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DEAR CHRISTINE: My mother feels guilty after affair

BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

DEAR CHRISTINE: My mother feels guilty after affair

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Dear Christine,
I am in my last year of secondary school. As an “older” teenager, I am more fully aware of the double standards that still exist for males and females. It makes me very angry and I intend to go into some career where I can perhaps do something about all this.
I thought both my parents where every liberated, but in the last months I have realised they are just old-fashioned and hung up.
I happen to know, factually, that my father has had several affairs with women (maybe even more than I am aware of). I believe my mother’s no dummy so she must know what has been going on.
Anyway, about six months ago, I think she fell in love with a divorced man and had an affair. I am not 100 per cent sure.
What I do know is that she’s now dying of guilt because of this fling. My father did not seem to suffer at all. I wish I could tell my mother to stop being so uptight but I cannot because I am not supposed to know what has happened. This is not fair!
– L
Dear L,
Most things in life are not fair. I think however, that most women feel more guilty than men do when they become involved in extra-marital relationships.
According a study which was carried out in the United States, they also get more emotional satisfaction. Perhaps one of the reasons they feel more guilt is that their relationships tend to be more serious. Many women tend to love deeply and will give their hearts.
Since your parents have obviously been through a great deal together, I suspect that they will, in their own way, survive this new problem if it exists. It is also possible that you may be misinterpreting your mother’s relationship with this man. How do you know for sure that she did have a relationship with him and that this is not just an emotional attachment?
I think rather than view your parents as old-fashioned and hung up, you should give them the respect and love they are due, and leave it up to them to sort out their love life without you sitting on the sidelines and judging them.