Sometimes even an insightful (ha!) gal like myself can use a little help. It's five days before Christmas as I write this, and it will be published five days before New Year's. I got to thinking about all that's happened this year and all that I hope will happen in the next. As you can see, a reflective mood is permeating the Dategirl household. Coincidentally, there also seems to be a slothful vibe I'm finding difficult to shake. I'm too worn out from Christmas shopping, holiday parties, and general festive overload to offer any words of wisdom. But you lot are a clever bunch, so I figured I'd let you guys do all the work this week.
A couple of months ago, I mentioned that I had just gotten myself a brand-spanking-new boyfriend. OK, perhaps I was a bit of a neurotic freak back then (and, yeah, perhaps I still am), but several people wrote in offering advice on how I should handle something as terrifying as a relationship. Much to my shock (and great joy), I'm still seeing him, so I figured I'd print their advice (not that I particularly followed it) as a service to all the other scaredy-cats out there.
I felt you ought to have some help with your current boyfriend situation.
A word about my qualifications: First, I'm a guy. I know how guys think. Demographically, I'm in the twenty-something bracket, but I'm wise beyond my years. Second, like you, I have relegated my heart to "cold storage" for quite some time and understand the delicate dynamics of resuscitating a suspended ability to love. Finally, I'm not an impulsive, chauvinistic male but rather a thoughtful one with a lot of respect for the women I date. A majority of my friends tell me I provide the best advice they've ever gotten about relationships. I'm not a therapist, but there are several in my immediate family.
So, on to your situation: You're infatuated with him and he's infatuated with you. Not surprising after a month—you're still in the fairy tale stage. First piece of advice: NEVER give your heart to anyone during the fairy tale stage. Enjoy what you have, but keep the deep feelings in cold storage a while longer. Don't give your heart to anyone until you've dated at least three months, preferably longer, and you've had at least one major dispute that leads you to question your affection for this guy. If your affection rebuilds after such a disagreement, that's a good sign, and it's probably OK to start letting down your guard. Otherwise, the relationship may be too shallow. Remember that once you give your heart, you can only take it back broken.
You are wise beyond your years and offer much more levelheaded advice than I usually do. Thank you. (I'm not being my usual sarcastic self; after all, it's the holidays!) Now we're going to hear from a woman who wasn't quite as patient with my plight.
Judy, Judy, Judy:
Get hold of yourself. Quit obsessing. Men are to be enjoyed, used, and never taken seriously. They DO NOT obsess over us, the girlfriend being fourth or fifth on their priority lists. Trust me on this—I've seen every male behavior, good and bad. The bad predominates. The smellier, hairier sex has no interest in being dependable, responsible, or honorable. Their loyalties are to their mothers, dogs, motorcycles, guns, buddies, and sports teams.
The conduct of women unfortunately engenders this behavior, i.e., your current besotted, hysterical state and the generally confused, less-than-honest flakiness of women who want men to make them happy. Relax, for God's sake. Your life was OK before him; you will survive very nicely should he be obliterated by a meteorite or wayward UPS truck. He's not interested in being the source of your happiness, enthusiasm, entertainment, or anything else (with the exception of lust, of course). Nothing's more repulsive than a crazed, moody, smitten female. People just want to slap you.
So stop overanalyzing, and stop ignoring your friends. Get your happiness out of his hands and back on your own turf. Have a good time as long as it lasts, whether 90 days or a lifetime.
The fact that this woman has basically said exactly what I would've said to someone else is not lost on me. I would like to point out that I have never been referred to as either "besotted" or "hysterical" before. I am deeply embarrassed.
Besotted, hysterical, or embarrassed? Write firstname.lastname@example.org or Dategirl, c/o Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western, Ste 300, Seattle, WA 98104.