DEAR DEIDRE: I’M in love with one of my closest friends. She’s married but deeply unhappy.
Her husband constantly puts her down, has been verbally abusive and cheats on her.
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I’m 43 and my friend is 42. We’ve known one another for almost 20 years. It hurts me to see what she’s become.
She’s no longer the happy, smiling, fun woman I’d come to know and love.
I think she has buried feelings for me but she won’t admit there is an issue in her relationship.
Whenever I bring it up, she always changes the subject.
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I think she doesn’t want to end up alone and feels that at her age her chances of finding love again are slim.
I want to tell her I’ll make her happy but I don’t know how she will react.
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DEIDRE SAYS: It is hard to watch someone you love suffer but the last thing she needs is someone telling her what she should do.
For her own, perhaps complex, reasons she is choosing to stay with him, at least for now.
The most productive thing you can do is support her in getting help when she wants it.
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If nothing changes, it would be best to move on and find someone who is free to be with you.
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