Small town dysfunctional relationship. Five-time divorcee wants marriage. Recent widower wants sex.
By Tom P Blake – Finding Love after 50
I receive about 30 emails a day pertaining to senior romance. One recent flurry of emails from a divorcee left my head spinning. Is this a case of senior sex too soon or of a small town dysfunctional relationship? Likely both.
Bonnie, 53, married five times, wrote that five weeks ago she met a 58-year-old widower of seven months on Match.com and had dated him "full-time" since then. They live in the same small town. He had been married 38 years; she was the first woman he had dated-other than his deceased wife-in 39 years.
When they met, the widower told her he was seeking a lover and a woman to move in with him, with the emphasis on love, as in senior sex partner.
Bonnie commented on that, "I want to get married again; I told him so in our first few days of dating. I told him I wanted to wait to have sex too. He thought I was a bit old-fashion.
"His daughter and family told him over and over he was going too fast and they did not like that I had been married five times. She told her dad I was probably a gold digger. His brother says he should date several women."
Bonnie reported that five weeks into the relationship, they had sex. Two days later, he dumped her, telling her he didn't want to hurt her, but he had to date at least three other women before making a commitment.
She said, "I am so hurt. I'm not sure he will ever realize how great we could be together. Can you send me any wise success stories so I can stop the pain in my heart?"
Seldom--in the 23 years I've been writing newspaper columns--have I been at a loss for words. What was I to tell her?
Five marriages? Gold digger? Maybe he didn't like the sex? Maybe he listened to his family's warnings? Maybe he hadn't healed yet?
I emailed her back and said that since the relationship had been for only five weeks, she'd likely recover soon, and asked her for more information, including why she had been married so often.
She replied, "Because I didn't want to 'live in sin' while raising my son. The widower is back on match.com and I have had maybe seven hours of sleep in the past 5 days. I decided today to go back on match. I have no clue how long it will be before he dates these three women and when he intends to let me know if he has found whatever he is searching for."
I figured that was the end of our correspondence. I hadn't helped at all; I had just listened. But she emailed this update the next morning:
"We got back together. We spent the entire day and resolved all of the issues we were having with his daughter who is worried about the silver and the crystal more than anything. Then the issues with a brother who thinks he should go out with several women. I feel better that we are back together. I am planning on living with him soon."
I thought, ah, another couple works out the differences through effective communication, moves in together, and lives happily ever after.
But it didn't exactly turn out that way.
A week later she wrote, "We broke up again. This time for good. I believe his drinking was a factor." (Oh thank heaven, it wasn’t lousy senior sex, her five marriages, or even the silver or the crystal. It was just the drinking)
Scratching my head, I had nothing left to say-not that I had said anything of value in the previous email exchanges with her-other than it was best she found these things out before investing too much more time or emotion.
Can you imagine if she had moved in with him? And they had wed? Chances are it would have been divorce number six. Ah, a small town dysfunctional romance. If only I could make this stuff up…