Love fiz­zling out too soon

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - LIVING -

I AM a busi­ness­man in my mid60s. I be­friended a di­vorcee, K, at a so­cial func­tion two years ago. She is a very at­trac­tive woman al­though she is al­ready in her early 50s.

Like me, she has no kids. We be­came great friends and over time, I fell madly in love with her.

K is such a charm­ing, bub­bly per­son, com­pared to my wife who spends her days watch­ing TV or play­ing mahjong with her friends. The pas­sion be­tween my wife and I fiz­zled out a long time ago, and we are just like two friends liv­ing un­der the same roof.

K, on the other hand, makes me feel alive again. I feel so young and full of en­ergy when I am with her. I en­joy K’s com­pany very much, and I have been tak­ing her for hol­i­days abroad. I just tell my wife that I am go­ing on busi­ness trips. I am al­ways think­ing of ways to spend more time with K.

K used to pour out her prob­lems to me, and I feel sorry for her and have been sup­port­ing her fi­nan­cially for some time now. I trust her im­plic­itly, and have even given her a sup­ple­men­tary credit card. K even asked me for a sub­stan­tial sum of money to go into a joint ven­ture with a male friend, M.

The prob­lem now is K doesn’t seem to have time for me. She gives me all kinds of ex­cuses to avoid go­ing out with me. She has been go­ing out quite a bit with M. I am be­gin­ning to feel jeal­ous. I won­der if there is any­thing go­ing on be­tween them.

When I con­fronted her, K in­sisted that M was just a busi­ness part­ner. K claims she still loves me but I am not so sure any­more. If she truly cares for me, surely she would want to spend time with me.

I won­der if K is just us­ing me. I have even con­sid­ered di­vorc­ing my wife to marry her, but K seems to be dis­tanc­ing her­self from me nowa­days.

What should I do? I love K so much and be­lieved in her, but she seems to have changed af­ter I parted with more than half my sav­ings to help her in her joint ven­ture. Please ad­vise.

No More Spark

IT Is not at all un­com­mon for cou­ples who have been mar­ried for a long time to feel that they have grown apart or that the “pas­sion” has fiz­zled out.

The chil­dren, who used to be the one thing that brought them to­gether, are grown up. sud­denly, there is noth­ing to talk about any­more. In­stead of work­ing to find com­mon­al­ity or love again in the re­la­tion­ship, it is eas­ier to feel “alive” with some­one else.

Not that any­one is blam­ing you. You wanted to feel needed again and K came in at the right time with the right re­quire­ments. Be­ing a shoul­der to cry on was the ex­act rem­edy you needed to feel like you were part of a re­la­tion­ship again. You may have felt not only wanted, but use­ful as well. And it was prob­a­bly that which made you feel alive again.

In your ex­cite­ment of feel­ing that way, maybe you over­stepped your bound­aries with K. You prob­a­bly re­sponded to her prob­lems that best way you knew how to – with fi­nan­cial aid.

We can­not spec­u­late what K was think­ing or feel­ing at the time that you of­fered to help. she may have felt that you were her knight in shin­ing ar­mour. Or, she may have thought that you were an easy tar­get to be used.

The only way for you to know is to ac­tu­ally ask K. It is an un­com­fort­able dis­cus­sion, but one that needs to be had.

You would have to broach the sub­ject care­fully with­out ac­cus­ing her. In­stead ask her what you and your re­la­tion­ship mean to her. That could pos­si­bly open the doors for more com­pli­cated dis­cus­sions.

It may also help if you are hon­est with her about what she means to you. But, be­fore that, you need to be hon­est with your­self.

What do you ex­pect of your re­la­tion­ship with K? Were you gen­uinely try­ing to help her? Or, were you help­ing your­self by re­al­is­ing that you could be use­ful to some­one?

Or, were you try­ing to have her feel in­debted to you? Are you will­ing to con­tinue ly­ing to your wife?

This is the same with the sit­u­a­tion with M. You have to ask her about it. And, you must be will­ing to be­lieve her. If you do not, you have to have a very se­ri­ous con­ver­sa­tion with your­self and re­flect on why you don’t be­lieve her when she says M is merely a busi­ness part­ner.

And what about the money? Do you ex­pect K and M to pay you back? Or, are you able to con­sider the money a gift to K? This is another is­sue that you will have to sort out.

This is a very awk­ward sit­u­a­tion and some­one is go­ing to get hurt.

You have to han­dle this very del­i­cately. At the most, the only thing that you can do is lessen the hurt. It can­not be avoided. To make things less awk­ward, th­ese is­sues need to be sorted out as soon as pos­si­ble.

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