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Breakup Girl » 2010 » October
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October 29, 2010

Sassy and lonely

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:29 am

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BG hits the ice on April 27, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

Thank you so much for your web site and especially your advice column. Even when the advice doesn’t directly pertain to my own predicament of the week, I enjoy reading your witty wisecracks and thoughtful responses.

Anyway, here’s my beef. Call me blind, but it seems to me the only relationships between men and women that I am seeing (at least the ones that are lasting) are the ones where the woman is very sweet, saintly, subservient, submissive, not strong-willed, sassy, independent, self-assured. It’s like for the long haul the smart, funny, sweet, self-confident guys don’t want a confident, sassy woman who might disagree with them or have her own life, one who might question their authority or want to call the shots some of the time.

I think of myself as a decent person (although still smarting from being dumped by one of those so called nice guys about five months ago who ditched me for a needy subservient type). I lead an active life, I’m friendly and willing to help out. I’m also independent, stubborn at times, and am not afraid to do things for myself if necessary. I would like to find a guy who can handle that, but am also not looking for an overly macho type. Am I asking the impossible? It seems I scare away the guys who possess qualities that I am looking for or only get the leechy ones who have no life of their own and like to latch on to mine. Any advice would be appreciated.

– Sassy and Single

(more…)

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October 28, 2010

How sex ed saved my life

Filed under: Treats, blogs, issues — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:07 am

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In case you didn’t already know this, Scarleteen is the source for real sex education in the real world. It’s deserving of a shout-out of far more than 140 characters; it’s run and supported by people “who want better for young people than what they get in schools, on the street or from initiatives whose aim is to intentionally use fearmongering, bias and misinformation about sexuality to try to scare or intimidate young people into serving their own personal, political or religious agendas.” And right now, there’s a extra push for cash going on to help Scarleteen keep doing the honest, empowering, and irreplaceable work they do. Read recent testimonials such as “How Scarleteen and Sex Ed Saved My Life,” and “Accentuating the (Sex) Positive: Discovering Scarleteen” — and maybe you’ll be inspired to show Scarleteen a little love yourself.

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October 27, 2010

I’m not gay, but

Filed under: News, Psychology — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:09 am

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A new analysis of teen sexual behavior in New York City offers some troubling/fascinating/instructive insights — and not just of the “only in New York” variety.

Published in the latest Pediatrics, the study found (for one thing) that among sexually active adolescent boys and girls, nearly one in ten had had a same-sex experience. But how many called themselves “gay”? Well, of the teens who’d had at least one same-sex partner, 38.9 percent answered “heterosexual or straight.” Which is fine in a hey-who-needs-labels sense — and hooray for experimentation, when that’s what it is — but not fine in a hey-who-needs-condoms sense. That is, the study also found that teens reporting partners of both sexes also reported higher-than-average rates of risky sexual practices, such as not using a condom during intercourse.

Hmm. Especially among those in the “I’m not really gay” camp, could there be a related sense that “it’s not really sex”? And does “I’m not really gay” stem from “Gay’s not really OK?” (”Even in New York”?) “These are kids in New York City where there’s more awareness and perhaps acceptance of non-heterosexual behavior, and you’re still finding such high reports of risk behavior and violence,” Laura Lindberg, senior research associate at the Guttmacher Institute, told the AP.

Ah yes, also violence. Students reporting same-sex partners also reported higher rates of dating violence. What’s going on there? Back to the AP:

Thomas Krever, executive director of the Hetrick-Martin Institute, a youth advocacy organization that runs an alternative high school for gay teens in New York City, said the survey results did not surprise him.

Many teens with partners of both sexes lack supportive adults and peers in their lives and may experience depression because social stigma, Krever said.

“Young people who are exhibiting characteristics of depression and lower self-worth can indeed place themselves in more risky situations including risky sexual practices,” he said.

Homework:

1. As advocates continue to stress, sex ed has to focus not on identity/orientation, but on behavior. No matter what you call what you do, it’s safer with a condom.

