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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

452

Sensual Shampoos, UTIs, and a "Mutual Love of M*A*S*H"

1. I’m a 30-year-old woman who has lived internationally. My biggest issue is that I can’t seem to let exes go. My first long-term boyfriend was for four years. He took it very hard when I broke up with him and has said he still considers me the love of his life (though he has a long-term girlfriend). I am still in contact with his family, and when l last saw him (four years ago), I was inappropriately friendly.

My next relationship ended mutually after two years, but he also took the break up very badly. We are very good friends now (and have travelled together) and he has said on more than one occasion that he believes I am 'the one' (though he is also in a relationship). Many of our mutual friends think I will eventually come around and marry him.

After that, I had a six-month affair with a man I eventually broke it off with, because he was married (though seperated). We are sporadically in contact, and he has said he still believes I am his soulmate. I also had an ex-boyfriend contact me recently, as he had a major health issue, and let me know he still loves me and thinks we should get married. Recently I went through the hardest break up of my life with an unhealthy situation of a year. I ended it and he left the country, but we are still in at least weekly contact, and he has told me and our friends that he would like to sort himself out and then: marry me. This sounds utterly ridiculous, I know, but I seem to be that girl that guys realize they love after a break up (I'm also not really the ‘marriage and babies’ type). I recognize there's this yucky part of me that craves the attention and I keep them hanging on … though I'm really unsure what I'm getting out of it (the thought of my latest ex with other girls makes me physically sick). I would really like some advice on how I can let go of the need to have power over these people, because I do love them and recognize that what I’m doing is horrible not only to them but to the new women in their lives (and makes me feel like shit).

I need help/advice/guidance?

Help:

The “yucky part of you” that does “horrible things” is pretty normal. You are (maybe) caught in the dramacaine, doing this horrrrrrriiiibbbllleee (but titillating!) thing, but since you are horrible for doing horrible things, why stop doing a horrible thing? You were inappropriately friendly four years ago what? You like, have some insecurities and need attention? Girl, if “getting attention from dudes in love with you” were unpleasant, it would be called “dry heaving.” Keeping them in emotional rotation, girlfriends or no, is just some common, tacky nothingness. Doesn’t that somehow make you feel worse and more motivated to stop than thinking about how world-historically horrible you are? Here is a card for your wallet you can laminate and take out when you think this is a big deal:

Advice:

There is a lot of background here, like you are maybe trying to make me/yourself think there is something mysterious you're doing — what net of shimmering strands do your amber eyes cast around their souls; you did not ask to wield this power and it weighs heavy in your alabaster bosom. But then your actual question nugget is super interesting and perceptive: “how do I let go of the need.” And it’s really almost irrelevant if you love them or want them to be happy because hey, needing to be the boss of people whose bosses we aren’t is a good way to turn into a serial killer (and then the thing you did would ACTUALLY be horrible). This is the thing where you need to develop other deep-rooted sources of self-worth, you know that, right? I dunno, take a class, go to therapy, get religion? Have a face accident that forces you to discover the true meaning of beauty? Show us your tits? My sense of self-worth mostly comes from going to Sephora and letting the makeup people tell me I have nice lashes these days, and I am ahead of the game, I think. How do we stop needing things, though? I think the main way is that eventually they disappear and you look around and are not dead, and say, I guess I didn’t need that. Try to imagine a future in which you don’t have that power (it is coming, truth) and are not dead, and maybe loosening your grip a bit now will not seem so scary.

Guidance:

I am your guide, follow me! This has also happened to me four times, although only intra-nationally. One was this guy we called dirtyfoot, one was my ex boyfriend’s best friend who then was my boyfriend for a bit because he was my ex boyfriend’s best friend, one was this other dude, and one was this other other dude. I got so power-mad I was just meaner and meaner to them to see what they would put up with until one day they just gave up and got the fuck over me. I think the last one I made plans with to have dinner like three nights in a row and flaked twice and then the third time texted “not coming just met this other guy at a bar and my plan is to choke on his dick” and he texted back “ur a horrible person i will not speak to you anymore.” And then he didn’t.

2. I've been going to the same hair stylist for more than 10 years. Ever since the first time he cut my hair I have been utterly devoted to him. Normally when I go for a cut there are a couple of people working who only do shampoos, but when I arrived at my last appointment, my stylist was waiting for me at the check-in area and he took me over to the sinks himself. He proceeded to give me the most amazing, intimate hair-washing and scalp massage of my damn LIFE. Maybe even the best time anyone has ever touched me in my life. I can't stop thinking about it, despite the fact that we are both in committed relationships. I feel like a line has been crossed from a client relationship to something that borders on sexual. Am I being crazy? Should I address this next time?

Cerealously, I am trying to imagine how that conversation would go down in any way that were not dreadful. Whaaaaaaat in the world would you say? Play that tape forward, bunny. Best case scenario, you alienate the guy who cuts your hair, and then he’ll fug you up and you’ll never get good touches again. Worst case scenario, he's like, "damn right it was sexual," and you guys start boning and your partner leaves you and eventually hairguy gets disenchanted and lazy and starts fucking up your haircuts and you never get good touches again. Go get you your sexy hairwash. There are plenty of places where we have to be like BOUNDARIES, but possibly sexy hair washes you actually enjoy are really not one of them. If he cops a feel, bite his arm. In either a sexy or not sexy way, depending on your plan.

3. Is it okay to be mad at my boyfriend when I have a UTI? Is it okay to ask him to help pay for it? And is it appropriate to want to be treated extra special when I get a UTI? Not like, fancy dinner, but like, maybe bring me some ice cream, or flowers or something?

Yo is he rubbing dirt on his cock before he puts it in you.tumblr.com? Then no, it’s not crazy to be mad at him. Otherwise, yeah, it kind of is, but sometimes people have crazy feelings and that is okay. Just keep your anger secret. Don’t actually give him a hard time about it, or he’ll start washing some hot wench’s hair and we all know where that leads.

That said, some kind of special treat while you're sick is the No. 1 reason to live with another human. Sometimes when people don’t get UTIs, though, you have to tell them "hey, these suck, please be nice to me?" And then they usually are, but not if you're being a total bitch because you're angry at them for their dirty penises.

4. My question pertains to an old beau of mine. I am happily married as of March 31 this year and ladies and gents, I caught myself a winner! Rest assured my husband is as lovely you might hope for another human being and I am in love with him from his nose to his toes.

A week or two ago I randomly came back into contact with a guy I dated for a while. We dated post a messy break up from a long term relationship and I wasn't very steady on my feet. He is lovely and we had a very good time together but ultimately I broke it off because I was a bit messed up in the head and worried about hurting him. I met my husband a few months later and things started to blossom with him. The old beau had been keeping in contact because I think we both thought that we'd get back to each other one day when I was less of a train wreck. When things started to get serious with my husband-man, I conveniently was able to set up the old beau with this awesome lady that I had managed to meet. I knew they would get along splendidly and they managed a two year relationship out of it! They split amicably earlier this year after she had to move away for university. They still keep in touch.

Anyway, the point is he and I went out for drinks last night. We had an hilarious time, playing pub trivia and bonding over our mutual love of M*A*S*H and to be honest, it felt like we were on a date. We just get along so well and even though nothing remotely romantic happened, I felt a slight betrayal of my husband somehow. At the end of the night we awkwardly hugged and I pretty much left on a lovely high. Now I am not actually feeling regret or pondering 'what if' I am more curious as to whether it is plausible to maintain a friendship with this man? I really want to and I am really keen for him to become friends with my husband and a part of our friend group but I am concerned that my admiration for him might make my husband feel uncomfortable and that even though he knows I am married that I could somehow be leading him on. I do have plenty of platonic male friends. One of my closest/dearest friends is a straight male. I guess I am worried because he was an old flame that flickered out and what we had ended on wonderful terms and … what am I meant to do, lady?

(For reference I am 26 although I feel about seven years younger coming to you with this probably-non-issue).

Really, this all turns on whether or no you have lived internationally. If so, you are playing with fire. If not, you are okay. Also, nose to toes? I think that unless you also love your husband’s forehead and scalp this marriage is going to be a painful slog.

So. You dated a guy for a bit but it wasn’t a huge thing then it was a long time later and everything was cool, but you talked about M*A*S*H and think he is great and you want him to meet your husband and your friends but it might make your husband uncomfortable? Okay. This turns on two variables.

(1) Is your husband a jerk?

If yes, he might have a problem with this and give you a hard time about it.

If no, he will either be like, cool, new friend! or will be like, this is a little weird but I recognize that is probably my own ish so I am going to hang back. I dunno, I guess you get some brownie points for reassuring him? I mean I would not even, why make a thing out of something that isn’t a thing.

(2) Are you ACTUALLY into fucking this guy?

If yes, hey, nbd, we gets all sorts of thoughts, including about fucking people, they don’t have to mean a whole lot, don’t take a thought about fucking him as an indication that you have Major Shit to figure out. If you don’t listen to that and start thinking your ideas mean something and do start fucking this guy, dude, don’t make your husband hang out with him, that is mean though I would watch that porn.

Also I fucking hate “leading on.” No one is leading anyone on unless they're like, meet me at place X to fuck and then don’t show. People toe the line between flirting and inviting in different ways, and it’s a bunch of different lines anyway, and just own your own arousal and deal. Not that you didn’t. This is just a rant. L8r!

Previously: Jealousy Mutations and the 2.5 Day Game.

A Lady is one of several rotating ladies. Do you have any questions for A Lady?



452 Comments / Post A Comment

PatatasBravas

UTIs make me mad at everyone, indiscriminately, but madder at some people more than others. If I want to stuff the pen and the entire attached chain up the nose of the annoying/disgusting/infuriatingly stupid person in front of me in the line at the post office, and you want to quietly seethe at your partner, it's all good.

