Dear Miss Emily:

I'm 48 and she is 31. We have been in love with each other for over a year now.  She says she loves me and I love her, but here is the problem. We are both independent and live in separate places and only visit each other maybe once a week. We both have very active social lives. Yesterday I had plans to go to a wine tasting and, come to find out, she also was going with her girlfriend.  She immediately panicked and made up several things trying to get me not to go.  Well, I respected her request and did not go.  Now I feel like that she is embarrassed to be seen with her younger friends in public with me. I have not met any of her young friends, only a few my age. Should I just walk away and find someone my age?

--------------------------------Miss Emily's advice----------------------------

It's a little hard to figure out why she would be embarrassed to have you attend the same function; although anything is possible and you might be right. I don't know what you hope to get out of this relationship in the long-term, but if it's a real commitment you'd need to know where you stand on all fronts. It was nice that you honored her wish to have you not attend the wine tasting, but I think I might have gone just to get to the bottom of what's really going on. "In love" relationships can work in several different ways, but not fitting into some situations that include her friends may be the price you pay for being independent in this relationship. To me, being "in love" means more than good sex, "I love you," and "let's get together, next week, if our busy social life permits."  You could solve this one issue pretty easily if you had the courage to ask her to include you in a social outing with her young friends. If she hesitates, something is going on  -- and, yes, it could mean you don't quite measure up in some situations, or she has an interest in someone other than you.