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Advice needed for a relationship - Long distance/older couple
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# 1
LE3
Old 05-12-2012, 12:49 PM
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Default Advice needed for a relationship - Long distance/older couple

I'll call them F&M (female & male)
They have known each other 20 years - They met at students & are now both 40+. They have always been close but timing was never quite right to get together (one was single, the other wasn't etc) - they have remained very close friends since. M has always believed that F was "the one" & whilst there have been other girlfriends, none have been long term as he could never shake the thought that he wanted to be with F.

F has been married before briefly (<5yrs), M hasn't. F lost a lot when she divorced & is wary of losing everything she has worked for in the 10 yrs since her divorce! F owns her own home, has a secure job etc. She is not a high flying exec but will probably always earn more than him. She only has her Dad left & he lives about 1 hr north.
M is currently living with his Mum (long story, don't judge him by this!) about 3 hrs south of F, but has his job, friends, church etc there. His large, complicated, family are based around his town or further south..

Neither have children. M loves children and has always wanted his own. F never particularly wanted children, and whilst she has somewhat warmed to the idea, having just turned 40 thinks it is now unlikely she could have them.


They have been "together" now for a few months and said that they should have got together years ago when life was less complicated! They have been talking about the future but being older, settled and of practical rather than impulsive/romantic natures, they are struggling to see past the "practical" issues like their locations, jobs, families etc. F is also really worried that she would be denying M his last chance of having children, but I pointed out that he's had 20 years to have kids & hasn't so it's as much his fault
Long term they say that for them it's got to be "just friends" or married - there is no in between ... (They do not wish to "live together". They are both Christians & very old fashioned in that sense)
They have said that whatever happens they will still be good friends & having had a 20 yr friendship, I'm sure they will!

Anybody got any advice for them - not really sure what the question is, other than what would you say to them if this was your friend/brother/sister?

Last edited by LE3; 05-12-2012 at 1:01 PM.
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# 2
Artytarty
Old 05-12-2012, 1:03 PM
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I'd have a few questions for M and F.
Is it a problem to just keep things going as they are for a while?
It is still early days into their adult relationship and maybe a bit soon to be making life changing decisions.
If they can't go on as they are , would marriage solve things?
F may still have to up sticks to be with M and his family circle.
That's the bit I would find hard, but then again it's only a few hours ay and not like she can't come back from time to time.
I would not like them to get married without realising that by trying for a family, which might or might not happen they are setting themselves up for potential heartache.
Try but be realistic. It's not out of the question but not easy either.
My bro married someone with kids, he said he didn't want any, then changed his mind, they tried everything going at great expense and heartache. Having said that he was a lot younger than M.
Good luck to this couple, I would like to think they will live happily ever after.and after all that waffle, I don't see any huge reason as to why they should not.
F will realise deep down that M is a good man and she can be much happier having someone to share her stable life with.
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# 3
getmore4less
Old 05-12-2012, 1:27 PM
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Not sure how to put this....

Are they testing the physical side or is that what get married means.


I think they each probably need to decide if they want a relationship and be close to somene.

Then decide if is going to be each other.
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# 4
LE3
Old 05-12-2012, 1:58 PM
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Quote:
I'd have a few questions for M and F.
I'll answer if I know the answer!!

Quote:
Is it a problem to just keep things going as they are for a while?
It is still early days into their adult relationship and maybe a bit soon to be making life changing decisions. If they can't go on as they are , would marriage solve things?
I don't know. They've known each other 20 years, they don't need to "get to know each other" like most people starting out in a relationship.

Quote:
F may still have to up sticks to be with M and his family circle.
Curious as to why you assume F would have to move - Or is it because "the woman always moves"? F is the one with her own house, the better job etc. He doesn't have his own home & couldn't support both on his wages whilst she looked for work. If she were to move there, they'd struggle to find somewhere to live (he's south & houses are quite a lot more expensive) He has a large complicated family - she has one elderly father who she is close to.

Quote:
I would not like them to get married without realising that by trying for a family, which might or might not happen they are setting themselves up for potential heartache.
I don't think they would actively try for kids - I think they have both realised that they have left it too late. F just feels that she'd be denying him the chance of ever having his own kids (he has nieces, nephews etc)


Quote:
Are they testing the physical side or is that what get married means.
I know they are not having a physical relationship, but they wouldn't get married just for that ... I don't think it's something that's "critical" to either of them

Last edited by LE3; 05-12-2012 at 2:03 PM.
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# 5
Sambucus Nigra
Old 05-12-2012, 2:21 PM
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I probably wouldn't say anything to them.

Why do you feel you have to put their situation on here and ask people for advice? What answer are you angling for?
If you haven't got it - please don't flaunt it. TIA.
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# 6
Artytarty
Old 05-12-2012, 2:26 PM
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Sorry, it's just that you mentioned his job friends church and complicated family . She only gets a mention of her dad.
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# 7
lostinrates
Old 05-12-2012, 2:28 PM
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If she decided she did want children forty/ early forties is not necessarily too late. I was born in my mothers forties (second child but age gap of circa twenty years).
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# 8
Judi
Old 05-12-2012, 2:28 PM
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Many people get married for companionship. If its what they both want, i cant see it not working.
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# 9
maman
Old 05-12-2012, 3:00 PM
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It's strange but when I saw 'older couple' on the thread I was thinking they were in their seventies! We've just been through all that recently with my widowed BIL who remarried within a year of meeting someone.

