This letter comes from the Strawberry Letter archive, which you can find here.

I am in a relationship with a guy I have known for two decades. We have been dating for two years and for the most part, everything is great. I have kids from a previous relationship and he loves them. He helps me take care of the kids, the house and anything else I need, he delivers. He has no kids of his own, so for the most part, he is with me and the kids. Here is the problem, after 20 years of friendship and 2 years of dating, I have only met two people in his family. When I ask him about meeting them, he always replies, “I don’t mess with my family like that,” but he is always over to one of their houses or they are always calling him on the phone. Whenever my family has an event he is always invited. When his family has an event, he always downplays it like “It’s going to be a small gathering” or “I’m just going to swing through for a minute and leave.” I’ve tried to not think about it so much, but the more I try not to think about it, the more I think about it. I am starting to feel like I am dating a married man.

Dear LW,

Honey.. you are the side-chick.

Chris Rock said it best: “If you’ve been dating a man for over 3 months and haven’t met any of his friends or family, then you are NOT his girlfriend.” He is keeping you separate for a reason. He does not want you running into his wife or main woman. Obviously the man is lying about his family, when he is always with them.  All the clues are there.

How in the world did you put up with this for two YEARS?

So, you have a big decision to make. You can either remain the side-chick or dump this creep. The choice is yours. Just be mindful that your kids are watching everything you do.

Good luck to you.


~Jana Leigh