that you dislike. People perceive others and their ways, from the backdrop of their own experience. Yours is that of the ex-wife who grew distant from him.
By contrast, she sees him as a girlfriend with admiration for his social skills, accomplishments and experience.
In short, hold your inner feelings close. There’s great advantage to you and your children to have a relaxed relationship with her.
My cousin and his wife asked to stay in my house to visit their daughter who’s in university here. It became a four-day nightmare. They’re a sloppy couple who toss their clothes on chairs and couches, and sit waiting to be served. Also, they repeatedly told their daughter to visit them here (involving my cooking more meals) instead of taking her out.
But the worst thing was that they didn’t turn the shower off properly and the water leaked through the floor into the apartment below mine, causing angry phone calls from my neighbour.
I had to call a plumber who was here for four hours and pay him.
I want to ask them to pay me back. Your advice?
Four Miserable Days
It can get ugly. You might have to prove that it’s their fault and not lack of maintenance on your part. Instead, lesson learned - never invite them again.
Tip of the day:
A young marriage based on years of being “best friends” calls for taking time to both be sure that you’re not just afraid to let the other move on.