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April 20, 1998   CONTINUED e-mail e-mail to a friend in need


Predicament of the Week II: Annihilation

Dear Breakup Girl,

You won't believe this, but I was your Predicament of the Week about 2 weeks ago. Hopefully, I won't be again, but I guess I'm well on my way. You may recall that I was the one with the long-distance boyfriend who took off on a holiday to Spain at the last minute, cancelling out on me OVER EMAIL (way tacky), and then apologizing for the "prevarication". Anyway, even though I tried (I really did) to cut him loose like the necrotic tumerous tissue that he is, I just couldn't help myself, and lo and behold, fell right back into that nasty spider's web he calls his bed. I've just returned from yet another rendezvous at yet another European capital (and believe me I'm tired of all this jet-lag), where we spent an idyllic three days "catching up."

Here's the problem. I'm still married, although my husband and I have agreed to separate, especially since he found out about the entire affair and is really upset and broken-hearted since "HE" was his friend for over 10 years. Sh*t happens I know, and I feel really, really bad about it. I feel even worse that it was over The Prevaricator, since I know it was totally wrong and God's going to punish me for doing such an awful thing to my husband. What's done can't be undone at this stage, and that's another letter anyway.

Here's my dilemma. Mr. Prevaricator insists that I'm his "best friend," which I don't doubt, since that's how this whole thing started anyway. The problem is that he thinks that he and I can maintain a "casual" sexual relationship. He also says that he doesn't want me to see other men, but that I shouldn't think of him as a long term relationship, even though he doesn't want to lose me as his best friend whenever it's over (I guess he means the sex bit). He doesn't know when that might be, but just knows it will have to end eventually. I think he's finally lost it, since it doesn't make any sense to be someone's best friend and have a casual sexual affair with them. BG, isn't that an oxymoron? I mean you can't unknow somebody, then re-know them a few minutes later as your best friend.

I told him that he's being silly, and that if he doesn't want me for himself that he's got to let me go, especially since I'm sick to death of all this flying around to meet him. He says that I'm being mean, and that he doesn't want to lose me as his best friend, but that he doesn't want to make any commitments either as a lover. I said "WRONG ANSWER LOSER," you know me better than that, and it's just not going to work. Besides, what's the deal with loving somebody as a best friend, wanting to have wild, passionate sex with them all the time (for like seven years now), asking them to leave their husband, and then when they do, saying you're hoping they're not getting "serious." Like DUH. Am I the one who needs a shrink? Like NOT. So I told him that it was the last time we were ever going to meet, and that he should decide what he wants from me and stick to it, but that NO, I'm not interested in being his best friend anymore, since I think that it's only HIS bizarre euphemism for "girlfriend I have no commitment to."

So, of course, I get home and there's a million messages, emails, flowers, the works. He's very persuasive and handsome and really gorgeous in a Pierce Brosnan sort of way, so you see BG, it's really hard for me to keep my cool and stick to my guns. I think he's just afraid that I won't really leave my husband, and that I'm just stringing him along (he's accused me of that), and all of this is just a smokescreen for "Fear of Intimacy." I know he loves me but SO WHAT, a girl needs security, not frequent flier miles. I'm a very practical sort of person, very logical and reasonable (I'm an engineer fercrissakes) most of the time, except when it comes to this man. I'm trying really hard to keep away from him, haven't answered his calls, etc.. Just now he left another one, and I know that he's miserable and very frightened that I'm serious about never seeing him again as long as I live. This is the first time I've really gone this far in all the years we've been together (if you can call it "together" living 3,000 miles apart).

Should I stick to my guns and not see or speak to him EVER AGAIN (I think I'll positively die), or should I at least call and tell him I don't hate him or anything, it's just that I don't see how I can be his best friend while simultaneously being his one-night-stand. How can I make him see the folly of his ways? He says I'm being impossible, and that if only I'd give him a chance to explain himself. I'm very wary of these "explanations," as he's got some voodoo magic up his sleeve I'm sure, and that's how I wound up in his clutches (again) this last time.

Why can't he just let me go? If he did it then I'd have to let him go by default, right? Help me BG, this man is driving me CRAZY. Did I mention that he's got baby-blue eyes and drives a Jag? I don't trust myself to talk to him, should I write instead? I just can't stand the idea of going through another year of this limbo torture with me flying around to meet him, not resolving my marriage issues, and generally not getting anyplace with him either. Help BG, you are the wisest one I know (all others in my life that know him think I'm crazy to even contemplate forgoing being one of his "babes" -- such is his HYPNOTIC POWER over my female friends). I just want to lead a quiet life, have kids, yada, yada. He knows that, after all, he STOLE ME FROM MY HUSBAND his EX- best friend (which he only now reluctantly admits to doing). Should I banish him or give him another chance to explain. HELP!!! My willpower is receding fast!! Oh, and he broke up with his "official" girlfriend a few months ago because she found out about us and told him it was me or her. I was quite shocked when he chose me, since I never really thought he cared for me so much. Why can't he choose me now? Is he a hopeless case, or can something be done to open his eyes that he's got to decide what role he wants me to play in his life. Help, I'm so miserable...

-- Miserable in New York

Dear Miserable,

See what happens when you don't take Breakup Girl's advice?

Not only have I already told you everything you need to know, but you already know it in the first place. You said it yourself: you don't need frequent flier miles, jet lag, or this crazy-making limbo.

Oh, wait. I take that back. You do need this limbo -- or at least you think you do. Your marriage is ending, you're untethered ... the only thing you've been able to truly count on for the past three years is this guy flying you around and driving you nuts. With him, you are the wacky off- to- Monaco divorcee with a major Brosnan problem. Without him, you are .... who? Just another gal leafing through the "Events for Older Seniors" pages of the 92nd Street Y catalog. Yikes.

"Why can't he just let me go?" you ask?
The question is, "Why can't you let him go?"

Think about it. Then write that letter. To him, not me! I don't want to see you back here again, young lady (though you are more than welcome to drop me a nice note to let me know how well you are doing). Sequels are never as good, and we don't want this one to come to Predicament III: The Wrath of BG.

Breakup Girl



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