2. Let kids know we accept them as they are and that they are loved matter what.

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October 26, 2010

Alarming press release of the week

Filed under: Treats — posted by Breakup Girl @ 6:43 am

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[Pasted without comment. (I'll leave that to you.) --BG]

Unique Ways to Ask Someone Out on a Date
Dating Expert Shares Some Fun Ways to Make a Move

Asking someone to go out on a date is easier said than done. When nervous symptoms such as sweaty palms, a knot in the throat, and butterflies in the stomach accompany an awkward “Will you go out with me?” stutter, things can get ugly. While it’s never a comfortable situation, XXXXXX, Director of XXXXXXX, a dating service for busy business professionals has some ideas for fun ways to make taking the first step a little easier.

Puzzle him/her with Your Charm: Want to really make someone swoon? Even if you’re too shy to ask someone out in person, you can still get crafty and turn the question into a game. Write your sweet proposition on paper, and then cut up the sentence into different pieces and place all the letters into an envelope. On the outside of the envelope, tell him or her to “Piece this together for a surprise” and let your crush do the work.

The Modern Message in a Bottle: A phone call may be the easiest way to contact someone for a date, but is certainly not the most creative. Be original when making that initial contact like in the movie Hitch, messenger her a walkie-talkie and have you waiting on the other end. Or if you or a friend is a lawyer, write up a fake subpoena to invite your crush on a date. Name the “case” something like Amber & Chris vs. the Thought of Foregoing a Great Time Together and indicated the day of the date as the court number. Acting as though she must appear on the date or be in contempt of court adds a playful start to the date.

Rush Hour Rendezvous: Driving in traffic can have its frustrations but instead of blowing your horn in road rage, scope out the road as a dating opportunity. If a fellow driver catches your eye and engages in some bumper to bumper flirting, you can casually hand over your business card. This proactive move will show you are interested and you might just get the green light for follow-up.

Roses Never Go Out of Style: It’s traditional. It’s cliché. And there’s a reason it has been around for decades, it works! Sending roses to a girl is a chivalrous gesture she is sure to appreciate. Accompany the bouquet with a simple note requesting a date or, for a modern twist, write a funny but silly poem. It is a sure-fire way she will get the hint that you would like to spend some time together.

Please contact me to schedule a segment or interview with XXXXX to share these and other unique ways to ask someone out on a date.

Thanks,
XXXXX

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October 25, 2010

Love in focus

Filed under: Treats — posted by Chris @ 9:16 am

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Monday morning treat: cute relationship story that is also a meditation on the photos we leave behind …

Thrush from Gabriel Bisset-Smith on Vimeo.

(I bet Facebook could generate these on these on fly by looking at your relationship status over time, then assembling the properly tagged photos in chronological order. Get on that, Jesse Eisenberg.)

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October 22, 2010

EPIC: BG meets The Guy At The End of The Bar

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:53 am

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This already-epic Predicament of the Week from April 27, 1998 actually includes three responses: One from Breakup Girl, a second from the mysterious “Guy at the End of the Bar” and then a rebuttal from BG…

Dear Breakup Girl,

This gets a little complicated, but bear with me, I’ll try to be succinct. “Ted” and “Carol” move into town, where they meet “Bob” and “Alice,” who are good friends of mine from college. All five of us quickly beome tight and hang out regularly. Inevitably the breakups happen. First Bob and Alice split. It’s long and drawn out. Then Ted and Carol split. It’s long and drawn out.

At this point Bob and Ted are living together as roommates and of course within a few months Carol and Alice become roommates. Then my girlfriend, “Millie,” goes away for several months. Carol and I hang out, a lot, and discover, ka-zaam, this wonderful connection. We don’t act on it, even though we both acknowledge it and talk about it. Finally in a defiant stupid drunken evening we do act on it. I feel like sh*t because I didn’t want to cheat on my girlfriend and we were both worried about all the possible ramifications from Ted, Bob, and Alice. So we agree not to be so stupid and forget about it.

(more…)

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October 21, 2010

It could get even better

Filed under: issues, media — posted by Breakup Girl @ 6:27 am

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I know that not everyone thinks It Gets Better is the best response to anti-LGBT bullying. I understand the criticism — it’s facile, it’s privileged, it misplaces responsibility — and even agree with much of it. But I’m still a fan of IGB, not as the response to anti-queer bullying, but as a response among what needs to be more and more, at individual and societal levels. That’s why I like Hillary Clinton’s contribution (h/t Andrew Sullivan) as an addition to the mix. She (appropriately, for her position) makes it not about you the sufferer versus them the mean kids, but about civil — American — society, how far it has come, and what it demands. Yes, it’s on the bullies to desist and the queer kids to keep it real, but more than that, it’s on all of us.

