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Dear Breakup Girl,
Hi, I just replaced the phone after a two-hour conversation in which the
subject was "male bashing" (perhaps you know of it). My
"girl"-friend had just been told by her steady that he had only
wanted her for one thing (take a guess). Yes, I was as disgusted as she was and
it set me thinking. I am used by a lot of people as a comfort from the tough
times and although I am not unhappy, I am sick of hearing about all guys being
chauvinistic pigs who look for one thing in life. I have gone out with two
girls for a grand total of four days and after both, I was given the good old
friends line. I know this is similar to other letters, but it is slightly
different. I am not bad looking, I have a decent sense of humor, and consider
myself romantic (flowers, candy, letters). The problem is, no one wants to
accept me as more than a friend. I don't see what my problem is. Although I am
used as a stuffed toy when times are tough, it is not a position I would change
for the world. Why is it that a) all the women around me seem to make the same
mistakes even though I warn them, and b) How do I get over that
"friends" line? It destroys me inside, and leaves me feeling
inadequate as a guy, but more like a used tissue. What can I do to make myself
appealing? Should I change or accept the fact that I will only ever be a
Thank you kindly for all your help.
-- Unlucky in Love
Everything I said above, plus a few points:
1) "He only wanted her for one thing." My
sense is that this may be your girl-friend's interpretation of what her
"steady" said. In other words, girls tend to complain about boys
being "pigs" out for "only one thing" when in reality, the
girl can't think of any other way to explain the apparent fact that the guy
just doesn't really like her all that much any more. So girls, quit tossing
those terms around willy-nilly -- it depletes their strength for when we really
need them. A boy is a "male chauvinist pig" when he says, "Women
don't deserve equal pay for equal work, and I like to paw them when they come
into my office -- and in fact, they're honored, because I'm Senator Packwood,
dammit." But when a boy says,"You're a nice person, and man, the sex
was killer, but let's break up, " he is not a male chauvinist pig; he is
an ex-boyfriend. Got that?
2) "Flowers, candy, letters." Okay. You say
you've dated girls for a "grand total of four days," and you've
bestowed flowers, candy, letters? There's no delicate way to say this: you may
be scaring them. Apply less pressure, and this so-called "friend"
problem may start to clear up.
3) "What can I do to make myself appealing?"
...Which leads me to my final point, which may sound familiar. You're being the
enforcer -- which is also why you get huffy when people don't heed your
warnings (though BG can completely understand that one). Stop trying so hard.
To be a friend and to be a boyfriend. The girlfriend will come eventually; in
the meantime, don't wear yourself out. I know you don't want to shrug off your
role as the shoulder, but yes, women will lean on you, perhaps too heavily.
When women get dumped, we like to have two kinds of conversations: (1) dishing
/ spewing / venting with galpals, and (2) boo-hooing with a temporary
boy-substitute, sort of an I Can't Believe It's Not Boyfriend. It's not pretty,
but we do it. You don't have to indulge us every time.
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