Friday, April 18, 2008

Advice Is Now a Habit - April 18, 2008 Edition

DEAR ABBY: I have been dating "Louis" for six months. Things are going great. I know he is my soul mate, and I need look no further. He's intelligent, artistic, appreciative, caring, and we have the same political and spiritual philosophy. We are both optimistic about a wonderful future together.

There is just one problem. Louis is emotionally constipated. He has trouble saying, "I love you." We discussed it, and he told me his last girlfriend -- his only other serious relationship -- just said, "Oh," when he told her he loved her. So now he's afraid of voicing the sentiment. Also, I heard his mother tell him she loved him, and Louis didn't respond to her.

He has asked me to move in with him for the summer while we're on college break. He says I'm an inspiration, and he's never been happier. He says our relationship is like an oak tree, solid and forever growing stronger. His aunt has also "casually" mentioned that she has Louis' grandmother's wedding ring if he wants it anytime soon.

Should I tell Louis I love him and risk scaring him off? I couldn't stand for him to say "Oh" to me. What's your advice?

- LOVES HIM IN MOUNT PLEASANT, MICH.


ABBY’S GOT A NOSEBLEED FROM THE HIGH HORSE SHE RODE IN ON. LET ME REIN THIS ONE IN:

If I hear the term “soul mate” one more time, I’m going to puke. All over you, probably. I suspect lots of other people feel the same way, so if you’re going to continue to bash that term over the head when you’re out in society, you’d better find a good dry cleaner. Only women use that term, and you wanna know why? Because men don’t have souls. It’s true—we can’t see ourselves in the mirror (that’s why our hair is always messed up). But that’s a discussion for another time…

Six months is not really that long, and it’s clearly not long enough to develop a relationship when both parties are emotionally retarded inexperienced. Obviously, you’re really young, or you’d know that this guy’s a fucking sap. He finds you to be an “inspiration?” For what—abstract sculpture? And pardon me, but that “afraid to say I love you” thing is a big cop-out. “Oh my last girlfriend emotionally scarred me when she didn’t say it back, boo-hoo-hoo!” “I’m all closed off now, boo-hoo-hoo!” “I’m sensitive and artistic, boo-hoo-hoo!” And he won’t even say it to his own mother? He sounds like a spoiled prick. Emotionally constipated, my ass! It's time for some "emotional roughage." Nature's broom, don'tcha know. But if I were you, I'd stand back when all the crap starts coming out. You won't like what you see.

But that’s beside the point, which is really that it’s too soon to expect anything resembling commitment at this point. You’re not likely to get much further than the “inspiration” line with this dude—things are great for him, so why should he stick his neck out of his comfort zone? Forget about this “soul mate” shit and stick with Coffee Mate instead. It’s more reliable.



DEAR MISS MANNERS: What do you do when your only daughter has her mother (a redneck) escort her down the aisle instead of her living father? The mother is the force behind this.

As a young couple, the two divorced early. My brother went his way, and she did also. Over the years, he supported the child monetarily and not as much physically.

Her mother's side is more controlling. As aunt and uncles, we all sent gifts, but all went unrecognized. We have excused this with lack of manners from parents.
Should we lower ourselves as rednecks and take care of them in a restroom? Or pretend their actions are a slap in the face to our family, especially my brother, who did the best that he could as a young dad and adult? It leaves me to believe that they are vindictive and money grubbers.

Please help me understand their ignorance. Your comments and suggestions are important and much needed.


MISS MANNERS CAN’T GET THOSE DAMN WHITE GLOVES OFF. IN AARONLAND, HOWEVER, THE GLOVES ARE OFF:

WTF?? What's the alternative to “a living father?” A dead one? Must be a barrel of laughs in your house.

I don’t know where you draw your characterizations from, or what you think qualifies this girl’s mother as a “redneck,” but by making these disdainful remarks about her family, you’re saying a whole lot more about yourself than you are about them. It might behoove you to realize that your niece is half "redneck," too. How nice that your brother financially cared for his daughter while she was growing up, but that’s what those in the legal world call “the least he could do” if one of his little sunbeams made it through the F-stop.

You implied yourself that he didn’t have much to do with her emotionally, and here’s a clue for you: weddings are emotional times for young ladies. Otherwise they wouldn’t turn into such bitches during wedding season. It’s clear that she needs the emotional support of the person who’s been giving it to her all her life. Is it really her mother’s fault that she behaved like, well, you know, a mother? Would you rather she’d dropped her daughter off at a kennel?

And I'm not quite sure what you mean by "take care of them in a restroom." Are you offering to dispense hand towels? Lotion? Breath mints? God help us, what else is there? No, wait, don't tell me--I don't want to know.

Sorry that your gifts went unacknowledged—that does suck. But there ain’t much you can do about lack of manners except respond with lack of manners, and who really wins then? Nobody. Build a bridge and get over it.



DEAR AMY: I have been in a relationship for about three months. We are two mature adults who work full time and are very happy with each other.

My problem is that her ex-boyfriend still has keys to her condo. He stops by frequently to hang out, talk to her and play with the dog they got when they were together.

