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Love Guru: Will COVID end our marriage?

June 24, 2021 12:49 IST
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Relationship problems? Let Love Guru help.

Illustration: Uttam Ghosh/

If you're facing relationship issues -- and if you're in a relationship, you're facing issues -- we have someone you can discuss them with freely.

Meet's Love Guru, who says, 'I've been told I give some pretty great advice. And some people think I'm funny, so if I can give you a laugh or two after your girlfriend stuck a fork in your face, why the hell not?'

So if you feel you want some personal advice, do write in to (Subject: Ask Love Guru).

If you wish to remain anonymous, do let us know and your name won't be disclosed when publishing responses to your queries.


Need advice from you.
I am a 34-year-old woman. Got married (love marriage) three months back with divorcee (no kids) with terms and conditions.
His first condition is that he does not want a child.
His second condition is that his parents will stay with us after retirement.
I wanted to adopt a girl child and he agreed initially.
But, now, the problem is his mother and sister (married) are interfering our married life. They want to know each and every activity in our life (My in-laws live in Kolkata).
My husband gives them complete information about our married life.
I had deep conversations with him about all this but it is of no use. 
Since the last two months, he sleeps in another room. We don't talk or have lunch and dinner with each other. He has deleted all photographs. 
Now, he wants to shift to Kolkata and stay with his parents and, if I want to continue this marriage, I have to go with him. If I don’t do that, he wants us to separate.
My in-laws and sis-in-law are not that supportive.
Tell me, what do I do now? Help!
Name withheld on request

Dear Anonymous,

I don’t know for how long you knew your husband before you married him, but it seems you may have rushed into it.

These ‘conditions’ he put forward should have had alarm bells ringing in your head right from the get go, along with the fact that he already has one failed marriage behind him.

Now, coming to what you need to do. This man is always going to put his parents and family before you, he made that very clear when he said you have to live with them after retirement (theirs or his I don’t know!). And he’s changed his mind about your having children, very conveniently, after marriage too. So basically, your needs don’t seem to figure in his scheme of things.

Next to consider; you are already finding that your in-laws are a pain in the ass when they’re living in another part of the country. You really think that you’re going to be happy living with them under the same roof?

And then the latest development -- he’s going to Kolkata. You have to go with him, or stay back and end the marriage. Again, what you want or need seems irrelevant to him.

I hate to break this to you, my dear, but even if you do sacrifice everything you want and go, it’s a matter of time before you become so unhappy there that you decide to end things and leave.

My advice is, you’ll save yourself a whole lot of heartache and self-sacrifice if you end this now, instead of bending over backwards for this selfish Mamma’s boy.

I understand that it’s no easy decision to end a marriage, but you’re only three months in and already things are rapidly heading south. You don’t have children either, thankfully.

So find yourself a good divorce lawyer and see if there’s grounds for annulment instead of divorce, so you can put this ugly episode behind you with minimum fuss.

Dear Love Guru
We are not in a long distance relationship. We are in the same city.
But I have not met my girlfriend in a year.
We both step out when needed, but she is not willing to meet me even for five minutes.
I asked if there is someone else, but she says no, that it is about safety. So I said we could do social distancing and wear masks. But she still says no.
Earlier, we used to talk nicely and there was lot of romantic conversation. But now she says she has nothing to say because nothing is happening.
I feel I am the only one trying.
We both are in college.
Should we break up?

Dear Uday,

Even if your girlfriend is a hypochondriac and paranoid about Covid, not meeting in a year would give her something to talk to you about on the phone, maybe?!

If she were interested, you’d still get romantic messages, calls, maybe even the odd gift?

You say yourself that things were very romantic earlier. I definitely think she’s avoiding you and you’re the only one trying here.

Maybe she’s hoping you’ll get fed up and end things yourself, saving her some drama.

And you’re only in college, child! Don’t take things so seriously. If it’s not working with Miss Avoid-a-lot, end it. There are plenty of fish in the sea.

In every woman's life, the mother-in-law is the villain.
A similar situation happened in my life just three months back.
In my case, I waited till five years and I have given a child to my husband but no change in the situation. Rather, it has become critical in a way that my husband has started harassing me physically and mentally.
Now, he is asking for mutual divorce.
I need suggestion from you on how to handle the situation.
Name withheld on request.

If he is guilty of physical and mental harassment, you’re the one who should be asking for the divorce, my dear.

It is always a mistake to bring a child into a troubled equation, hoping the situation will serve to mend fences.

I understand that the prospect of being a single mother must be daunting for you, but there seems to be no point in trying to save this marriage. How long will you undergo this stress?

Even if your mother-in-law is Cruella de Vil, it’s the husband’s duty to stand by you and try to smooth the situation over with her, instead of taking sides and abandoning his wife and child.  

As for the mutual divorce, I suggest you find a good lawyer who will ensure that he doesn’t take you for a ride and is made to support the two of you financially, if required to do so.

I am in a relationship with my boss.
He is married; he has not hidden it from me.
He does not have a problem with his wife but she does not know.
He has two children.
Before the pandemic, we used to meet in the office and go on holidays together so it was good.
Now, we can’t meet and barely have any personal conversations. We can’t text in case his wife finds out.
We see each other on work calls and that’s it.
All this is making me very depressed.
We don’t want to break up.
Please advise.
Name withheld on request.

This isn’t going to end well for you. This man has a wife and a family, and you’re the bit on the side.

If the affair runs its course -- and believe me, they usually do -- you will have compromised not only your happiness and reputation, but your career as well, because he’s your boss of all people. Not to mention that you’ll still have to see him at work every single day.

This forced separation is a blessing in disguise, so don’t be a fool.

Call time on this office dalliance, and start looking for a man who won’t be afraid to step out with you in public!

Dear Love Guru
The pandemic has affected us badly.
While my husband helped a bit in the initial months, there is no help from him at all since the last 7-8 months.
We have two young children and limited outside help -- pehle, pehle there was not even that.
Then he gets angry because he says I have no time for him and I am always tired.
But I am, because there is so much to do.
And I am angry because he does not help.
We are fighting all the time.
I am afraid of what will happen in the future.
Please help.
Name withheld on request.

You need to divide your household chores in half. And let him do half of them.

Your problems arise not from the day-to-day issues you are facing, but from a mindset that housework is a woman’s headache, not a man’s.

You need to sit him down and explain that this caveman thinking has no place in today’s world. He needs to pitch in, end of. And if he doesn’t, this will drive a permanent wedge between the two of you.

Does he have eyes or potatoes, can he not see how hard you’re working? Maybe if he cooks a meal or two the penny will drop!

Also, since you seem so overworked, maybe consider some fulltime help till this period tides over, if you can afford it? You can ensure s/he is vaccinated beforehand.

This column is not for the psychologically disturbed, or those who need professional help for severe mental trauma. It's for those who can't discuss their issues freely with parents, or friends, or partner. Or dog. Or just want a fresh perspective from an unbiased, objective-thinking individual.

Maybe your partner is the problem? Or maybe you are the problem and just don't know it. And need's Love Guru to tell you just that.

So if you feel you want some personal advice, do write in to (Subject: Ask Love Guru).

If you wish to remain anonymous, do let us know and your name won't be disclosed when publishing responses to your queries.

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