Steve and Mia | His lover's married to an abusive loser

Should he stay or should he leave?

Posted: September 07, 2007

Steve is a 50-something married man who's been around the block. Mia is a 20-something single immersed in the Center City dating scene. They may not agree, but they have plenty of answers. If you'd like an answer to your romantic troubles, e-mail them at S& or write: S&M c/o Daily News, Box 7788, Philadelphia, PA 19101.

Q: I have been married for nine years and am having an emotional affair with a woman who's been married for 20. We are both 38. We have never had sex although we have kissed, held hands, etc. Not long ago, she showed me some pictures of the latest beating her husband had given her. It was horrific, but she will not report him or leave. This has been going on for two years, and I fear she is going get killed. He does not know about me; if he did, she would be dead. What do I do, keep being her friend or walk away?

Steve: I wouldn't walk away. I would run away. Fast. Your friend needs counseling immediately and also should seek a protection from abuse order. If she refuses either of these things, you should never see her again unless you want to get killed, too. Oh, for future reference, an affair that includes kissing is more than just an "emotional" affair. It is a physical affair.

Mia: Sometimes you just can't help people help themselves. It's just the way it is. See this woman one more time - just once! Tell her she needs to act to protect her personal safety and provide her with information on your local resources for battered women. Then, as Steve said, run.

Q: I am 21 and my concern is my father. He is dating a woman who is ruining his life. She has run his bank account bone dry, doesn't clean, never has fixed a meal and teaches my 12-year-old sister about sexual things. Not to mention that she could be involved with drugs. She pops in and out of his life. My father doesn't even talk to my sister anymore, and he could care less. Now my question: Is there a way for me to introduce my dad to decent woman without taking him to a bar, casino or club? My dad is 51. I'm not sure how much more my sister and I can take.

Mia: This chick sounds like quite the wicked stepmother. But it can be pretty hard to dissuade your parents from dating the wrong people. Before you try to find your dad a new girlfriend, maybe you and your sister should try first to rebuild some trust with your dad.

I suggest you and your sister take your dad out to dinner alone and talk to him about the kind of relationship you want with him. Try to get him to commit to some family time each week. Over time, you can respectfully question whether he really sees a future with this woman.

Steve: Never, ever criticize someone a friend or relative is dating, no matter how big a loser. People are irrational when it comes to romance, so all you can do is stand by and watch the train wreck happen. But Mia's right about rebuilding your relationship with your dad. Work on that separately and don't mention the wicked stepmother.

Q: I was in a relationship for almost four years with a man I'm totally in love with. I put my heart and soul into not only him but his two teenage daughters. He broke up with me, and I'm devastated. The last time we broke up and got back together, I discovered he had returned only for sex and nothing more. I know I need to let go, but I am having a hard time. Any advice?

Steve: Remember, time wounds all heels. You deserve better than to be a doormat for this selfish guy. There will be pain, but use your time alone to learn how not to make this mistake again.

Mia: Snap out of it, girl. Try to shake things up to move past this. Join a new club, take up a hobby, start a new exercise plan or spend more time with your family.

It's important for you not to sit around thinking about him or to keep doing all the same things you used to do together. After a little effort and time, you'll be ready to find your real Mr. Right.*

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