As long as we don't actually take it out on others. Hah. No pen murders.

faience

@PatatasBravas This is apropo of nothing but when I was researching 16th century kaolin clay pipes and their manufacture, I found a disturbing case where one pipe maker murdered his rival by jamming a clay pipe stem into his eye. The man lingered for a month before dying. But, yes, sometimes I understand his rage especially when a UTI decides my kidneys are next.

halfheartedyoga

@PatatasBravas once my roomate in college said she had to do SOMETHING ELSE before fetching me cranberry juice to soothe my irritated urethra. I don't think I've ever been so pissed (!ha!) off at somone. People who have never had a UTI cannot possibly understand the mindfucking rage.

Titania

@PatatasBravas I was once walking from CVS to my apartment, DYING to take those magical little UTI pills, and got stuck behind two flamboyant gay men who were walking very slowly and taking up the whole sidewalk. I completely lost my temper knowing that I was mere minutes away from pain relief except for this blockade, and shoved past them, walking quickly. Behind me, I hear some finger-snapping and nasty comments, and see out of the corner of my eye one of them doing a dead-on impersonation of my "gotta-pee-wanna-kill-myself" walk. Now...love the gays, love my gay neighborhood, but COMPLETELY flipped, turned around, and explained to them that I was in excruciating pain from a UTI, needed to get home to take meds, and they should thank their lucky penises they would never experience the thing that was causing me to walk that way. Dead silence on the street. Murmured apology. I went on my merry speed-walking way home, feeling fully like the crazy person I resembled.

saul "the bear" berenson

@PatatasBravas Is everyone using Uristat or one of the other lovely over-the-counters for their UTI's? I suffered for a long time before realizing they were even available. Now if/when I get one of the (dreadful) symptoms, I immediately take a uristat and the symptoms go away for long enough for me to get to the doc. That and drinking All The Water helps a lot.

@Titania I may have taken those meds in the vestibule of Duane Reade last week. No walking home for this gal, nope. And it was the 34th street one, so it was an extra-classy experience.

PatatasBravas

@all I LOVE OUR URINARY-INFECTION-INSPIRED RAGE.

beeline96

@PatatasBravas Okay, my top 3 UTI stories, as requested!

#1 is the worst. I totally blame it on then-bf's dick-dirt, regardless of the real (FOREVER UNKNOWN cause). I was in France. It was my first UTI ever... so I didn't realize what was going on. Until I landed in the hospital. On the day of a hospital strike. With my roommate, who only spoke French, but - thank goodness - seemed to know it was a UTI when every other medical professional thought it was 'bad gas'! And then they put me in a Pepto-Bismol pink room with a 90+ year old lady who would talk during the night. As in... she would speak to her relatives and God and ask them to take her "home". (ETA: I speak French, but... not the word "bladder", etc.)
(ETA2: One of the doctors said, in French, "She'd be pretty if she wasn't wearing a hospital gown." Despite my sleepy and drugged state, I could understand people! GEE WHIZ.)

#2 was during vacation in Scotland. Wizened to UTIs, I drank a lot of cranberry juice and took OTC stuff from the drugstores (Hallelujah for everything being in English!) It didn't go away, though, so I asked the hostel people for a recommendation and they sent me to the hospital. I took a double-decker bus to the hospital and back, holla! Then, not only did I get treated by the HOTTEST doctor I've ever met (complete with swoony accent!), the visit and the antibiotics were free! ("Are you suuuuure I don't have to pay?" "Positive. Have a nice day!")

[As an aside, I've since been diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis, which is a crazy bladder condition... look it up, and also don't make fun of me for running to the bathroom at LEAST every hour!]

#3 --back on home turf-- is when I got a UTI following surgery. I'm not exactly sure how I got it (ok, I have a few ideas, cough) as I'd been chugging water up until 11:59 PM the day before, then couldn't drink until after surgery was over (but I'd been on intravenous antibiotics!??!?). Surgery went extremely well, though, so I was super pissed to come out fine up top and in pain down below. Not cool, body. Not cool.

paperbuttons

@PatatasBravas Yay pee pee stories!
Besides the one that turned into a kidney infection (omg sucked+ permanant scarring) my worst was actually one that occurred during a California to New York road trip with a boyfriend who realized just after Utah that he didn't really want to be my boyfriend anymore. The symptoms set in around Kansas, but instead of trying to find an urgent care center, we pushed through, me chugging water and cranberry and stopping along the highway to pee every hour or so. It was pretty advanced by the time we finally made it to Brooklyn and found what we later learned was known as "the worst hospital in New York." The wait was six hours to get my Cipro. All around us people writhed in pain, sometimes literally on the floor. In the bathroom there was shit smeared on the wall and no soap or toilet paper. The WB was on in the background.
The next day the boyfriend really wanted to do a city-wide bike ride with his pack of friends. The only bike they had available for him was a tandem. "Which means you'll have to come too," he said. So I rode around on a tandem all day through Brooklyn with a urethra of fire, behind a dude who was about to break up with me. Then I flew back home to California and cried a lot. I was 21.
Now I drink allllll the cranberry.

mustelid

@beeline96 Best UTI story that I have ever witnessed. My friend and I were at Pitchfork and she had a UTI so she was taking Uristat until she could get home and see a doc for antibiotics. So at one point she's gotta piss, and I had to as well but the portapot lines were just ridiculous. So we're like, it's cool, we'll squat behind these tents, we're wearing skirts. No biggie. So we do, but she accidentally peed on her foot, which sometimes happens. But her pee was Uristat orange and it totally stained her foot. Poor darling.

I ended up with poison ivy on my bits after that weekend, but I'm not sure from which time I peed outside (three times that I remember).

PatatasBravas

These are amazing war stories, comrades.

One time on vacation, we woke up to discover that my partner had food poisoning and I had a UTI (...evidence of an interesting night before) and let me tell you the Great Bathroom Battle of the Hotel Room was a violent and upsetting one at the time.

eiffeldesigns

@PatatasBravas This UTI bullshit is suddenly relevant to my life. In all my 33 years I never, ever, ever had one. Until this month. And I've had two! TWO!

First one I had to call the urgent health care thing at my doc's office to get an emergency prescription for antibiotics since I was about to hop on a plane and go to Detroit for several days. Things that are not fun: flying with a UTI. Christ.

And I'm currently dealing with number two right now. The nurse came in and said, "Let me guess. New boyfriend?" Sheepish response from me, "Uh, yeah. He's new. And fun." She essentially said too much sexy times will increase the odds of a UTI, even if I am diligent about peeing right after. **sigh** I've now purchased cranberry pills and the unsweetened juice for future prevention techniques.

Mariajoseh

@PatatasBravas THIS ALL SO RELEVANT TO MY INTERESTS! since...I have a UTI. For the second time. In two months. I actually just e-mailed my 2 doctor friends to ask for help because the meds are not really working and they said I should go to a specialist but I just moved and I have no idea where to go. I miss my mom.

I do kinda hate the boyfriend and he keeps on being super nice and I keep wanting him to die, while also loving him very much.

I think I'm going to die. I hate this.

Mariajoseh

@Kirs yeah. New boyfriend here too! after 3 years of no sex. My body hates me :(

eiffeldesigns

@Mariajoseh I've been a complete slut this summer, so I've no idea why this is the first time I've ever had one. But they are not fun.

I will, however, say that I think they are not nearly as awful as yeast infections. I was dating this guy who, I swear, was the cause of multiple yeast infections in a few short months. I wanted to die, die, die. I'll take pain over itching any day of the week.

stonefruit

@Kirs It's extra fun when you get both at the same time. "Here, take antibiotics! To treat the one issue! Just ... make sure to eat lots of yogurt, because the antibiotics will absolutely make the other issue worse."

Thank all that is good and holy that this only happened to me once.

eiffeldesigns

@stonefruit Oh my god. Both at once has got to be hell on earth. I can't even imagine. **drinking cranberry juice and eating plain yogurt from now until forever**

tea tray in the sky.

@Moxie I have a UTI RIGHT NOW AARGH. I'm taking Ural, which is a powder you mix in with your water. It's HORRIBLE. It's like, fizzy lime, which sounds good, but also super sodium-y and kinda bitter.

Sharna Pax

@PatatasBravas UTIs bad, Interstitial Cystitis THE WORST. I have it too and have to get on my soapbox and say that going for physical therapy changed. my. life. Seriously, it changed me from feeling-like-I-have-a-UTI-all-the-time to usually-only-feeling-like-that-twice-a-month.

For all the ladies with new boyfriend-related UTIs, my NP once told me that using plenty of lube is the best way to avoid UTIs (in conjunction with peeing/washing afterwards). Apparently it forms a kind of sticky barrier that the bacteria get stuck in? Anyway, it might help!

tea tray in the sky.

@tea tray in the sky. It also may be relevant that I'm currently living internationally.

NiceDress

I concur that UTIs are the worst, and are definitely a reason for your bf/partner/everyone to be nice to you, and anyone who doesn't think so has clearly never had one. I made it through the first 23 years of my life without getting one, and then got one when I was in freaking rural China. I've gotten them regularly ever since, despite my vigilant prevention tactics (cranberry pills, lots of water, peeing after sex, etc.). I did have the UTI/yeast infection combo once too... ugh. In addition to making me want to rip my bladder out, each infection leaves my wallet ~$150 lighter (antibiotics are cheap, but they always make me do an exam and urine test even though I clearly know the problem, which is the expensive part).

For what it's worth, a doctor told me that using more lube during sex can be helpful so there's not so much friction rubbing evil UTI-causing bacteria into your urethra, especially when using condoms as they tend to result in more friction. Lube isn't usually an issue for me though, so I dunno?

He also said that for some women it's just the way we're built, i.e. our bodies are shaped in a way that make us more susceptible to these infections.

