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December 7, 1998   CONTINUED e-mail e-mail to a friend in need


Dear Breakup Girl,

I've been dating the same guy for a little over three years. I really want to get married, or at least engaged, soon. My boyfriend on the other hand wants me to be his "permanent girlfriend" and has no intention of putting a ring on my finger any time soon. He tells me he loves me and that I'm the best thing that has ever happened to him and that I'm the best girlfriend he's ever had.

I haven't broken up with him yet because I keep waking up each morning thinking "maybe today is the day he'll change his mind." What do I do? Dump him and wait for him to come to his senses, dump him and forget about him or keep waiting? Thanks for any advice, I'm miserable but terribly in love.

-- Tracy

Dear Tracy,

Do you want to get married, like, in life, or do you want to get married to him?

If it's the former, this "PG" relationship won't fit the bill -- and waiting isn't working, is it? See "Walk," above.

If it's the latter, consider this: what's it worth to you to be with him, period, no matter what your status? Can you live and love in this relationship right here, right now, complete and whole as is, without holding your breath for something to happen? If he's as mad about you as he says, then he could be like Tile Guy, above. As Dalma Heyn writes in the same article, "Unless the [person] you're waiting out is behaving badly, not just skittishly, remind yourself that you can wait as long as [s/he] can. And that trusting the process, and [him/her], and yourself, will let you enjoy these unencumbered months (or, yes, years) of courtship. You'll have plenty of time to be married."

Breakup Girl



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