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Updated: Jan 16, 2017,

Question: I am a 30-year-old man in a relationship with a woman 9 years elder to me, who’s also a mother of 2. We have been together for 3 years now. We met at our workplace and then I moved to another organization. Recently, we have been having a lot of arguments based on her opinion about a female colleague of mine who she knows from her previous workplace. She thinks I will be influenced by this person and does not want me to have anything to do with her. I do share a good rapport with this person and have also taken the step to let her know that my girlfriend does not want me to even speak with her. However, I did not want to do it and end a friendship because of my girlfriend’s insecurities. She has gone to the extent of threatening to make life difficult for me and also my colleague, if she ever finds out anything, including me just speaking with her.

Things have got even more difficult as I have been put in a situation where I have to choose between being with her and her daughters or going out of station with my childhood buddies. She cannot afford to make it to the trip and leave her daughters alone (they are 18 and 14 respectively). On the other hand, I do not want to choose between these two scenarios.

We have mutually agreed that we do not want to get married and may consider living in together in the future, depending on how things are. Please help, as I am in a dilemma now.

Answer by Dr Gaurav Deka: In a relationship, more than the emotional investment that a person makes, what is important is the personal space. In the absence of space nothing can grow, not even a lobster. That’s the reason it sheds its shell. You need to tell your girlfriend that just like the mutual decision of “not tying the knot” is something both of you believe in and respect, similarly there are other concerns that come in such a relationship, one of them could be to work on the level of insecurities one partner may have against the other. Insecurities usually are about the person himself/herself and not about the partner. If age gap is a factor in this relationship then it needs to be addressed. Tell her how you feel about it, ask her to be vocal about how she feels about you being nine years younger to her. Again, this isn’t a good or a bad thing, but the privilege of youth or being a man or someone who hasn’t fathered a biological child cannot be assumed to work in your favour. You have made a choice to love this woman and be with her and she needs to respect it and work on her level of insecurities. And ‘this’ you need to tell her. Until she works on these aspects of her life, you will have to keep making compromises like ‘giving up on your colleague/friend’ to avoid altercation at home. The choice is yours.

– Dr Gaurav Deka is a Psychotherapist, Regression Therapist and Meta-Health Expert at Private Practice.
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(This story has not been edited by BDC staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed from IANS.)

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