Question: Dear Luise: I met a man who I think is truly remarkable. He did not tell me he was married at first, but he later confessed he was married but had been separated for the last 8 to 9 years. He said he would never lie to me again. I have addressed him several times in our 3 year relationship about when or if he is ever going to get a divorce but he tells me he is going to handle it. But to date, still nothing and every time I bring up the subject he gets really angry. I also have concerns with our intimate relationship. He does not seem to want me in that area like he used to. It’s once a month or maybe twice. I am the one that is always trying to get him in the bedroom. He always tells me that is all I ever want or talk about. I was told that I am selfish and that he feels like a piece of meat. I was hurt. I did not think it was being selfish when you want to be with the person you love. He is 58 and I am 46. I love him, but not sure if I can continue in this relationship, I am tired and drained of begging for his affection. What should I do? T.
Answer: Dear T.: Guessing games don’t work very well…and they don’t work for very long. You have no way of knowing why this man lied to you in the first place, any more than you can guess why he remains married or why he is losing interest in you. Beyond that, are you absolutely sure he’s separated? Do you have proof of that?
The only antidote I know of to guessing is honest communication. Promises, lies, delays and accusations are not honest communication.
If I had to enter into the guessing game, I would wonder if you were his first outside interest in the last 8 or 9 years and/or if you will be his last. Staying married and separated, if that’s even true, is a very handy way to not be truly available. It is all about guessing. Can you see that?
Self-respect is probably motivating you to question the whole set-up. If it’s not better than being alone, what’s the point? Are you hanging on to hope? Isn’t that unrealistic? He had almost a decade to get himself single before he even met you. If you don’t end it, it sounds like it may die a natural death anyhow because what you’re asking for sounds healthy and his response to your requests sounds abusive.
Haven’t you asked me questions you already know the answers to? Blessings, Luise