I feel like it happens more with new-ish partners, especially if I haven't been having sex regularly. But what am I supposed to do, just never have sex again with anyone ever?! Sigh/end rant.

doil

YOU GUYS
WHAT
D-MANNOSE
D-mannose
D-mannnoooossseeee!!!! Oh my god why isn't this mentioned anywhere on the page.
It is an indigestible sugar that really actually does what it is supposed to and clears urinary tracts of E-coli which is probably the number one cause of my and everyone's UTIs especially the sex-y ones.
I hear in America you ladies can buy it at the 'drug store' but I am from Australia and buy it here:
http://www.iherb.com/D-Mannose
and honestly, I wake up with a horrible UTI, I take four of these puppies, 2 hours later I feel fine (FINE!!!!) and by midday normal, keep it up for a couple of days. I went from having like 8 a year to maybe 1 in the last year?
Do it! Oh my god.

contrary

@doil oo ooo oooo! Trying this (after asking my doc if it's cool). I've never heard of this and I get UTIs all of the freaking time.

hotdog

@doil I WAS JUST ARRIVING TO SAY THIS!!!! There's a product I take with cranberry and uva ursi as a preventative, and it works WONDERS, also...take one if you're feeling 'iffy' or if you've had a lot of sex:

http://www.vitanica.com/supplements_08.htm

CRANSTAT. It's so good.

Mannose D if you have repeat offenders, or a full blown infection. It's wonderful, too. Trust, unless you have naturopathic docs, they will probably be apprehensive about these things, but they work and they get you out of the antibiotic cycle.

happy go lucky scamp

@tea tray in the sky. URAL is horrible but the best.

My lovely bloke went to the chemist to buy me some once because we were at a concert and I was in pain and it was horrible. But he is so lovely.

We often wonder about the cleaners who would have found a whole bunch of beer cans and an empty box of ural. (I transfered the sachets into my handbag, but the box didn't fit).

I always ALWAYS have at least one sachet on me now. At all times.

contrary

@hotdog @doil Okay, I hope you guys change my life. I just ordered D-mannose and kind of want to know how to find a naturopath because antibiotics have been a wee bit terrible to me.

tea tray in the sky.

@sparkles Sweet, good to know it works. Question though, do you know if it's cool to take it with juice rather than water? I feel like a sweet juice would cut the saltiness, but I don't know if mixing it with sugar would be detrimental. It's just sooooo hard to take it with water because it's sooo grooooooss.

anitabath

@PatatasBravas Also, Swiss Vitamins' CranMax! All other cranberry pills must bow before CranMax. Seriously, I was getting UTIs every few weeks for about 4 years and it's now been three years since I found CranMax and three years since I've had a UTI!

harebell

@Mariajoseh Did you see the people downthread talking about d-mannose?

Just wanted to chime in that it really, really does work -- you put it in water and drink it several times a day and the d-mannose sugar takes up the space that the bacteria need if they're going to give you a UTI. It's a little expensive, but it has worked better for me than antibiotics, esp. during a time of repeat infections. They sell it at Whole Foods where it is a bit pricey) in addition to natural food stores.

Mariajoseh

@harebell yes. thank you. I am Mexican, and I have no idea if I can get it here, but it's goo to know! :)

FoleySparrow

@doil - Yes on the D-Mannose! Do it everybody. The way it was explained to me was that D-Mannose 'grabs' the nasty little E Coli bugs and drags them kicking and screaming out of your urethra. Somehow the structure of the stuff has an attractant grabby quality for the bacteria and clears them out of your tract.

I can definitely attest to the quick effects. Within a few hours, I'm usually able to at least hold a brief conversation with another human being rather than scream in pain, moan, grunt, smash other's faces, and constantly demand access to a bathroom. Within a few days, it completely clears the UTI. Since I found D-Mannose, I've only had to go on antibiotics one time in the past 4 years.

Cranberry is awesome too. It works by making your urinary tract really really slippery. So the bacteria can't latch hold and start multiplying. They just slide out. Which is why it's an excellent preventative. But if you're in pain, skip the jar of juice and go straight to the super-concentrated pill form. Get the highest concentration you can. So much more worth it.

D-Mannose combined with super-concentrated craberry supplements for the Win.

I've had 10+ yrs being dogged by vicious, recurring, wicked UTIs. I've missed job interviews due to UTIs (such a bad idea, but when you're in the bathroom weeping in pain it's hard to go any place). I've scowled and hobbled in pain through more classes, presentations, work meetings, and dates than I can possibly remember. I was on antibiotics once for a full year. There's no possible way that could have been good for me. I finally did whatever I could to get off the antibiotic cycle.

bookbike

HAIRPIN ADVICE SHOULD ALWAYS BE FUNNY AND THESE COLUMNS ARE SO MUCH BETTER NOW AND I LOVE IT AMEN.

City_Dater

@bookbike

AGREE.

Scandyhoovian

I just laughed really, really hard at "If he cops a feel, bite his arm." That was a lovely laugh.

Also, if someone isn't hopping mad at a UTI, I don't know what kind of non-irritating barely-a-thing UTI they have. Any UTI I have ever had has induced "I can't concentrate because of my awful nethers situation" rage from the moment I wake up and am reminded that I have it to the moment I fall asleep again that night, until the UTI clears up and everything is fine again. I try not to spew it all over everyone around me (the rage, not the UTI ...lol), but you never can tell with these things.

PatatasBravas

@Scandyhoovian That line made me bark out a laugh too!

Megasus

@Scandyhoovian Oh man, for like the first two years of my relationship, my ex used to give me the WORST UTIs. Like, I had to go to the doctor because I would be in the bathroom all day/curled up in a ball. And then I dunno, I got used to his penis or he was cleaner about it or something and I stopped getting them. He did have to take me to the doctor once I was in such agony so maybe that helped.

Hellcat

@Scandyhoovian I think I must be one of the lucky non-hopping-mad UTI-getters! I've had only two ever and both never escalated past annoying in a tickly, "do I or do I not actually have to pee?" way. I'm sorry!

PatatasBravas

@Hellcat Don't be sorry! Rejoice in your glorious, magnificent luck! Seriously that is an amazing superpower, the ability to have small and infrequent UTIs.

(blah blah prevention and treatment tips covered elsewhere in the comments, those are all well and good, but UTIs are a special hell and you should totally celebrate this superpower of yours!)

Hellcat

@PatatasBravas After reading everything here, I seriously am celebrating. I really never knew that they were typically more than mildly irritating! And I don't want to learn the hard way either!

And now I know what to say on Thanksgiving, should anyone want to go around the table and say what we're thankful for.

Megasus

@Hellcat I know someone who just got a kidney infection from one, so nope, not always a minor irritation!

Hellcat

@Megano! YIKES! It just gets worse and worse.

Now, can I highjack for a moment in the hope of some knowledge? Has anyone gone off the pill (I'd say maybe two months ago in my case) and then gotten a period every two weeks or so? Is this just my system saying, "You fucked with me for three years, now it's your turn," like some kind of nature three-fold vengeance thing? I'm not in any serious pain or anything (though two weeks ago, the cramps were extra-crampy), just a bit achy. And annoyed.

Better to Eat You With

@Scandyhoovian I am really impressed that you can sleep with a UTI. I had them chronically when I was a kid. It makes me shudder just to think about it.

Better to Eat You With

@Hellcat My GYN told me this is normal for a few months, until your body self-regulates.

TARDIStime

@Hellcat Visit a trusted Gyno.
There could be all kinds of issues, though - did you have wacky periods before you went on the pill? Are you taking the pill to counteract crazy periods or just for contraceptive purposes?

I kind of hate that the pill is used to treat issues with the reproductive cycle because doctors are treating the symptoms, not the cause (though the symptoms should be treated, that shit is debilitating) - I doubt the pill is fucking with you just because; there's probably something else going on.

Hellcat

@Better to Eat You With Thanks. I figured that was the case but couldn't find anything all that solid online; there were either more or fewer things going on in the scenarios I read, when all I wanted was basically what you said (and I know this might make me a terrible lady but I didn't want to call the doctor because he'd say come in and I don't wanna).

Hellcat

@TARDIStime When I was in high school, I was on it for really painful (but not irregular) periods--headaches, cramps, vomiting, etc. Since then, I've been on and off it, sometimes with a couple of years in between. Even during the off-the-pill times, the cramps, etc., never came back the way they had been, but I also don't recall getting two periods per month after coming off the meds either. There might have been some slight irregularities, but this is my third period since the first week of September (and the one two weeks ago was actually pretty painful and nauseous; today is not great either but not like that). I figured I'd go another two weeks and then call the doctor. I just don't want to go if this is normal because I am the biggest baby about the gyno; man, do I hate it (to the point where he prescribes Ativan for me to take before I come in). Stupid lady business!

LordHennyson

@Better to Eat You With UGH I had the exact same thing, was on a daily low-dose antibiotic for YEARS and still got them. Now of course I'm super prone to them when sleeping with someone but then the person I was sleeping with longest was also a dirty definite-non-penis-washer. Definitely all his fault.

allofthewine

L1: Stop talking to exboyfriends, especially if they still like you and especially especially if they have new girlfriends. You like attention because it feels good (we all do), but you are hurting other people by engaging in this behavior.
L2: Keep it a fantasy. He was probably not trying to bone you when he was washing your hair, i.e. doing his job.
L3: UTIs can come from a lot of reasons so it's not fair to blame your bf. Idk what A Lady was going on about dirt in penises, but you can get one from condoms, man stuff (wink) and tampons. So it's almost certainly something that you had a consensual role in. You should educate yourself! See here: http://www.medicinenet.com/urine_infection/page3.htm#what_causes_a_urinary_tract_infection_uti Also, splurge and go for Monostat; is it worth $10 to spend fewer days feeling gross? Yes. Also, you're allowed to ask your bf for ice cream, but I wouldn't expect it or feel as though he was indebted to you because of the UTI.
L4: If you love your future husband, you need to forsake all others, period. (Unless you have some sort of open thing going, but that is a MUTUAL decision.)

