Dear Thelma: If I leave my sugar daddy, who will pay for my car?

Dear Thelma: If I leave my sugar daddy, who will pay for my car?
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

Dear Thelma

Early this year, I signed up as a "sugar baby" on a dating website for young women looking for older men (name of website withheld - Ed.). At first I thought it would be fun to just date older rich guys.

Then I actually met this guy from the website and it started as just fun but turned serious. We have had sex many times and it is amazing each time. He gives me an allowance of RM5,000 every month, even more than my pay which is only RM3,500. He also pays for my car instalment every month.

The problem is he is married and his wife found out. She came to my office in a luxury minivan along with her driver and maid and spoke to me in the car park.

She told me she could accept her husband having a sugar baby, especially someone as young as me. I am 29 and she is 45 but she wants me to follow a few rules. What I need to do is to make sure to be discreet ALL the time and to take down all the photos I have with him on social media. I must make sure her friends never find out.

That is not a problem but I am in a dilemma. Is what I am doing wrong if his wife knows and is ok with it? I want to be married too and I know if I continue with him, I won't have a chance to get married and will continue to be a mistress.

If I give up now, I can't afford to pay for my car. What do you think I should do? - Confused Sugar Baby

Dear Confused Sugar Baby

I had a look at the website you mentioned. It promises "mentorship" and professional connections but what I'm seeing is something quite different.

With sexual harassment being endemic it may feel like you're being clever at taking advantage of old men who lust after young women, but what I see is that you are being conned into prostitution.

While you think about that, let's start by taking a look at your particular situation.

I'd say the first question is, are you hurting anyone? You have convinced yourself your boyfriend's wife is fine with the situation. From your description, I'd disagree. The lady is terrified people will discover her husband is having an affair with a girl young enough to be his daughter.

While her circumstances are unclear, the poor woman is stuck in a relationship that hurts her deeply. And you can't deny your part in that. So you need to ask yourself whether you can still be happy, knowing that you are hurting someone.

Old men lust after young women. You might hold on for a year or two, but pretty soon you will be replaced with a younger girl.

The second question is, are you hurting yourself? You've made your values very clear and while you get 100 per cent for openness you must know they are not the norm in conservative Malaysia.

You ask if it's wrong, so let's look at some possible consequences of your choices.

First, old men lust after young women. You might hold on for a year or two, but pretty soon you will be replaced with a younger girl. Where will that leave you? What is the age limit on a sugar baby?

Second, studies show that the stigma, low autonomy and other issues that come with putting a price on yourself are linked to depression, self harm, suicide and other mental health problems.

Third, suppose your private life becomes public knowledge, what will happen then? Ask yourself, how will your family and friends react? Also, would you be able to keep your day job?

Finally, Malaysia's laws are formulated around religious principles so you could be inviting trouble. You'd need to talk to a lawyer to ascertain all the legalities, but at the very least your boyfriend's wife might cite your affair in a divorce. She might even be able to sue you for damages.

You will make your own choices, but I strongly suggest a more conventional path is a better choice. If you focus on your career, you can make your own money for decades to come. And for your own happiness, find a partner who is free to love you openly, and who will still love you when your Sweet Young Thing days are over.

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