Ask E. Jean: My Husband Is Sleeping with My Mother


Dear E. Jean: My mom is an attractive, engaging lady who reads ELLE and The Economist, dresses fashionably, and maintains a petite distance 2 frame. Recently, we found out that my 39-year-old father (of 14 years) has been carrying sex with her when he attends conferences during a review nearby where she lives. When he told me, we was worried by a fact that it didn’t worry me.

He’s a smashing man—father to a dual children and a good provider—and he’s always taken caring of me emotionally, sexually, and financially. we know we should be upset; we know we should feel tricked on so many levels. But we usually don’t. He says he enjoys a attribute with her though will stop if it’s what we want.

Honestly, if my mom and father are happy in their affair, we usually can’t seem to find a appetite to be indignant or jealous. So my doubt is: Is this normal? Should we be upset? —No Talent for a Conniption Fit

My Dear Miss Conniption: For 20 years, a world’s many appealing idiots, unrequited lovers, and swelling milksops (including myself) have babbled in this mainstay about “unconditional love.” You are—astoundingly—the initial to live it.

So…no. I’m not going to advise we to feel “upset.” Instead, I’m popping open a bottle of prosecco and lifting my potion to you, Conniption! You’ve found what so many seek: True love, like loyal joy, comes when we wish your dear free, and when we get out of your possess head.

The difficulty, of course, as Henry James forked out is that “not usually to get out—you contingency stay out” of your possess head. So we consternation if we should feel “angry”? Bah. Being tellurian means feeling spiteful, disgusted, sad, ecstatic, bitter, and terrified, usually meditative about changing hairdressers.

Being tellurian also means experiencing deep, spiritual, liberating feelings of umbrella love—and a recover from anger. People who contend we should be in a fury don’t know a thing about love. To love, totally and absolutely, means to wish your desired ones to be free. No need to spin yourself into a walking Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders usually since we doubt either or not being indignant is “normal.”

Indeed, what is normal is a male anticipating his wife’s mom attractive. People usually don’t speak about it. In a mid-1980s we trekked opposite a Star Mountains in Papua New Guinea. Due to descending down a 40-foot-deep sinkhole, acrobatics into a 150-foot ravine, crashing off a vine bridge, removing lost, using out of food, being pounded by torpedo ants, crawling by quicksand, and rambling my ankle so badly that it swelled adult to a distance of a H2O bucket, we was forced to stay for a spell in a willing Atbalmin encampment of Munbil. And what we saw there!

Beauty, serenity, boredom, and a integrate of mothers-in-law (as superb as Edith Wharton and both underneath 4’10”) enjoying a favors of their daughters’ husbands. It was accepted. It was a custom of a country—or during slightest a tradition in this sold paradise. (Papua New Guinea is so aroused that some-more than 820 languages are oral there.) But we’re not vital in a Star Mountains. If we ever do get upset, tell your father to cease.

P.S. My initial inkling that we possess a nirvana-grade leisure from jealousy? You mentioned a associate lady wearing a “size 2” in your initial sentence, afterwards went on to write dual some-more paragraphs—a sum of 158 words—without slamming her.

This minute is from a Ask E. Jean Archive, 1993-2017. Send questions to E. Jean during


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