Scandyhoovian

@allofthewine Are you saying "forsake all others" as in all male friends ever? Because that seems, frankly, ridiculous. I'd say forsake anything that makes you feel those questiony-uncertain feelings about your situation, but if it's flatly platonic I don't see why someone cannot maintain a friendship.

That said, L4 seems to be treading the questiony-uncertain lines a bit, so...

allofthewine

@Scandyhoovian It sounds like she still wants to bone her exfling, so yeah, I think she should explicitly forsake this dude. She is allowed to have male friends (and it sounds like she can/does from the question), but this lady (and probably the dude) is probably not really looking for a new friend, if you know what I mean.

etheline.

@Scandyhoovian Maybe not all male friends ever, but probably the ones you are secretly in love with - as I suspect is the situation with LW4.

Scandyhoovian

@allofthewine Ah, yeah, I was just confused by your original response! I totally agree with you there.

bessmarvin

@allofthewine I think you meant Azo, not Monistat. Just FYI for the UTI-suffering ladies out there!

allofthewine

@bessmarvin ugh, so many edits to be made! :( Yes, I meant that.

swirrlygrrl

@allofthewine Okay, @bessmarvin just chimed in to say what I was going to say.

And then ask if Monistat was different in to US, just in case it was something we didn't have in Canada.

Also, my question to UTI lady: how nice are you to him when he is ill? I'd have a calm conversation about that, phrasing it like, "I like to do this for you when you are under the weather, because I feel like it shows you that I care and want to take care of you (even just in little ways). And I would really like it if you would do the same for me."

And also, does he know you have a UTI? Are you telling him? Maybe he just thinks you are grouchy and have a small bladder.

RogueState

@allofthewine
of course I am extremely nice about it. Come on! He's my boyf, after all. He is very sweet and I love him very much, he just doesn't understand what is happening.
And I am fully educated about it, thankyouverymuch. My doc has given me the option of abstaining indefinitely or taking a pill after every time the P goes in the V. I just want to have him be a part of this so I don't feel like I am battling his bacteria like a Spartan when we could work together to keep my urethra infection-free.

PS I will take your comments as loving suggestions, but I am fully educated about urinary tract infections. Avo is only for pain, and does not cure the issue. I have to take time off work to go to the doctor, have my pee checked for nitrates/white blood cells to determine infection, have the doc say "yup, UTI", then go to the pharmacy and purchase the antibiotics. It's inconvenient, painful, and expensive. Having to endure this all on my own when it is something that my partner has an impact on is frustrating.

MilesofMountains

@RogueState If you're getting these that regularly, can you ask your doctor to prescribe a couple doses of antibiotics? I'm sure at this point you've had enough you won't mistake something else for a UTI. I've had a doctor do something similar with anti-fungal pills for recurring yeast infections.

allofthewine

@RogueState hey OP! okay, well, the fact that this is more of a chronic/recurring thing is different! Yes, he should be more understanding and considerate than if it was a one-off UTI.

And in the same vein as someone else said here, this A Lady is not really answering things in a medically appropriate/totally helpful way, so I figured it couldn't hurt to give (a tiny bit of) info. Of course you are informed.

Sorry for anything that sounded harsh!

saul "the bear" berenson

@RogueState I used to get chronic UTI's too, and they are the worst!!! Thankfully they seem to have subsided. Just in case you haven't already thought of these, here are some things that helped me: 1. Drink lots of water regularly, don't get dehydrated. 2. Pee right after, always (like within 10 minutes, not militantly IMMEDIATELY RIGHT NOW) 3. Don't drink too much wine or eat candy! This was a big discovery. Sugar is the enemy. Tons of salt isn't great either. 4. Make sure dude's junk is clean pre-messing around. Have him give it a rinse. No soap, that leads to its own problems. Wash with dreams and wishes only.

christonacracker

@RogueState as someone with the same issue, just go with the pill after every PinV, and you'll stop having to actually go in to the doctor all the time. It sounds horrible, but omg quality of life is so much better now.

RogueState

@christonacracker this is what I'm doing now. It sucks! I wish boys had a pill they had to take all the time

RogueState

@Moxie ahhhh I am so glad that someone else has this problem. I have been to the acupuncturist, a naturopath and a primary care doc and I still get em!! I think cutting out sugar is a good thing for everyone to do anyway and also a very hard thing to do but I am 100% game for trying anything. Is it regular sugar like candy that's the issue or everything, including fruit and bread?

saul "the bear" berenson

@RogueState I eat fruit and stuff too, I don't go crazy, but cutting out super sugary stuff definitely helps. Excessive wine is troublesome, probably because it is sugary and also dehydrating. But you raise an interesting point with bread - have you ever tried going gluten-free? I know people are crazy about that as a whole issue, but you might want to give that a go, for like 2 weeks, and see if it helps. Who knows what the problem is, might as well try it and see what happens. I don't have a gluten allergy, but I do find that when I'm gluten-free I have more energy, sleep better, and have fewer food cravings. Worth a shot maybe?

Also, are you using condoms, and if so, could you have a weird latex allergy or something?

RogueState

@Moxie no condoms! IUD ftw!!

Gluten-free? No wine or sugar? Geez :( I know you're right, I think it's just that how sad is my life without these things? But how happy is my life without UTIs? Probs very happy, plus, less stress with my bf.

RationalHatter

@allofthewine UTIs can come from a lot of reasons... but they can also be caused by your bf. I used to have the exact same (recurrent, horrible) UTI problem that RogueState had. Then I broke up with my then boyfriend. And while I've had plenty of sex in the years since, I have had not had a single, solitary UTI. So yeah, there's a chance that it's his deal. Particularly if he's uncircumcised, there may need to be some kind of conversation about daily hygiene and so forth. (Per my doctor: while there's no clinical study on the relationship between male hygiene and female UTIs, it can't hurt and uncircumcised men have been shown to pass on more infections than circumcised).

RogueState, what if you asked him to take you to the doctor? And then perhaps ask as part of your appointment if you can bring the bf back to get a little info from the doctor about what his role in causing this is, and what he can do to try to prevent it.
And if it turns out there's no recourse except for you taking a pill every day, well, he needs to know that he should be appreciative that you're still willing to have sex with him.

RogueState

@RationalHatter THIS IS WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR. thank you so much.

antilamentation

@Moxie I've had good results from peeing right after, in terms of preventing UTIs. So I would definitely recommend that suggestion.

saul "the bear" berenson

@RationalHatter Seconded. The call is coming from inside the penis.

beeline96

@RogueState Have you spoken to a urologist about Interstitial Cystitis? There's this whole list of things I'm not supposed to eat/drink because they a) cause pain or b) cause me to live in the bathroom but aren't actually caused by UTIs... the list includes alcohol and chocolate, though, which I've ignored. ;)

Leanne

@roguestate I am right there with you. After I had 6 in 2 months, I scheduled a visit with my friendly urogynecologist. I had to take macrobid pre-coitus (hee, that was what it said on the bottle!) for a few weeks, and when that didn't help, I went for several really fun bladder exams that involved all kinds of catheters. Honestly though it was worth it for my peace of mind to know that there wasn't anything seriously wrong with my bladder or urethra (cystitis, cancer, what have you) although ultimately just as frustrating to find out that it's just the way I am built and sometimes I get em and sometimes I don't.
I actually found one thing helps the most - if you are using condoms, non latex are preferable for me. The strangest thing is it also seems to depend on the partner. I wish I had more wisdom to share, but, I would recommend finding a special lady bladder doctor in your city and getting those tests done (cystoscopy and urodynamics) just to be sure.
If you are in NYC I can recommend mine :)

christonacracker

@RogueState More info -- the more you UTI's you get the more likely you are to get another, because it scars up the tissue causing the bacteria to not flush out well. Some women also have what is known as a short urethra (meaning nasties crawl up faster), and there isn't anything to be done about that.

Jinxie

@RationalHatter Whoa, really? I used to get UTIs all the dang time but I haven't had a single one since I've been with Manfriend, not even in the early "boning all the time" days. I figured my good fortune was due entirely to my dedication to peeing post-coitus, but it's kind of nice to know my ex could've been partly to blame. (He was kind of grungy.)

honey cowl

@RogueState GIRL I FEEL YOU. All these people here who are like "whine whine I have had two UTIs in two months!" WHAT?! I GET ONE AT LEAST ONCE A WEEK ARE YOU KIDDING ME YOU DON'T KNOW MY LIFE

RogueState

@LaurenF Yeah, this!! I'm over it!!! Let's take all the sexy out of sex, because every time I get it in I get holy hell fire pain. I have the macrobid, but is it acceptable to take a pill every time I have sex? Is that the life I want? I once asked my doc how women used to deal with UTIs before there were antibiotics available, and she looked at me and said, "women DIED before they were 40". Uh, thanks doc.

Judith Slutler

@RogueState Girl, why would it be somehow "not acceptable" to take a pill before sex? Some people are on birth control and have to pop pills every day even if they won't be having sex! There are dudes who have to time their Viagra in order to enable sex every single time! It's not something that signifies you're not living the life you want, it is a thing that you can do for yourself to help keep your body healthy and your sex life positive. Just take the pills!

RogueState

@Emmanuelle Cunt good point, thanks for your perspective. I feel like shit on antibiotics but it feels worse to pee blood, amirite?

I need to shed this vision of my body as an island, autonomous and not needing pharmaceutical companies to stay healthy.

Chrestomanci

@RogueState yes, fruit = sugar, and i try to avoid it in times of UTIs (apparently its not good for yeast infections either). And yes definitely, your sugary American bread is full of sugar and modern day wheat and not much that's good for you. I think the gluten free idea is worth a shot. Spelt bread is a good alternative to wheat, too.

Better to Eat You With

@RogueState This is a fairly shady suggestion, but I have a standing prescription for Septra because I had awful bacterial acne one summer, and it takes care of my UTIs, as well. So: get acne? Ask a dermatologist for a standing order of Septra? It's also dirt-cheap, at least on my insurance plan, and my dermatologist renews it every six months without hesitation.

