Recently, I connected through the Internet with an old girlfriend I hadn’t seen in 17 years. We’d shared a teenage romance, dropped out of high school and moved in together. Naturally our parents were against it and interfered.
After four years of struggle, I, on the insistence of my family, ended the relationship suddenly. I spent the next 17 years regretting my decision. I went back to school and got my degree.
Later, I married and had two fantastic children.
My ex also married and had a child, and after 16 years, divorced.
We agreed to meet and it was fantastic, talking about our families and old times. My intent was to apologize for how things ended, but after seeing one another, many emotions and feelings came back ten-fold.
Our relationship has now evolved physically and emotionally. I’m torn between being a decent husband to a wife whom I care for and a dad to my two young children, or, being selfish and continuing a relationship with my soul mate.
I’m afraid that any decision I now make will cause great pain to all whom I love.
You’ve already started down a painful path, so you must weigh which hurt you can live with vs. which causes the least damage. Be aware that leaving your marriage will likely be traumatic for your wife since there was no hint of prior unhappiness; and your children’s lives will be forever changed.
These are realities of divorce, as are the financial and legal involvements you must now confront – sharing assets, supporting the kids, and your spouse until she’s re-established on her own, while supporting a new situation for yourself.
On the other hand, if you break off with your old sweetheart, you may still harbour regrets and give less of yourself to your family, and/or end up living deceitfully (and eventually caught) in an embarrassing affair.
These are the tough choices, and you’re no longer a teenager plunging willfully ahead. You’d benefit from professional counselling to help you come to the decision you can best handle.
I’m the mother of seven children – four grown and three still at home.
The dad of the three little ones swishes in and out of their lives sometimes after several months, or several years, and I always allow him to do this. I believe I must now put my foot down as it’s not healthy for the children; they grow attached, think he loves them, then he’s gone with no contact.
Then, they wonder if he doesn’t love them or what’s going on.
His family doesn’t want him to have any contact with his children and he listens to them.
Should I think of him and his needs, or of my little ones’ needs? They now say they NEVER want to see him again.
Your children’s needs come first, and though I may surprise you with this statement, I believe some father is ultimately better for them than no father at all (unless he’s abusive with them) - especially since they already know him.
While his absences are hurtful, they’ll soon be old enough to tell him how they feel, and if they truly want to end contact, they’ll tell him, not just you.
So don’t you be the barrier to his visits. Help him see that he must explain to them why he leaves; and encourage him to send cards on birthdays and show some caring even when apart.
When my boyfriend of two years changed jobs, I was between jobs and the bills piled up. His father developed cancer. My guy was also stressed over visitation with his daughter.
I kept silent about our struggling finances. He left, feeling I lied to him.
I’m still paying back bills.
Now he’s constantly at my house, but refuses to tell his friends we’re together again. He swears he loves me.
I’m a single working mom.
What should I do with a man I love who’s keeping me a secret?
Give him a deadline, to get his story together. He’s likely embarrassed for whatever he said about the reasons for the split, when he was angry and uncomfortable about the financial situation, and blamed you for not telling him.
But make sure this isn’t about YOU paying off debts and him taking advantage. Get him to pay a share, or leave.
Tip of the day:
Divorce requires much thinking through and preparation, not just the dream of another’s arms.