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A Time for Temporary Lovers

Dear Philippa,

This guy and I have been dating about six months and although we enjoy each other's company, both of us know this relationship isn't ever going to go anywhere. Is it OK to just date someone until your Mr. Right comes along?

�Gail, Boston, MA


Dear Gail,

It's normal to want companionship and as long as you enjoy each other's company the kind of situation you describe sounds fine. This means you each understand that you are both between meaningful relationships.

Being unwilling to just date for fun and companionship until Mr. Right appears is like being on a much too rigid diet. If you don't allow yourself a sliver of something delicious once in a while, eventually you may binge on the whole chocolate cake (and/or wrong guy) and end up full of remorse and guilt.

An in-between lover however, can be become much more than a rest stop. It can become it easier to stay put in this kind of situation than getting yourself out there trying to meet the right person. You can also unconsciously shut down your ability to attract the someone you really want. I know someone who did this for fifteen years�hanging onto a pleasant but unsuitable chap while crying there were no suitable men. It wasn't until she broke off her relationship with this guy and eliminated her safety net that she met her Mr. Right.

I wonder how important it is for you to meet your Mr. Right? Are you really ready for the reality of that kind of relationship? Remember that the joy of increased intimacy also requires hard work to sustain itself. If you are ready for Mr. Right to appear you need to either maintain a dual track�continue seeing Mr. Just O.K. while you make a conscious effort to meet your Mr. Right; or cut the cord and move on. Six months is a long time to just coast with someone if you really want a fuller relationship. If you are in no rush then just enjoy the ride. People come into our life for all kinds of reasons. Maybe this is your time to concentrate on other aspects of your life while you enjoy some uncomplicated companionship.



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