Dates with the Philanderer

July 31, 2012 § 63 Comments

From yesterday’s Times (with apologies about lack of posts of late, but am on holiday; more to come anon):-

Several dates, and the Philanderer behaved impeccably.  But when it is someone who doesn’t make a person’s insides do a movement like a synchronised swimmer, he or she (and in this case, I) can be a fickle thing indeed.  There were moments when I thought yes and moments when I thought no.

At the end of the evening of our opening date, he made no move but suggested we should meet again soon.  I went away thinking I was pleased he had not put me in the position of having to decide whether or not to sleep with him on the first date, but also quite pleased that he had liked me enough not simply to say, “See you around sometime,” which can precisely be translated as, “Won’t see you any time soon, I hope.”   Late at night, as another date was coming to an end, we stood on the pavement outside his flat for really a rather long time, chatting and both putting off the moment which sat plumply between us like a socking great elephant, when there would have to be some sort of An Outcome.  During those twenty minutes, I was of the opinion that it would be agreeable if the Outcome was more significant than less so, but in the end said Outcome constituted merely a mutual squeeze of the hand, a kiss on both cheeks and no references to future meetings.  If he had asked me right then, I would have gone inside with him.  But he didn’t.  And now I think the moment might have passed, on both our parts.

As I walked away into the night, I wondered what he was about.  The reputation would seem to belie the old-fashioned pace of the courtship, if this is what this is? Maybe I under-estimate him, and he is in fact gallant and courteous and a fellow who sees me as more than just another anonymous brick in his extensive wall and so wishing to take things slowly. The trouble is, in this modern, fast-forward world, a plankton doesn’t see it like that.  I’m guessing he once was keen but is as fickle as me and hot and cold.  But probably more cold, having concluded that I am too old or unappealing, or fat or thick, and that, after the investment of a few gettings-together and a hundred quid or so, he has found that plankton, and more specifically I, just don’t do it for him.

Now I am going away.  He knows when I am back, so we shall see.  No idea whether or not I shall ever see him again.  Which is fine; just slightly odd.  Middle-aged dating is just so peculiar; just so extraordinarily nebulous.

 

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§ 63 Responses to Dates with the Philanderer

  • Lydia says:

    You want him to kiss you? You have to be very blatant with many men or they don’t understand what you want. Just tell him. Or send him something sexy. If you arouse him he’ll want you.

  • Barry says:

    I agree, you have got to put out the message at a moment like that.
    He made the first move, asking to meet again,
    if you don’t respond , albeit just a kiss, he would feel you are not interested in him . IMHO

  • kathy says:

    He definately does not sound like a Philanderer to me. Good lord, if he was, your underpants would be down around your ankles by now

  • James B says:

    If he emails you, ask you out for dinner and lingers afterwards, then this was a date. A man does not ask a woman on a date unless he is interested in them, although he can lose interest on the date, I guess. I think that probably he is taking his time. His reputation as a philanderer suggests a degree of experience and he will obviously see that you are an interesting, intelligent woman and he is probably deciding what to do about you. It would be clear to an intelligent man that you are not some fluffy plaything to bed and move on from. So, he may be more interested than you think. It depends on how narcissistic he still is.

    But… once again, men and women do not understand each other at all.

    So – ask him what he thinks, ask him what he wants and if you know your own heart (or other part of your brain or body for that matter) tell him what you think and what you want. Over 40 it does not have to be a game anymore really. Also, he may intimidated by your obvious intelligence – and attracted at the same time of course.

    • fi says:

      But P was outside his flat so was he lingering or was she? Does it make a difference?

      • fi says:

        Why is he called the Philanderer? Have I missed the explanation? Does he have affairs when he’s in relatonships, or does he not have relationships but skip from one woman to another all the time? Does he have a low boredom threshold or is he devastatingly attractive with women throwing themselves at him and he can’t say no? Apologies if it’s all been explained somewhere else.

      • The Plankton says:

        Although I had never met him, I have known of his “reputation” for about thirty years. Hence my nickname for him. pxx

      • fi says:

        This is my story of a philandering man – attractive, confident, witty, admired by men and chased by women of whom he had plenty. Married women and single women. Actually very disapointing in the sack – a sort of one trick pony who had never been called upon to extend his repertoire as he hadn’t hung round for very long and was off before women got the chance to be bored. He missed the chance to settle down and the invitations from women dried up. When last seen he was portly and had moved home to live in the same village where he grew up, keeping company with his elderly mother. And he was a nice guy – just couldn’t resist opportunities that came his way. I don’t know if he’s happy with the way things turned out but I doubt it really.

