Third Wheel

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:
Please don’t get too moralistic on me until I explain. My longtime ex
just moved here from cross-country. He is in the traditional “loveless”
marriage with two kids, except in this case there is lots of love and
affection, but no sex. His wife has agreed it is fine for him to have an
affair, or more properly, a long-term mistress, as long as there are
some “rules,” the biggest one being that no one outside the three of us
know, because he’s prominent in the community. I am single and 55,
no spring chicken, and have stopped looking for Mr. Right. I’m happy
alone, but miss physical intimacy. Even his therapist says its okay. Do
Third Wheel

Dear Third Wheel:
How often have you seen this movie? How often have you seen this
movie end happily for the third wheel character? Generally, the
mistress ends up sobbing and lonely, if not worse, say killed off by the
wife, the husband, or by her own hand. That’s not to say she doesn’t
have some good times in the short run, and a vivid, if often hollow,
romance to zing up her otherwise drab life. But is this really what you
want and deserve? Sure it’s hard to find someone that you’re attracted
to. But maybe the secrecy and danger are part of the attraction, and
they keep you from honestly investing in a relationship with a real and
available partner. I’m not even invoking the commandment about
adultery, because usually people in your condition don’t listen to
morality. But tuck that away in the why-not column too.

So here’s my advice, none of which do I expect you to heed now,
though I do suggest you save this answer for later, when you might.
First: Just say no. Transmute the energy into something, anything
else. Get physical, but in a different way: join a gym or a team; start
doing yoga. When you reject that idea, have a direct conversation with
the wife, and get her to follow it up with a note that can be waved in
her face later, when she inevitably changes her mind. Not that I doubt                     hubby’s account, but that’ll kill some of the magic and take some of
the heat out of things. If she really does agree, it also makes it less
likely that she’ll show up at your door with a shotgun and or wake the
neighbors branding you a _______. Whatever word you just filled in
that blank, imagine it in the local paper. Still interested? Consider an
appointment together with the therapist, as a twosome or a
threesome. If you still want to hug and kiss after all of that reality
therapy, my guess is there’s now way to save you from your mid-life

P.S. I’ll expect to talk to you later, on the downslide.