?> Annie Fox Parent Forum - Ask Annie - Long-distance relationships: I'm a single mom who's in love with a man I met online.

Long-distance relationships:
“I'm a single mom who's in love with a man I met online.”

Dear Annie,

I am 51 years old and fell in love very deeply with a man the same age and who is also a single parent. (We both have teen daughters.) I met him because I emailed to compliment him on his web page. We've have been emailing and phoning ever since.

My question to you is: I have been asking for his phone number for the past 7 months and he always would say: "It is a man's place to call." I only wanted it in case I felt like calling him and as an added assurance of his honesty with me. He has recently given me his phone number to my delight BUT!!!!!....... Now since he has given it to me, he wants me to do most of the calling. He used to call me every Saturday night and talk for 2 hours and that was our Saturday night date.

Now he comes up with an excuse as to why he can't call me. He uses the $10.00 phone cards for 3 hours and spreads out his time with me. I, on the other hand, pay about 4 cents more per minute. I told him that I should be worth the extra money, but he insists now that I do the calling and more often than him now! I noticed that he calls every other Saturday. I can't afford to pay the phone bill let alone all these long distance charges now. Should I stick to my guns and hold him to his words: "It's a man's place to call." or is it fair to take turns? PLEASE HELP! WHAT SHOULD I DO????

Used

Dear Used,

If you think of yourself as being "used", then you definitely need to take steps to change this situation because it's not likely to change by itself. This isn't about taking turns calling each other, this is about feeling like you're both equally invested in this relationship. You obviously don't believe it's a two-way street.

But there's something much more important going on here that you should be aware of. You say you "just can't afford" paying for all the phone calls. Personally, I think there's something else you just can't afford continuing to do.

You say that you're "deeply" in love with this man. But since the basis of your relationship has been restricted only to email and phone calls, I wonder if you really know him at all. I tell teens that it's way too easy (and common) to pose online. I'll tell you the same thing. How do you know this man is what he presents himself to be? How would you feel if your daughter was in love with a guy she only knew online? If you'd be uncomfortable with that idea, how would you be able to discourage her since she'd only be modeling your own behavior?

In friendship,

Annie

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