      • Emgee says:

        Fi, I think he’s a skipper, but only because that is the only one that Ms P has mentioned. And I gather he’s very attractive.

    • The Plankton says:

      Thank, James, that’s helpful. Pxx

  • T Lover says:

    A proper bloke (having undergone a decent course of social potty training) would have walked the woman to her door not waved the bird off from his.

    Apart from good manners it gives the bloke an advantage: if she asks him in, he knows he has cracked it.

    Whilst here could I ask Kathy (I assume you are a north American from your use of language) if by “underpants” you mean knickers/draws/trollies/na na’s?

    “He definately does not sound like a Philanderer to me. Good lord, if he was, your underpants would be down around your ankles by now”

    The quality of elastic has improved immeasurably and, unhappily from my point of view, it is no longer a common sight to see knickers round ankles.

    You won’t remember the Donald McGill comic postcard drawn at the races “they’re off”.

    Now Fi. A “one trick pony”? How unkind. Ferryman is another description in use amongst the crueller women round here. Roll on. Roll off.

    • fi says:

      Ferryman? What a fantastic turn of phrase. I’m definitely going to use that one 😀

    • EmGee says:

      T Lover, are you a fan of Art Frahm’s art?
      http://www.lileks.com/institute/frahm/art1.html
      (‘a study of the effects of celery on loose elastic’)
      sfw, I assure you all.

      • fi says:

        EmGee – 😀 😀 😀

      • T Lover says:

        EmGee,

        In a hurry. Had a quick look for a link. This was the first – sorry.

        http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Donald-McGill-Theyre-Off-Races-/290717987710

        Must go.

      • fi says:

        Who would have thought there was so much loose knicker elastic cartooning going on out there! Apart from you two that is 🙂

      • EmGee says:

        That’s good enough, T Lover, maybe that’s where Art got his inspiration! 😀

      • T Lover says:

        EmGee,

        I should be work bound. Why am I doing this? The dog has filled in a complaint form.

        It is true McGill was well known, he was first published in 1905 and mentioned by George Orwell in a 1941 essay but I doubt a connection between McGill and Frahm – no what I mean is I doubt “They’re off” was the inspiration for that Frahn picture. I might be wrong. I can see how Frahn could have developed the McGill idea of the saucy comic drawing.

        Reasons. First: I am sure failing elastic/knicker drop was pretty common. Second: the “They’re off” card is one of hundreds of different McGill themes. Third: McGill’s art was intended to illustrate a written joke. Frahn’s was the joke.

    • Jill says:

      I do agree, T Lover; I was also puzzled that P was lingering on “Phil’s” doorstep instead of the other way round. How did that come about? I’m all for sexual equality, but I think that was a mistake…..and he calls himself a gentleman?!

      But once again, James B has the most good sense to say about this matter. (See above)

      • T Lover says:

        Jill my lover,

        You are making this basic assumption: that what you read at the top of this page is true.

        Worse, who are we to comment without possession of all the facts – both sides.

        Illustration. The wife of a good friend advised my wife to leave me after hearing one side of the story. She was conveniently not told that the wife was dropping her trollies for another bloke just that I was grumpy.

        So I enjoy sticking my oar in here but I’m not going to dissect the minutiae of what might be a work of fiction. It’s a girl thing – a bit Mills and Boon don’t you think?.

        But pulling a leg here and there is fun. And it is nice to read what women say.

        Allez Bambo – where are you now?

      • The Plankton says:

        T Lover, Nothing I write on this blog is fiction; disguised a bit here and there, sure, but never fiction. Pxx

  • Dawn says:

    Perhaps as you didn’t fling yourself into his arms straight away, he’s taking you a little more seriously.

  • Barry says:

    I Love “Ferryman” …Women have such depreciating wit when they attack the Male ego.

  • Scott Benowitz says:

    As someone pointed out in The Times yesterday (07/30/12)- Whoever you are Ms. Plankton, you certainly don’t write for Harlequin…

  • maria says:

    Oh f*ck P, I don’t know why you still bother. I’ve given up on men for good.

