Dear Wendy 7/9

After I read “not so patiently waiting’s” letter, I became increasingly more concerned about my own situation. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 13 months now, and he has not said “I love you” yet, except by mistake, and the look on his face when he realized what he has said is horrible. When we met, he was separated from his estranged wife and I was separated from my estranged husband. We stood by each other through our respective messy divorces, and he moved in with me shortly after my mine was finalized. We haven’t been apart since the day we met and he tells me all the time that he cares a lot for me and wants a future with me. But when I have asked him why he’s never told me that he loves me, he says that he told his crazy ex-wife — whom we both have restraining orders against — that he loved her for 14 years and if that’s what love, he doesn’t want it anymore. He says marriage is not something he really wants to do right now but it’s not completely off the table. Is there something I can do to make him understand that I love him and hearing that come from him, would go a long way in making me feel secure with our relationship? — Second Chance

I’m 22, and I have never dated a guy. I’ve always been interested in them, having crushes now and then, but no one has ever shown enough interest to ask me out. Now I’m out of college and exploring the big dating world, and I have an actual date — my first! — planned for this week. But here’s my dilemma: How do I avoid the conversation of past relationships when I haven’t had one? I know that relationships are based on honesty, but I’m actually embarrassed that I have never dated anyone, so I don’t want to tell this new guy and make the rest of the night uncomfortable. I don’t want to lie either, but I also don’t want to scare him off, having him think that there’s something wrong with me because of my lack of dating experience. And am I making a bigger deal out of this than it really is? — Dating Newbie