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Dear Mrs. Web,

I am a 19-year-old college student and I live with my boyfriend. We have been together for the past 3 years. I have decided to move home for the summer and live someplace else when school begins next autumn. I am breaking this off because we just are not getting along.

My problem is that he owes me about $1000.00 in back rent and loans. Now that we are separate and I am moving away, I am afraid he will never pay me back. I have stuck around because I knew that if I did leave he wouldn't repay me. I think I still love him but I know I shouldn't because he is no good for me. I want my money back but at the same time I need out of this relationship. Please help me!

I donít think you can get your money back. You can ask, but donít count on it being repaid. It is time to walk away and begin again. You wonít be the first person who lost money lent on an uncommitted relationship...and you wonít be the last either!!

If you are living with someone, you consider not good for you just for the sake of some dollars; you need to think about your priorities. Your emotional and physical well-being is worth much more than a thousand dollars. You are young and have many thousands of dollars worth of earning power ahead of you, but you only have one heart.



Dear Mrs. Web,

I have found your site very interesting. I have a problem. I have been dating this wonderful guy for 2 years. It is an on and off relationship, we have broken up four times so far.

Although he is a great guy, he has very bad mood swings and almost a split personality. He always blames me when we have a disagreement and he flips or makes up stories just to make himself look better. 

He is not very open and keeps things to himself. I have opened my heart and soul to him but he just tosses me away. These things bother me but I can accept them because I love him so much and will do anything to be with him. 

I even offered to help him, whatever his diagnosis. Recently, I have a real urge to marry him so we can be together forever. Since our breakup I just can't sleep or even eat. Should I forget about him and move on or should I wait until he is better? I am so lonely, please help!! 

There is an old saying: "Never marry anyone crazier than you." 

You are considering a lifelong commitment to a secretive, mentally ill man? One who you describe as having severe mood swings, perhaps manic-depression, and has a "split personality?"

What are you thinking of woman? What kind of life do you think this man will provide for you and your future children? I had a mentally ill family member. Mental illness is a severe disability and to become involved with a mentally ill person and hope that he will "get better" is like expecting an amputee to re-grow legs. It isnít going to happen, and in my experience, severe mental illness often grows worse over time.

I understand you are lonely. Do not use loneliness to drive you to make poor choices that will effect the rest of your life. It is not fair to you, your family, or your future children.



Dear Mrs. Web,

I need your clear perspective. I have lived with the same man for over 20 years. He was physically abusive during the first 10 years. During the second 10 years the physical abuse stopped but the emotional abuse increased. I have been foolish enough to put up with this but over the last few years, I have had enough. I now realize that there are things in him that I canít change. We both are here living difficult and painful lives together because it is the easiest thing to do.

I have put a lot into the things we have our house, the business, and generally being the caretaker and homemaker. I have done so much and he never has had to lift a fingerÖ He has had free household help and a "Mother" in me for years. We donít even sleep together any more.

Oddly enough I am afraid and just cannot leave. I have made plans, packed stuff away, squirreled away money, and have laid the groundwork for the day I leave. The final step has been too daunting.

I am sad to leave the house we have had together. I daydream about my leaving but it never happens. Life is passing me by and I am not striking up new relationships with men and living life as a free agent. I wish he would leave me then I wouldnít have to do it. At times, I also have the fantasy that someone would just knock on the door and rescue me!

Let Dear Mrs. Web assure you that there are no knights in shining armor on white chargers to save you from yourself.

You both sound like you are two sides of the same coin: uncommitted and afraid to change things. Sounds like you have both danced the same waltz for a long time. You have had no limits and no boundaries on this relationship, what you expect from it and what you will accept from it. Your "no boundaries" existence continues in your inability to leave it.

To tell you the truth your letter reads like a complaint session about him and truthfully I think you should be looking at your paralysis, your enabling, and your complaining and see what these behaviors have gotten you in your relationship. You talk about beginning new relationships with other men but frankly, I canít see whatever could possibly be different in other relationships because what you bring to a relationship is what needs to be changed for you to be successful in one.



Dear Mrs. Web,

Is staring at other women a "guy thing?" When we are out, my boyfriend just about snaps his neck to look at other women. He is usually checking out their features, and I am not talking about their winsome faces.

