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Dear Breakup Girl,
I've been so busy doing my own thing all these years and all of a sudden,
boom, I'm 33 and single! I'm no Bridget Jones
here, but I'm starting to feel like a carton of milk reaching its due date.
The problem? I do date, or at least lurch from short relationship to short relationship
like a drunken sailor, but I just can't seem to fall in love anymore. I'm attracted
to many men, really, I'd like to grab them by the hair and drag them back to
my cave -- especially those bike messengers, rrrrr -- but when it comes to investing
emotionally, none of them seems to measure up. I know what you're thinking,
BG... but this is no commitment-phobia thing. I have had serious relationships.
I had a very wonderful extended relationship, almost three years ago... until
it became not so wonderful and we broke up.
Now, half the time when I feel all flutter-stomached about someone, it's because
I'm making up a story to talk myself into how great he'd be for me. And then
bang, reality. Right now I'm dating a friend whom I truly care about, but he
keeps telling me how terrific I am and how he doesn't understand why I'd go
out with someone like him. Frankly, this sets off lots of warning bells. I think
at one time I would have been flattered, but now I just don't have the energy
to deal with someone else's neediness; I've spent so much time on my own. Really,
Otherwise, all the guys I meet are younger than I am, or guys from work, or
other unsuitable types. I don't look like Phyllis Diller yet, but let's just
say the boys don't eye me in the street quite like they useta. What do I do?
Where do I go? Are the good ones really all gone? Did I use all my good stuff
up in my 20s? Help, it's getting lonely out here in Bridesmaid Land, and I look
lousy in taffeta.
--Lonely but Not Pathetic (...Yet)
PS Please don't tell me to take up a hobby. I have so many freaking hobbies
Dear Lonely But Not Pathetic (...Yet),
What shall we do with this drunken sailor? Well, here's
Good news: I am not going to tell you to get a hobby.
Bad news: I am going to give you equally square-aunty-sounding
advice. Ready? "You just haven't met the right man." But truly!
"Attracted" is a start, but quicksilver
is mercurial. "Really and truly care about" is also a start, but I'm
clear that for you, full-time self-esteem administration is a draining temp
job at best.
Good/bad news: You're already doing everything right,
except the part where you're still seeing that friend because he's good/warm
enough. I can just tell. I really can. And
that is actually pretty major, sailor. You know how to be on your own; you know
what a relationship walks/talks/bikes/feels like. So trust this...
IMPORTANT BREAKUP GIRL MAXIM: There really are plenty
of nice, straight guys "left." (It would just be helpful if they'd
have some sort of parade.)*
And. Try, I don't know, the same hobbies in different
places. Internet personals where you can
sort by hobby. And age. Whatever. I know these aren't brilliant revelations;
I'm just suggesting that you do something to shake things up -- while, yes,
you soldier on, epaulets shined with shoes dyed to match. I know, I know. But:
that missing guy on the milk carton? Auntie Breakup really does not say this
to everyone: when you find him, you will know.
PS Seek more reassurance from/for Enuff
Already, Libby, and MB.
* To actually see and hear BG say this, click here!
Over and over, if you like.
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