Is it okay to have fun while I’m waiting for Mr. Right, when Mr. Was is still here? I’ve been with my HS sweetheart on and off for a decade now. I think one of my new co-workers has a crush on me. He’s of a different race and is 4 years younger than I but is funny, fit, cute and a gentleman. Every chance he gets he has his hands on me, whether its a hug, playful taps, or a police hold. I don’t think anything serious could come out of this because we are at two different points in our lives. He just turned 21 and I have a 4-year-old son, whose father (my HS sweetheart) I still live with. If I know nothing could come of this and I’m technically no longer dating my son’s father, is it okay to have some fun with this younger co-worker while I wait for someone steady to come along?
-Nikki, Long Beach, CA
It seems to me like you already know what you want and are looking for. Having that you still live with your “baby daddy” makes your situation special. But if the flame between you and your ex is over and done, then proceed with what makes you happy. It seems to me that you want to explore your options and see what is out there and if this young man raises an interest in you, don’t hesitate. Age ain’t nothing but a number and 21 is very legal, so, I say play on. Now, maturity is a different factor. The fact that both of you are 4 years apart doesn’t necessarily have to intervene with your chemistry-IF you two can relate on YOUR level. For the most part, young men who go after older women tend to step it up a notch just by trying to be on her level so that they are more compatible; since it is a fact that woman mature on a 2 year rate on top of their age. However, I would suggest that you are upfront with your co-worker about what it is you want at the moment and let things flow from there without limiting yourself. Because although it might be a little cougar-ish of you, he might just surprise you and turn out to be someone who you want in the picture. Make him aware of your current living situation and your mommy status so that there are no surprises for him and what he is going into. Its import that everyone have a choice. Its only fair. What I wouldn’t suggest is that you bring your son around him until the terms of the relationship are defined, and by this I mean more along the lines of long term relationship. And FYI, if your considering dating or “having fun” like you mentioned, also consider the fact that you still live with your son’s father and things might get a little crowded. Avoid awkward situations and unnecessary drama for yourself and for your son by moving out and moving on. Lets keep it real, every woman needs to have their needs and wants met and you my dear appear to have a candidate, according to his “hands on” PDA. There’s nothing wrong with playing the field as long as you play nice and relay the game plan to your young lover to avoid unwanted clinginess and hurt feelings. Other than that your a big girl-go get him!
Dear Bely, My boyfriend and I have been together for a couple of months now, and during this time, I have fallen head over heels in love with him. He is absolutely wonderful: he writes me love letters, always tells me he loves me, and surprises me with the most incredible gifts! This past Valentine’s Day, for example, he sent me 58 roses (one for every day we’ve been dating), and in a box put in 58 little notes that said “I love you, now and forever”. On top of that, we had a very romantic dinner at a very fancy restaurant, and I got a beautiful bracelet. I think he’s head over heels in love with me too, but my friends keep on telling me that my prince charming seems too good to be true, that no relationship plays out like a fairy tale and that I better watch my back. I personally think they’re jealous, but there are times when it makes me second guess him...What do you think? Is it possible that guys who go over the top when it comes to expressing their love, too good to be true?
-Lindsey, San Pedro, CA
Some would argue that it is not in a man’s system to be overly expressive. For the most part, men do tend to reserve their feelings. They hide their feelings to protect themselves from heartbreak and hurt ego’s. Which is why there might be a bit of skeptical concerns over the kind of behavior your man shows. Your girl friends can also be basing their negative comments about prince charming and fairy tale love stories not being real on previous sour relationships and experiences. Which is where I can see that your friends comments may lead you to second guess him. But one should always keep in mind that one bad experience does not account for all and that the way one perceives love is not the way every one may see it. The love world you and your boyfriend have created for each other is one that is built solely on your feelings for one another. For your boyfriend to shower you in romance, doesn’t mean he’s got tricks up his sleeve. Its obvious that he is very much into you and knows your worth. A man can always go the extra mile for the one he loves. It is in them to do so, they just may choose not to. On the contrary, some may argue that men go above and beyond to smitten girls up in order to get what they want. I do think that as a woman, you should always keep a balance between the fuzzy love world and reality. Be realistic about it all. Be realistic about how much he loves you and how he shows you and be realistic about when his sweet ways seem fishy. A woman’s intuition is something you should always rely on. Until suspicions arise questioning his genuine affection, just keep indulging in his love. If time tells all, then let time tell it.