HappyBeet

@allofthewine Just chiming in to say that taking a cranberry pill every time after I have sex (as well as the peeing soon after thing) has significantly reduced the number of UTI's I now get. And I really prefer this to taking an antibiotic regularly.

FoleySparrow

@RogueState - See upthread about D-Mannose. I also had the evil evil weekly blood-peeing UTIs. No joke. I completely feel you for how horrible it is and how very little others get it. I also did the fat antibiotic pill every time I had sex and that sucked too. But when I found D-Mannose, I was free of the clutches of prescription pharmaceutical hell.

Now at the first inkling of a UTI (or preferably, before sex), I start the D-Mannose, and have no issue. Just like taking a vitamin with my dinner. It doesn't have to be a production. And I can buy it myself, any time of day or night, at my well-stocked local drugstore. Without a Dr's prescription, waiting, tests, or any folderol with the effing medical community.

If you're sick of the merry-go-round of doctor visits, sick of being in the medical system, sick of having to ask for permission from a man in white to write on his pad so that you don't have to be in pain and peeing blood, and sick of being on antibiotics, buy a huge bottle of D-Mannose, do some internet research on how to take it, and give it a try. It freed me.

FoleySparrow

@:Cinnamon Girl - Well I don't think it's been around a super long time while Cranberry's been known about since our grandma's days. I've had raging UTIs for years and just started hearing about D-Mannose two years ago from a friend who worked at a women's holistic reproductive clinic. I thought "Sure, whatevs, I know everything about UTI treatment by now." It took me another year to go buy a bottle of the stuff and give it a try. Then I couldn't believe I'd been so stuckup and stubborn. It really works.

Plus, it's not cheap. If a lady has insurance, the insurance might cover the antibiotic prescription and doctor visit. So maybe you can get away for $20, $40, $60 (and a day of your life wasted in clinics and pharmacies). But if you don't have insurance, that beautiful day will cost you upwards of $150, as someone said upthread. Vicious.

By comparison, I think I pay $48 for a bottle of D-Mannose in my town. I could probably find it cheaper online. That is more than my co-pays, but so so so much cheaper than waiting in line, in pain, for the priest of the prescription pad to ordain my bleeding worthy of relief. Between the doctor and D-Mannose, give me the D-Mannose and get out of my way. There's no contest.

And doing a quick online search right now, I'm seeing it for between $18-$25.

So why it's not more known about - it's newish, and not cheap? But saves lives. (I'm sure sometimes literally. UTIs can lead to kidney infections.)

synchronized
synchronized

L1: Wait, what does the fact that you've "lived internationally" have to do with anything? Are you trying to prove that you're cool and experienced and worthy of devotion? Confused.

alliepants

@synchronized I LOL'ed at that too. "But don't you see? I AM THE MANIC PIXIE DREAMGIRL NOW LET'S GO GET HIGH ON MACARON SUGAR THEN BONE BUT JUST KIDDING BECAUSE I'M FLIGHTY"

allofthewine

@synchronized if you had lived internationally, you would understand

/hasnotlivedinternationally

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@synchronized
It means that people who haven't had such experiences shouldn't be weighing in on her higher-level problems.

God that's more snarky than I usually allow myself.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@alliepants
Also, if I was going to go as "manic pixie dreamgirl" for Halloween, what would my costume be? I'm trying to figure this out.

Mira

@Rock and Roll Ken Doll Zooey Deschanel in anything, with a ukulele.

synchronized
synchronized

@alliepants You'll wake up tomorrow and I'll be gone, having left only a Smiths record behind!

AmandathePanda

@synchronized I kind of interpreted it as relating to Carolita's "take a lover" thing, but I dunno. I expected more explanation.

synchronized
synchronized

@Rock and Roll Ken Doll I love it. Way to cut to the heart of the issue.

MilesofMountains

@synchronized I believe it's how she lets us know she's a leggy blond who drinks whiskey etc.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@synchronized
It really irritates me! Perhaps because I've had to deal with that attitude a lot in real life.

SuperGogo

@synchronized I would like to see a Venn diagram of ladies who have 1) lived internationally 2) drink whiskey and 3) like the Big Lebowski, please and thank you.

Ellie

I took it to mean that she doesn't live in the same place as any of these relationships anymore, so they are kind of associated with discrete phases of her life that she now feels very separate from. And maybe it makes it hard to tell what is actually her personality/desire and what's just some kind of personality or life circumstances she was just having situationally?

But, yeah.

olivebee

@Rock and Roll Ken Doll A shirt with a peter pan collar, charmingly messy, long brown hair, and a knee-length pleated or circle skirt. So, yeah, Zooey D.

iceberg

@olivebee also, giant glasses with no glass in them.

Atheist Watermelon

@MilesofMountains I JUST CAME DOWN HERE TO SAY THAT hahaha

Cawendaw

@MilesofMountains As someone who has lived internationally *runs hand through hair, sniffs haughtily*, here are my best guesses:
1. Huh?
2. LW1 is used to writing this on all her cover letters, and forgot that this wasn't a cover letter.
3. What with the chaotic nature of expat communities (everyone's busy, everyone moves all the time, everyone tries to stay in contact with the folks at home and the folks you met abroad but who've moved back home and the folks you met abroad but who have now moved to a different part of abroad) it can sometimes be hard to keep track of who you are and aren't close with. It's way easier (and way more necessary) to not contact someone for months on end, then pick things up where they left off as you were hanging out just yesterday, whereas if I did that here I think I'd have to grovel a little and have a darn good explanation as to where I was for the last few months. So I could understand how it could be really easy to assume that things would pick up where they left off (because people do that with friendships all the time), and how people could stay in the post break-up "I've given up the love of my life and all I need to do say my true feelings!" stage for an indefinite period of time.
That said, no one I knew abroad ever actually had this particular problem with their romantic partners (at least not any worse than my not-abroad friends had it, and not without a lot of other stuff going on as well), so... huh?

Jaya

@SuperGogo Aww shit that's me. I swear I'm not awful.

OhMyGoshYouGuys

@MilesofMountains And she probably is asking A Lady because she doesn't have a lot of female friends to turn to because she just "connects better" with dudes.

beeline96

@synchronized Well, I have 'lived internationally' and it resulted in the two of the three "best" UTI stories I've ever been able to tell in my life... so there's, um, that.

Mira

@OhMyGoshYouGuys You know. As one does over a couple of scotches.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@Cawendaw
Okay if it's #2 I'm going to feel really bad for being snarky.

SarahP

@Jaya Me too! ...although actually I thought the Big Lebowski was just okay. But you guys! I'm leggy.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@SuperGogo @Jaya I, too, am at the center intersection of that Venn diagram. Sorry for not being sorry.

SuperGogo

@Jaya etc. Nothing personal, honest! I was just making a callback to the other humblebrags that have come up in past Ask a.. columns.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@SuperGogo Ha, I know. I felt douchey writing that response, but I AM LIVING MY TRUTH (let's drink whiskey together?)

Jaya

@SuperGogo I would very much enjoy an "Ask A Column" column.

"Dear Column, What's so great about the Corinthian order?"

PatatasBravas

@beeline96 TELL US THE UTI STORIES. I have capsily created a thread above for them!

elbows on the table

@SuperGogo oh gosh I only fit in one of those bubbles. rats.

synchronized
synchronized

@beeline96 Haha! Are you the writer of the first letter AND the third?!

Beatrix Kiddo

@Jaya That's me, too, and I've never had an ex declare his love for me years later.

SuperGogo

@Jaya Get rid of your Ionic capitals, seriously they're revolting.

beeline96

@synchronized Hahahahahaha no, I have no dealings with my exes - they certainly do not want to marry me, and vice versa! Also, I am a UTI champ and take care of that ish ASAP... though I would never turn down ice cream.

saul "the bear" berenson

@synchronized L1 is from Jessa of TV's Girls.

Judith Slutler

@synchronized I have life experience in this area and I get the feeling that "living internationally" might be that time period in which everything is really complicated and dramatic and foreign, and then one day you are trying to explain your situation and you just say, "I, um, emigrated? Oh, I'm an immigrant!"

synchronized
synchronized

@Moxie OMG YES.

Hellcat

@Mira What immediately came to my mind were authentically worn out (but not pre-ripped!) jeans that are somewhat ill-fitting but flattering nonetheless, messy (and, again, flattering nonetheless) "I don't care" hair, and an accidentally but oh-so-perfectly boobie-highlighting faded t-shirt of the very best band that no one has ever heard of. Oh, and a piece of one-of-a-kind jewelry from a completely ill-advised, yet 100% soul-awakening, spur-of-the-moment road trip to the middle of nowhere.

And a ukelele.

Hellcat

@SarahP I'm leggy too... though short. And blond... though I pay someone to do that for me. However, I only drink the dark stuff if I find myself in a booze pinch, and I make terrible faces while doing so, thus likely keeping the boys from wanting hang out with me. And I have lots of female friends... so, well, never mind, I guess.

LilyMarlene

@Cawendaw I'ma read a bunch of my own ish into this, but...could it be possible that LW1 has dated a series of hopeless dudes? Guys who, I dunno, live in their cars/dumpsters, can't hold a job, lack any ambition or drive to improve their lot whatsoever, who perhaps saw International Chick as a ticket to their only foreseeable way of improving their lot in life/doing something cool-sounding, without having to actually expend any energy or take any risks themselves? Even though these guys have since partnered up, perhaps they're still unhappy and floundering, and thought hitching their wagon to International Chick and her cool-sounding life would be a good cure-all. "Pulling a geographic" with International Chick holding the safety net would allow such a guy to brag to his friends at home about living the dream in Monaco or whatever - even if he's spending every day in front of the teevee in their Monegasque apartment with Cheetos dust in his undies just like in mom's basement/his car/dumpster boudoir at home - whilst International Chick actually does all the heavy lifting, decision-making, bolstering, etc.