When I object he tells me it is a guy-thing and I need to get used to it. Is this normal?

Is it normal to be with one and check out the equipment and features of other models? Only if we are talking about cars Öand ÖokÖboats.

If your beloved is obviously evaluating the scenery for its topographical interest, and the scenery happens to be other women, he is being enormously rude. When you tell him you object and he single-mindedly continues, he is a boor. What are you doing spending time with a boor?



Dear Mrs. Web,

I recently broke off a 6-year relationship with my boyfriend. We have a 2-year-old child. I ended our relationship because he would not take an active interest in our child. He stopped by to see us perhaps a few times a month. I should have expected this because this is how he has treated his other children from his previous relationship. He also is not interested in any custody rights

I realize now that I was wrong to have a child and not be married. I want my child to have two parents. He has been calling me non-stop since our break up, it seems that he has become more interested since I decided to move on. I feel guilty in rejecting my childís father but her hasnít really changed. What should I do?

He is the babyís father. He will be in your life for the rest of your days. But he does not have to be a off again Ėon again romantic fixture in your life. Since he hasnít changed, there is no reason to have this man back as a life-mate.

There is a kind of man who really donít want to be connected to a woman, but donít like the thought of anyone else connecting with her. They consider women something akin to property. They tend to show action when the woman strikes out on her own. However, they have no ability to maintain a relationship.

In your shoes, I would end the relationship. Be careful, some men who treat women like property become violent when crossed. You may need restraining orders and a safe place to stay if he starts acting out.



Dear Mrs. Web, 

My boyfriend has historically dated tall women. He used to make positive comments about tall women in front of me- to the effect that "tall women are best." We had a discussion and he stopped talking about them

Recently we were watching a movie "Dirty Dancing." We both enjoyed the movie, but then he made a comment, "that it would be better, if they had a taller woman play opposite  the leading man. I sarcastically said, "Yeah, tall women are best." Our own personal World War III broke out. I am short and feel so insecure whenever he talks about this. What should have I done?

He stopped saying, "tall women are best" because he realize it offended you. He made an aesthetic comment about the couple in the movie and you parroted his old remark back as a zinger.

Moreover, you got into an argument.

In your shoes, I probably would have asked him why he would have cast a taller woman Ė and listened with out attacking him. This was his opinion. We are all entitled to our opinions. You donít have to agree with it but you are expected to listen, politely.

Self worth is the internal ballast that grounds us when we are unsure of where we stand. Self worth tells us we are valuable, worthwhile, and lovable. Even when we feel threatened by someoneís words. Self worth helps us to stop measuring ourselves on other peopleís yardsticks and lets us stand firmly in our own skins. Self worth allows us to want to become better people because we wish to improve, not because we want to meet someone elseís expectations.

He may have dated tall women in the past, but youíre the one who has him. You must have a lot more going for you than being tall.




Dear Mrs. Web,

My boyfriend and I broke up about a month ago, because of a misunderstanding. He now knows the truth, but is involved with another woman. They have been dating about two weeks. How do I convince him to break up with her without hurting her?

You will hurt her. Emotions by definition and nature can hurt us. That is why we need to treat our own emotions and the emotions of others tenderly and with respect.



Dear Mrs Web

I hope you can give me some advice. I have known this man for about four years. We met through mutual friends while at college. Last year we saw each other in a nightclub and we ended up kissing, I felt a little bad about this because he is a friend of my former boyfriend and I did not want to get involved with him because of this reason.

I didn't see him again until autumn. I saw him a bar and we hit it off. By the end of the night we where kissing again. This has happened nearly every week, we meet at the bar and go off and kiss. My friends tell me he likes me and I know that he looks for me every week at the club and waits for me to arrive.

Last weekend I ended up back at his house and we had a lovely time, we didnít have sex, neither of us wanted that, but we did spend the night together. The next morning he was very shy and tried his best to avoid me. When I booked a taxi to go home we kissed and that was it.

We do have each otherís numbers and e-mails and I have rung him once before but he has never rung me but has mailed me a few times. I am confused, what is going on? Is this kissing on Saturday night when we are both half-drunk all he wants? I have no idea what to do.

Dear Mrs. Web says: "If you keep doing something and it doesnít get you what you want, it is time to stop."

