Adapted from a recent online discussion.
No drama required: Just fess up about your fiance's real age
Regretting it: I lied to my parents about my boyfriend's age when I first started dating him because he is quite a bit older, and at the time I did not expect the relationship to last.
Well, the relationship did last, and we are engaged and very happy together. My parents have since met my fiance and absolutely love him. But the lie has been going on for years! I really regret lying, it was stupid and unnecessary, but I don't know how to come clean.
They know he is older (and, alas, were not concerned about that), but they think it's by x years, not y. Fiance looks and acts younger than his age.
Should my fiance and I talk to them together? When? To both or only one parent first?
Carolyn: Oh, brother.
Just tell your parents next time you talk to them. While the mental image I have of your telling them together — with you and your fiance holding hands and speaking in solemn tones while your parents sit expectantly on their living room sofa — is a priceless bit of instantly regrettable, awkward personal theater (which makes it the audience choice), I think you'll be grateful later if you skip the grand announcement and just spill, be it in person or just on the phone.
If it helps to have some phrasing handy, you can say you initially lied because you made a stupid choice, and then you took forever to correct the record because you felt so stupid about your choice.
Anonymous: Re: Regretting: What the heck is acting "younger than his age"? Is a person supposed to act differently at 30 vs. 25, or 35 vs. 30? I'm turning 40. Please tell me how I'm supposed to act.
Or are you saying he's immature and still acts like a teenager?
Carolyn: Maybe his knees don't pop when he descends a flight of stairs.
Dream is just reality, so make a decision about life with him
Va.: I am dating my dream guy. The only catch is that he doesn't want to have kids and I do. I have been trying to decide for some time if this should be a deal-breaker, but I can't seem to make up my mind. How should I handle this?
Carolyn: Choose him over having kids, definitively — just keep the decision to yourself. Then, live with it for a while.
The other way to go is to make the other, definitive choice: Break up with the guy, then live with it.
Neither approach guarantees an epiphany; they're both just nudges in one direction or the other, and both are more or less reversible (the former is more reversible than the latter, obviously). But both are a lot better than just throwing up your hands and saying you can't decide. You can, and you will, you just need to listen to yourself, and trust what you hear.
By the way — your "dream guy" would want kids, no? So what you have now is a "reality guy," which is fine, because that's all anyone ever has. But you need to be honest with yourself if he's not the reality you want.