I'm going through a difficult separation from my alcohol-abusing abusive wife and I've got custody of the children.
Through the Q&A forum I met a woman who is in a similar situation, but a year in advance from where I am. She has faced similar issues and problems with her ex and children, who are a couple of years older than mine.
We strayed into emotional affairs territory. It started with me telling her I liked her a lot and if I could think of anything flirty then I'd like to flirt with her. She came back with carrying on with what you're doing and when I'm ready for a relationship this is the right thing for me.
The following day the first message, I got from her was saying she'd like to back off. I agreed with that because we both have too much baggage at this moment in time: I'm dealing with a nasty separation and have two pre-teens who need loads of emotional support and who are pretty much my focus.
But I don't want to lose the friendship advice and sounding board and general nice chit-chatting because we have an awfully lot in common outside of our general common situation.
I'd like to keep the chat going just the way it has been, and for that I guess I should ask her to define her boundaries so that I can respect them. How can I ask her to continue our friendship after we accidentally took it to a romantic level?