Is This For Real?
    Feigning an air of confidence to conceal the raging disquiet inside, I scanned the restaurant and headed for a table near the back, where I could observe him searching for the forty-something woman with whom he had shared a few words on the telephone. He had neither met me nor seen a photograph. The year was 1986, long before the advent of online dating. I had purpose-ly arrived early to give myself time to adopt that elusive veneer of tranquility. The dating game was indeed uncharted territory. Having been only 18 years old when I married my first husband, I was ill prepared for the complexi-ties of marriage. And here I was, at age 40, 21 years of marriage and five chil-dren later, newly separated, on a date with a man who answered an ad I had placed in the personal column of the local newspaper. "What was I thinking?" I muttered to myself. "This man could be an axe murderer!" I took a few deep breaths. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a tall, attractive, bearded man heading in my direction. Feeling both fearful and a little excited, I stood to shake his hand and exchange "pleased-to-meet-you" pleasantries. We quickly busied ourselves with menus and meal choices, a diversion that eased us into the dis-covery of similarities and the sharing of histories. "So far, so good," I thought to myself as I asked the obvious question: "So, what led to your separation?" "We just grew apart," he began, elaborating on the gradual process that left them with little to say to one another. I went in for the kill. "What do you think ...
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But I Love Him!
Excuses People Make to Stay in Abusive Relationships " … but I love him!” protests the woman whose husband has been knocking her around for the past three years  … “… but I love him!” wails the wife whose philandering spouse continues to profess his innocence, despite her proof to the contrary … “… but I still love him”  bemoans she whose hubby controls her every move -- her decisions, her friendships,  their finances -- and even their sex life … “…  I love him, but sometimes he’s mean to me” laments the lady whose paramour has perfected the art of criticizing, condemning and complaining about her every move – whether alone or in company … “…  but I love him!”   whines the woman whose partner mooches off her, changing jobs like he changes his underpants ... And the list goes on … Helloooo?!!  Wake up, ladies!!  (and gentlemen who see themselves in any one of these scenarios).  You love him?  Excuse me?  You call that love?? I'm tired of hearing people using   “… but I love him!”   as an excuse to avoid growing up. “This isn't love. It's something broken and ugly.I wanted it so badly I didn't care what it looks like" - Amanda  Grace The   “… but I love him!” syndrome has nothing to do with love.  Rather,  It is an expression of insecurity, fear, self-doubt and need.  The capacity for mature love emanates from one’s own inner security,   and the concomitant expectation that respectful treatment is a given …   that anything less is unacceptable. And by the way –  staying together  “ for the sake of the children”  is as much a cop-out as is the   “… ...
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A Heart of Gould
  I Met My Husband Through a Personal Ad Feigning an air of confidence to conceal the raging disquiet inside, I scanned the restaurant and headed for a table near the back, where I could observe him searching for the 40-something woman with whom he had shared a few words on the telephone. He had neither met me nor seen a photograph. The year was 1986, long before online dating.  I  wanted to know what life after divorce was going to look like,  and didn't like the bar scene, so - in an act of impulse -  I put a personal ad in the local newspaper. I had purposely arrived early to give myself time to acquire that elusive veneer of tranquility. The dating game was indeed uncharted territory. As a bride of only 18, I was ill prepared for the complexities of marriage. Here I was, 21 years and five children later, newly separated, on a date with a man who answered an ad I had placed in the personal column of the local newspaper. “What was I thinking?” I muttered to myself. “This man could be an axe murderer!” I took a few deep breaths. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a tall, attractive, bearded man heading in my direction. Feeling both fearful and a little excited, I stood to shake his hand and exchange “glad-to-meet-you” pleasantries. We quickly busied ourselves with menus and meal choices, a diversion that eased us into the discovery of similarities and the sharing of histories. "Life after divorce? So far so good,” I thought to myself as I asked the obvious question: “So, what led to your separation?” “We ...
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I Never Dreamed
25th Wedding Anniversary Poem " I Never Dreamed  … " Written October 2011   I never dreamed when I met you that day That my life would be changed in a most profound way Lost and alone -  I knew not where to start For I longed to find someone who’d capture my heart   I never dreamed that in you I would find A person so gentle – so thoughtful and kind A partner whose love and devotion is real A man I can trust with all that I feel  I never dreamed  as we talked and we shared That we’d end up together – two souls ill-prepared Though the odds were against us we made it somehow As we leaned on each other - and still do that now     I never dreamed, when I first saw your face How I’d melt in the warmth of your loving embrace How you’d show me in so many millions of ways That you’re thinking of me through your busiest of days     I never dreamed that the bond I saw forming Would quickly become a love quite transforming Through my ups and my downs you have stayed at my side And I know that in you I can always confide     I should have seen – the signs were there Your love was simply everywhere No matter what the circumstance My life had become an unending romance     It’s hard to believe that we’ve come so far Since the day that you read my ad in The Star I’m thankful each and every day For all these years with my wonderful Jay   With my love forever   ( See About Adele Gould, and  Life After Divorce) ...
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