I've told her this makes me uncomfortable.

My girlfriend claims they broke up a year ago, but I've seen his shoes and a razor at her place. She says he'll stay over on occasion but sleeps on the couch. She said he pays part of the mortgage.

Now she has invited him to a destination wedding in the Caribbean next fall. She says they'll share a room but they're just friends.

When I asked to spend the night at her place, my girlfriend said I couldn't because her ex might come by — she said it would be mean because he is helping pay for the place.

She says she really likes me and wants to have a long-term relationship with me. I really like her and want the same thing. She told me to be patient about this.

— J


THE ADVISOR IS OUT—SOMEONE THOUGHT SHE WAS A GNAT AND SWATTED HER. I’LL FILL IN:

Did you know that you can work from home and make thousands of dollars a month? It’s true!! Write to me, give me your credit card number, and I’ll show you how!

Boy, do you need someone to bitch-slap you or what??! Does “J” stand for “Jackass?!”

Your problem is, and I hate to break this to you, that you’re dating a 12-year-old. A crafty, smart 12-year-old, to be sure, but clearly someone who isn’t prepared to stand on her own and move on with her life. Or else she just doesn’t want to. This condo is an excuse for her to hang on to this “ex” and “play with the dog” (and if I’ve ever heard a worse euphemism for whacking the donkey, I don’t want to remember it). He pays for half, so he can come and go as he pleases? Bullshit! That’s when she decides to either buy out his half, sell him her half, or both of them decide to sell the whole damn thing and part ways.

And I’ve heard of this “long-term relationship” she wants to have with you. It’s called “Sugar Daddy.” Stop dropping lumps in her tea.

12 Comments:

Blogger American Girl said...

I really liked the Miss Manners' letter with the parentheses around the word redneck. It was so wink-wink nudge-nudge.

Did you leave the part out of the last letter where the author said he will be allowed to drive the BMW he bought for his girlfriend anytime he wants? Sarah

1:06 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

No, and believe me, I looked for it! I couldn't believe that was all there was to the letter. I kept waiting for an "April Fools" line somewhere...

Yes, the Miss Manners letter writer was clearly the type of person who writes to Miss Manners all the time: a stone-age WASP who still thinks we live by the etiquette rules of the 1920s (as, indeed, Miss Manners believes).

But the letters are great for a laugh!

1:32 PM  
Blogger Gregory said...

What a gift! My god, this is good stuff!

3:58 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Thanks, Gregory! Your visits are a gift, also. (And so is your voice, I understand! I wish I could have been at your recital--heard it was FAB.)

4:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is advice column gold here, Aaron. If only you could actually send it to the authors. They might be a bit surprised but it might just be the wake up call and kick in the posterior they so badly need. I got quite a chuckle out of your hitting the nail on the head by the "playing with the dog" being a euphemism for "whacking the donkey". Her current boyfriend can't stay overnight because her ex might come over, please, what a chump! I believe "sleeping on the couch" is a euphemism too just like "back in the saddle again". Wait, her current boyfriend can't have sex with her because her ex might want to put his cock there. Ed

10:11 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

I have to admit, Ed, I saw the "whacking the donkey" phrase in the movie "Overboard" with Goldie Hawn. Her bastard husband admitted he'd been "whacking the donkey with painted ladies" after she got discovered, and the jig was up.

I mentioned it in the company of two of my college undergraduate female companions (one of whom later became a senior manager at Leo Burnett), and was roundly condemned...

**sigh** It's nice to be vindicated at last...

12:56 AM  
Anonymous Servidores said...

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5:11 AM  
Blogger Johnny C said...

I think the Red Eye should have you're alternate comments side by side Miss Manners like they have Sidney Omars and that other woman's horoscopes.

and without your site I never would have learned about the Seridore! Double Thanks!

11:16 AM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Thanks Johnny! I'm still not quite sure what a Servidor is...at first I was confused and thought they meant the fancy cigar box. But the site seems to have to do with computer equipment or something...but it's in Portuguese, so I can't read it...

11:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the Sunday paper, the Dear Abby column had a story about a woman who didn't want to believe the rumors that her husband was cheating on her. One day she went to his office to surprise him. The Receptionist told her he had already left for lunch with his "wife". The woman went to the restaurant and saw him feeding and kissing the other woman. She asked him about it when he got home that evening and he tried to deny it. When she told him she had seen him he slapped her. They were divorced soon thereafter. The woman saw an ad for a Divorce Ring. Being gullible she sent for it and wore it proudly. Her ex husband and his family ridiculed her for flashing the fact that she was divorced in their faces. Dear Abby told her not to be concerned about it after all it was the cad she was married to that caused the divorce. I was wondering what Uncle Aaron would say to her. Ed

1:18 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

I'd probably tell her that it's only to be expected that HE and HIS family would ridicule her. There's little honor among thieves (or adulterers) and their tribe. Let 'em stay home and stomp their sour grapes. He can ridicule all he wants, but he'll still have to abide by any legal financial obligations (read: alimony). Hope she socks it to him.

9:37 AM  
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5:59 PM  

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