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Week of September 10, 2000

Dear Mrs. Web,

The man I have been dating works in our main office. I work in a different department. He has recently been transferred to the Pacific Rim for an unknown period of time but most likely two years. He leaves in three weeks. I have grown fond of him and he seems fond of me. I am not sure whether to let him know how much I will miss him. Should I tell him?

If you both have been growing close to each other and if you think that this is a relationship that has a true future: marriage, kiddies and happily ever after; in your shoes, I would let him know how much he will be missed. The relationship will either end or crank up a few notches.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I like a girl in town. Iíll call her Sue. We have known each other since kindergarten. Although I see her at school, we never talk. She works at a big store. My friend John and his girlfriend work there too.

One day after work John was talking to his girlfriend and Sue. I joined them hoping Sue would speak to me. All she said was she knew we went to school together. Then we all went home.

I would like to ask her out but I think she will say no because I'm a little heavy (205lbs. 5'10") What should I do?

I would ease into things. Perhaps you, your friend, and his girlfriend can make plans and include Sue. Stop for pizza or coffee on the way home a few times. Pay attention to what she says and how she treats others. This is a preview of how she would treat you. Your weight should only be a minor factor, your personality will be more important in the end. In the meantime, discover whether she is as nice as she was in kindergarten.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I dated a guy a few years ago. I was pretty messed up and wild back then. I did some very stupid things and hurt him a lot. I have changed quite a bit and am no longer that reckless college student. I have discovered he is not involved with anyone and is working not far from here. I would like to talk to him and offer my sincerest apologies for my past behavior.  Do you think I should call him up and do this?

People who have been hurt need lots of room. To me, a direct telephone call would blindside him. Give him a chance to think clearly.  Find out his address and write him a note instead. Add your phone number. If he wants to see you, he will call.

Dear Mrs. Web,

 I have met a woman through an on-line personal ad. We live 60 miles apart, and have been emailing and talking on the phone for a month. We have discovered our birthdays are 4 days apart and are going to finally meet this weekend and celebrate our birthdays together. I sent her flowers on her birthday, 3 days ago. Mine is tomorrow. Should I give her a small gift? Through our conversations, I discovered a perfect item (only $20) that she would love. We have much in common and are both anxious to meet.

 A small gift would be nice. Maybe something beyond candy, but not clothing. Something that shows that you have been listening to her will definitely get her attention.


Week of September 3, 2000

Dear Mrs. Web,

The woman I am seeing is very neat. Everything in her apartment is in order and immaculate. She immediately washes the dishes after we eat. She doesnít relax when any thing is out of place. She is intelligent, witty and a good conversationalist. However, she straightening my clothing, sews on my buttons, clips hanging threads, and generally neatens me up too. I have been polite but I like it less and less. I am not sure what to think.

Some people lean towards obsessions and compulsions. A rigidity of this nature can be difficult in a relationship. If you are less than neat, she is more than neat, and there is no ability to compromise, you are headed for trouble.

Dear Mrs. Web,

My boyfriend has asked me whether I would want to invest in his business. My 401K has good chunk in it and I am tempted to give it to him.

Your retirement fund is for your future. This guy is just a boyfriend; you donít even have a future with him. Do not mix business with pleasure. The investor gets hurt.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I need to find a husband. I have been looking for a few years and I never get past the three-date stage. I donít know what I am doing wrong. All I have ever dreamed about is having a husband, home, and children.

Why donít you stop looking for a husband and start living your life? If you werenít concentrating so hard on what you wanted and your needs, perhaps there would be room for someone else. Step out of your neediness and begin living a full life. It will also go a long way to dissipate that smell of desperation.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I have known this guy for three years now and I would like to be more than just friends with him. I want to know is it bad for a girl to ask a guy out on a date? 

I do not think it is "bad" to ask a guy out on a date. I do think, however, that girls need to do it differently. Do not pick him up for dinner and a film. 

Instead, pick things that emphasize your feminine traits. For example: " I have two tickets to the fair and wondered whether you would like to go and have a picnic lunch...." or...Packing a picnic lunch and going to a soccer or football game, or "a group of us are going to help cut and stack wood for Widow Smith. If I bring lunch would you bring your axe?"  

Pick active things: games, carnivals, bike trips, and hikes, beach trips.... Add another couple if you know they will be equally active, interesting, and not obsessed with each other. Good luck!


Week of August 27, 2000


Dear Mrs. Web,

My boyfriend and I work at the same place and recently a girl that we work with car had her car break down. He has been taking her home every night. Every time I think about them together, I feel hurt and angry. What should I do about this?

I am not sure a boyfriend giving someone a lift on the way home is cause for such feelings. If it is in keeping with his character of kindness and thoughtfulness, it is not, in itself, a bad thing.

Has he dated other women during your relationship? Is he as attentive as ever? Are you seeing or talking to him, after he drops her off? Do you have a sense they are becoming close? Has your relationship changed recently?

I would talk about this with your beloved. You have needs and feelings that should be acknowledged and he has a responsibility in your relationship as boyfriend/girlfriend to be honest.

Dear Mrs. Web,

My best friend has gone off the deep end over a boy she met. She is sixteen and he is seventeen and they are really, really involved. They are planning a great weekend away at his parentís camp. He is going to steal the key and she is getting someone to lie and say she is spending the weekend at her house. They found someone to drive them there and pick them up. It is all she talks about. They will be drinking; this guy drinks a lot. Our friends think it is so romantic. I am worried. Ever since she met this guy, she isnít fun anymore. We used to talk about different things but now she seems so shallow. I think her mother should know but I donít want to tell. She would never talk to me again.

