Monday, March 10, 2014

Widowed Gentleman Wonders If He Is Leading Her On...

Dear Tazi:

I am fiftysomething years old, in good physical shape, attractive, financially secure, and widowed. My beloved wife of almost thirty years died of breast cancer two years ago and although I am ready to move forward with my life, I am not ready to move on from her memory. What I am saying is, I am not looking to date.

I realize my “Just for Men” model looks and my financial portfolio, as well as my manners, put a large bulls-eye on me for women seeking a husband, but I am simply not ready to walk that path.

Over the past several months I have been volunteering with different breast cancer awareness events in my community, working in memory of my late wife and hoping to meet people who will understand my loss. I have been asked out by many breast cancer survivors, all of whom I have politely refused, explaining that I am simply not ready for a romantic companion. Some women have taken it well, others not so much. There is one woman in particular who refuses to take no for an answer.

“Brianna” is a woman who is young enough to be my daughter; she is constantly asking me to join her for coffee or bringing me coffee and asking me to take a coffee break with her. Although I can refuse to join her for coffee it seems rude to turn down a coffee that she has brought me. I do, however, refuse to stop working to take a coffee break, explaining to her that the cause depends on my commitment to it.

I was recently told by a few of the women with whom I volunteer that I am leading Brianna on by accepting the hot coffee that she has purchased for me; that I am only encouraging her behavior and inflating her hopes that one day soon I will accept her offer for a coffee “date”. Tazi, this was never my intention in accepting the coffee that Brianna had purchased for me. I thought I was only being a gentleman in accepting a hot beverage that had been prepared to my liking. Have I done something wrong? Have I led this young woman to believe there could be something more between us? Or have I behaved appropriately. So much has changed since I was last considered an eligible bachelor; I want to make certain I have not committed an egregious error in judgment.

Mr. Widower

Dear Mr. Widower:

You sound like a charming gentleman! I can see why all the single ladies are after you! The fact that Brianna is aggressive to a fault is no fault of yours; your accepting a coffee that she has already bought and paid for is not the same as accepting her offer to buy you a coffee. If you are uncomfortable accepting coffee from Brianna, knowing how she feels about you, you can offer to pay for the beverage the next time she brings you one. This should make it clear to even the most blinded by affection that you are not interested in her, and are not wavering on your disinterested stance.

Much has changed in the dating world over the past thirty years, but the rules of etiquette never go out of style. Continue to be the gentleman you have always been and in time, should you be ready to start dating again, you will find no shortage of ladies who appreciate a fine gentleman such as yourself!


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

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