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January 24

Ultimatums: Exit Strategy

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:01 am

UltimatumsWe’ll know six weeks from December 7, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I have been dating this guy for 6 months. Two months ago he got a really good job offer in another state and moved there. We decided that there is enough between us to keep the relationship going. I have visited him twice there and he has come here once. Beginning in January, we plan to see one another twice a month. But before that happens, we will have a separation of 6 weeks where we can only speak on the phone, email, or Instant Messenger. He is an outgoing person and feels he will go out with other people and the more time he spends around them, he will want to get to know them better, which can lead to dangerous situations. I have given him until the end of the six weeks to decide if he loves me enough to commit to me and move back here where we can build a life together. He says he loves me with all his heart, but not seeing me daily or almost daily is hard. I love him truly and am hurting so badly now and am just wondering if I am putting myself through unnecessary pain. What do you think?

— Davida

Dear Davida,

I hate to say this, but your IMee is already developing an exit strategy. He is entitled to move in order to take a really good offer. And he is entitled not to move back to be with you. Aaaand you are both more than welcome to attempt the long distance thing. But if he doesn’t know if he can go he can go even six weeks without stumbling into a “dangerous situation,” then no, sweetie, there is not enough between you. Which means, actually, that what you are putting yourself through isnecessary pain. Because: better a deadline then a drag-out. Despite how hard you’re hurting, you made a good call. Healing will not be instant, no, but yes, you sent the right message.

Breakup Girl


November 2

I want candy

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:12 am

Going the distance on November 9, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I really like this guy I met at a friend’s house this weekend! I think he likes me too (his friend kinda hinted he wanted to hook up with me… plus he gave me extra M&Ms for Halloween, more than anyone else!) He’s so perfect for me! The only problem — he lives about 5 hours away from me :( ! I think it could work anyway though, I’ll be up there almost every other weekend. What do you think? HELP…I really like this guy!!!

— Jasmine

Dear Jasmine,

M&Ms make friends, but they don’t make miles shorter. If you happen to be up there, sure, see what happens. But I hope and bet that you’ll find someone closer to home who’ll melt your heart.

Breakup Girl


September 11

Mixed signals or no signals?

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:13 am

Not getting the message on November 2, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

There is this girl whom I’ve known for quite awhile and have liked romantically but still haven’t got anywhere with her other than just being friends. To combine problems she lives in another state but I do see her on a regular basis. She is moving in the near future and I have suggested that she to move closer to me. Anyway, the problem I have is her mixed signals. I read your advice on just asking and I have tried hard to get a response. I have backed her into a corner (so to speak) to get a response about whether she wants me romantically or wants me to just to be friends. She doesn’t say anything either way. I always give her an opportunity to back out and she never does. I have been the “nice guy” without trying too hard like you suggested. I have tested the waters by sending her flowers and gifts without too much of a response either way. I do really like this girl but it seems to be a one sided deal and would like a reponse either way. If she doesn’t like me I would like to hear it from her, instead of always being accommodating. What do you suggest I do to win her over (if that’s possible) ?

— Joe

BG’s answer after the jump!


September 6

She’s invading our turf — online

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:21 am

Totally territorial on November 2, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

Recently I got to know a wonderful American guy over the Internet. We spent a while exchanging erotic e-mails while his then new girlfriend was out of the country. (In our defence, he was very unsure about the relationship with his girlfriend at the time, and I was foolishly convinced he was falling as deeply in love with me as I was with him).

His girlfriend came back to the US and they began to get closer. Then, he came over to Ireland on a sales conference and he and I actually met. We got on wonderfully and I really thought this was “it.” Notwithstanding the immense sexual tension between us, we didn’t do anything. I was glad of this, because he would have been a lesser guy than I thought he was if he had cheated on his girlfriend.

We discussed how inappropriate the erotic e-mails had been, and decided to go back to being just friends.

Here’s my quibble: we met on a Website bulletin board, which his girfriend has recently taken to frequenting. Now, she can read whatever she wants on this site, but I hate seeing her write in. I can cope with her in the realm of the theoretical, but really don’t want to read all about how she and he met and fell in love. I feel that she is straying into my turf, and am becoming increasingly territorial about it. (I should, of course, just not read the posts, but the masochist in me finds it hard to do).

Am I crazy, or is it understandable to have”our” Website, the way others have “our” tune?

And more to the point, can I/should I do anything about it?