This struck a chord with me because I have had no less than three exes contact me in the post-breakup years to convince me to get back together, get married or have a child. (The last one in particular is a common thread amongst my exes; "All chicks just want babies, she'll really go for this carrot/stick! See what I'm willing to do for your love?!?". Bleh.)

Anyway, said exes do not contact me because they want to see my alabaster boobies, or because they want more amber pearls of seduction thrown their way; nor was I doing anything particularly interesting with my life whatsoever (unless working 9-5, paying my rent and hanging out with my cats is wildly fascinating, and I didn't realise). Not only do I have none of that to offer to begin with; in fact, what they want really has nothing to do with "me" at all. My exes try it on because during our relationships, I've kept a roof over our heads; bought them food-cigarettes-beer-healthcare when they couldn't keep a job; bolstered their typically shitty self-esteem when it got dinged; encouraged them to pursue their dreams (usually at the expense of mine); and didn't threaten their shaky masculinity by demanding they DO SOMETHING with their lives...and once on their own, they couldn't find a better enabler than me, and it made them feel like shit. I have no money, I'm not all that positive or fun, and am pretty much a total asshole in general, but I am a champion enabler, and those I've dated who need enabling have a history of not letting go when it's time. When you're low down on Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs like said exes, even someone who's crept a little bit ahead (but still exists on the bottom) can be quite attractive, in terms of what they can do for you - whether it's providing electricity and hot water, or a new life somewhere else. This may be reaching, but maybe International Chick's exes see latching onto her as a way to change their own life narratives from "boring/kind of sad" to "awesome/adventurous-sounding", even if the reality would be anything but.

Also, guys...um...I don't mean to brag, but...I've had an international UTI and kidney infection combo, whilst travelling and living overseas. From my Authentic Overseas Partner, in the early, banging-away stage of our relationship (<3 you, Cipro!). Though sadly, I am neither leggy nor blonde. *tossing hair, sniffing contemptuously*

tea tray in the sky.

@MilesofMountains Ahaha I love how this juicebox-lady still comes up every so often. She must be so ashamed.

hollysh

@Cawendaw I am another lady living in a place different to where I was born, and have also lived in other places different to this place AND to the place where I was born. How's that? An equal "huh" on my part as to this whole ex debacle. I think "living internationally" (ick) has little to do with it. I've been able to successfully fade-out of what would otherwise be long and painful breakups by skipping the country. I broke up with my very first boyfriend at the peak of our high school puppy love when I left his country, where I was living during student exchange (that was actually really sad, but we were able to remain friendly since we ended on a high point). I had a nasty and prolonged break-up with my college boyfriend that was luckily truncated when I moved to the other side of the world six months later. The first ex and I speak maybe every few months in a casual catch-up sort of way (although he wrote me a really unintentionally hilarious letter about his most recent breakup with a long-term girlfriend where he promised he wasn't "trying to flirt with [me] from overseas") and I have removed the other ex from my email contacts, blocked him on facebook, removed him from skype, lost his phone number etc. etc. I will never ever run into him because he lives on the other side of the planet and thus don't have to face him awkwardly asking why I haven't responded to his contact (same goes for other random flings and short term boyfriends from the same city). LW1! Cash in on your "international" status to cut off contact! Seriously! Seriously. It is so much easier for us than the other ladies stuck in tiny places where they run into their exes allllll the time.

L1
L1

@synchronized hello L1 here... This is awkward haha I kind of wrote that email after a shitty day. I'm not 100% sure where the international bit came from, reading back it sounds a bit weird. I think I meant that I'm not settled? I don't live in the same country as any of my exes. I think the advice was good, it's a bit of get over yourself mixed in with some 'hey I've been there'. Someone down the line made a comment about being put on a pedestal when you don't feel like that person, but the way I articulated my question (and the responses it elicited) says a bit more about me than I'd probably like to admit. Ahhh dammit now I have to go work out how to get shit laminated and stop messaging my exes. I'll get onto that tomorrow...

L1
L1

@synchronized Also I'm from New Zealand. Does that make the international thing less weird?!

Mira

I like this Lady. Excellent advice, esp. to L1, who (sorry L1!) I kind of want to slap, even though I'm sure she's a very nice internationally-dwelling radiant dude-hoarding type. But recognizing you are kind of a jerk is a good first step! Keep that up, L1.

L4, I'm reading your letter and it's making me feel a little queasy. Mostly because having a good time with your old guy makes you feel like you're betraying your husband. I'm no expert, but that doesn't seem like a good sign.

LlamaLlama

@Mira I agree with you on like of this lady (stranger?), annoyance with lw1 and queasiness about lw4.

Stranger did a god job being both Real and Kind with lw1. Lw1, stop being common and tacky. You will be a lot cooler if you do!

elbows on the table

@LlamaLlama I need to make that card for everyday use.

PatatasBravas

Also, LW1, lady whose exes are all convinced that you're The One:

Here's the thing, I really don't think there is such a thing as The One. XKCD has me backed up on this issue. It seems kind of weird that so many of them think you are the person they want to marry (and that your friends think you will marry at least one of them back? when you say you are not the marrying and babies type? what).

It seems to me that they are imagining a you on a very specific pedestal, and maybe that pedestal is not exactly where you want to be for the rest of your actual lived life. So these breakups are good things. Maybe just wade around in that knowledge for a while? That the breaking up and the disengaging from these (lovely, misguided, weird marriage dreaming) people... is good. Then, once you have found that you can feel unshitty about being separate from them, GO BOUNCE AROUND CONFIDENTLY, and feel awesome about being just you, you awesome person you!

I would second the advice to be your happiest you, and make this a project centered around your confidence and joy, rather than a project for rehabilitating your relationshapes with men. I do not do Sephora, but hikes, or volunteering to walk puppies and pet kittens at the animal shelter, or getting a weekly brunch with your friends, anything that bolsters you -- do it.

Also I like to imagine the fantastic snarky woman I will be when I am 60, and work towards making myself that awesome before all my hairs are grey.

Koko Goldstein

@PatatasBravas Yes to all of this. Also the whole "I want to marry you, once we both are less fucked up" thing? Is fucked up. You get married or you don't, you don't get your shit together in five years and THEN marry someone. They love you even when your shit isn't together! I had a friend be led on by a horrible man due to just this same phrase and it pisses me off.

Judith Slutler

@PatatasBravas I also love to visualize my older self. It's pretty awesome. It's also made me strangely OK with the idea that I might never get married or have kids.

sevanetta

@PatatasBravas my god, i was just thinking about relationshapes, and how I missed it, and there the word was waiting for me in your fourth paragraph. RELATIONSHAPES RELATIONSHAPES COME BAAAACK

frigwiggin

I like funny advice columns, but sometimes the glibness of these makes it hard to actually understand what the advice is? Like, if I wrote in with a question and got a response back, I would not be able to tell if the Lady/whoever was making fun of me or not.

Ellie

@frigwiggin Me too. It's not my type of humor. But to each his or her own. To be fair, these are also pretty weird questions.

olivebee

@frigwiggin Yes, exactly. I'm glad I am not any of the LWs in the last few columns because I would just be like, umm, hrmm? I can definitely pick out some good, solid nuggets of advice from this one, but I still feel like the advice is shrouded in a faint cloud of "hahaha you so dumb."

meetapossum

@frigwiggin I feel the same. I don't need heart-wrenchingly sincere ala Sugar all the time, but this was a little much for me. This Lady and the last Dude were "meh" for me.

SarahP

@frigwiggin I'm sort of with @Ellie, that I think the first 3 letter-writers just seeing their questions in writing should be able to be like "Ohhhh, I am being ridiculous." But I do think LW4 could have used a less flip answer.

SuperGogo

@olivebee Even though I agree that it's not great to have the Ask a Lady/Dude/Whatnots to be all "bish, please" and judgy--even if they do it in a funny way--I also think that sometimes they go a bit overboard in the other direction and reassure all LWers that they're beautiful, wonderful, special snowflakes who deserve only rainbows and kittens and True Love in their lives. Ideally, the Ladies/Dudes/etc. should hit a middle ground between condescending to the LWers AND blowing sunshine up their asses.

Jinxie

@frigwiggin I was just thinking that I really like this A Lady specifically because she's funny and glib and snarky but then I realized I probably wouldn't be thinking that if it were my letter up there and I was being teased/made fun of.

olivebee

@SuperGogo Yeah, totally. There are some O.o questions that get asked on Hairpin advice columns where you just want to be like, "oh, come on!" But if I were A Lady, I would still handle them as though I were a therapist or something where it's your job to listen (no matter how ridiculous) and then give actually useful (maybe stern, maybe not) advice. But the condescension can totally go.

maevemealone

@frigwiggin I found this Lady completely unreadable and irritating. But the questions were pretty self answering and irritating as well, so they cancelled each other out.

hollysh

@olivebee Yes! I agree. I think that throwing in a bit of tough love is all well and good, but the Ask A ____ need to be a bit more sympathetic and less patronizing/mocking. LWs are trying! It's hard to clearly articulate your problem in a short word span without the back and forth banter that problem solving is usually comprised of. I think A Queer Chick does a wonderful job of this, but obviously she is more consistant than the other advice columns because she is just the one chick.

SBGBlogs

@meetapossum Thank god, I thought it was just me that wasn't really into all the glibness. Like, what are you actually suggesting people DO, lady? I always just think that if I wrote in and got one of these kinds of responses, I'd be super disappointed because it tends to read (especially with this particular lady) that the Lady thinks the LWs are fucking stupid. And that's not so much "tough love" as it is "kind of mean for no reason"...

Again, not saying it has to be all rainbows! Some people NEED to know they're being ridiculous, but I like Queer Chicks middle ground and this is not that.

