You've seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel All Alone in Their Marriages, keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show Braxton Family Values. Now it's your turn to sit in her chair...
Dear Dr. Sherry,
My ex husband remarried a couple of months after our divorce. I have been living a celibate life ever since we separated in 1992. (We divorced in 1995.) After that, I wouldn't give him the time of the day. Now I get lonely sometimes for that male companionship. He calls me sometimes and I enjoy his conversation, but he enjoys talking to me as well. It took me a long time to talk to him about the breakup. We are talking about it now and we realized that we made a mistake and should have worked harder on keeping our marriage together. He is married now with three children. Here lately he calls me on a daily basis. I find myself looking forward to his call. Based on my religious beliefs and what the Bible says about me marrying again, I know I am not supposed to unless he and I get remarried or he is deceased. What should I do?
After being legally divorced for almost 20 years, you are still emotionally married to your ex-husband. Stop lying to yourself! You are still in love with this man. It is no accident that your ex husband is the only man that you can talk with to satisfy your loneliness for male companionship. Your marriage has been over for a long time. Let it go and move on. It is apparent that your ex has moved on. (He is married with three children!) He talks with you and keeps you hooked by going down the "coulda, shoulda, woulda" memory lane. He does that because you allow it and he wants more. More does not mean marriage or a relationship. At best, it means he wants to be your friend with benefits. You are quickly allowing yourself to become the "other women" who is better known as the "side chick.” You are emotionally involved and in love with the dream of what could have been. Most men do not leave their wife and children for the other women. There is a reason you separated in 1992 and divorced a few years later. You have been frozen in time with this man. It happens, and it is called love, but it is time to let go and move on. I recommend that you seek individual therapy to process your feelings and learn to let go. This would also give you a chance to fully process the role your religious beliefs play in your relationships. I am sure there is no role for the "other woman" in your belief system. You deserve more, but if you want more, you must not settle for less! – Dr. Sherry
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