One particular boozy night I made some unwanted advances and committed what amounts to sexual assault. I did this. I am deeply remorseful and wish to apologize for what I have done.
My concern is that the woman involved may not relish hearing from me, given what happened.
Do you recommend I reach out or let this remain in the past?
I am trying to be a better man.
Working on It in the Midwest
Working on It in the Midwest: You need to carefully examine your intentions and expectations before attempting to make this apology. Do you expect a response? Are you pursuing forgiveness so that you will feel better about yourself? Are you prepared to face the possible legal consequences (including being charged with a crime and/or sued) for admitting guilt for what you’ve done?
On the one hand, your impulse to admit this is commendable. On the other hand, it implicitly asks something of the woman you’ve admitted to assaulting. Any contact with you might be a triggering event for her (do not attempt to meet or speak to her; any contact should be in writing).
One college assault victim who responded to my query about your dilemma said, “Men who commit sexual assault don’t want justice for their victims — they want forgiveness from them.”
You could really prove you are a changed man by turning yourself in to the police and letting them contact your victim to see if she wants to press charges.
I’m sure readers will want to weigh in; I’ll run responses in a future column.
Dear Amy: My ex-husband and I got married after a quick engagement of six months. I was 23, and we had two beautiful children together, but we were both young and didn't know each other or ourselves. That marriage lasted for nine years, and ended four years ago.
After four years of being single and dating online and getting sober from alcohol and falling off the wagon for a few months, I moved into a recovery home for women to get myself straight and sober again. There, I met an amazing man with more than 11 years of sobriety who was volunteering as a "handyman" for the house.
I was only there a few months until I moved into a new apartment and landed a wonderful job, got stable, and the man and I started dating.
We have been together now for 10 months. We both have children (12, 7, 6 and 5) and we've both survived divorce. We both have struggled with addiction and are both active members of AA.
We understand important things about each other.
We talk about getting engaged within the next year and married in 2020.
Does that sound too soon to you? I want to show my kids what a healthy marriage is like.
Too Soon? in Chi-town
Too Soon? in Chi-town: I applaud your determination to advance this relationship slowly and carefully. Your continued sobriety must be your priority. No matter how healthy your relationship is with your guy, life with four children these ages will provide a lot of extra stress for both of you.
Before marriage, it is vital for you two to discuss and compare your parenting styles and to talk about how you plan to tackle your various challenges. Couples therapy before engagement and marriage will help both of you to face your future and continue to work your steps through sobriety. Understand that your sobriety is a tender thing, and never ever take it for granted.
If you commit to facing your future with intention and purpose, then your timeline sounds just about right.
I’m very happy for you and your children. Your happiness and ongoing stability will change their lives forever.
Dear Amy: I'm responding to the question from "The Invisible Wife," whose husband spent all of his home-time on his phone.
I'm a psychotherapist, and I would highly suggest this husband go for addiction therapy.
If he won't go, then his wife must look for a support group for herself. Tech addiction is no joke.
Disappointed: “The Invisible Wife’s” first task is to get her husband’s attention. My suggestion focused on ways to do that.