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Do I or don't I - that is the question.


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Would really appreciate some advice. I am in my early 50's, twice married and divorced, and I have been in a relationship for the last two years with a lovely man. The only problem is that he wants a commitment and I am not sure! I don't know if it is because I'm twice bitten thrice shy or if the doubt is because he isn't the right person. He is a good, kind-hearted man but we have very different personalities. I'm outgoing, adventurous, goal-oriented, 'juggle half-a-dozen balls at the same time' type of person and he is the opposite. He is a neat freak and I am messy. We also have very different tastes in just about everything. Can two such different people live together without driving each other crazy? He doesn't want to live together first because he feels like he would be on probation. I know I have to make a decision because my indecision is hurting him, but I just can't seem to say yes and I don't want to say no! Help!

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I'm of several minds about these sorts of decisions. On the one hand, if you have to think hard about committing to your partner, that raises some flags about whether you think you are compatible with him or her. On the other, sometimes people are just frightened by the thought that they could be hurt (again), and rationalize reasons why they should keep their distance. You're the only person who can know which is which.

I don't think that the differences in personality are too significant all by themselves. People who love and respect one another find ways to honor each others' ideosyncracies, and when that is not possible, you tease your partner (or complain about them good naturedly). Keeping in mind that your partner is not perfect, but then again , neither are you.

Do you think these differences you mention are real deal killers, or are they more along the lines of things that are inconvenient but not really the reason why you are hesitant?

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Thank you for your comments Mark.

It is difficult for me to determine if my hesitancy is because it isn't right or simply because I am scared. Perhaps having spent most of my life married, I have no illusions about what it is like sharing your life, day-to-day, with another. Small things can really grate and I guess I am concerned that such large differences will have us both gritting our teeth which will end up killing it.

Sometimes I wonder if that ease of being with someone is part of the mysterious thing called chemistry. I do love and appreciate his kind and gentle nature, but I met him on the rebound and there has never been that easy understanding you sometimes experience. I don't think I am expressing this very well, but you know with some folk you just sort of 'get' them, there is a similarity in tastes and styles that just feels easy and comfortable. That feeling I have never had with him, but we can communicate very well and work our way through even the most difficult terrain.

It all seems so much more difficult at 50 than it was at 17. It is hard to know where your wounds start and your intuition ends!

Many thanks again

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