Question: Dear Luise: What are your thoughts about a man who is constantly meeting new women on the internet, but always calling me back eventually to have sex? We have been going out on and off for 5 years, and I recently found out that he has been on the web looking for just as long. He has dinner with other women, and is looking for sex. We have a great sex life. What is his sickness? We live in Hawaii, on 2 different islands, and he flies me over to his every 2 or 3 weeks, calls me once in awhile, treats me nicely when we are together and all the time he is communicating with other women. I got into his match.com account, and was pretty devastated. I know I am stupid to hang onto him, but I suppose it’s partly because of the lack of men on my island. Is this common among men? I am hoping for another man to come into my life but meanwhile I seem to just jump whenever he calls. What is wrong with me? What is wrong with him? It’s not like he’s young, he’s 58 for god’s sake! V.
Answer: Dear V. I don’t think the “whys” are the issue…not really. He does what he does and so do you. The problem here is that using each other, no strings attached, works for him but it doesn’t work for you…(any more.)
How could your “arrangement”, (why dignify it by calling it a relationship), be anything but unsatisfactory? You now have enough information to know that you are not cherished or respected. Apparently you have had the concept that something is better than nothing. If that’s the case, at least be honest with yourself and let go of the idea that it has any potential.
It is sometimes difficult to find a responsible partner. It’s even impossible at times but it is pretty clear to me that you are miserable settling for less. Isn’t the guy a loser? Aren’t you putting yourself in the same category?
Who cares what his value system is or what motivates his behavior. What would knowing the answers to those questions change or prove? He established the game and set the rules years ago and you have been a willing participant. You wrote to me because it’s getting old. What you feared lurked under the surface, has proven to be true. Why continue?
Bottom line: What you have is something you don’t want. You find it demoralizing and degrading. That’s who he is and that’s what he offers. Your only two choices are to continue and pay the price in self-esteem or wash you hands of him. There is no in-between place. It isn’t going to get any better. He’s a 58 year-old, randy teen-ager. You already knew, when you wrote to me, what you needed to do and I applaud you in advance. Blessings, Luise