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New Friends, Surprise Babies, and the “Rare Phenomenon”

1. I’ve been good friends with this dude for five years. I don’t want to be overly maternal or meddling, except: about five weeks ago, he was feeling mopey and went to a strip club after he got off work. He “struck up” a conversation with a young lady who was working there, and they discovered that they have a “lot in common!” Here is the sum of information he’s given me about her:

1) she became a stripper to avoid the government lien against her wages;
2) she has a government lien against her wages because she
3) dropped out of school and owes several thousand in student loans;
4) she dropped out of school because she went to jail;
5) she went to jail because she was a drug addict and
6) stole from several family members, neighbors and friends to support this habit;
7) when she got out of jail, she had a baby;
8) she doesn’t have any contact with the father, so no support or help from him;
9) she has no plan to get a job;
10) she wants to apply for disability because she’s “got a lot of problems!”

I swear I have no problem with her having gone to jail or being a former drug addict except:

1) they’ve only known each other for five weeks and
2) he’s already given her a lot of money and
3) helped her finance a new car and
4) agreed to move in with her and support her so she could be a “stay at home mom” and
5) they just announced their engagement on Facebook;
6) Every time he ever talks about her, he prefaces it with “I feel like we’re moving really fast” and
7) “All of her friends love me, and all of my friends are concerned about our relationship! Weird, right?”

I feel like a terrible person for being so distrustful. My boyfriend of three years, who has known this friend for 33 years, says to “let him handle this in his own horrendous way” since the friend hasn’t asked for help. Tell me what to do! Because to me, it sounds like “kidnap him for deprogramming” time.

1) We cannot always save our friends from the terrible mistakes they make.
2) Or, more precisely, we should avoid our own desire to save our friends from
3) every terrible mistake they will make. People pretty much do whatever the hell they want anyway.
4) Your concern about your friend’s new relationship will certainly register,
5) but he will still have to figure it all out on his own. 


10) You could rent a van, a few contractor bags and some duct tape.
9) You could take him to a secluded place and tie him to a chair in a very cold room.
8) Play loud music and dump cold water on his head and
7) take his favorite stuffed animal and shred it to pieces in front of him while he sobs.
6) Keep at this every few hours until he behaves in the manner you’d like.

Beyond kidnapping and reprogramming your friend, who sounds like an adult, maybe you should just wait for the universe to right itself on its own. Some things just have to be played out and no one can be saved from them. This may be part of some important life journey for your friend the dude. Strippers are people, too. And the problems of hers you list are not all crimes. We don’t live in a Hawthorne novel. I’ve lived with a stripper and some of them are positively delightful. And everyone’s got money problems. And former drug addicts and ex-convicts also deserve love. The best thing you can do at this point is wait it out. So far it’s just money, and it sounds like he’s happy. If you’re truly his friend, you want him to be happy. Take lots of pictures of this lady when you get the chance, and obtain samples of her DNA and fingerprints. If the guy wakes up in a bathtub with a scar where his kidney once was, you may be glad to have them. Certainly let him know of your concerns. But then you have to let him grow up and wither away on his own, like some kind of terrible chia pet.

2. So, I’m seeing a dude. We’re both seeing other people (and are both cool with that). It’s been a couple months. He lives with his ex as to more conveniently co-parent their daughter. I believe him that it’s over between them.

Hairpin turn — his ex just delivered their second child. I found out about it when the child was, oh, six hours old. He has since tucked tail, said he “didn’t know how to tell” me about it, and made efforts to make it up to me.

I want the partner-and-kids thing someday. I am not fully clear on whether he’s available for this, eventually. I’m here until next May (grad school), but I could stay. If I did, it would be for him. If not, I’d probably flee to one of the coasts (or wherever I found a job).  

These letters always do the thing where “the better he is at the start, the more dumped he is at the end.” He’s not perfect — he prefers odd haircuts, he’s not super emotionally expressive, and oh, more baggage than Beyoncé visiting South America. But he’s what I want. We’re wired the same, and thus he feels deeply familiar to me. I won’t say, yet, that I love him, but that’s around the corner. If I need to leave him, though, I need to do it sooner rather than later, right?

I always pre-emptively dump, as a rule. But I’m not exactly sure what exactly you’re in that requires dumping. You have a non-exclusive relationship with a guy who also happens to be having babies without telling you. If you want him so badly, why are you sharing him? I’m pretty sure you could find a dude with a better haircut and who is emotionally expressive with slightly less baggage somewhere else. I don’t know what the percentage of people being “wired the same” is, but probably moderately high. And this dude seems pretty busy having babies and dating other people. Sounds like you will have to dump him to win his love anyway. If you dump him and he then decides to be with you instead of living with his ex and dating other people, you may be onto something. If not, maybe you can make a go of it with someone else you’re seeing.

