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Ask Lynn-I can’t get over a fling


Longest Her online fling has left her longing for more with a younger man. Lynn helps her set realistic expectations and open her heart to future dalliances.

By Lynn Harris

ear Lynn,
About three months ago, I met someone online who’s four years younger than I am. I can’t say we really talked much but we did a whole lot of text messaging. Most of it was very flirtatious, and though we played with the idea of meeting, our schedules never synced up (we live an hour apart).

So we continued to flirt and flirt until last weekend, we finally met. He came over and it was a little strange because it was like we knew each other. We had spoken on the phone only twice for
I cannot stop thinking about him. It’s driving me nuts!
three months but there we were, face to face—and he was gorgeous! We went to dinner, had a few drinks… and of course, ended up in my bed. It was great.

Still, I knew this was nothing but a fling. After all, we don’t have much in common and he is only 29. We are both parents to young children and live in different states, and after we met up, he was heading off to Florida for a while.

Here is the big problem. I cannot stop thinking about him. It’s driving me nuts! This is not what I need because I am finally ready to date after being divorced over a year and dating losers for six months. I feel weak for sitting and hoping that he calls. What should I do?
– Maybe Not So Mature?

Dear Maybe Not,
Here is perhaps the best advice my mother ever gave me: “Never tell yourself ‘I shouldn’t be feeling this way.’” Feelings are feelings. That’s what they’re there for. (It’s actions that get us in trouble.) We can’t help feelings, and we shouldn’t try to. They may not always be positive, or pleasant, but they can give us lots of useful information, and they are, no matter what, part of who we are.

So let’s look at this situation in a positive way. Quit beating yourself up for, or at least second-guessing, getting a little attached here. I think
Feelings are feelings. That’s what they’re there for.
it’s great that after a divorce and a six-month rut, you had some serious flirting and serious fun. That’s an end in itself. And what useful information can you get here, besides? That you are emotionally open, which is no small thing. That you still have the capacity to be a little giggly and giddy, which really, no one should lose. And that, post-divorce, you’ve still got it.

Now, I can’t say for sure whether this guy will be up for more a fling. But I can say for sure what you should do with those feelings of yours: have them. Now that you know you could be ready for real romance, keep looking. You had good luck, at least short-term, with him: Doesn’t that suggest that you could find another who’s definitely interested in something long term? Isn’t it an indication that there are fellas out there who do not fit your definition of “loser?” So yes, take it for one fabulous night. And take it from me: With him or someone else, it’s not your last.


Lynn Harris (www.lynnharris.net) is co-creator, with Chris Kalb (www.chriskalb.com), of the award-winning website BreakupGirl.net — you can visit BG's blog to discuss this letter! A longtime journalist, Lynn has written about dating, gender, and culture high and low for Glamour, Marie Claire, The New York Times, Salon.com, Nerve.com, and many others. She is currently the communications strategist for Breakthrough, a transnational organization that creates pop culture to promote human rights. Submit your own dating questions for Ask Lynn via bg@breakupgirl.net. Your question may be answered in a future column.
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