Fickle Fates

Direct Answers - Column for the week of April 19, 2004

I am currently involved in a wonderful year-long relationship with a man I've known for ten years. We dated briefly all those years ago, but I wound up marrying someone else. To make a long story short, I should have listened to the fates back then.

Recently I was contacted by another man I dated briefly right after high school. Our relationship ended in a gross misunderstanding. I thought I was getting signals from him to get lost, so I did. I was very hurt, and I have thought about him many times over the years. I found out in a recent meeting that I got the wrong signals and he has always been in love with me.

During this meeting the chemistry was very strong, but I would do nothing to betray my current boyfriend. You should also know I moved several times during that time period, and I believe he was looking for me but could not find me.

My problem is making a decision. I've compared the two, and I keep coming up with a true feeling of torn. I've done the pros and cons paperwork only to find each has the same amount of qualities I love. If I let one go, I will most likely spend my life wondering. One is wine and roses, the other is picnics and wildflowers?and I like both.


Penelope, in ancient Greece people listened to the fates by going to the temple of Apollo at Delphi, and asking the Delphic oracle for advice. The oracle would inhale the vapors from a cavern in the temple, enter a trance, then make a prophecy.

The most famous prophecy was to King Croesus, who asked if he should attack the Persians. The oracle ambiguously said, "If Croesus attacks the Persians, he will destroy a great empire." Croesus thought this was favorable advice, but when he attacked, the great empire he destroyed was his own.

Last year some scientists published a paper suggesting the vapor in the cavern at Delphi was ethylene, a compound which produces the same effect as "huffing," sniffing glue or paint thinner. In your case, we suspect the fates have been both speaking in riddles and sniffing glue.

Your feelings for neither man are strong enough that you could marry one without regret. Marry no one until you feel love without doubt.

Wayne & Tamara

Second Time Around

I am a 22-year-old female having a ridiculous problem getting over the fact my fiance was married before. We recently became engaged, and now the issue has become even more magnified for me. It upsets me to the point I'm afraid I might just tell him to forget the whole thing.

Aside from this, he is a really great guy and we get along terrifically. But I cannot get over the fact I am not the first person he's felt this way about. It cheapens it for me. When I remember he has already spit out vows for someone else, has already had wedding night sex, has already gone on a honeymoon, I don't feel special.

When we are at his mother's apartment, which used to be his apartment with his wife, I get filled with anger and start being mean to him. This is totally unfair. Even typing this makes me feel like a jackass, but I seriously can't help it.


Jackie, a song made popular by Kathy Mattea says, "You've got to sing like you don't need the money, Love like you'll never get hurt. You've got to dance like nobody's watching?" Everything, according to the song, must come straight from the heart without reservation.

You have a reservation about your fiance, and it is something he can never change. You are latching on to his past to stop something you don't wish to occur. We would not dismiss your reservations. Neither should you.

Wayne & Tamara

About The Author

Authors and columnists Wayne and Tamara Mitchell can be reached at" target="_new">

Send letters to: Direct Answers, PO Box 964, Springfield, MO 65801 or email:


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