It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in three sentences or less, because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great, being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go. Today we discuss Craigslist personals, getting pregnant through trickery, and a micromanaging mama.
About seven months ago I discovered that my fiancé, “Carl,” whom I’ve lived with for about 16 years, had been trolling around on Craigslist men-to-men ads. He had also posted ads on the site with pictures of himself. (I discovered all of this by looking at his online history). I confronted him about this and he broke down saying that he was sexually abused by an older cousin when he was a kid and has been struggling with these types of fantasies on and off for years (he says the sexual abuse messed with him). He admitted to actually meeting with one of the guys on the site but said he couldn’t go through with having sex with him. He told me that he loved me and would do anything to make it work and that he was extremely ashamed of his past behavior, etc. Since then, I haven’t found anything on his computer, phone or otherwise which would indicate that he’s still doing these types of activities, so, if he is, he’s hiding it really well. I’ve stayed with him because of his remorse and now he’s treating me very well, whereas in the past he treated me crappy. I still strongly believe that he’s gay, but he’s adamant that he’s not. When we first went through this “discovery,” all of a sudden sex was great for a couple of months, but now it’s pretty much non-existent again. What’s your take on this? — Not a Craig
My take is that if you stay with a man whom you don’t trust, who you think is gay, who has basically cheated on you (if not completely cheated on you), who has treated you like crap for 16 years, and whom you have bad sex with, then you’re bonkers. If this isn’t a case of MOA, then, darlin’, I don’t know what is…
A woman I recently befriended, “Carrie,” is in her mid-forties, has never been married and is desperate to have a baby. She is not interested in adopting or going to a sperm bank because, as she says, she is particular about the genes she wants for the baby. She has recently started sleeping with someone I know as an acquaintance who is in a committed relationship. Obviously, I’m concerned that she is doing something extremely immoral by participating in his infidelity, but there is something even more alarming: she is trying to get pregnant with this man’s baby without him knowing. He has not asked if she is on birth control, but she does not plan to tell him voluntarily. She said that she likes his genes and therefore wants him to father the child, and she is sick of waiting around for a man who is willing to have a baby with her, because she is running out of time (oh yeah, I’m also concerned about the health of the baby given her age). She does not feel that what she is doing is wrong or immoral because she will not make this man pay child-support or insist that he has a role in the baby’s life, but STILL!!! Obviously, this guy is a total jerk for being unfaithful, but that doesn’t mean he should be tricked into getting someone pregnant. Or should I not care because he is a total jerk and should have the smarts to ask whether she is on birth control? I’m concerned about this (on many levels) but I’m not sure what I can/should do… — Concerned Citizen
I understand the temptation to want to say something to the man, your acquaintance, but he’s an adult and if he’s having sex irresponsibly (i.e. without protection and contraception), that’s on him and it’s his problem to deal with whatever the consequences might be. Honestly, I’d be more concerned about alerting the woman he’s cheating on that her significant other is having unsafe sex with someone else, not that I would advise telling her unless she’s someone you know well or are close with.
I’m worried about my daughter as she has a lovely boyfriend who has just lost his father and is now completely under his mother’s control. He doesn’t seem to understand that at thirty years of age he should not be allowing himself to be at his mother’s beck and call. My daughter feels he only “fits” her in to his schedule when his mother doesn’t need him. This woman excludes anyone who is not strictly family, and my daughter feels unwanted and excluded to the point she thinks that breaking up may be the answer. Please help! — Grateful Mother
Methinks if you have an issue with your daughter’s boyfriend’s mother interfering in their relationship too much, you should probably set an example and not interfere too much yourself. Your daughter’s a grown woman — let her navigate her relationship on her own (or write in for advice on her own volition). (And by the way, when a man’s father dies, I think it’s perfectly acceptable for him to be more attentive to his mother, who just lost her husband, while the family grieves.).
You can follow me on Facebook here and Twitter here.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at email@example.com.