He Ain’t Stella But He’s Trying to Get His Groove Back!

| 07/16/2013 | Comments (0)

Dear Ms. HeartBeat:
I am a 23-year-old, female with a college degree. About five months ago, I started seeing a 42-year-old man. We’d known each other for about four years prior to this. Being an only child, I grew up mainly around adults and I think this has made me slightly more mature than most people in my age group. I have many friends that are 10-20 years older than I am. I find it so refreshing to spend time with someone who doesn’t cuss like a sailor, smoke like a chimney, or drink because it’s Tuesday.

We are both Christians and have the same basic moral values. I have very diverse interests and he actually shares my love for both ballroom dancing AND fishing/ camping (that’s VERY rare). I admire his energy and the way he lives everyday to the fullest.© Copyright 2010 CorbisCorporation

Here’s the catch. He has a 7-year-old son from a previous marriage that lives with him. Because of his son and failed past relationships, he’s very reluctant to commit. I’m not asking for anything serious right now. I’m not ready.  I realize that when I’m 55 he’s going to be 74. Given the limited amount of information you have, do you think I am wasting my time, or that this relationship is destructive? Or do you think it might be possible?

I have heard both positive and negative feedback form friends and family, but I’m interested in hearing a non-biased opinion.

Casey C.

Dear Casey C.:
Anything is possible, but does it make sense?

Here you are in the prime of your life! There are so many things for you to see, do and experience. Right now you are happy with the limited exposure to people, places and things that you have had at 23, but that is not all there is to life honey. Settling down with a man 20 years your senior and stepping into the role of stepmother of a child who is almost an adolescent is nothing to sneer at. That is a big load to assume even for someone 10 years older than you are!

It’s great that you two have similar values, hobbies and entertainment interests, but that does not remove the fact that you are at two very different stages of life.

Everything he has done, you have yet to experience. You have hardly had a long-term serious relationship at your age, and he has already been married and divorced! He has children, you have none. He has been out in the workforce, traveled, broadened his horizons through contacts with other people in dozens of situations. You don’t yet have those experiences.

This is exciting for both of you because you have an older man (many young girl’s dream of older men being the epitome of sophistication, accomplishment, suave, etc.) and he has a firm young body and bouncy youth to look at and touch, which makes him feel young again. But he isn’t young. And you are not a matron.

Would you not want children of your own? Can you see them having a 50-year-old father too old to wrestle and tumble with them, that may be developing various health problems and that may be deceased before they graduate from high school? Is that fair to them? Is that fair to you?

I think in situations such as this the best thing to do is break the relationship off to the point where you two can remain friendly, perhaps take a dancing lesson here and there, be civil to each other at church when in groups, etc. However, I would encourage you to date and become involved with people that are more appropriate for your stage of life.

For you, a mature young lady in her early twenties, that would probably mean a guy no older than 30-32. For this older man you speak of, a woman in her mid-30s to mid-40s with a child of her own who is more on the same page as far as life experiences and maturity goes would be an appropriate mate as well.

All in all, I think if this relationship advanced any further, you would be cheating yourself and greatly resent him later.

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Veteran social researcher, relationship advice columnist, author and radio host. Author of hundreds of articles on American and black culture, gender issues, singles, dating and relationships. Author of "Sucka Free Love!" , "The 24 Types of Suckas to Avoid," "The Black Church - Where Women Pray and Men Pray," and "Why Vegan is the New Black" all available on Amazon.Com. Her unique voice and insightful commentary have delighted fans and riled haters for 20 years. Read her stuff on SurvivingDating.Com and AskHeartBeat.Com.

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