Ask Someone Else's Mom by Susan Writer

Playwright's Daughter Wonders If History Is Repeating Itself

DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: My father is a locally known playwright. He and my mom have been married nearly 30 years, and I know she’s put up with a lot of s##t from him, including his having had an affair about 10 years ago, when I was still living at home. It was a hellish time, but they went to counselling and decided to stay together.

At the time of the affair, my dad wrote a play about a philanderer, which he claimed he based on an old college friend of his. My mom and I continue to not buy this, and believe it was inspired byss the affair he was having.

Last month, my father showed me a draft of a play he’s currently working on getting produced. Guess what the theme is? It’s about a man having a mid-life crisis affair with a coworker. He tells me it has nothing to do with his life, but is just inspired by what he’s seen going on around him. I don’t believe it for a minute. I asked if he’s let my mother see the play yet, and he said of course he had, since she’s always been his primary editor.

I am so uneasy about this and don’t know if I should say something to my mother. What do you think? --- IS HE AT IT AGAIN?

DEAR IS HE AT IT AGAIN?: I can certainly see why you may have cause to be suspicious, but unless you have any concrete evidence your father is having another affair, I don’t see what good it would do to share your worries with your mother at this time. She’s seen the draft and knows both its subject matter and your dad’s history. He’s her husband and their marriage is their business.

That said, I’d keep an eye open for any further developments that might justify your concerns — especially to be of use to your mom, should the need arise.

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