Jealous in Ireland

BG’s response after the jump!


July 26

Good friendship is good enough

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:22 am

Unrequited on October 26, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

There’s a girl whom I really like that I met this year at college. She has a bf who is in the Navy who is thousands of miles away. I know she really cares for him, and loves him. I don’t want to come between something like that. I don’t want to be the jerk who breaks up a good thing. But I can’t help but feel the way I feel. When I’m around her, I feel so alive. At the same time though, she is a really good friend. I feel like I can open up to her about anything, but what I don’t feel is the same from her. How do I go about showing her I can be one of the greatest friends of her life without flirting with her, or making her feel I want a closer relationship out of it. I mean, I do, but right now all I really care about is strengthening our friendship.

Then maybe if things were meant to be, something will come out of if. If not, then I’m happy just being friends. My biggest concern is that once the semester is over and I don’t have any more classes with her, which I’m sure I won’t, it will be difficult finding reasons to call her or go to her place. Thanks.

— Hopeless in Hartford

Dear Hartford,

Okay. Don’t overdo it, but go ahead and do all the things that I always yell at the accursed Friend-Boys for doing. Do nice stuff for her. Do fun stuff with her; do not touch. Build her a loft, for all I care. And/But if you find yourself without a good reason to call, then don’t. Instead, find a reason to call someone else. And ask her out.

Breakup Girl


July 24

To Fling or Not To Fling?

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:54 am

An international incident from October 26, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I’m a 28 year-old single woman with a house, a garden, a couple cars, a PowerMac — the whole nine yards. At long last, I can finally say I’m as happy as I imagine clams must be, what with that handy calciferous shell and all. I mean, sure, I’d like a guy to bum around this wacky planet with, but it’s no big deal. For real.

Anyhow, around the first of the year I met this guy (he’s 31) from another continent on the Internet. I knew he was far, far away, so I didn’t take it seriously at all. But Around-the-World Boy had other emotional ideas, and I got a little swept along. After about four months he decided he wanted to come visit me. It seemed like a zany, romantic adventure and I was really looking forward to it — but he bailed at the last minute, saying he “didn’t feel the same all of a sudden.” For the first time in my life I heeded those big, red bells clanging away in my head, cut my losses right there, and told him I didn’t think we ought to write anymore. A teary, sorta embarrassed (I mean I met him on the *Internet*…) call to mom, a pint of coffee Haagen-Dazs, and a couple margaritas with the gals later I was already starting to forget it.

Flash forward a couple of months, and what should arrive but some mail from ATWB saying he’d been thinking about me. So I replied in a just-friendly kind of way, and we’ve been writing to each other a few times a month ever since. In the meantime, I’d made arrangements to use my frequent flier miles for a free overseas vacation. Since ATWB and I had once discussed meeting in the country I’m going to (I’ve wanted to go there for years), I debated not telling him that I was going because I didn’t want him to think it has something to do with him, which it honestly does not.



May 7

Not getting his drift

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:23 am

Apart of nothing from October 12, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I am 16 years old and recently my boyfriend moved quite far away. We were very much in love. When it came to the idea of breaking up, my boyfriend told me we weren’t really breaking up, we are “breaking apart.” Whatever that means. I’m really not sure. It will be a very long time before he comes back to visit and I don’t know if I should date ever. I still love him a lot and I know that he is the only guy I want to be with, but is it foolish to wait at such a young age. I know I should probably be discussing this with him but I’m not sure he understands either. Every thing is so confusing. I’d really like to know if I’m wasting my time and if I should even still call him my boyfriend. I hope “breaking apart” isn’t just a nicer term for breakup but I don’t understand the so-called difference. Do you think you could clear this up for me? I would really like to know where I stand.

— Isabella

Dear Isabella,

Never mind the difference between up and apart— I think the real keyword is away. As in “quite far.” I’m not saying you shouldn’t try and stay “together,” but it will be hard — especially if you don’t talk to each other honestly about what your intentions and expectations are. This situation is totally confusing! Your brain knows it’s foolish to wait, but your heart’s like, “….Waaaaaaaiiit!” So yeah, give yourselves a real talk — how does each of you feel about “seeing other people?” etc. — and give yourselves some time to get used to being apart, whatever your status. Even if the new key word turns out to be over, you’ll be down, but — I promise — you’ll get through. (How can I be so sure? Remember: he’s away, not in all of your classes. Waaaay easier to move on.)