In his situation everyone said why rush and the response was what are we waiting for? They seem very happy but only they can make that decision and it's the same with your friends.

Looking from the outside I feel that the new woman has given up a lot. They've moved to his town and his house (although that's temporary while they wait for housing market to pick up). She's given up a lot of independence and having grown up children, friends and hobby groups nearby. Maybe she'll build a new life but maybe he'll just want her to spend time with him. BIL's quite well off and arrogant enough to think 'his' life is the better one on offer.

Obviously from what I've said I wouldn't give up my stability, job, friends etc for someone who I could stay just good friends with UNLESS she loves him and wants to be his wife in a proper relationship rather than just a friend for occasional outings holidays with. If that's the case then they need to resolve the issues through give and take. Maybe those sort of discussions will help them decide.
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# 10
ognum
Old 05-12-2012, 3:06 PM
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I think that if they need to have these complicated thoughts about how,why,when then they probably should just remain friends.

For most people who believe they have found 'the one' they would move a few hours away, change jobs, move out of their mothers, sign a prenup, they would MAKE it happen if they really wanted it.

If they need everything sorted correctly first it probably will never happen they should accept they are good friends and move on.
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# 11
LE3
Old 05-12-2012, 3:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ognum View Post
For most people who believe they have found 'the one' they would move a few hours away, change jobs, move out of their mothers, sign a prenup, they would MAKE it happen if they really wanted it.
And I'm sure F & M will if they decide that's what they want - I think they are just really practical sorts though who are well aware that things like jobs aren't as easy to get as they used to be, houses don't buy themselves and elderly parents shouldn't be too far away.

These two are the most selfless people I know and maybe that's their problem - they always put other people first & maybe they need to do something for them now? Not that it would make it any easier for me to know what to do if I were in their position - I certainly wouldn't be in a rush to give up my stable job, my house, my friends - everything that I had worked hard for over 20 odd years. Would you?
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# 12
ognum
Old 05-12-2012, 4:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LE3 View Post
And I'm sure F & M will if they decide that's what they want - I think they are just really practical sorts though who are well aware that things like jobs aren't as easy to get as they used to be, houses don't buy themselves and elderly parents shouldn't be too far away.

These two are the most selfless people I know and maybe that's their problem - they always put other people first & maybe they need to do something for them now? Not that it would make it any easier for me to know what to do if I were in their position - I certainly wouldn't be in a rush to give up my stable job, my house, my friends - everything that I had worked hard for over 20 odd years. Would you?
If I truly thought that this was the person I wanted to be with then I would move those things, it is not like you actually give up everything is it?

You would have the same friends just further to travel to see them, you would still have a home just in a different place etc etc.

If M and F cannot see this then they will never think that being together is important enough to change the current comfy lives they have.

They do have to choose a bit of discomfort for a long term loving relationship, sometimes you have to step outside your comfort zone if you think it's worth it!!
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# 13
FBaby
Old 05-12-2012, 6:05 PM
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Sorry but I don't see what the problem is. Surely it is a matter of feelings and only they will know when it is the right time to do whatever they consider the right thing to do. They don't need to be advised. It would be another matter if one wanted one thing and the other something else, but from what I've read, it doesn't seem to be the case, yet?

In the end, if it is nothing or marriage, they will come a time when they will have to decide if they go for the nothing or the marriage. If it is the marriage, they will have to make compromises in terms of who moves where.

If it was my friend/family, I would just listen to what they have to say and get excited with them about any developments.
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# 14
LE3
Old 06-12-2012, 3:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FBaby View Post
Sorry but I don't see what the problem is. Surely it is a matter of feelings and only they will know when it is the right time to do whatever they consider the right thing to do. They don't need to be advised.

If it was my friend/family, I would just listen to what they have to say and get excited with them about any developments.
I do agree, however it's nice to see how others view the same situation! If it were your friend/sibling/relative/whoever talking to you, being obviously confused & asking advice on what they should do, would you not want to have several different viewpoints to help them consider their options?
Too often you only see a problem from your own perspective and others see it differently - a few people have made helpful comments which I can feed back to the couple next time they talk to me (eg Judi saying about many people marrying for companionship)
If anyone else has anything useful to say, I'd be pleased to hear it
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# 15
FBaby
Old 06-12-2012, 5:58 PM
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I totally agree with you, but this is not about making to right or wrong decision, but what is right for both of them and nobody can know that but them.

Yes, many people marry for companionship, but how is this knowledge supposed to help them make a decision? Does the fact that many people do it makes it right for them?
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# 16
Sambucus Nigra
Old 06-12-2012, 6:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LE3 View Post
I do agree, however it's nice to see how others view the same situation! If it were your friend/sibling/relative/whoever talking to you, being obviously confused & asking advice on what they should do, would you not want to have several different viewpoints to help them consider their options?
Too often you only see a problem from your own perspective and others see it differently - a few people have made helpful comments which I can feed back to the couple next time they talk to me (eg Judi saying about many people marrying for companionship)
If anyone else has anything useful to say, I'd be pleased to hear it
Have they asked you for help?
If you haven't got it - please don't flaunt it. TIA.
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