Online ‘Lovers’ Really Pen Pals
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Dear Christine,

I am in love with a woman I met on the Net back in October. The problem is we’re both married to others. I am deeply in with love her because she understands me better than my wife of nine years ever has, and we help each other through all of our problems. My marriage is stagnant, and my online lover is perfect for me. I want to be with her in real life, but because of our situations, it may never happen.

Although I’ve never seen what she looks like, I love her unconditionally. I need to be with my lover—what can I do? -- ONLINE LOVER – Cyberland, USA

Dear Online,

You’re not lovers; you’re pen pals.

I get so many letters about people who think typing back and forth on a computer constitutes a relationship. Isn’t it interesting that the majority mention “real” relationship vs. Internet relationship, “real” feelings vs. interactions with illusive online lovers? And in your case, you speak of wanting to be with her in “real” life.

Well, get real!

How dare you tell a stranger about your marital problems? How dare you compare a stranger to your wife of nearly a decade? You and your pen pal are the kind of people who give the Internet a bad name and stir fear in the hearts of married people everywhere.

The Net is meant for researching and exchanging information and communicating with friends, family, and business associates. In real life, married people can and do break their vows, causing deep hurt to their spouses and families. But at least it’s real—which is more than can be said about your “affair.”

You speak of perfection. You’re imagining the perfect woman — when, for all you know, you could be corresponding with a transsexual terrorist who types to you with one hand while his other hand rests on his rifle.

Step away from the computer. Go fix your marriage and stop whining to strangers about your mediocre existence. Life is what you make of it.

Dear Christine,

My 34-year-old best friend has been dating a girl steadily for the past five years. Lately he’s been finding fault with everything about her—especially the way she looks. It’s not that she’s not good looking; he just finds fault with small things. He’s also told me he’s not sure if he loves her as much anymore. But he’s not sure he doesn’t love her, and he doesn’t want to hurt her. Thoughts of how great it would be to be with other women have also been on his mind.

What advice should I give him? -- CONCERNED FRIEND – LONDON, ON

Dear Friend,

I suspect the small things he’s finding fault with are just masking what’s really bothering him. It’s time to do some soul searching and decide whether he’s viewing her in a different light due to fear of commitment or because he wants to end in the relationship.

If he doesn’t want to be with her, he needs to set her free. The longer he waits, the more it will hurt her.

If he wants to continue the relationship, he must stop destroying it with constant criticism. When he feels the urge to criticize, he should stop and look at her positive qualities—the qualities that originally attracted him to her and have kept him with her for five years.

In order to make the relationship last, he has to accept her for who she is inside and forget about the unfounded complaints and criticisms. Nobody’s perfect.

As far as his grass-is-greener thoughts of other women, it’s time for him to decide whether he wants her and her faults or other women and their faults.

Have a question, a thought, or a story to share (anonymity guaranteed)? E-mail Christine at:

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