Seniors have the right to love again

On Life and Love After 50 eNewsletter – August 27, 2021

by Columnist Tom Blake

Seniors have the right to love again

Champ Nancy emailed: “I had been friends with my neighbors for eight years. She and I were never close. She died last December and I developed a relationship with her husband. Did I violate a girl code by dating him?

“We found out she’d been cheating on him. Although her husband and I got to be friends before she died, we never were involved in anything other than that.

Am I wrong for dating him?”

Tom’s reply to Nancy: “What the heck is a girl code? Also, “You say, ‘we’ found out she’d been cheating on him. Who is we? And, how did you find out?”
“Her cheating on him has nothing to do with your dating him now. She is gone: he will need to move forward with his life.

“May I ask your approximate ages?”

Nancy’s reply: “Girl code is you don’t mess with a friend’s man.

“The guy she cheated with called their home after she passed not knowing she had died. He told her husband she told him she was a widow and said he was her current boyfriend. “I’m 65 and he’s 55.” 

Tom’s second reply to Nancy: “You say, ‘Girl code is you don’t mess with a friend’s man.’ Does that code apply after the woman or man has passed away? I don’t think so. “

Can married women and men and people in committed relationships be platonic friends with members of the opposite sex?

“Yes, it’s healthy for us as we age to have friends of the same sex and the opposite sex. Recent studies during the pandemic by health officials reveal that loneliness and social isolation are unhealthy. We all need friends. 

“Of course, knowing and respecting what is acceptable and not stepping over the relationship line are important. Trust and fidelity are essential in a marriage or committed relationship. 

“Your friend’s wife wasn’t your friend, and you say your relationship with him was platonic. So, I don’t think your girl code applies here. The man probably needs and appreciates your friendship with him now. Your question made me think of a song sung by Jerry Vale in 1970, titled, ‘To Love Again.’

“Vale sang words that have stuck with me all these years:

‘No heart should refuse love

‘And if we should lose love, we have the right to love again.

‘Don’t live in the past dear. For you and me the die is cast dear. But if love won’t last dear, we have the right to love again.’ (The link to this song by Jerry Vale is below) 

“I think all people have the right to pursue happiness after a loved one is gone. Of course, it’s a personal decision; there is no right or wrong. “We’ve all heard endless times where the dying spouse has unselfishly said to the spouse left behind, ‘I want you to find a nice mate.’ 

“Regarding the phone call from the man who called the house. How could he be dating a woman and not know that she still lived with her husband and wasn’t a widow? That sounds like a stretch of the truth and he was probably cheating with her.

“I feel the widower (and you as well Nancy) have the right to love again. Without guilt. Link to “To Love Again” by Jerry Vale

Author: tpblake

Tom Blake is a newspaper columnist in south Orange County, California. He has published four books. His primary topic is finding love after 50 and beyond, sometimes far beyond, for people 80 and older as well. He also blogs about travel at TravelAfter55.com.

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