3. Dude here, but I feel like Ask a Dude is the only judgement-free way to get an honest opinion on this. Here’s the rub: sometimes, when I’m totally alone, I like to blast music and dance all around my house, sometimes in front of the mirror sometimes just around my room/living room/bathroom/kitchen. This has been a regular occurance for my entire adolescent/college/adult life, often when I’m excited about something or getting ready to go out. It just occured to me that maybe this isn’t a universal male trait. Is this weird/effeminate/unusual? Does A Dude do this?

P.S. I’m straight. Not sure if this is relevant info but I’ll throw it out there anyway.

Dude! I have a fake plastic guitar and sometimes pretend I am The Pixies and we’re the musical guest on SNL. In our own homes we are all rock gods and dancing fools. This sounds like a totally okay thing you don’t have to worry about. Kind of adorable in the abstract.

4. So I’ve been dating this guy for about six months now and it’s all great — he’s super intelligent, really fun, we get along really well and the sex is AMAZING. Like best-I’ve-ever-had, throw-me-down, do-me-ten-times amazing. With one eensy problem. Kissing is a rare phenomenon. We kiss each other goodbye when I leave in the morning, and while sometimes repeated, these are just pecks — no open mouth at all. We were making out pretty hardcore in the beginning but that has all faded away.

A couple weeks ago, I broached the issue. He asked, “What do you want to do?” I said, “I want to make out. We never do that.” His response? “Make out? No. Guys don’t want to do that.” I was like, WTF? My mind was blown. I had never heard such a crazy statement. In my bountiful experience, no guy has ever NOT wanted to make out. Kissing is not just for girls, right? In any case, this guy is apparently not into it. I explained that kisses are definitely a big part of the sexual experience for me — they heighten foreplay, turn me on. He made an effort to kiss a bit when we banged the next time, but that quickly dropped off again.

A caveat: I may have a halitosis problem (who doesn’t?), but I always brush my teeth before any kind of romantic encounter, so there shouldn’t be any sort of breath issues impeding our mouth-on-mouth action. My ex was one of the most amazing kissers in the world, and I certainly miss how turned on I get from a good makeout session. Because no matter how AWESOME the sex is, it would always be improved by kissing. Plus making out, in my opinion, is sometimes better than the sex act altogether. Please advise me.

Guys do love to make out. Making out is pretty great. Kissing is not just for ladies. You may have found a guy who is just not that into it. But on the plus side, you’ve got the Ten Times Over and Over Again kind of guy. You’ve spoken with him about it. But maybe you need to set up some kind of reward system. What are you willing to trade kisses for? Get one of those egg timers. And a minute of kissing gets _____ and 5 minutes of kissing gets ______ . I’ve never heard of anyone not liking kisses. But maybe he has a thing about kissing. It doesn’t sound like breath has anything to do with it. So you can

1) Get a van, duct tape, and contractor bags.
2) Bring him to a secluded place where you won’t be disturbed.
3) Tie him to a chair
4) and don’t let him leave until he likes kissing you a lot.

5. Okay, so I’ve been dating this guy for a little over a year and I have to say, I’ve never been really crazy about him. He’s very nice and respectful but he just doesn’t meet all of my requirements for a long term manfriend/potential husband. For instance, he doesn’t have anything resembling a career, let alone a full-time job, and he lives in his parents’ basement. 

I’m pretty much over it and want to end things, but here’s my problem: his parents bought us tickets to go on vacation with them. Not like, a little trip, either, but to a foreign country across the ocean. A week-long trip. They bought my plane ticket and everything, and the trip is planned for about two months from now. I’ve asked my friends and they all have different opinions. I don’t know whether I should break up with him now and pay his parents for the ticket and see if I could use the credit later, or if I should take the trip and break up with him after that. If I did the latter, I think everyone would feel like I used them, even though I didn’t ask for them to buy me the ticket! We talked about it one time and then I had found out they booked the trip. Help!

Dump him. Get out! They can bring some cousin or neighbor of theirs. Do this sooner rather than later. You’re unhappy, and going on a giant trip and having the dude propose to you in front of some golden fountain or whatever will be a miserable experience. Also faking it the whole time must be exhausting. Just dump this poor dude and let the healing begin.

Previously: Smanging, Semi-Secret Affairs, and the 88 Percent.

A Dude is one of several rotating dudes who know everything. Do you have any questions for A Dude? (300 word max, please.)

Photo by Rapha – Serrana/Flickr


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