Desperate Measures

One of my co-workers suggested I might enjoy going out with a family friend of hers. She said he had just gotten out of the Air Force and was back in college, and that I might like him. So she gave him my number, and he called. I agreed to have dinner with him. So I get dressed up for dinner out, thinking it would be a restaurant we would be going to. My mistake: After I was in the car, he asked if I would mind having dinner at his house. What could I say? Maybe it would turn out he was a good cook. We had some polite talk in the car, and that's when he mentioned his children--all three of them. Then he mentioned that they all lived with his mother. Well, I couldn't fault him for that, but I was getting uneasy. When we got to his house, I discovered it was a trailer--a really dumpy trailer, with an interior to match. His mother was fixing TV dinners for her, the kids, and us. I found out over "dinner" that he hadn't quite gotten his divorce, but that since his wife was a drug addict, he had custody of the kids. We then spent the evening watching Barney videos while his mother interrogated me about my salary, religion, and marital plans. I finally got so desperate that I said that I needed to go home to take insulin for my diabetes.

— Sally, 35

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