DEAR ABBY: I am a 58-year-old, never-married woman with a 22-year blue-collar career. I own a home and will retire with benefits many people dream of.
I've recently ended a relationship with a man I've known since childhood. I truly love him. The problem is that he had been stealing from me. I confronted him several times, but finally had to involve the police. Now, he has flattened my tires and repeatedly dented my cars.
My question is this: Is there more than one right person for everyone? How long will it take me to recover from a broken heart, if ever? His vandalism and my huge financial loss keep me away from this whack job. How well do you really know anyone? -- DISILLUSIONED IN WASHINGTON
DEAR DISILLUSIONED: Inform the police that your ex-boyfriend is continuing to retaliate because you reported him. There is no timetable for healing from a broken heart, but take it from me, it does happen. I firmly believe there is more than one "right person" for everyone. You do not truly love him. What you love is the fantasy that he's the only right person for you.
We get to know the significant people in our lives -- both male and female -- by observing them over a long period of time and watching how they treat others. You should not keep your distance from this man only because of his vandalism and the money he has cost you, but also because he has anger problems he seems unable to control. Surely those character flaws showed themselves before he started acting out on you. Think back on the little things you may have chosen to ignore, and you may recognize that I'm right.