I'm in love with my son's best friend, but I'm questioning our future

DEAR DEIDRE: I’M in love with my son’s best friend, a man who’s not even half my age.

We’ve been sneaking around for almost three years, and I can’t imagine my life without him.

But I know it could never work — my son would disown us both if he ever found out.

My lover is 24, I’m 52. We met when I gave him a job in our family restaurant.

Him and my son met at university, and both wanted to make some money while they were home for the summer.

He was flirty from the start, always complimenting me on my looks and winking at me from behind the bar.

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One night I offered him a lift home. I didn’t like the thought of him walking home in the dark.

As I drove, he quizzed me on my marriage. My husband had walked out six months before, leaving me for a younger woman.

He asked if I was ready to start dating again, and when I said I was, he asked me out.

I laughed it off at first. But when we pulled up outside his parents’ house, he asked again.

As I struggled to get my words out, he went in for a kiss. I didn’t push him away.

I agreed to a date, and he came round for dinner the next night when my son was working a late shift at the restaurant. I was surprised how easily the conversation flowed, and how attracted I was to him.

Three bottles of wine later, and he was pleasuring me on the sofa with his mouth. It was fantastic.

The years have rolled by and he often tells me he loves me, and I think I feel the same, but I daren’t go public.

I feel so selfish. He’ll probably want babies and marriage, neither of which I’m interested in.

And as good as this relationship is, I’m not sure it’s worth losing my son over.

DEIDRE SAYS: A relationship with a large age gap can work, as long as you’re looking for the same things.

But you’re at very different life stages and, as you say, he may want kids and marriage in the future.

You need to have “that chat” and discuss what you both want from life.

My support pack on age gap relationships will help you work through any issues.

If you decide you do want to stay together it would be better if your son hears about your relationship from you. Otherwise it is only a matter of time before he hears about it elsewhere.

And after all you have nothing to feel ashamed of. Many people never find such a loving relationship – hold your head up high.

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