I separated from my wife a year ago. there’s a girl that likes me and I like her. She has a kid. She fears 2 things, firstly that I’ll return to the ex and second that I’ll reject her because of her son. How can I reassure her that this isn’t the case for either. When I’m with her my world lights up.
I think the first and most important thing is keep talking with each other, but in a productive way. You don’t want to end up in an endless cycle of constant reassurance, because that does nobody any good, and gets in the way of the fun part of beginning a new and exciting relationship. It sounds like she’s playing it very cautiously, possibly from having been hurt before, so I think you’ll have to take it slow, and be patient. You know how you feel, so let her know your feelings and be open about how much you care for her.
Actions also speak louder than words, remember. So show her what she means to you. I’m not talking about grand pricey gestures or anything material like that (although nobody’s gonna stop you if you want to!). Listen to her, be loyal, trustworthy and reliable, be someone she can depend on and who will be around when she needs. If you really see something long-term with her, it’ll be important to make her son feel valued and important to you; but let her call the shots on that one. Once again, it’s all down to patience. When there’s a child involved it can move things along a lot faster in a budding relationship, and force both parties to lay their cards on the table early on to avoid hurt feelings. Build on what you guys have first, and when she’s feeling secure and sure that this is a long-term thing, she may start bringing her son into the equation.
Lastly, mind yourself in it too. There must be balance, so as long as you feel valued and wanted in the relationship too and not spending all your energy on trying to reassure someone, in time it could be something really special for both of you. If down the line there are still some insecurities surfacing, there really is no substitute for a spot of couple’s counselling. It’s a fantastic way of developing tools of communication and discussion in a safe environment. Therapy is not necessarily a sign of cracks appearing, it’s a sign that you’re prepared to do some nurturing of a relationship that really means something to you. That can only be a good thing!
Brain: “Oh. My. God.”
Me: “What?? What is it??”
Brain: “For a split second there I had this glimpse of a thought that was so revolutionary and life-changing, it would have brought us a lifetime supply of unforgettable moments of pure ecstasy.
It is summed up thus: the true meaning of life is d-”
Me: “YUSS! ROMANCING THE STONE IS ON TV RIGHT NOW!”
Brain: *thought evaporates*
“Shit just got real.”
Brain: “How are you Jen?? Been a while since we talked…”
Me: “The grandest. Apart from the nagging feeling that we are all essentially just lumps of carbon and water in varying shapes and sizes, bestowed with a limited number of days on this giant ball of crap. We struggle daily to engage – and compete with – other carbony watery lumps to leave some sort of lasting print on this pissy little planet before we all evaporate into an abyss of nothingness. We are forgotten in a miniscule amount of time relative to the existence of everything ever, only to be replaced by other lumps pretty much the same as us. And so it shall go on, ad infinitum. Hope, love, happiness…these are all man-made constructs designed by those above who seek control to keep us from destroying ourselves within seconds of becoming self-aware. For fear that we would gain even the smallest fraction of understanding that at the heart of it all, in the grand scheme of things, we, and all that we believe to be connected to us, are nothing.”
Brain: “Left the phone at home again did we?”
Me: “IT’S LIKE I HAVE NO HANDS…”
We’re all in this together… *sniff*
Brain: STOP WRITING.
Me: Why? What now?
Brain: Check your Facebook.
Me: I just did, five minutes ago. Leave me alone. I’ve things to do.
Brain: Five minutes? FIVE MINUTES? That’s seven years in facebook time. You could have missed so much! Any longer and you’ll be like Rip Van Winkle, wandering around your page, asking what a meme is, not knowing what Guardian articles are trending…not having a notion what music video to put up on your page to seem cool and down with the kids any more… think of all the ‘likes’ you could have gotten in that time…
Me: You know YOU’RE the reason I’m not published right now, right??
Brain: ALL THE ‘LIKES’…..
Brain: “Stop yawning.”
Me: “Stop making me yawn.”
Brain: “Dunno what you’re talking about. I’m busy trying to name the Best Supporting Actor Oscar winners for the last fifteen years.”
Me: “That’s what’s making me yawn! I’ll be asleep in minutes as this rate. I’m off to bed.”
Brain. “I just want you to get a good night’s sleep. It’s good for both of us.”
Me:. “Good. I’ve a really long busy week ahead, I need all my rest. Well, goodnight so.”
Brain: “Okay, nighty night. Sleep well.”
Me: “Really? That’s it? No fight?”
Brain: “Nope. Like you said, you need your sleep. I’m good like that sometimes.”
Me: “Great! Well, talk to you in the morning so..”
Brain: “Will do.”
Brain: Just try not to think about that bathroom scene from The Grudge.
Me: I KNEW IT WAS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE.
You’re welcome. Each and every one of you.