Enlightening Answers: Suddenly Dumped and a Cougar

I’d very much like to know your thoughts on divorce and its effects on subsequent relationships. I think many people become skeptical about the concept of finding true love once their marriages don’t work out. I’m in a committed relationship with a man whose wife, much to his surprise, wanted a divorce. In any relationship, I think it’s rare that both people agree to end things at the same time. So, what’s the effect on the person who is “dumped” as opposed to the “dumpee?” Is there a way to convince someone that it’s possible that the first marriage could have been a “lesson” to show them what they need from their true soulmate?

Seeking and Teaching

Dear Seeking,

You’re right – when a person is suddenly “dumped,” you bet it can sour their romantic, starry-eyed notions of love. Yet there is no one response for everyone, of course. Many people (in fact – most people!) get right back up on that horse again after being pushed off, typically starting a new relationship before their divorce papers have dried. Your question sounds rhetorical, but clearly you’re trying to figure out what to do with your guy. It’s healthy that he be slow to trust and make commitments too soon to anyone, but he shouldn’t harden his heart forever. Give him a reasonable amount of time after his divorce (men are ready to remarry on average after three years), and a fair amount to get up close and personal with you (the typical couple becomes engaged in 18 months) and see where things are. If he’s not making any progress by these markers, let him know what you’d like. But be careful – as soon as you’re “teaching” or trying to “enlighten” or “convince” a man of anything, you’re typically with the wrong man. A man who is emotionally healthy, ready and wants you, won’t let a little thing like a messy past breakup stop him from happiness. So if he doesn’t start meeting you halfway, it means that he’s not healthy enough or in love enough to be a great partner to you, and I’d encourage you to find someone else.

Many Blessings,

I recently got out of a two-year relationship and a few weeks later had what I thought was going to be a quick fling to help me get over my ex. Much to my surprise (because I’m eight years older) I feel like this person is the one I have been waiting for my whole life. It’s kind of scary that someone much younger than I can be more mature than any of the guys my age or older that I’ve dated… Could this guy truly be the one? How do I know for sure? It feels like I’ve known him forever and like we’ve always been together…

A Cougar In Love

Dear Cougar,

Congratulations! I love your letter – you got your groove back, baby! Here’s my advice: Get over your age difference. Of course someone younger can be mature – if you believe what all the saints and religions of the world say, we’re all timeless and ageless anyway. So quit seeing things from the perspective that you could be his mother – you’re not that much older. Besides, older women are hot – you know who you are, you’ve had a bit of valuable life experience, you’ve found out what you’re made of and you’re ready to rock. Trust the healthy lusciousness of your dynamics with this man and give it a chance. As for how to know he’s “the one” – keep your heart open and time will tell. Either way you can’t lose – if he’s not the one, he’s certainly one to not be missed!

All the Best,

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