DEAR ABBY: I am a healthy, single, 76-year-old man. I spend lots of time at a local gym. I met a woman there two years ago, and we went out for coffee. She's a few years younger than I am. She told me she was married, but it was a "complex" marriage. What started as a friendship morphed into an intimate affair.
We have many common interests and spend as much time as we can together, given the circumstances. I know she will never get divorced. I've fallen in love with her, but I have never pressured her to divorce. She has grown children, and she doesn't want to upset them. I get it. There are also financial considerations and entanglements.
Over the last six months, our relationship has become strained. It has turned into a push-pull type of situation. I know it's unhealthy for both of us, but I can't seem to let her go. We've come to the brink several times, but we always have talked through it, and we keep limping along. I don't know how to stop loving her. Even thinking about it causes me great mental distress. I'm looking for suggestions to ease the pain and figure out how to move on. -- LOVING A MARRIED WOMAN IN MAINE
DEAR LOVING: Because thinking about it causes you great mental distress, go cold turkey. You deserve more than to be someone's side dish, but in order to find a more fulfilling relationship, you must let this woman go and allow her to focus on her "complex" marriage. Then, keep yourself busy, join another gym, avoid places where the two of you used to hang out and get back into the swing of life.