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by Abigail Van Buren

Widow Reconsiders Romantic Overture From an Old Friend

DEAR ABBY: This is something I can't talk about in my grief support group. I'm a 70-year-old widow. I lost my dear husband of 35 years 17 months ago. I always was more sexual than he was. Since the funeral, I have had a one-night stand with a nice younger man, but it was a failure for me physically. Since then, I am leery.

Last night, a dear friend visited. He knew both of us for years. I had flirted with him last year, but nothing happened. Last night he came on to me. I was upset about my failure to perform with the nice young man, so I turned him down. Now I don't know what to do.

If I sleep with him, will it destroy our friendship? Will I be able to keep him from becoming a major presence in my home? -- WONDERING WIDOW

DEAR WIDOW: Please accept my condolences for the loss of your husband. That your first experience after your husband's death wasn't all that you fantasized it would be isn't unusual. Good sex is all about communication. It takes time for couples to adjust to each other and feel comfortable enough to talk frankly about their individual needs.

If you sleep with this old friend, I can't see why it would destroy your friendship. You are both adults and, I assume, available. Sex with him may -- or may not -- bring you closer for a variety of reasons.

However, if you would not welcome someone becoming "a major presence in your home," allow me to point out that it might be better not to go to bed with him. Once a door is opened, it's not unusual for a guest to become comfortable and crave more "hospitality."

Read more in: Death | Sex & Gender | Friends & Neighbors