He says he can’t satisfy me

Dear Guys, 

I am 64 and my ex-“male friend” is 69. He claims he is “not marriageable” and advised me to look elsewhere “for a younger man” who can satisfy me sexually. I really love him but the last conversation we had, resulted in him comparing himself to “purchasing a car with a bad engine” and saying “no one should do that.” He said he would call in three or four days (the last time we spoke) but that never happened.

How do I know he just hasn’t met someone else? Up until that time we seemed so compatible. I am trying to get over finally being vulnerable with my heart and it really hurts. I know this sounds odd at my age, but I was never really “out there” and wondered if I had finally found my “true love.”


Name Withheld

Dear NW,

Since we don’t have a lot to go on here, we can only surmise that up until he told you his engine didn’t work the two of you were getting along famously, but mostly as friends. Is that true? If that’s accurate, our best guess is that he saw where things were headed—getting more serious—and decided to get out with his pride intact.

We know you’re worried that he met someone else, but if that were true, he’d likely just blow you off, rather than come up with this sort of specific excuse, especially at his age. So he’s convinced us that he has some sort of issue “down there” and he’s not happy about it, maybe even embarrassed about it, and instead of letting you make the decision, he’s doing it for you. It’s a common defensive strategy. He’s protecting himself by breaking things off with you.

Now, before you go running to tell him it’s okay, ask yourself something. If it is true, and his engine no longer works, are you okay with that? Sure, there are other things people can do to enjoy each other physically, but it’s important you’re honest with yourself. If the answer is no, then we’re sorry, but it’s time to let him go and find someone else. If the answer is yes, maybe you should go talk to him and see if that is truly the only reason he broke up with you. If it is, then you could reassure him that you’d be willing to work with whatever he’s got, and see what he says. If he continues to make excuses, then you’ll know this is not the only reason he left.

We’re sorry. We hope this helped you sort through some things.

All the best,


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