It sounds like you go out every week, get drunk, and play no-strings kissy-face with a man who is happy to do the same. Kissy-face leads to sex. Everyone knows that. It works by increments. He already has you in bed; the sex is just a matter of time.

In your shoes, I would stop this silly situation and see whether the man is actually interested in the kissy-face or me. I would find some other place to go on Saturday night. 

I also would make some decisions about what kind of relationship I want to have with him and the commitments I would need to sleep with him Ė because that is the direction you are heading.



Dear Mrs. Web,

My name is Steve and I have a question regarding men's hairstyles. I am balding and decided four years ago to shave my head completely bald for a cleaner look. I received a lot of positive attention from women at the time.

However, over the last year or so I have noticed more men with longer hair and women paying less attention to bald-headed men. Are bald-headed men out and longhaired guys in?

Not as far as Dear Mrs. Web is concerned. I have noticed a number of bald men as well as a few balding ones receiving quite a bit of female attention. Bald men will never be out of style in my book. It is a classic look. There is something about high foreheadsÖ



Dear Mrs. Web,

I am 21 years old and have had a four-year relationship with a man a year older than me. We have a 1-year-old daughter. He recently left me for another woman, not for the first time.

This is the longest he has been gone.  I love him so much and I am heartbroken. All that I want is for him to come back so we can be a family. How do I get him back and be a part of his childís life?

You canít get him to come back or be a part of his daughterís life. These are choices he makes that reflect his character (or lack of it) and moral center. This is the man you chose to be the father of your little one.

There is a difference between love and worship. Love is place where as adults we give and get in relationship. There is a commitment to each other and the marriage which supersedes all other desires and commitments. Worship, on the other hand, is a place where we give our hearts over to someone unconditionally, no matter what they do or how they behave. Women often sacrifice their integrity, their children, and their self-respect when they worship a man.

I have no idea why you would want this man in your life. He will introduce emotional mayhem, pain, and possibly even disease into your lives. He is an uncommitted cat-about. Donít waste your time. Find your self-respect and look for a decent, committed kind of guy.



Dear Mrs. Web,

I am pregnant with my ex-boyfriendís baby. I really love my ex and would like to restart our relationship. He wants nothing to do with the baby, his parents are divorced, and his father was never there for him. I would really like him to be there for our baby and me. We are friends, but it hurts me to see him with other women. I need advice.

It is time for you to make a plan for this baby. You have made a baby with a man who doesnít want to be a father. It does not matter how much you love him, he will never be there for you or the baby in the way a mother, and child need and deserve to be loved and cherished.

Do the right thing and give the baby two loving parents and a chance for a good future. Place it for adoption. Many agencies will care for you and the baby and make sure it has a good home. The agencies will house you during your pregnancy, find your baby a good home, and give you counseling. Keep in touch. You are facing these important issues.



Dear Mrs Web,

I hope that you can give me some advice because I really need it. I have a boyfriend (we have been together for 14 months and now live together). Recently our relationship has changed. We seem to be drifting apart. We hardly ever talk but just sit there in silence - I sometimes feel that if I did not make an extra effort to speak to him, we would never talk at all.

I am 23 and he is 8 years older. When I want to go out, he is "tired" and all he seems to want to do these days is to go to bed to sleep. He has even taken to going to bed to sleep for a few hours in the afternoons when we are at home at the weekends. He is also taking me for granted. I am expected to do all the washing, and cleaning.  He wants me to get up early to do it, while he is, yes, you've guessed it, in bed asleep. 

He continually tells me that he loves me, but I am not sure I believe him. When we do go out, he spends the entire evening staring at all the other pretty girls.

When we first started seeing each other, I felt that I really wanted to be with him. I fell in love with him and I felt happier when I was with him than when I was on my own, now I am not sure. What advice can you give me? 

Thirty-one year old men do not need to spend that much time sleeping. He is either lazy, sick or depressed. My guess from your description is that he is lazy, as well as rude, selfish and self-centered. So, what are you doing giving your physical and emotional self to someone with such glaring shortcomings.

I think you should cut your losses while you can. In the future, stop relying on your feelings to determine a loving life partner. Go slow, take your time, and read all of Dear Mrs Webís Dating Archives. Read the courtship books on Dear Mrs Webís bookshelf.



