Doesn't Want Her Kids

Q: This young lady and I have been dating over the past year and have already broken up twice. She has two kids with two different fathers. I have always told myself I will never get serious about a woman with two kids, since I don't want an already-made family. I don't love her, but I can't stop thinking of her. Every time I see her we have this weird connection that neither of us can explain. If I believed in that kind of stuff I would swear we had some type of relationship in another life. What could this connection be or mean? Are we destined to be together? -- Lance, 34

Dr. Susan: Destiny is a crock. If you're sure you don't want a ready-made family, then stop seeing this woman and get busy -- very busy -- looking around for single childless women. What you feel for her is a simple mix of hormones and chemistry and habit and neediness. What happens with mating-aged men and women is that you're drawn together by some scent or look or sound, something that evokes your childhood or your fantasies or that twangs some hardwired predisposition. That's why we all have favorite movie stars that excite us and why we "respond" to utterly inappropriate strangers at times. Cupid, like justice, is blind. But then our more advanced human brain tries to find a reason that makes sense. Stop torturing yourself trying to rationalize why you feel connected. If you genuinely want to start your own family rather than take on the challenging job of stepfathering two kids by two other dads, then this weirdly compelling woman had better be perfect for you in every other way or you're in for big-time misery.

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