Scandyhoovian

L1's letter is bothering me more and more the longer I think about it. Really, three different people have all said after you've broken up that L1 is the person they wanted to marry, but none of these people ever... took the time to ask? Either L1 is misinterpreting something somewhere or she constantly attracts the kind of people that can't commit 'til the option is taken from them. Which could totally be a thing! And if so, L1, that must be rough.

Also, there is a large difference between "You are the type of person I could have seen myself marrying" and "I want to marry you." Not that L1 necessarily is misinterpreting things people say, but it's easy to confuse these things, and the former is something people might say in long-term-relationship breakups.

iceberg

@Scandyhoovian yessssssssssss. I'm also thinking the context in which these comments are made is key. are the dudes drunk? are they following this up with "how about it because I would totally leave her for you?" are they greener-grassing you because they're feeling some kind of way about their current relationship?

City_Dater

@Scandyhoovian

LW1 is humblebragging like a champ: "they just can't get OVER me, even when they have girlfriends." Not that she wants them too, thank you very much.
You are being far more generous than this not-very-kind lady deserves. It isn't so very difficult to leave one's exes alone and allow them to move on, particularly if you "live internationally." *Snortlaugh*

Lily Rowan

@Scandyhoovian There's got to be something about age in there as well, if she's 30, had a four year relationship and last saw him 4 years ago. Like, "it didn't work out in our early 20s, but if we met now, I could see it going toward marriage." Which is STILL not the same thing as "let's get married."

Oliver St. John Mollusc

@Scandyhoovian I totally agree -- there is some key information missing from L1. It also struck me that there is an *awful* lot of talking to exes going on in her letter, and not just seeing them socially and being like "oh hai, how bout them Tigers" or whatever. I see several of my exes socially and none of them has ever expressed any past or present desire to marry me, partly because the opportunity was never there (and I'm sure also because they don't want to, but I haven't lived internationally, so there you go). So that makes me think LW1 is intentionally or unintentionally *creating* situations where this kind of heart-to-heart can happen?

Mingus_Thurber

@Scandyhoovian Or she could be dating a string of drama-obsessed, manic pixie dreamboys. 'Cause that's what all of the DOMPDBs I dated as a youngster used to say about me, until I realized they were complete twerps and quit hanging out with them any more.

A Lady was dead-on when she said that these guys are creating pedestal-versions of L1. It's *not* actually about her, unless it is in the sense that she dates twerpy, drama-obsessed, manic pixie dreamboys.

Scandyhoovian

@Mingus_Thurber I'm suddenly picturing all her exes as JGL from 500 Days of Summer. Just a slew of JGLs, pretending she's a magical fairy princess when really she just is a girl who travels internationally and won't let go of exes.

entangled

@Scandyhoovian yes, I totally agree. I get the sense that she is someone who is a better partner in theory than in practice. People sometimes break up when the relationship could have been saved, sure, but if every guy is telling her she was "the one that got away," there is almost certainly something about her that is leading to it.

I get the sense, since traveling is such a huge part of her and she claims she's not the marrying type, that they're people they can kind of see a possible version of themselves with but in real life they want to be with someone who is more partner and family and stability oriented. We all have these images of ourselves as wild forever young world travelers but in the end, but for those who are the married and kid having type, that's a tremendously difficult lifestyle to maintain.

I don't think she *necessarily* needs to cut off contact, if she really does honestly consider these exes to be good friends and people she wants in their lives. But she needs to realize that if they really, honestly wanted to be with her, they'd act on it.

TyrannosaurusWreck

@Scandyhoovian hahaha ORRRRRRRR people just say shit. Seriously. People say shit they think they mean al the time because oh it sounds so goooooooood. "I would marry you. I'm being SO. INTENSE. RIGHT. NOW." We like pretending we're in movies - that we're these intensely romantic people. We like doing this from a safe distance like while with another person, because then it OBVIOUSLY doesn't actually mean anything. None of these dudes would ever actually marry you. I'm sorry. None would. Or they would and a year later they/you would be telling other ex-people they are THE ONLY ONE. Blech. Break the cycle!

L1
L1

@Scandyhoovian Hey L1 here. I haven't read all the other replies because I'm lazy but I did just want to say reading the comments has been good. It puts into perspective that things that have really upset me and made things hard, other people think are ridiculous. I'm not being facetious. Things feel really big and important sometimes and they're just really not. I was unhappy for a long time, and someone hit the nail on the head when they said it was about being put on a pedestal that's not real, and after the fact. I was trying to say that, like I know that these guys aren't going to marry me so why am I getting off on it? I need a freaking hobby is all. Potentially once I learn to laminate that card I can just start laminating things. Become a laminating enthusiast. Laminate my ex boyfriends. Um, I'm tired so I'll stop there.

tea tray in the sky.

@L1 We should all laminate our ex boyfriends.

Nicole Cliffe

you.tumblr.com

EpWs

@Nicole Cliffe Yoisherubbingdirtonhiscockbeforeheputsitinyou.tumblr.com. Coming soon from the people who brought you "Yo, Is This Racist?" and "Yo, Should I Dump This Asshole?"

staircases

LW4, granted, I am no expert on marriage. But I would think a part of your answer here would maybe be talking to your husband and seeing how he feels about you spending time with this person. Is he cool with it? Does it make him uncomfortable? Maybe the three of you could hang out together and then he can see that it is NBD?

Unless, maybe, you are thinking (since it sounded like you mentioned in your letter that he is currently single) that he still harbors romantic intentions for you. In this case, I still feel like if your husband is down, the three of you should hang out, and your friend can see how wonderful your husband is and how happy he makes you, and that any romantic yearnings he still has can be redirected to a more suitable target. Or, he can realize that his romantic yearnings for you are eating away at him and a platonic friendship with you is not something he can do. Yearnings.

I've been in this exact situation (I suppose I was the guy), and you can navigate this, you can do it. But everyone has to be clear about what they want and feel secure.

Ellie

@staircases The way I read the letter, it seems to come from the fact that even though she's happily married she has a kind of a platonic-ish crush/frisson of excitement about her friend/ex. So on paper, and in all realistic practicality, it IS legit and kosher to have a friendship with him. But because she has this little crush type thing it's producing a modicum of guilt, but it's not at the "this is an inappropriate involvement" level.

I think it's possible to have a friend-crush/very slightly more than platonic crush on someone and have it not be inappropriate. Like where you're always super excited to see the other person, but you would genuinely, truly NOT want to hook up with him. I have definitely had people like that too (including girls and I'm straight). I don't think it's so bad. Even when you're single it can be fun to be around people you have a little crush on but definitely wouldn't want to pursue for real. It's the human condition.

SarahP

I agree with you both! LW4, there's no need to feel guilty for having had a great time hanging out with an ex. I do think having your husband hang out with you two a couple times would be helpful for you, if only because it will make you feel less guilty and see that you're not doing anything inappropriate.

SarcasticFringehead

@Ellie Friend Crush was exactly the phrase I was trying to come up with to think about this - where you're really excited to hang out with someone, and you really want them to like you back, but there's nothing romantic there at all. It sounds like that's what's happening here, but because it's a man and a woman, there's other baggage attached.

On the other hand, sometimes feeling guilty about something is your clue that there's something to feel guilty about, that you're not consciously processing.

meganmaria

@staircases I kind of get the impression from her that regardless of what her husband thinks, she's flirting with the idea of even a little bit of "emotional cheating" and it's making her uncomfortable with herself. That alone would lead me to distance myself from the situation.

lalaland

@staircases This is exactly what I am going through! It is...normal, right? To be in a committed relationship with someone but still have crushes? Please say yes.

Judith Slutler

@lalaland Um, yes. This is a part of normal life! You can talk to your partner about it, or not! It will be OK!

SarcasticFringehead

@lalaland My personal feeling is that as long as it stays in the place where you get kind of giddy when you see your crush, and, like, stay excited for a long time when they notice you, that's probably fine. Once you start actually treating it like a potential dating situation (making one-on-one plans, thinking about sexytimes in a more-than-imaginary kind of way), you need to shut that down. Progressing to that stage means either 1) you may be a cheating asshole (unless your partner's okay with it!) or 2) you're giving yourself signals that something isn't right in your relationship and you need to figure out what that is.

But if it's just fun giggly crushing, go for it!

leonstj

@meganmaria - Could I chime in with some advice from a Leon? Or opinion really.

Let's say I'm in a relationship. And my lady is this letter writer. The like, #1 thing NOT TO DO is tell me "So, I hung out with this old ex, and you know how I have a lot of male friends and it's no big deal? Well, I dunno, it felt kind of like maybe it was a date when I hung out with this guy."

NEVER TELL ME THAT SHIT. Look - life is what it is. Even for people who are 100% committed to monogamy, you will TOTALLY have moments where you crush on someone else. Just like...let them slide? If you keep crushing on someone, you basically have to avoid them or reassess the person you're being monogamous with.

Don't tell the person you're being monogamous with someone else you used to see made you feel all tingly. At the risk of sounding like a caveman and getting yelled at, don't even tell your friends. Talking about a crush makes it worse. Sometimes you just have to bottle shit up inside, avoid the triggers, and move on. Keep an eye out for a trigger in your relationship that's making you crush elsewhere, sometimes it's that.

But sometimes somebody who's not the one you're with just gets you all jazzed. It happens. Either ignore it or break out of your monogamous thing. It's a million times easier said than done, but so is cardio, and we still do it.

staircases

@leon s This is interesting! When I read the letter, I don't at all get the idea that it's her that is having the crush. More that she's afraid that he might be the one with the feelings.

lalaland

@SarcasticFringehead Yes totally just fun giggly crush. Work gets boring otherwise, you know?

Thanks guys, I thought I was just a horrible person.

Super Nintendo Chalmers

@staircases I sort of figured that it might be more or less existing in a space halfway between this dude and the LW. And, honestly, LW, it might just be the history you're feeling that's sort of amping up all of this. There were definitely times when I've hung out with exes where the timing wasn't right or whatever and little wisps of our past connection seemed to hang around in the air. Pretty much that all dissipated given time. What I would recommend is inviting this other guy to mixed group events that aren't super coupley. Going in a group to the movies, the theater, out to eat? I think it will make things less weird.