Lying, stealing, breaking in, illegal drinking, and the possibility of disease or pregnancy are serious issues. Your friend is not thinking clearly. Her mother needs to be notified. Some things are bigger than friendship. Talk to her mother. Sometimes being a true friend involves saving someone's neck even when they put the noose on themselves.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I am dating a really nice man. He is an associate at a law firm in the same building I have my job. We have been seeing each other for a while. He has met my family and is spending quite a bit of his spare time with us. My father is a retired doctor. EVERY time my friend comes over to our house, my father cannot wait to tell his newest lawyer joke. Mrs. Web, some of them are awful. I have talked to my father but he just laughs and says he is just kidding. He is a great kidder with the rest of the family but sometimes I think he is out to get Jason. How can I stop my father from continuing this joking?

Doctors and lawyers seem to be natural enemies. However, your friend deserves the respect and the benefit of the doubt that one fellow human provides another (letís ignore all those jokes about the inhumanity of lawyers). You are perfectly within your rights to ask your father to stop. 

Dear Mrs. Web,

I saw this guy for about six months; he was just so wonderful. Then he dropped me to go out with my best friend. They are still together and she is trying to be my friend again. I donít want anything to do with her. Our friends tell me to get over it.

Men and women who date each other owe each other honesty about their expectations and goals of their relationship. They, however, do not owe each other fidelity. Fidelity comes with the deeper commitment of marriage, not the wandering eyes of dating. You may be sad the relationship did not work out but I agree, you were just dating.


Week of  August 20, 2000


Dear Mrs. Web,

When will it be the right time to have sex? I keep on thinking that the next time we are together is the right time, but I am never sure.

The right time to have sex is after a legal marriage ceremony. Most people, though, try to get through the reception first.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I am twenty-eight, female, employed in a good profession and single. I am having difficulty meeting men. Any suggestions?

The man-magnets I have always found successful are the hot red sports car, good cooking, and the attractive, well mannered but frisky dog. Also changing your job to a company that works in an area still dominated by men such as science, pharmaceuticals, engineering, software, and heavy machinery may help. Make sure you do not let yourself be treated like one of the boys. Donít sleep around. Most men like a bit of reticence in women.

Dear Mrs. Web,

I know a man who lives in our apartment building. He is quiet and works in computer software. I run into him sometimes and he just doesnít say anything. He just looks at his shoes and turns all red. How can I get to know him better?

Sounds like he is shy. Shy men have their own appeal. However, they do need to be drawn out. Next time you run into him, tell him you are at loose ends and would like to buy him a cup of coffee. Ask him about himself. Then you will know him better.

Dear Mrs. Web, 

I hope you can give me some advice. My story is long and complicated. I have been seeing this guy for a year and a half now. From the very beginning, it's been rough. We work together. He is 28 and I just turned 21. When I met him, he was in the process of a divorce. He has two daughters (2yrs.and 4yrs.) and I love them to death and they think of me like a second mom. His ex-wife had been cheating on him and she ended up marrying the man she was seeing while she had been married. When she found out I was in her ex-husbands life- she made my life and his, complete hell. She has stolen from me, vandalized my property, and made harassing calls to my home among other things. Now suddenly his ex wants to "get-along" and she is trying to be my best friend. I don't trust her though. 

Recently things haven't been the same between my boyfriend and me. We either argue constantly or just sit in silence because we just don't have anything to say to one another. I do love him, but I just don't know if I am in love with him and I find myself wondering if I just stay with him because I am so attached to his children. I feel everything I do is wrong to him and never enough. If I walk too fast, he gets mad, stupid stuff. It makes it harder because we do work together. 

Presently we have not spoken for four days. He got mad and quit talking to me and I don't know why. I just do not have the strength to fight with him any more! I sometimes wonder if I always run back to him because I have this fear of being alone. I am so confused. I know I am young, and some think too young to have gone through what I have. But I thought he was worth it. Not many 21 year olds are ready and willingly to be a step-mom figure to two little girls. I think he has a lot of scars from his marriage and maybe jumped into our relationship way too fast. Please try to help me. 

You are right; twenty-one is young to be caught in this kind of melodrama. You are also right that he did jump into a relationship way too fast. Moreover, you are wise to pull back from the ex. She certainly has showed her character. However, also a few other things going on here need to be looked at.

First, he quit talking to you. This is behavior usually not seen in mature men. When I hear of this sort of behavior in a divorced man, I can better understand why his wife left him. People are consistent creatures; they do the same thing repeatedly, just with different people. 

You sound like you are in love with the children. That is no reason to marry a problem. One of the reasons I like keeping children separate from their parent's love interest is so everyone is thinking clearly about the future. A sweet little face can cloud the picture.

If I were in your shoes, I would pull back, even to the extent of new work if you cannot avoid your friend at the work place. I would take a couple of months off from the relationship so you can evaluate the man, not the family. Your choice of man will either make or break a relationship. The children, however wonderful they are, are add-ons. Marriage is ultimately between a husband and a wife. His behavior should be of great concern. I think you have good instincts. This relationship needs a major reevaluation. I hope this helps.




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