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Parallax - Advice            December 18, 2000

Future Happiness?

Ask us a Question!

This week we look at three relationships with questionable futures. All three raise intriguing questions. Can you take separate vacations without jeopardizing your relationship? Does being funny and attractive override being a drunk? Can you love someone your parents hate? Can you promise a fairytale ending? Read on, as our perceptive pair offers help.

He's in Italy...She's insecure.
Mope or cope?
 Date: 12/18/00

He drinks, but she's still tempted.
Will it work?
 Date: 12/18/00

He wants commitment.
She wants forever-and-ever.
 Date: 12/18/00

More from last week...

He's in Italy...She's insecure

Dear Conversely,

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I'm forty-six and my boyfriend is fifty. We've had a great relationship for the past two-and-a-half years. We don't live together, but we spend several nights a week together, and he shows - in many ways - that he loves me, cares for me, and wants me around. We have traveled together, and enjoy being together - I pay my own way and he is fine with this. However, today he left for a two-week vacation in Italy, where neither of us has been before. He planned this trip over the last few months and has given various excuses as to why I would not be able to join him.

His son and daughter-in-law will be there at the same time - he sees them often in the States and we all get along wonderfully. They are also taking a close male friend who's their age. If he had shown some enthusiasm about the possibility of my joining him, I would not feel so confused, puzzled and, at this point, rather sad. What do you make of this? We have touched upon the subject of marriage. Why would he want to enjoy the beautiful, romantic sites without his lover? Perhaps I should end this relationship, as it seems he wants me in his life when it suits him. Thanks for your response.

Her view:

Dear Miffed,

Hmm, perhaps he just wanted some time with his children. Perhaps he is cheating. Perhaps he wants a break from you. Perhaps he'd like to buy you an engagement ring while he is there. There are so many options on this one.

Don't torture yourself. Have it out with your lover. Tell him what's running through your mind - this bothers you, you're considering leaving him because of it, and it makes you very sad. He might not even be aware of the pain he's causing you and that he could potentially lose you.

Furthermore, if this is so upsetting for you, he can't just take off to Italy and upon his return find everything as splendid as it was before. No…you will be upset, wounded, rejected. Your relationship will be different because of that, even if you choose not to be ostensibly angry.

So be open and honest - forthright communication is the best and it can save your relationship. It sounds like this relationship will be doomed without some reconciliation on his solo Italian trip.

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His view:

Dear Miffed,

Two-and-a-half years are nothing to sniff at, and the fact that he went off on his own without inviting you is clearly a sign. But consider the possible reasons for his Italian sojourn.

One likely scenario is that he's eager to spend some time alone with his son and daughter-in-law, with a close male friend, or even by himself. Just because you've traveled together before, doesn't mean that you always have to.

Another possibility is that he's feeling some pressure. Maybe things are moving too fast and getting too close, and he wants some time to decompress and ponder things with more breathing room.

He could also have something new in the pipeline, and this is his first salvo. However, the evidence at this point seems flimsy. You may want to make sure your ship is sinking before you walk him off the plank.

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You Vote!

You Vote! 57% of Women agree with HER VIEW and 43% with HIS VIEW.

25% of Men agree with HER VIEW and 75% with HIS VIEW.

You Vote! Do you agree more with HER VIEW or HIS?

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