Dear Annie: An old flirtation recently resurfaced in my life, and we've enjoyed getting reacquainted. There's even a possibility of a long-term relationship. We are both in our 60s, so a late-in-life romance is fun and comforting.
The problem is, I accidentally discovered his interest in videos of pubescent girls, around 11 or 12 years old. He told me to check a travel video on his computer, and I was shocked to see his viewing history — it also included adult fetish-type imagery. The kid videos had creepy comments from viewers about the young girls' feet. When I told him that anyone could stumble upon his viewing history, he was embarrassed but then said, "I don't see anything wrong with it." Annie, I'm not too concerned about the adult fetish content, but kids?
We were at the beach once and when a little girl in her wet bathing suit walked into our beachside cafe, he was transfixed, staring at her. I asked him a carefully worded question, saying, "Does any part of your brain tell you that is a child?" He thought for a second and then said, "No." He also ogles teenage girls, especially if they are wearing "sexy" shoes.
This is troubling to me. Also, our sex life is peculiar. We make out furiously, but have never been able to consummate our relationship due to his erectile dysfunction. I have to wonder if he is capable of relating to an age-appropriate woman. He is divorced with two grown children and has an 8-year-old granddaughter. — Sad and Worried
Dear Sad: Please reconsider this relationship. Your creepy boyfriend sounds like a pedophile with a foot fetish. If his sexual interest is underage girls with sexy shoes, your bedroom relationship is doomed. Some of those videos may be illegal to own, and if he has an 8-year-old granddaughter, we would worry for her safety. If you know the child's parents, please inform them that Grandpa has some inappropriate ideas about young girls, so that they can protect her in case Grandpa ever decides to act on his sexual impulses.
Dear Annie: I am a 17-year-old female. I have been struggling with depression since I was young. I have had traumatic events happen in my life. Both of my parents died before I was 13. My mother was abusive and my father had to be both mother and father to me. I also have a younger brother. I currently live in foster care.
I have recently wanted to learn more about my past. I've been told I should move on and not dwell on what I can't change. But I have a lot of questions and some guilt about how I handled things when I was younger. Am I doing the right thing by pursuing this or am I just hurting myself? — Battle with Wanting to Know More
Dear Battle: We think you deserve to know the truth. But knowing about your past involves the bad as well as the good. Would it be hurtful? Perhaps. You can't make amends for past mistakes if you are unaware of them. But if you had an abusive mother, your behavior was in response to hers, and you may be feeling guilt for something that is not your fault. Also, please look into counseling to help you sort through any negative feelings that surface.
Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to [email protected], or write to: Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. You can also find Annie on Facebook at Facebook.com/AskAnnies. To find out more about Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.