Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Q & A: "She misses the city and her friends"

Q: I like this girl a lot and I can't seem to get over her. The problem is that she has a boyfriend, so there's not much I can do. What should I do so that she could pay lots of attention to me.-She Has a Boyfriend


Dear She Has a Boyfriend,
If you start seeing other girls, you'll be a lot less needy. Neediness is not an attractive quality and definitely won't make you a girl magnet. Sometimes, gals and guys become more attractive when they aren't so readily available. The reason is that when people are living their lives full out, they are alive, energetic and interesting. Vibrant and alive people are date magnets.


Q: I live in a small town. My girlfriend just moved here from a big city and so she doesn't have any friends. She misses the city and her friends. What can I do to help her with this difficult transition?—Small Town Guy


Dear Small Town Guy,
You sound like a great guy and your girlfriend is very lucky. Every new place has something wonderful to offer. Be her tourist guide. Expose her to local things that she would never find in the big city so that she won't feel so much an outsider. Then help her find an outlet to pursue her hobbies. Do volunteer work together. It's a great opportunity to give to the community, step outside of yourself, and meet new people.

Throw a party to introduce her to some new people. Whatever your girlfriend is into, make that the theme of the party. It could be really fun. Here's another idea. If either of you are computer savvy, create a web page that lets her share new home with her old friends in the city. She can share her experiences but putting photos up. And it's cool to have your own personal website.


Q: What am I going to do? I have been with this guy for four years but last night I kissed his cousin. Not just a peck on the cheek or lips but a true kiss! Should I feel this guilty? Before I was dating my current boyfriend I dated his cousin, but like I said, I have been with my boyfriend for four years. What can I do?—Confused and Happy


Dear Confused and Happy,
The only way to get rid of guilt is to first forgive yourself for what happened. It already happened and you can't do anything to take it back. Now ask yourself this question. If your boyfriend kissed your cousin whom he had dated before, how would you want him to handle it, given that you are his long-term girlfriend. And that's what you should do. Remember, treat others the way you would want to be treated. Integrity and character determine who you are and the type of life you decide to have.


Q: I recently started dating a guy who is divorced with a small child. He and I live in different states. I went to visit him for a couple of days, and while we were together he spent a lot of time on the telephone talking to his ex-wife. They also seemed to be arguing about their child more than discussing parenting. He says he is not interested in her, but it was very uncomfortable for me. I didn't want to listen to it and felt like maybe, since I was there a couple of days, he could have waited until I was gone to talk to his ex-wife about these issues. I have never been in this situation before and don't know what to expect.—My Boyfriend and his Ex


Dear My Boyfriend and his Ex,
Exes have a way of hitting all our hot buttons, at the most unexpected times and inconvenient moments. Having said that, he was still totally wrong. Plain and simple, he handled the situation poorly and was inconsiderate of you. This doesn't make him a bad guy though. And you shouldn't read him the riot act, but it seems to me that the two of you need to have a conversation about how the two of you spend quality time together. Be supportive of his situation. It's not easy being a divorced father because he knows he will always have a connection to the mother of his child and that they will be in each other's lives because of that child. But don't be a doormat either.


Remember as you're talking with him about this that men don't like to be criticized, condemned, conquered or made wrong. They want to be praised, reinforced, and made to feel as if they are winners. Tell him that because you live in different states, you look forward to your quality time together and you'd prefer for both of you to be really present when you are together. Share with him that you totally understand his difficulties and responsibilities in being a divorced dad and trying to get along with an ex and, that the next time you visit, you would prefer to have some uninterrupted time with him. Tell him how you feel and what you prefer. If you order him or dictate the terms and conditions, you can say adios right.


Q: My boyfriend and I have been dating for about 6 months. Lately I've noticed that he makes racist comments and is very judgmental of others. He and I come from very different backgrounds. I was an extremely straight-laced teenager, he was wild. I love so much about him, he's supportive of my working towards my bachelor's degree, he loves me as well as my family, he is extremely respectful of me...the good seems to outweigh the bad but it disturbs me to think that if we have children he will pass these attitudes on to them. He has promised to curb the attitude, is it worth it for me to stick around and see if he can? —My Boyfriend Makes Racist Remarks


Dear My Boyfriend Makes Racist Remarks,
You don't want him to curb his attitude you want him to have a complete attitude make over. And I agree with you, but he has to want to change. You can't do it for him. And, if you make allowances for his remarks, you're only reinforcing his racist behaviors. You have to let him know that that type of attitude and behavior is totally unacceptable to you and that you won't be in a relationship with anyone who exhibits such behavior. Then it's up to him to do something about it. Of course, if he wants you to, you'll be right there to help him change his attitudes.

Racism is based on self-insecurity, fear, anger and resentment. Many of our parents' attitudes are passed on to us. But there comes a point in time when each individual must decide for himself or herself what is right and what is wrong. Racism is always wrong. You never want to teach children to hate. Remember, a parent teaches a child what he or she knows. As for me, I wouldn't marry a man filled with hate.

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