Her Highness Cocoa at #1629 says I “feel guilty and sinful without doing anything.” Married for 18 years with two sons, she relates an exciting, growing, and emerging love for a coworker who seems to have mutual interest. She concludes with “Where to go and what to do!!!??? Uhhhhh!” She’s also creating a program using this blog to teach teen girls in church. I respond to her personally.
Your Highness Cocoa,
Elsewhere you ask, “What’s totally faithful?!” To men it’s physical fidelity. To women it’s emotional fidelity. Your natures are like that. You have to figure out what it means in both your conscience and family.
As to you and coworker, I offer the following.
- You face the perennial battle between heart and mind. Men handle it fairly easy compared to women. You need a strategy. If you’re ready right now to dump family in order to mate with a relative unknown, then you need an offensive strategy to escape the best you can. If not, then you need a defensive strategy. If you seek an offensive strategy, I’m not the right guy to consult. If you seek a defensive strategy, stay tuned to what follows.
- You say you married without being in love. If parents matched you with a mate, then you may not have been in love at the time. But, my dear, you can’t have cared for husband and children for 18 years and not be in love today. It may be an unexciting love compared to what you feel about the coworker, but it has worked to the solidarity of you and family. If your culture allowed you to marry for love, then you must have had some love in your heart. Either way, after 18 years of married life, elements of boredom are common. CAUTION! Stable love built over years can’t be compared to teen-like hormonal love that now seems to flood you. (It’s apples and oranges again.) So, don’t compare the promise of new hope against what you built with hope.
- Your guilt arises from your sense of infidelity because you are attracted to someone else. If you don’t cheat physically you likely remain faithful in husband’s eyes. Your life and conscience hang in the balance of what you do about your situation. It’s your female equivalent of husband’s forthcoming mid-life crisis. Reassessment of your life thus far facing up to your natural need to brighten your future.
- My advice: Appreciate that you remain attractive and desirable at your age and after generating a great family. But pay more attention to how well you’re respected by men in your life for that’s where masculine love starts.
- Start a journal that you’re willing to let anyone read. Don’t mention the other man or your associations or feelings. Each day record AT LEAST three other things about which you are grateful. Repeat this one each day: “To my husband, I remain attractive, desirable, and well-respected.”
- Brighten your future by spending more time paying closer attention to the interests of husband and sons. Find gratefulness in being able, in doing it, and in posting to your journal.
- In the journal include your sense of self-importance for teaching young girls in church how to be better girls, churchgoers, teens, friends, sisters, siblings, women, wives, mothers, homemakers, and even grannies. Be sure to emphasize the role that loyalty, character, and mutual respect play in those roles and loving a mate.
- As to the other man think on this. What do you REALLY, REALLY know about his character, intentions, and ability to provide/protect, show affection, listen, and consider your feelings. You spent 18 years getting yourself and husband conditioned to making those factors at least adequate and perhaps great. I suspect you have nothing but hope to help make a decision against husband and family. Is hope enough to desert them, or do you think first-love is enough? Be careful not to let the need to satisfy your curiosity and excite your imagination spoil your life.
- Also, think on this ABOVE ALL. How would he change if you yielded sex to him? You can never know until after the fact if he is after you or just sex. Analyze your newfound hope and emerging love against the fact that men change after conquest. (Women are very poor at figuring it out before conquest.)
- You say, “I answer what I want and dodge what I don’t.” Brilliant. It’s exactly what a mature lady does to handle attention she loves but can do nothing about.
- This should squelch your last bit of hope for imagined new love. You say, he “changed from not respecting to respecting….” So, he changed? He became motivated to show more respect when either you or he showed interest in the other? It’s a red flag.
- I suggest you prepare one or more lady-like responses to deter his next move to advance his agenda. If and when he shows the least lack of respect at your responses, you can conclude he’s only after sex in the first place.
Finally, good women are much more valuable to themselves as builders and maintainers of families than they are as lovers. Starting over at your age and stage of life leaves hardly enough time to do much other than impress your heart with teen-like hormonal heat. If you start over, how does the future brighten when you are constantly reminded of what you left behind? Think on this: Two sons and perhaps an ex pulling backward on you while new man pulls in another (worthwhile, brighter, promising?) direction.