My close friend is 20. I’m a widower, 66.
We’re very close but I want more from her and believe she’s open to it.
But I’m unsure how to approach her with this.
Go slow, and delicately. Or you’ll lose the friendship.
You’re not too old for feeling desire and wanting a sexual relationship.
But you’re a lot older than her - by 46 years!
If you care for her so much, you need to also care about her and about her future.
When you’re 80 – years when even the healthiest of seniors start experiencing some frailty, she’ll be 34, at the peak of her passionate powers career-wise, emotionally and sexually.
An attempted relationship now may disappoint you both terribly, sooner than later.
Enjoy spending time together, but help her see the differences between you as well as the attraction.
If there’s to be “more,” it’ll happen naturally.
My dad has three kids, all with different moms (me and one brother are both 20, our younger brother’s 11).
He worked three jobs because our moms weren’t reliable.
He married my current step-mom 16 years ago.
But my eldest brother and I didn’t get along with her, as she’d make hurtful and mean comments.
After she had my youngest brother, it led to me taking care of a child almost full-time when I was ten.
She became manipulative, threatened to not let us see our youngest brother, and told lies to my dad and extended family about how mean we were.
My eldest brother moved in with his mom and refuses to visit - upsetting Dad, their son, and me.
She’s made my life miserable, depressed, and hopeless because I cannot afford to move out.
My dad does little about it anymore, saying I shouldn't let her attitude affect me, just be mature enough to deal with it.
Now that I'm older and not scared, I’ll tell her off because I REFUSE to be bullied anymore.
But she's successfully manipulated my younger brother into thinking our older brother doesn't love him and has started to badmouth me to him as well.
My dad won’t leave, wanting to keep the “family” together but he doesn't realize it fell apart when she became part of it.
Dad and my brothers are everything to me but I cannot help but pull away to keep from completely falling apart.
You’ve done very well in tough circumstances, staying as close as possible to your father and committed to your brothers.
And despite your father’s passivity regarding his wife’s attitude toward you, he’s tried to maintain his belief in the benefits of staying as “family.”
You’re an adult now, already pulling away emotionally. And that’s okay.
But instead of just feeling upset and wishing he’d leave her, you need your own plan to move forward.
Your dad’s worked hard, and likely feels he needs peace with her. Their son needs both parents.
You need a future.
Start looking forward, not backward. Focus on what kind of education and work you want in your now-adult life.
If possible, take courses that lead to practical possibilities for getting work.
Start to save money, perhaps even consider rooming with your same-age brother if and when you both have enough to share expenses.
There are lots of possibilities ahead. If your depression persists, see your doctor and ask for counselling help.
You’ve shown strengths and abilities since childhood. Now take steps toward your own independence.
You’ll connect with “family” in your own time and ways.
FEEDBACK Regarding the woman with interstitial cystitis which sometimes makes sex very painful (Feb 17):
Reader – “There’s a very effective drug for interstitial cystitis: Elmiron. Taken with a diet that’s low on acid it can stabilize the problem.
“Low acid” means no tea, coffee, soft drinks or juice until it’s under control.
“It’s usually related to an autoimmune problem so being run down or exposed to a particular virus may cause it to flair up.
“It’s often misdiagnosed. My daughter has had it since 1997 and is able to live a normal life with care and medication.”
Reader #2 – “I also have that condition and have found a really helpful solution – the medical marijuana product called “Foria.”
“When topically applied to the outer and inner areas (labia, vagina, etc.) it helps relieve intercourse pain, doesn’t make you “high,” but can also provide additional pleasure for the female participant.”
Tip of the day:
Adult children can gain independence from earlier family stresses.