Mom’s Grabby Guy

3 Mar

Dear LetterBalm: My dad died three years ago. During that difficult time, an old family friend was there for my mom. She was grieving and lonely. Eventually, they fell in love and have a good relationship. Recently they began living together. I haven’t told my mom that years ago, when her boyfriend was going through a bad divorce, he once came on to me. I was 22 at the time, and deflected his advances. I never told anyone other than my husband, when the friend began dating my mom. I want to tell Mom, but my husband says to leave it alone. I think she needs to know. What to do? What to say?

–Hands Off

If any disclosures are made, it shouldn’t be to your mom. It would only hurt her – hard to see how it would benefit her.  Ms. L.B. is inclined to agree with your husband, that nothing should be said to anyone. Your grabby family friend was in the throes of a tough divorce. He may be horrified about his past bad behavior and worried that you might spill the beans to his beloved. You say they have a solid relationship. Do you really want to threaten this? You might take him aside privately and let him know there are no hard feelings, that you trust him with your mom’s affections. Keep it brief and low-key:

Darnell, a brief word. I’m glad you’re with my mom and I trust you to have her best interests at heart. I do remember your indiscretion a few years ago when you were going through your divorce. It was a tough time and you weren’t on your best behavior when you made a pass at me. Jason and I certainly don’t think this would benefit Mom to know. I feel absolutely sure that you would never do anything like this again to me or to any other woman. Let’s not speak of it again.

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