Happy Birthday, Baby Jesus!

Dear Dategirl

I am a self-supporting 18-year-old of better-than-average looks and intelligence. The problem I am having stems, oh, so surprisingly, from my own actions. When I first met my girlfriend, I told her that I was 23. While I hate the term "love at first sight," I have no other way of simply describing the attraction between us. On our first date we made love, me giving up my virginity and her breaking two years of celibacy. On our third date, I told her that I had lied and revealed my real age. Since my confession, she has been trying to cope with my lie (the age difference doesn't bother her), but it hasn't been going well. All her previous relationships have been that time-honored tale of girl meets guy, girl falls in love, guy cheats and/or lies, guy breaks her heart and leaves (preferably with her money). The combination of her history and my lie has more than likely ruined our relationship. I was hoping that the (sadly) many-times-trod-upon Dategirl could advise me on how to possibly salvage the relationship. Because you have been plagued with more than your share of cads, I hope you can tell me how I can show that I'm not one, or at least not more so than all other men.

Sorry and Melancholy Asshole

Listen Sweet Pea,

I'm not one of those Pollyannas who believe that honesty is always the best policy. There are some no-brainer truth-stretchers, like always telling your girlfriend she's the most beautiful, sexiest, smartest woman you've ever encountered (even if her sister is hotter and your third cousin is smarter). Sure, there are big lies that can never be forgiven or forgotten ("no, I didn't have sex with your hot sister"), but then there are teensy little lies that should be dismissed immediately (like yours).

As you get older, you'll meet more and more people who lie about their age—usually in the other direction. You confessed fairly quickly (though probably should've done so prior to nailing her), and I think she should get over it already. What you should do is simple: From now on, follow through on everything you say you're going to do. (Sadly, follow-through is a trait lacking in a lot of guys, and if you can master it, you'll be shocked at how far it'll get you.) In time, she'll either trust you or she won't. If not, her loss.

And as for working the empathy ploy to get me to answer your question—could you make me sound more pathetic? Sure I've been trod upon, but this girl has done her fair share of trodding! Harumph!

IT MIGHT SEEM a tad odd for an atheist to love the Xmas season as much as I do, but for me, Christmas is all about flashing lights; loud, drunken caroling; stinky pine trees; and heaps of presents. For the first time in a few years, I'm going through the holidays solo. While several of my friends are in the same boat and rather glum about the situation, I'm actually pretty jolly about the whole thing.

Last year I gave my then-boyfriend the best holiday season he'd ever known—tons of thoughtful prezzies, a day with my kind family (who also gifted him generously)—hell, I even cooked a gnarly-ass Tofurky because he wasn't man enough to eat real meat! What did I get in return? A whole lotta whining, no sex, and hideous pale-blue polyester pajamas. (Note: I am neither a pale blue nor polyester kind of girl, and the thought—or lack thereof—does count!) The gift situation started off better the year prior to that one (a KISS Fountain of Blood!), but the sociopathic closet case I was wasting my time on back then proceeded to "accidentally" give me a fat lip once he was good and drunk (by noon).

So sure, it'll be a little lonely under the mistletoe all by mybadself, but sometimes you're your own best company. Why am I droning on about this? Because I got a bunch of letters from lonely, heartbroken types over the last few weeks, and I wanted to let you know that you're not alone in being alone. For what that's worth. . . .

Tired of being trod upon? Write Dategirl at dategirl@seattleweekly.com or c/o Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western, Ste. 300, Seattle, WA 98104.

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