    • Are you absolutely certain about this?

      • fi says:

        Maria. No idea if the problem is that you just don’t meet any men you fancy snogging but there’s a lot of enjoyment to be had simply from practising your flirting skills without it going anywhere. You feel good, they feel good. I think you’re never too old to flirt and where you are (if say your target is 20+ years younger then you), there’s a lot of fun to be had in unnerving them by flirting with them. They panic as they’re so-o-o out of their depth and they know it, whereas we know when to step forward then step back without ever going too far or laying cards on the table. All done very nicely but entertaining and empowering and flirting makes what could be a boring exchange between two people into one that makes you both feel good about yourselves and puts a spring in your step. Shutting down your sexuality isn’t good I think.

      • maria says:

        Fi, I’ve never flirted with anyone in my life and I’m too old to start now, and I could never do it with young blokes, I’d feel silly and pathetic. I’ve had men flirting with me, but I was never able to flirt back, I’m no good at it. Anyway, all the relantionships I’ve had it was always the men who approached me, I never took the first step and I never will. I’m kind of old fashioned about these matters.
        To be honest, I rather enjoy living on my own, I have my house (rented), I’m able to support myself, and I would never give that up for some man, however great he might be.
        But, I’m not dead yet and the thrill you get when you know somebody fancies you, feels rather nice and makes life less boring.
        Anyway, I have this yummy neighbour, he looks like prince William (believe it or not) only with lots of hair, who seems to fancy me. He’s about seven years younger and, on top of that, he looks younger than his age. The thing is, every time this guy sees me on the street, he looks like he was struck by lightning, he looks back several times, the other day he even stumbled and nearly fell. Our backyards are next to one another and almost every day I see him walking his dog and looking into my backyard, trying to catch a glimpse of me, but I never go out when he’s there.This baffles me, not only because of the age difference, but because he’s really good looking and tall and I’ve always considered myself quite ugly. I was told so by lots of people, including my mother, but, on the other hand, I’ve always had men interested in me.
        Anyway, he lives with his girlfriend, a really nice girl in her thirties (I’m fifty), and I would never hurt her.
        The point is, this is a guy I find very attractive and with whom I wouldn’t mind getting in the sack with, but since I’m too old and he is kind of married, it will never happen. There are at least half a dozen men here in my neighbourhood I could date, but I find all of them disgusting.

        Sorry for such a long comment.

      • fi says:

        Maria – you know I think of flirting as just being charming and showing someone you like them. And everyone responds to that. What I find quite sad about this site is that nearly everyone on it seems to feel they are unattractive. Well, nearly all the women anyway. And I bet they’re not at all. I think though that they feel unattractive and don’t recognise what they actually have to offer or recognise their value. Attractiveness is so much more than facial features and you’ve obviously got something. Penelope Cruz has one of those faces, as does Uma Thurman, that sometimes when you look at their whole persona you think they are quite beautiful (I do anyway) but if you look at their individual features you would think they’re ugly. Its the whole package that’s attractive. And plenty of people with nice features, like lyndsay lohan, simply aren’t attractive in the least. I wish women would stop looking at their faces and concluding they aren’t pretty, and therefore not attractive. It’s your personality that makes you attractive – trite but true – and that comes over in how you dress, and hold yourself, and walk, and your gestures and expressions, and its the totality of all that that makes someone appear attractive. I totally get where you’re coming from in relation to how unattractive middle aged men can be, especially ones who have always been single as without a woman to keep them in check they often eat microwaveable crap, drink too much, don’t exercise and just generally let themselves go, but in a way that can be liberating – you don’t want them so you aren’t dependent on their approval and you can’t be diminished by not getting it. You should smile at the man – nothing needs to happen beyond that – but it would make you feel good about yourself when he smiled back. Honestly, smiling at people makes them automatically smile back, even if its just someone you walk past in the street. Then you feel good that they smile at you. Everyone’s happier!! :). (rambling as I’ve had wine – might feel a bit of an arse tomorrow but hey ho!)

