I’m 16. My parents have been married 20 years. In the past my mother and I have both found my father watching porn, which is fine and well, but my mother doesn’t like it.
She also found him on gay chatting sites. She said if that happened again she would leave. I went to use his computer and found emails from my father talking about meeting for sex.
I don’t know what to do. Should I tell my mum, comfort my dad, or keep it to myself. Please help.
Marcia, you’ve been put in an agonizing situation. Not because of something you did. Not because of something your mum did. But because of something your dad chooses to do.
What he chooses to do, like wingsuit flying, is inherently risky. If he gets hurt, he has no one to blame but himself. But he also has no right to impose his risks on anyone else.
There are more than 20 types of sexually transmitted disease, many with grave consequences. Your father could be exposing your mum to any of them. He is not protecting your mother, so you must. Not telling her would make you an accomplice after the fact to his deeds.
Not telling would also mean you have chosen sides, and chosen the side of the person doing what he has no right to do while married to your mum. If your mother finds out you knew and didn’t tell her, she will feel she cannot trust you.
What kind of daydream is your father living that he can’t be bothered to shield his activities from his daughter? It is further indication that he will not protect your mother from risk. Apparently your father’s need to act out is greater than his need to have a wife and child.
Your father’s behavior is reckless. He has given you no choice. Tell your mum. Then let mum do what mum will do. It’s her marriage. She’s already given your father a second chance.
~ Wayne & Tamara
Four years or so ago, I wrote you about my former husband’s desire to be friends after leaving our 30 year marriage. I told you I hoped to find love, but thought it an unlikely prospect at my age.
This letter is to tell your readers not to give up hope. At 59, I am passionately in love. We connect on so many levels and cannot bear to be apart. What gives our love its power is that it is shared. He truly is my other half.
Kate, your letter serves as a counterpoint to the letter above. Almost 20 years ago we wrote that two people who belong together are like two droplets of water that suddenly converge into one.
As we said then, “The love of right halves is like the migration of animals, the connection between twins, the bond of mother and child, or the willingness of a man to risk his life to save the life of someone he does not even know.”
Some people experience this. Many people do not. But the people who experience this are transformed. They know the possibilities of life and the reality of genuine love. They aren’t struggling to stay together. They know that though life can be difficult, that has nothing to do with their love.
~ Wayne & Tamara
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