heart-logo_web.pngDear Dr. Monique,

I met a really attractive girl in the gym and she seems to have it together physically and professionally. I’m seeing my current girlfriend six years now and started to find more girls attractive. Is it wise to ask this girl out just for coffee to see how it goes or would that be unfair to my girlfriend? It’s just coffee …

Just Coffee

Dear Just Coffee,
I would hazard a guess that many affairs start out innocently enough. By asking this other young woman out while you are still in a relationship, you are hedging your bets. However when used in this context at least one person if not all who are involved are likely to get hurt. Make a careful evaluation of your relationship and decide whether you want to pursue it further. If you need more space to date other people, give your girlfriend the opportunity to decide whether she wants an open relationship or if she thinks it is better for you both to go your separate ways.  This gives you free rein to pursue other dating relationships without cheating your girlfriend of the opportunity to do the same.

Dear Dr. Monique,
I’m the secretary at our local church where our minister made a pass at me. Actually this is the second time! I am single and he is married and such a family man. I feel sick to my stomach. How can I warn him off so as to not cause any friction? The church hired me as I was laid off and I don’t want to seem ungrateful. Thanks in advance.
Scared Secretary

Dear Scared Secretary,
Although in tough financial times it is more difficult to see this, your values and your integrity are worth more than any job.  Be firm and clear to the minister that you will not be embarking on a relationship with him under any circumstance. If your job is threatened because of your actions, seek some free legal advice on your best course of action. I am confident in saying that his actions will not be viewed favorably by the wider society and even if it is not obvious to you in the short term, in the long term you will be much better off for staying true to yourself.

Dear Dr. Monique,
My husband and I have three kids under the age of 6. How do I find the time and energy to have sex?
Tired But Sexy Mother

Dear Tired but Sexy Mother,
I must say I agree with the quote “Motherhood is the hardest job you will every love.” That being said, some alone time with your spouse, including time for sex, is important to maintain a healthy marriage. Five words: Date nights and baby sitters! Consider enlisting the help of family and/or friends or even hiring a baby sitter on a regular schedule to give your husband and yourself some bonding time. If you can let the children do an overnighter with family even better. Otherwise, maybe you can spend a few hours at an inexpensive hotel, and order takeout. That way you can enjoy dinner and sex with your husband at least once in a while. If that is all too elaborate, work with lunchtime while the kids are at school or daycare and maybe you can both arrange your schedule to be home for some quality one-on-one time before you are both too worn out from a long day.  You may have to get creative but I am sure you will agree, your marriage is worth it.

Dear Doctor Monique,
I am 51 years old and I have been dating a much younger guy for the past two months.  He is great and things are going well. The problem is he thinks I am much younger than I am and I haven’t told him the truth. I really don’t look my age. How do I tell him the truth without ruining the relationship?
Hiding My Age

Dear Hiding My Age,
You are certainly not the first and won’t be the last woman who prefers not to be up front with her age. My beloved maternal grandmother, God rest her soul, is an example near and dear to my heart. She continued to subtract years from her biological age, even in her ninth decade. That being said, from the tone of your letter I sense that you desire to come clean with this guy.  Perhaps one way to approach the issue is discussing the relationships of popular older women/younger men couples with him on a casual basis to allow you to get some insight into his feelings on this matter. Use this knowledge to help guide you on the appropriate context and time to reveal your age to him. Hopefully his feelings for you are deep enough for him to realize that age is just a number.

Dear Dr. Monique,
I made a compromising tape with my ex sometime ago and he claims he doesn’t know where it is. I know the last time it was in his possession at his house where he lived previously. I’m worried it could surface to haunt me. I’m so paranoid about it I am thinking of changing my name. People make mistakes right, or this is one I shouldn’t forget?
Paranoid Ex-Girlfriend

Dear Paranoid Ex-Girlfriend,
Ever so often many of us may look back at our life and wish we had acted differently. However we cannot allow our past mistakes to cripple our future. Forgive yourself for your perceived mistake and forge ahead in your own identity. While it is still possible that this tape may surface, the consequences may not be as bad as you envision. Furthermore, many celebrities have outstanding careers despite compromising tapes or pictures, and for others it has even served as a catapult for their careers. So hold your head high. Mistakes mean only that you are human.

Dear Dr. Monique,
My husband wants us to jump the broom at our upcoming wedding. I appreciate his desire but I simply don’t want to. If we are fussing about this, then what is to come?
Soon To Be Married

Dear Soon To Be Married,
This difference between the two of you may be a little sneak preview into married life. Two separate individuals come together to become married and they seldom if ever agree on everything. As such married couples may fuss and argue even about the most mundane matters. This gives you the opportunity, however, to learn one of the most important lessons of marriage:   Compromise! Undoubtedly over the course of a successful marriage one or both parties will have to compromise on a number of occasions. Examine your reasons for not wanting to jump the broom and explore your fiancé’s reasons for his strong desire. Discuss the matter further in a calm dispassionate manner. Hopefully this will lead to a comfortable compromise.

Dr. Monique is an award-winning graduate of Harvard Medical School, who completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington DC. She has years of experience in counseling and discussing relationship issues. Ask her your questions at drmonique@sfltimes.com