      • fi says:

        In fact, smiling at strangers in the street is the best way to start as you keep on walking so there’s no expectations. 😀

      • maria says:

        Fi, thank you for your kind words. Re being charming and let men know I like them, I would never do that as it has been my experience, that whenever I did it, they immediately thought I was either desperate or that I wanted to have sex with them. And I was just being nice. This has happened to me a few times and I was told the same by my female friends. Besides, I’m a private introverted person, and it’s hard to change my personality, at this point in life.
        As for my neighbour, thanks again for your advice, but I think I’m not going to follow it , as I can tell he likes me, and I don’t want him to get any ideas. And, as I said, I would never hurt his girlfriend, who is a sweet girl.
        Re being the whole package that makes one attractive, that’s just it, my package is quite uninteresting.

      • fi says:

        Well it obviously isn’t as you have Prince William (full head of hair) after you. 😉

      • Fi- Believe it or not, we don’t usually feel all that good when we realize that a woman was flirting with us just to practice her flirting skills, with zero intent of doing anything other than practicing those skills- It’s actually not as flattering as you might think- In fact, it’s kind of annoying as well as condescending towards us….

        Actually, I can’t speak for the estimated 3.5 billion men on this planet, I should replace the “we” with “I” here…

      • fi says:

        Scott. There seems to be a very narrow definition of ‘flirting’ here – its not about picking people up for sex. ‘Flirting’ or more accurately I suppose ‘being charming’ is just a pleasant way of interacting with people. I suppose I should have made that clearer. Sometimes blokes do misinterpret that, and that’s the line that you have to be able to back off from when you think they’re heading off down the wrong route, but it would be a sad world if the only 2 ways people can relate to each other are either indifference and ignoring them (for fear of leading them on) or seeing them as a potential boyfriend/girlfriend. I think there are more nuances at play in our interaction and even when we aren’t interested in something going somewhere we can still get that little filip that makes us feel good about ourselves, and give it to. And I’ve never yet met a man who was annoyed and fet he was being led on because I smiled at him.

      • Emgee says:

        Re: Flirting.

        It’s a delicate dance, that is for sure. It was harder when I was younger, thinner, prettier, etc. They all seemed to assume that I was theirs for the taking, fair enough.

        Nowadays, the young men tend to play along in good humor, the older men engage if they are feeling an equal attraction (& vice versa), but I am ashamed to say that I get great amusement when I see the look of horror on the faces of some, when they regard the simplest compliment as some sort of come-on from a desperate Plankton. Really, it is up to the recipient, and his/her reaction. If it appears to be misunderstood, drop it.

      • fi says:

        Agree EmGee. But really all it is is being charming and its done to people of the same sex as well as the opposite. It’s smiling and chatting to the person serving you in the supermarket, or standing next to you at the bus stop. I’ve never had a woman misinterpret my chatting to them but I have sometimes had men do it – but I think that’s because either they are so gauche they can’t see any interaction with a woman as being non-sexual in its aim, or fear – once they’ve dropped their partner’s name in and reassured themselves they’re ‘safe’ they relax and join in. I know exactly what you mean when you say some men see it as a ‘come-on’ and are horrified, but to be honest I don’t think that must mean I’m an old hag (although I am) instead I think there’s something wrong with that man’s social skills that renders him incapable of responding appropriately to a compliment. If a man I don’t think attractive thinks I am, then I’m still flattered – a compliment is a compliment is a compliment and its significance is not dependent on the age or attractiveness of the person delivering it. But maybe that’s cos I haven’t got the gigantic ego that these men must have to think every woman they meet must want to have sex with them 🙂

  • Ross says:

    As an occasional male reader of this blog, I find myself empathising somewhat with “Phil”. Not only do I imagine him to be around my age (early fifties), but my recent dating experiences with Divorced Mother of Two charted a remarkably similar course to that of his apparent relationship with Ms P, although DMoT and I never quite got around to hand-squeezing outside my flat (nor hers for that matter). Nevertheless, over the course of some half a dozen dates, my relationship with DMoT followed the same 3 phases that Ms P describes so eloquently above: initial tentative interest; growing excitement; and, finally, a dawning realisation that it was not to be. I’m sure that this cycle is familiar to many.

    However, I would contend that to describe “Phil” as a philanderer in such circumstances is to do him something of an injustice. Surely a philanderer is one who conducts sexual liaisons with several women concurrently, without serious intent towards any? Whereas, the impression created by Ms P of “Phil” is quite the reverse.