Breakup Girl


September 29

Long-distance guy acting distant

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:18 am

Burying the lede on August 17, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

Ok…so I guess I have two questions. I was just reading your bit on long distance relationships so here goes. About two years ago I broke up with my boyfriend of almost three years. A year ago, I asked a complete stranger out. Completely random — I thought he was cute, he said yes — voila, lunch date, movie we hit it off quite well. I end up getting sick — as in having surgery sick. I move in with my parents — 3000 km away — to Washington state. He visits here twice, I visit there once. Each time he has been here, he has been very affectionate, very sweet — we’ve made travelling plans together etc. We both agreed before I moved, that a commitment, a formal relationship, would be ridiculous. Mainly due to the enormous distance and the fact that neither of us is ready. (I want to be single for a bit due to my tendency to merge with the other person and lose my personality — other story.)

Fine. Groovy. So, a few months ago, I went to visit him. At his house — he lives at home as he is getting into real-estate and has it easy. He behaved very, very differently. He was distant, not as affectionate. Didn’t talk about plans — wasn’t as nice even. Now, I had just come off of my period, so hey, I thought maybe it’s hormones right? All in my head? But, now that I’m home, and we talk on the phone every Sunday, I’m getting the same vibe. (He had email for awhile and in type, was his usual self before my visit self — and he was like that at the airport when I was leaving too! Grrr.) I know he hates the telephone, but prior to my visit, he didn’t let that stop him from being sweet. What is going on? A couple of my friends are convinced he is seeing someone else — and yet, we agreed on complete honesty. Is he seeing someone and is too uncomfortable to tell me? I would be fine and taking it one day at a time if there hadn’t been this strange shift in his behaviour towards me. Was it my being in his house? Here is this commitment-phobic person (he says he does not want to get hurt, bad things have happened in the past and he is just very nervous of getting close) and I’m in his bathroom brushing my teeth, talking to his mom and dad, chatting with his sister while he’s at work…did it scare him? freak him out? Any advice to stop this noise in my head would be wonderful!



September 20

Drifting away to college

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:11 am

falllogoCollege bound on August 17, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I am sixteen going on seventeen, and my only experience, really, with relationships, was an LDR that sorta faded away (he stopped emailing) until I realized (after 4 months!), with help from my best friend (an Angel!) that I needed closure, so I ended it. Then this summer I was going out with a guy (all of this is secret, of course, since my parents forbid even THINKING of guys That Way) who was perfect to me. Problem is, we’re heading off to different colleges. He broke up with me, kinda for that reason, and that’s cool. I felt REALLY bad for a few days, then sorta bad for two weeks, and now I’m kinda okay again. We became really close friends over the summer, and he — and I — would like to keep in contact after we head to college. You know, email, etc. He is special to me, as a friend, now (I realize the magic is gone now, Relationship-wise). He was my first a lot of stuff, from first REAL kiss (tongue) to … well, there’s a French word, demivierge. Most of it was a first for both of us. And I have no regrets. Is it impossible to really keep that kind of friendship going? I’m afraid it’ll be like the last time I tried to keep in contact with someone (LDR boy) — the gradual drifting away. Is that inevitable, or just my experience…? I’d appreciate a response.

— Better

A Better answer after the jump!


July 18

Long Distance Relationships

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:36 am

Although we do hear long-distance success stories, of course — the summer fling that lasted a lifetime, the professors with bi-coastal tenure, WOMAN WEDS ALIEN – it’s hard. And that’s the main — and not as obvious as it should be — thing you need to know about LDRs. They are hard. It does bear noting that the information age has made LDRs both easier and more difficult. Used to be you had to wait months for the steamship to deliver one letter, or fight with your siblings to get the horse for the weekend. Now, however, we’ve got the opposite problem: “Why didn’t you respond to my beep/email instantly?!” “If you loved me, you’d take the Concorde.”)

Anyway, the fact that LDRs are hard, like built-in hard, doesn’t mean there’s something wrong. People forget this. It’s like, “Dear Breakup Girl, my girl/boyfriend and I argue about phone bills, have trouble getting away to see each other because of work and expenses and feeling like we’re blowing off our other friends, and then when we do get together there’s all this quality- and quantity- pressure for it to be GREAT…are we fundamentally incompatible?!?!?!” Uh, not necessarily.

That’s the main thing. Other points on the map:


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