Dear Dr. Love,I am presently in a relationship with a woman that I am not sure I care about. This may sound weird, but I think I am attracted to the chairperson of the nursing department at my university. I think she feels the same.Presently, I don’t feel this relationship would be approprate regarding the power that she has over me. I am not worried about the age gap, but if a relationship pursues and it is broken off, she has the power to fail me, which is something I can see her doing. Please help me!!Confused in Academia,Markus
You are absolutely correct. Power differences do gum up the relationship works. From the sound of it, your instincts say that this woman is the type to retaliate against you if you date and then break up. By all means listen to your gut and be careful. If you don’t feel safe with this woman then she isn’t safe.My big question for you is this: Why would you be drawn to a woman that you feel is capable of screwing you (you know what I mean. ) This is an important question for you to examine. The fact that you are so attracted to such a woman tells us a couple of things: First, someone in your early life betrayed you; and 2) You are drawn to this same type of person, partly because you are used to being betrayed and second because hope springs eternal. That is, you hope to heal an old wound by choosing a betrayer who, for once, won’t betray you.Realize that we all hope to recreate the painful relationships of our past and then work for a happy ending to our stories. But, the problem with recreations is this: by choosing someone like the people who hurt us before, we never get a better outcome, we simply keep chasing our emotional tails.So, my advice to you is to find out why you are drawn to black widow spiders and then be careful to fight the impulse to recreate history by allowing yourself to be drawn into their webs. It sounds like you are on the right track already, since your instincts told you to run for the hills.