Dear Mrs. Web,

Here is my story. I met a gentleman on- line a couple of months ago. We found out we lived near each other and after chatting for a few weeks we met.

We got on well and we continued to chat via the Internet and talk on the telephone. He has been to my house for a visit and continues to suggest coming over. The problem is that I always have to take the initiative.  He never contacts me.

He says he will call or come over, but he never does. When asked he says he was busy working. I have come right out and asked him if he would rather not talk/email and he has told me to relax and continues to suggest getting together.

So...what do I do now? I really like this man but I am beginning to feel like I am chasing him. Any suggestions?

Dear Mrs Web believes that relationships are a bit like tennis. When one lobs the ball over the net one expects it to be returned. If one lobs all the balls without any returns; well, one is running around the court, but it ainít tennis. Even if there is someone standing on the other side of the net saying it is tennis.

The best way to find out if your are in a relationship or not is to lob it into his court, tell him you expect him to lob it back, and stop. If nothing comes back, there wasnít anything there. 

In relationships, it is important to watch what people do as well as listen to what they say. If there is a divergence between what they do and what they say, I always bet the truth rests in what they do. Talk is cheap.



Dear Mrs. Web, 

I met a man about a year ago that I have recently come to care very deeply about, he is very sensitive, caring and seems to feel the same about me. He works close to 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. Last year he had a serious accident and his long-term girlfriend moved out.

I do believe that he is trying very hard to get back on his feet. However, after work, he heads straight to the bar and 80 percent of the time closes the bar. I am very worried about his health; he works so hard, and drinks so much. He is not getting enough rest and his eating habits are poor.

My main concern is his drinking; he is 45 years old and tells me he is ready to settle down. I recently ended a relationship where alcohol was the main problem and I don't want to go through that again. Please tell me how to show my concern without sounding like his mother.

You are considering a relationship with an alcoholic. Moreover, you are concerned about hurting his feelings about his poor life choices. Why are you worried about how you sound? The blunt truth is that he is an alcoholic and you should be running in the opposite direction. You have known him a year now. What could possibly attract you to a barfly, even a delightful barfly? Do you really want to deal with all the problems that occur in a marriage to an alcoholic? Itís not anything Iíd volunteer to do.

Women who coast from one alcoholic to another usually like the familiar craziness of the alcoholic life. I recommend Al-Anon. Get some perspective here.



Dear Mrs. Web:

My boyfriend of 5 years is going home to his family for Easter holidays. It is a long 12-hour drive. I have met all of his family on many different occasions. He said he would normally invite me but he wanted me to save my vacation for our summer plans. He also wanted to be alone. He wanted to be with his mother who is slowing.

I am just fine about this; in fact, I have encouraged him to spend time with his family. I have a friend who thinks that it is odd that he is not taking me. I havenít seen any signs he is pulling away from our relationship; on the contrary, we are becoming closer. Should I be worried?

He said he is going home to connect with his family. He said he had rather you use your vacation days for summer plans. Sounds reasonable to me.  I don't think he is going to run off with the Easter Bunny!



Dear Mrs. Web,

I am in love with a man who my mother hates. I have been intermittently involved with him for 5 years. We broke up about 5 months ago and I moved back in with my mother.

We have started reconnecting as a couple (by the way I am the mother to his four year old son and one year old daughter) My mother vehemently objects to him so I have to sneak around to see him.

I really would like to be back with him. We have been talking about getting married. I donít know what to do. My mom wonít help me with anything if she finds out that I am returning to him. She is also my daycare provider. I just don't think it is right that she is making it so hard for me.

I think it about time you took full responsibility for your own life. In addition, I think you and your boyfriend should take full responsibility for the two little children you have made. I am sure part of his paycheck would cover the daycare costs. 

I have no idea why your mother is so dead set against your boyfriend. However, sneaking around is dishonest and juvenile behavior. 

Your mother is not making it hard for you.   She is telling you the rules of her house.  By breaking these rules you are using her.  

You have an adult choice here. If you really want to be with your fiancť and he wants to be with you, and you both want to support your children and be responsible for them, then grow up, get married and be responsible. If you donít want to do this, and want to continue to live with your mom, and receive those benefits, then follow her rules. The world is made this way. It's called choices.

Now make me proud and make a decision that is the best and safest for your children and you. Notice I put the children first. You should too.



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