    But that still leaves unanswered Ms P’s question as to why mid-life dating appears to be quite such a complex, circling game of messaging and counter-messaging, signaling and counter-signaling. And, all the while in circumstances where one party is signally so subtly, for fear of appearing wanton, that the messages go entirely unnoticed by the other party who is waiting for a clear and unambiguous signal, for fear of making an unwanted advance. Honestly, there are times when I’m tempted to despair….

    • EmGee says:

      Ross, Phil has a reputation among Ms P’s friends as a philanderer, hence her own perplexity at his “old-fashioned pace of the courtship, if this is what this is? Maybe I under-estimate him, and he is in fact gallant and courteous…”

      My hope is that he sees her as worthy of more respect than just a conquest, and he feels she is worthy of pursuit to gain her affection. Whether she, in turn, ever feels synchronized swimmers in her tummy, remains to be seen.

      I wish I had an answer to the mid life dating game, except throw all the conventions out the window and just meet as friends with no expectations. However, it takes time to do it this way, something we all feel is accelerating as we get older. Just remember the adage: the hurrier I go, the behinder I get. Hokey, but true!

      • Ross says:

        EmGee, I acknowledge that as an occasional reader I may have missed out on some of the details of Ms P’s relationship with “Phil”.

        However, the point that I wished to make was that his actions (or lack thereof) appear to belie his alleged reputation. I would contend that, if Ms P’s “friends” are in long-term, settled relationships, as they appear to be, then they might be inclined to surmise (for various reasons) that his dating experiences all result in a positive outcome, after which he moves on to seek out others.

        My view, reinforced by Ms P’s experience, is that his supposed reputation is based upon nothing more than female conjecture (or gossip, if you prefer) and that he is much more likely to be a decent man with an honourable intent.

      • The Plankton says:

        I am not so sure, Ross. His reputation as a Philanderer is pretty watertight! Pxx

    • The Plankton says:

      Ross, I totally agree! Thanks for this. Pxx

  • june says:

    Dear me P, thought this might be the one, could still be but as you say this dating game when older is a difficult one.

    i had a lecture from my doesent ever want to be a plankton friend today, after i rejected a nice sounding man on POF and thats a rarity on that site, but i put a new rather flattering pic of me on recently and it does seem to have resulted in a few more contacts.I rejected him because he lives some distance away bout 60 miles, but aa she says i dont really want to move in with anyone permanently so does it matter, Well no i dont, but what if it goes further, i could never move for any man not at my age, i like where i iive, it took me years of living in a place i didnt like, but now apart from not having anyone, im happy living in this city. But guess she is right, i am jumping gun a bit and i do reject people for wrong reasons, maybe after all this time i, scared of a relationship . So i messaged him back and he gave me his mobile, so will text him. I must be more flexible i think or decide exactly what i do want if i really know, surely i should by now. Think Em Gee said more or less same as my friend, just treat them as friends at first men, dont read too much in to it, but also as she said as you get older,we feel we dont have so much time.

    • maria says:

      Good for you, June. Go for it!

    • castoff says:

      June, if you have found someone you like the sound of, albeit 60 miles away, then for goodness sake give it a go! I met a man on a more expensive dating site a few months ago, the only downside being that he lives 170 miles away. Yes this seemed daunting at first, but we now meet every 2 or 3 weeks for a few days either at my place or his. If you like the person enough you can overcome perceived obstacles. I don’t know where the relationship is going (if anywhere) but we are sure having fun finding out! Maybe I’ll be back trawling the dating sites soon, who knows, but I do feel that at my age (60ish) I need to make the most of any opportunities (goodness knows, decent, clean, solvent men who are interested in me are very few and far between!)

    • The Plankton says:

      Good luck, June. pxx

  • PY says:

    Welcome back, Jill – good hols ? Like Ross, I’m beginning to despair so help me out here.

    Perhaps Ms P found herself outside of Phil’s flat because that was her destination, subliminally or intentionally, to cover her options ? Offspring at home, bachelor pad vacant , physicality on the agenda. To my mind, the distinct lack of carpe diem rests on both of their shoulders.

    Surely it’s all about clear communication between the sexes and the lack of it. As others have pointed out, the clocks a-ticking , there is little time for games. It would all be far simpler if more people spoke their mind rather than danced around the subject . I was brought up to do that and it is not entirely appreciated down South but it certainly saves time (albeit sometimes at the expense of bruised egos).

