Week after week, it is the input from Champs that powers this newsletter. Without your comments, insights, and experiences, this newspaper wouldn’t exist. This week, there are four parts. Each is a result of a Champ stepping up and taking the time to write. Often, Champs respond to the previous week’s message, or an earlier newsletter. Such is what happened this week.
Part 1 - Why some women are content with just loving an image in a long-distance relationship and never meet the man (presumably a man) in person
Champ Marta shared, “I have a good friend who regularly ‘falls in love’ via long distance with men she KNOWS will never keep their promises to meet her. She does not really want a partner, having been married before to a ‘real piece of work’ (her words). So, she is satisfied by the romancing of strangers.
“Over time, it becomes clear that the promised meeting will never happen, so she drops that particular man, and then finds another. She moans, groans, and goes through all the stages of an emotional breakup, and even continues to send some of them money, and then argues with them via texting over never being paid back (Duh!).
“She has been doing this for 10 years. All of her female friends have tried to discourage her from this and none of us will listen anymore to the agony of the breakup. We suggest she get psychological help, and she does, but keeps on repeating the scenario.
“Finally, she has admitted that the feeling (however false) of being cared for is enough for her.”
Part 2 - Some women who have suffered a loss fear it will happen again and are afraid to commit
Christine, one of our Champs, and a relationship expert, in response to last week’s article, posted on the Finding Love After 50 Facebook page:
“It's so important for singles to hear there definitely are good men and women using online dating as shown by Cheryl's story from last week’s column.
I also agree it's very impressive how Annise (also from last week’s newsletter) has kept her sense of humor and zest for life through her tragedies. I appreciate your helpful answers to her and I have a few additional thoughts.
1) Reminder that her prior online dating experience included having many dating attempts before she met a wonderful man
2) Her comment about 'life being short' shows her very understandable sense of urgency (As a widow I definitely appreciate this sentiment)
3) Feelings of ‘impatience’ can definitely have detrimental effects on our dating life
a. They can be a draw to men and women who won’t have our best interest at heart
b. They can also make us less discerning in our assessment of potential dates
4) Calming our impatient feelings can certainly be a challenge
a. Make sure you spend time with family and friends so you’re getting some of the attention you’re missing from a relationship. You enjoy talking to them and they are good at listening to you. You get regular hugs from them
b. Engage in regular activities that interest you including physical activities
5) I’ve coached women who have lost more than one man to death and we’ve sometimes discovered they have an (understandable) fear inside (they’re not aware of) that if they fall in love it will happen again
And we’ve discovered they unconsciously attract and are attracted to men who they won’t get into a long-term relationship with so they won’t lose another love again. It’s been an interesting journey to walk with them as they became conscious of this belief
Some consciously decided it was worth the risk and some decided it wasn’t. And once they made their conscious decision I watched all of them stop attracting and being attracted to men who weren’t right for them.
Part 3 – Widower shares his internet dating success story
Champ Art said, “Even though I am in a 3 ½-year committed relationship, I enjoy reading your column every week. You can let your readers know that internet dating can be wonderful, as in my case, or, from what I read, it can be horrible. I have used POF (Plenty of Fish) and OKCupid extensively in the years after I was widowed in 2007, and have met many wonderful women, dating at least 35 to 40 of them.
“There are very good women out there, and there are a few ‘troubled’ ones. There are also women with agendas. One woman I dated invited me to a party at her house after our first date. The party turned out to be an introduction to a multi-level marketing program selling vacations and trips.
“One of the women I dated is also one of your champs, and we remain friends.
“I have also dated many wonderful women, but they just were not for me. One nurse worked two shifts daily, another baby-sat her grandchildren every day, a few were smokers, a few were alcoholics, but not in AA. I am in AA, and will be celebrating 32 years of sobriety at the end of August, with my lady friend at my side.
“I have also had at least 10 of the women become ‘exclusive’ for a month to over a year.
“Then, one night on POF I met my current lady friend. For me, this was more than just another pretty face. We messaged each other on POF, then emailed each other for a few weeks, before exchanging phone numbers. We met in a Barnes and Noble book store, spent about two hours at the coffee bar talking. I knew it was time to leave, but I did not want the meeting to end, so I invited her to have some yogurt next door.
“Success is very possible with internet dating, but be careful, honest, and considerate of her all of the time. I had to be patient and persistent, sending as many as 20 or more messages out almost nightly, and hoping for a response.
“When my wife passed in 2007, I thought my life could never be as good again, but now it is as good or better than ever.”
Part 4 – “I Walk The Line.” Yes, as in, Johnny Cash’s version
George, one of our Champs from San Francisco, knows that I worked with Johnny Cash and was a friend of Johnny’s. Hence, he often sends me links to performances by Johnny that I may have not seen. This week he sent a link of Johnny performing “I Walk The Line.”
I saw Johnny perform “I Walk The Line” in person perhaps 50 times and this version George sent was one of his best. The guitar player with the black hat is Bob Wooten, a long time band member with Johnny and also the husband of Anita Carter, June Carter’s sister. Once, Wooten showed up at a concert with a cast on his hand. “What happened Bob?” I asked.
At first, he told me sheepishly that he slipped on a curb. But band member Marshall Grant was standing nearby and said, “Bob, tell Tom the true story.”
Wooten said, “Some dude said something very nasty to my wife Anita, and I punched him.”
I have no idea how he made it through that concert playing his guitar wearing that cast but he did.
If you like Johnny, you will enjoy this video. He is very relaxed and smiles a lot, which is how I saw him many times. Here is the link to the video:
I published an ebook this year titled, “The Johnny Cash I Knew. A Kind and Caring Man.” You can download it on Smashwords.com for $2.95. The book gives an insight into the Man in Black from my perspective.