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Second Fiddle

I have been seeing a married man for the past nine months. He is unhappy but says he is not ready to leave his kids. They have a teenage daughter and a grown son, who is hers from a previous marriage. He is close to them and has a lovely home, which he worked hard for.

We pulled away from each other because we both felt guilty. However, we are still very close as we work on an oil rig in the North Sea and cannot help being around each other for great lengths of time. We feel we are soul mates.

Now he's found out his wife is having an affair with a man while he is offshore. She is unaware of me, and she is unaware he knows about her infidelity. I care so much about this man I felt his pain when he first found out. I want to support him through this. I don't want to be a destructive force that will be the catalyst to divorce.

I do believe in fate and hope the best situation arises.


Maya, if a conductor is hiring violinists and he knows one will only take first chair, she will get first chair. If first chair is already occupied, the conductor is hiring a second chair. If the conductor knows a violinist is willing to take second chair, why would he give her first?

You both know you are doing something which is in its essence wrong. He says you are his soul mate, but he chooses an unhappy marriage over you. He is willing to lose you. If he is willing to lose you, he doesn't love you. If he loved you, losing you would be the one thing he would be unwilling to do.

Hannibal Lecter said, "What do we covet? We covet what we see." Why did this man become involved with you? Because his opportunities were limited, and we covet what we see. But what role can he offer you except the role of helpful mistress?

If a relationship is not monogamous and leading to marriage, it is of no benefit to a woman at all.

Trust issues predominate in this situation. Until one or all of you decide to do what is right, nothing good will come of this. You are a single, available, unmarried woman. That is the basis from which you must proceed. Leave these two alone to deal with their mutual infidelity.

Ayn Rand said we are free to make the wrong choice, but not to succeed with it. The only path to your happiness will come from making right choices. You need to be in an open and honest relationship, with someone who is free to be involved with you.

Wayne & Tamara

Breaking Ground

After a two year relationship, I found out he was married. He assured me time and time again he was divorced, when I questioned his actions. I need to find out if there are any legal remedies to this relationship.


Natalie, we cannot give legal advice, but you raise an interesting question. Should a person be able to lie to another, to that person's detriment, and not suffer legal consequences?

Some people would lick their wounds, chalk it up to experience, and move on. But there are others who blaze new trails, make new laws, and fight the good fight. People like consumer advocate Ralph Nader. In the words of one former United States senator, he created a movement "whose sole purpose is to keep large corporations and the government honest."

Are you, like Ralph Nader, ready to blaze new trails? Then you might want to contact an attorney and see if something can be done. But first you need to answer one question. When you asked him again and again about his marital status, why did you continue in the relationship?


Direct Answers - Column for the week of October 25, 2004

About The Author

Authors and columnists Wayne and Tamara Mitchell can be reached at

Send letters to: Direct Answers, PO Box 964, Springfield, MO 65801 or email:

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