    As for ‘Phil’s’ reputation, he may well be growing out of his ways, if it is historically watertight, and is trying to settle down; he may be a mis-judged man, burdened by society’s judgement; he may not be that into our P but until she tackles him up-front he will remain an enigma. There may be all sorts of rumours floating around about ‘Phil’, some of which may prove totally ridiculous, simply because he has not allowed himself to be pigeon holed or because he has chosen not to challenge a false reputation which to some would regard as a badge of honour – even if he can’t rise to the occasion.

    As for abandoning men all together , there is many a man who has contemplated dowing tools on the search for the perfect female partner as well . This is not a one way track. But, I for one, can’t do that. Despite experience, I like women, their company and all they have to offer. The search continues …..

    • Jill says:

      Thank you PY, but sadly no hols, just very busy readying home for sale shortly. The amount of clutter one accumulates during the course of a long marriage and bringing up four sons is mind-boggling….but am getting there slowly.

      I did in fact make my comment about P finding herself outside the Philanderer’s front door rather than her own in a somewhat tongue in cheek way, merely because I am an old-fashioned sort and think it is incumbent on the man – obviously depending on the circumstances, e.g. available transport, geography, and so much more – to return his female companion safely to her own front door, or at least ensure that she reaches it safely. And as you are quite right to point out, I may well be being very partisan and unfair to the no doubt decent and charming “Phil”. In addition, of course, P, as we know, does have children living at home, so it was probably out of the question to invite him back to “hers”, however much – or not – she might have wished to do so.

      You are totally correct in asserting that the lack of carpe diem rests on both sets of shoulders, but I would suggest that there is possibly – even in these enlightened times – a smidgen of reserve on the part of a woman in such a situation about being too bold or forthcoming, lest she appear too eager/ forward/ pushy, (or, perish the thought, a bit too “easy”.) Oh dear, I think I probably sound very old-fashioned and embarrassingly proper. I agree that the root of the problem is lack of communication, but that is the root of most relationship problems, so plus ca change……

      • fi says:

        If I was abandoned in the middle of the street outside his flat that would be the end of it for me. If for some reason I was in his bit of town, rather than mine, and I wasn’t invited in to have coffee or call a taxi, I’d expect to be escorted to the tube/train station or taxi rank. If I was simply left standing in the middle of the pavement with a door shut in my face there would be no second date.

      • Jill says:

        I rather tend to agree with you, fi, and you put if better and more strongly than I did!

      • The Plankton says:

        To be honest, it wasn’t quite like that. Pxx

      • fi says:

        It’s just good manners isn’t it? And if a bloke expected me to escort him to HIS door, well…shudder….

      • PY says:

        Jill
        An apology for my presumption re hols – clearly far from the truth.
        I hadn’t realised you were very much in ‘transition’ and the picture only came clear having read the next P posting and your tale .
        It really is a shitty time and I hope it progresses as smoothly as circumstances allow .

  • Jill says:

    Really no need to apologise, PY, it could quite well have been the case, and I am planning a BIG one (holiday!) after all the dust has settled! And thank you for your sympathetic comment – I very much like the phrase ‘in transition’ – so much preferable to the ghastly ‘moving on’ which has been said to me so many times now that the next person who uses it is in mortal danger!

    • joules says:

      Big hugs from me Jill at this time. My teeth are set on edge by the phrase “we are where we are”. Enough to earn a good punch in the teeth to anyone who uses it on me again. The perfect get out clause for every bad deed anyone has ever done to someone else.

      • fi says:

        Or at work – the justification for why you have to fix someone else’s cock up without complaining about the hassle it’s causing you. 🙂

      • Jill says:

        Thank you so much for that, joules. And I SO agree with you about your detested phrase – almost as good as “that was then and this is now” – or one of my STBE’s favourites “Let the past remain where it is, in the past” Grrrr…..My retort: ” I wish it could be so, but you have dragged the past (i.e. HER) into the present, to the detriment of the lives of all of us (i.e. his family)”. Which brings me back to the reason I was impelled to respond to P’s post on infidelity yesterday. I read something so apposite not long ago – can’t remember where – to the effect that it is sometimes inevitable that a (long) marriage must or does come to an end; if that it so. the only way of ending it is to do so honourably with respect and compassion……

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