Let’s see if writing this out helps me put it in perspective.
I have been dating D for the last 4 years. 2 years ago he sold his home across the country, sold or gave away most of his stuff and came and lived with me. Due to his job we have a rather erratic schedule with him being out of town at least half of every week and sometimes for weeks at a time. Then we can have months of being together. We seem to do fine either way. When he’s gone, we talk everyday. When he’s home we have fun and are relaxed together. Because of his schedule he hasn’t really integrated into my community, but we spend lots of time with my friends. He does miss his old friends who were very different from mine. My friends are older (I’m older than him by 5 years and most of my friends are older than I am) and my friends are a fairly intellectual bunch. His friends were younger than him and a group who liked to go to sporting events and to party. But he seems to be doing OK with this.
Here’s the problem – logical or not, I want to get married. (I was married for 28 years, he has never been married). He’s not ready, and not very good at explaining why, though it seems to come down to having a fear of divorce ( a few bad break ups in his history) and a fear of the responsibility of my grown children (who are doing just fine and make no financial and few emotional demands on me) and the responsibility of my mother who is financially quite well off and is reasonably healthy ( he has no children. Both of his parents are alive, healthy and again quite well off) On the other hand, he is quick to jump in to be supportive of my kids and mother . For example, when the daughter who is in graduate school needed a new computer he was quick to tell me we could help (I told him that this wasn’t an emergency and I thought she would figure it out herself – she did).
With his emotional and financial support I just retired. My pension is just a bit short of what I need each month and he is willingly and eagerly taking over many of the bills for the house (which I own). He repeatedly tells me not to worry about money, even if I never make another penny.
He sounds like a prince and he is. But with my not earning enough to support myself I am feeling very vunerable. I feel guilty taking money from a man who is not my legal husband and I’m terrified of what would happen if he should die. As of now, his parents are the beneficiaries on his IRAs. For some reason (well, I know the reasons – a brother who borrowed money and then declared bankruptcy leaving my guy in the hole and a long ago ex girlfriend whom he supported and then she ran off with another man), anyways, for some reason he hasn’t made arrangements to secure my financial future by writing me into his will. My kids are my beneficiaries though I have left a little money to him. Truth is he has twice as much as I do and plans on working for another 10 years.
I’m feeling a bit frustrated and a bit stuck and sometimes a bit angry. At 51 isn’t it time for him to step up to responsibility? To face his fears of divorce? To abandon some of the self-centeredness of being a bachelor? His committment to me is generally unquestionable, but his inability to clean up some of these legalities, or to talk about them, is driving a wedge between us – because I’m letting it.
Well, I can’t say that I learned anything from writing, how ’bout some thoughts from the sisterhood.