And it’s on all of us not just to give miserable kids hope for magical “later” land when they get to graduate  and move to Seattle. It’s on us to help them — and continue changing the culture — now. Some less in-the-headines folks who are working to make it better, today:

Do Not Stand Idly By: A Jewish Community Pledge to Save Lives (more/interesting context here)

Responsive Classroom (h/t Marjorie Ingall)

WeStopHate (h/t I Heart Daily)

This list is the opposite of exhaustive. What other great anti-queer-bullying and pro-tolerant-society work should we all know about?

Oh, and here you go:

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October 20, 2010

Ex-Span

Filed under: TV, Treats — posted by Breakup Girl @ 12:27 pm

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Wow. C-Span hasn’t been this hard to watch/look away from since, well, you know. In case you missed it, via TPM Livewire:

The Daily Caller reports what they call the “wonkiest, nerdiest Internet revenge ever.” Allow us to add “social conservative-iest” to that list of adjectives.

Todd Seavey and Helen Rittelmeyer, contributors to “Proud To Be Right,” a collection of essays written by “voices of the next conservative generation” and edited by Jonah Goldberg, appeared at a panel promoting the book this weekend. They sat next to each other, and Seavey’s critique of Rittelmeyer’s political philosophy turned into Seavey basically calling Rittelmeyer a two-timing cheat.

“It might come as a surprise to some of you that we dated for two years,” Seavey said. “[Not because] we have ideological differences, but because there are probably some people in this room who also dated Helen during those two years, given how tumultuous it got.”

Rittelmeyer tries her best to keep her cool as Seavey just unloads on her. There’s not much else to really say about this, except that once you start watching, you’ll have a hard time looking away.

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October 19, 2010

Forgetting to know you

Filed under: Psychology — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:17 am

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Via @Naunihal: Oldly-wed couples, counter-intuitively enough, might tank at The Newlywed Game. As Wired reports, a new study from the University of Basel has found that “couples married for an average of 40 years know less about one another’s food, movie and kitchen-design preferences [?!] than do partners who have been married or in committed relationships for a year or two.” (Dramatically, when data for these preferences were combined, all couples agreed  that “Julie and Julia” worked better as a book. — BG)

This pattern was observed among 38 couples aged 19 to 32, versus 20 couples aged 62 to 78. The greatest knowledge gap was in predicting food preferences, which just seems weird. The researchers’ hypotheses?

– Older couples pay less attention to such specifics, figuring eh, what’s left to learn?

– Older couples, rightly or wrongly, perceive more similarity between themselves.

– Older couples come from a generation in which men and women generally knew less about each other to begin with (Cf. Don Draper and Megan, not that they’ll last long enough to qualify as “older”)

– Older couples may be more likely to use “white lies” to keep things running smoothly. (”Seriously, your beets are my FAVORITE”)

And yet! Even though they knew less about their partners in certain areas, long-term couples reported more satisfaction with their relationships. So even if we start to space on the little-ish things we like (”I could have sworn you’d prefer Ikea”), it’s the like-like we share that pulls us through.

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October 18, 2010

Ask Lynn on Yahoo: Why hasn’t he called?

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:30 am

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MSN.com, Match.com, HappenMagazine.com: they’re in a healthy and satisfying 3-way relationship. This new Ask Lynn column is being promoted at Match on Yahoo this week…

Curious (and Confused) Carrie complains of a boy she met online that went from flirtatious to flat within 24 hours:

We went on our first date this weekend … We ended the evening with a goodnight kiss (OK, three small ones) and things seemed to have gone so well. … I called him once and was sent to voice mail and have not heard from him since then.

How long should she wait to call again? (She thinks 72 hours.) Why has the stream of funny emails stopped? Is this about the meeting in IRL thing? See what Lynn thinks at Match, then come back here to give your own assessment in the comments below.

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