Angry Panda

@leon s Thank you! Speaking as someone whose significant other did exactly that, that shit hurts like hell, and can damage a relationship. Or maybe it was the living internationally that did us in.

sevanetta

@leon s I would like more Advice from a Leon!

cinnamonskin

@leon s for true, son. Permission to have a crush, always granted, permission to tell me about it, nope.

My word, y'all, isn't lusting in your heart ok in our modern times?

Lucienne

I like that this Lady was sort of a cross between Aunt Alicia and Buddha.

katiemcgillicuddy

@Lucienne Yes, but has she lived internationally?

laurel

Lawd, a good shampooing really can be, um, amazing.

julia

@laurel Preach.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@laurel Yeah...I got a scalp massage that turned into a neck massage (!) at my hair appointment this weekend. I sort of fell in love with my hairdresser; plus, she was wearing an awesome shade of lipstick.

iceberg

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose - I think this question is why massages stress me out because my brain associates good/intimate touch with feeeeeelings and so I get all freaked out. The LW's hairdresser is probably like "hey i can make people's heads feel nice :)" and she's all HE WANTS TO BONE.

frigwiggin

@laurel I still remember the shampooings I got from the hairstylist my mom and I went to for ten years...she had these great nails, and my scalp was always all tingly afterwards. (My nails are always stubby and it's never quite the same when you're doing it to yourself anyway.) Good thing my current hairstylist has skills too!

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@iceberg I think you're right. And in the back of my mind I know that I'm PAYING for these touches, but another part of me is like, "Oh heeeeey..." Good lord. Maybe I should be writing to A Lady about this.

laurel

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose: IMHO, it's OK to have the "Oh heeeeey..." feelings as long as we don't make it our shampooer's problem!

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@laurel Oh man. I can't even imagine verbalizing those "oh heeeey" feelings to my shampooer. I think it would actually make my face cave in with shame.

laurel

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose: Oh man, indeed. The last question in LW2's letter made me go, 'Whaaa?!'

bot
bot

@laurel My dad has a cute story about the first time he got a fancy hair cut, and how he was totally convinced the shampooer (a pretty lady muuuuch younger than him) was coming on to him with the scalp massage. . . until he realized that everyone else in the salon was getting one too. Massages! They confuse everyone!

lora.bee

@laurel I never know what to do with my hands while I am half reclined during the hair wash. I always just awkwardly cradle them in my lap.

(Or maybe I do Raptor Hands and don't notice...)

antilamentation

@lora.bee Haha! Yes. This is totally a thing I do as well. Or else another variation is that I awkwardly clutch my glasses in my lap.

At no other time do I clutch my glasses like that.

selenalynn

@laurel I have had sexy shampoos and non sexy shampoos and there is definitely a difference! You can tell if someone is taking extra care to touch you nicely. The way one shampoo guy did it - all business, felt good but no CARESSES, and the way the flirty shampoo guy did it - world of difference.

selenalynn

@Selena Hoy@facebook Not saying they were into me. After all, flirting=tips in the service world.

seaview

@laurel I once got a scalp massage that extended to my face, then down my neck and then included my boobs. I was in Vietnam and still don't know if that is part of the usual service?

nicolesnacks

@laurel I had one that ended up in an ear massage? Is this normal? Fingers in ears.

alliepants

Great advice to LW1. It IS tacky to keep exes on the hook to feel good about yourself! For some reason I have been involved with multiple dudes who did this, and were constantly seeking validation through female attention. When I figured out it was going on, I was angry, then upset, then just sad. It really made me lose respect for them.

lil_bobbytables

what net of shimmering strands do your amber eyes cast around their souls; you did not ask to wield this power and it weighs heavy in your alabaster bosom.

There is something about that statement that made me gigglesnort into my coffee.

SuperGogo

@lil_bobbytables There is something about that statement that made me suspect evil melis.

olivebee

@lil_bobbytables Yeah that was probably my favorite part of the whole thing.

evil melis

i must know the name of today's a lady for she is a wizard of great and terrible power and i wish to ride with her and talk of knowledge on raging stormclouds over a failing sea

evil melis

It's really not me, though.

Bittersweet

@evil melis I think we need an "Ask an evil melis" column, stat.

Bittersweet

@Bittersweet Oops, just saw the whole discussion a few threads down. Never mind.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

LW1: You don't want them, but you don't want anyone else to have them either. PS: Men aren't flying buttresses, whose only job is to look pretty and hold you up en masse. You need to be able to support your own walls, girl.

Jinxie

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose
BOOM. This is some real talk right here and amazingly put.

dale

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose Maybe someone can embroider that wisdom on a sampler & we can give it out as necessary.

tea sonata

@dale I want to knit that into a jumper. Better put a push-up bra on, just in case.

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@dale And a TL;DR version: BE YOUR OWN CATHEDRAL, GIRL

PistolPackinMama

@I'm Right on Top of that, Rose And perfect metaphor for a living internationally person, too, on account of Gothic Architecture. So perfect all around!

questingbeast

LW4: I think it's fine. It seems like the problem is that you see him as someone you could have made a go of it with, but never really had the chance. But really, if you were going to he would have been the one you got out the post-breakup slough with, rather than your husband. If you get on well, you should be friends, just stop thinking of him as someone you met when he was a 'possible' and think of him like any guy you'd meet after marriage, a 'not-possible'. The date vibe's probably only there because you're remembering the same times when it WAS a date. Have a few nights out with your husband/other friends and that'll probably go away.

The Lady of Shalott

LW2: How "intimate" of a hair-washing are we talking here? Did his hands at any time range down to your boobs or your nether regions?

If yes: WTF kind of hairdresser are you going to???

If no: No, it wasn't sensual, he's doing his job.

And what are the odds that he was just washing your hair himself because he had an open slot before you were there and he figured he might as well because you're a long-time client? Girl, he ain't hitting on you by giving you an extra-yummy hairwash. He's at work. Enjoy your nice hair-washes and go on with your life.

fabel

@The Lady of Shalott I have had sexy feelings during a hair wash before. it happens. It's not a huge "thing" & LW2, nooooo don't "address" this in ANY WAY.

Judith Slutler

@fabel Your scalp just has nerve endings, right? No wonder my life lacks drama, when this type of thing happens I'm like "your scalp has nerve endings, right?"

kinbarichan

@The Lady of Shalott: Okay, but there is a thing - Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response,(ASMR) is "a physical sensation characterized by a pleasurable tingling that typically begins in the head and scalp, and often moves down the spine and through the limbs." It's also been described as a 'head orgasm'. So I can see why there would be some confusion - ASMR isn't a universal response to hair-washing and scalp massage, and some feel the sensation more deeply than others.

Slapfight

@kinbarichan I have one of those practically every time, yet I have never mounted my hairdresser or shampoo girl. I'm doing it wrong, the whole "creating unnecessary drama" thing.

Mccart Viraminto@facebook

i am hear to give testimony of how i got back my husband, we got married for more than 9 years and have gotten two kids. thing were going well with us and we are always happy. until one day my husband started to behave in a way i could not understand, i was very confused by the way he treat me and the kids. later that month he did not come home again and he called me that he want a divorce, i asked him what have i done wrong to deserve this from him, all he was saying is that he want a divorce that he hate me and do not want to see me again in his life, i was mad and also frustrated do not know what to do,i was sick for more than 2 weeks because of the divorce. i love him so much he was everything to me without him my life is incomplete. i told my sister and she told me to contact a spell caster, i never believe in all this spell casting of a thing. i just want to try if something will come out of it. i contacted traditionalspellhospital for the return of my husband to me, they told me that my husband have been taken by another woman, that she cast a spell on him that is why he hate me and also want us to divorce. then they told me that they have to cast a spell on him that will make him return to me and the kids, they casted the spell and after 1 week my husband called me and he told me that i should forgive him, he started to apologize on phone and said that he still live me that he did not know what happen to him that he left me. it was the spell that he traditionalspellhospital casted on him that make him comeback to me today,me and my family are now happy again today. thank you traditionalspellhospital for what you have done for me i would have been nothing today if not for your great spell. i want you my friends who are passing through all this kind of love problem of getting back their husband, wife , or ex boyfriend and girlfriend to contact traditionalspellhospital@gmail.com. and you will see that your problem will be solved without any delay.

The Lady of Shalott

@Mccart Viraminto@facebook But will it help if you have the hots for your hairdresser?????

yarabollocks

I cannot stop laughing at the image of this guy all "brb, I gotta put some more dirt on my cock before I put it in you".

Also, reminds me of that scene in Season 1 of True Blood when they have post-grave sex and all I could think of was the mahoosive UTI Sookie probably got. (Sookie )

EpWs

@yarabollocks This is why I can never get down with sexy-on-the-beach-sex. SAND. GUH.

yarabollocks

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher - sandinorifices.tumblr.com?

EpWs

@yarabollocks Ew ew ew ew

Megasus

@yarabollocks Hahahah that is EXACTLY what I think when I watch that scene too! Also my vag screams, "Nooooooooooo!"

alsoknownas

@yarabollocks OMG thank you for bringing up that scene! It is quite possibly my favorite thing to ever air on TV.

oh! valencia

I couldn't figure out what a Lady was talking about to LW4 with the living internationally thing, until I realized she was making fun of LW1. And then it made me laugh, and sigh. More coffee please.

Jinxie

Bah. I know this kind of stupid, but I can't help but be a little bitter at the fact that LW1 has all these dudes giving her the "you're my solemate" spiel and my boyfriend of a year and a half won't even say "I love you" out loud to me. {pout}

EpWs

@Jinxie Apparently the trick is to break up with them, and they will then declare their undying love for you/her/whatnot. (Seriously, though, her dudes sound kind of awful. Who does that?)

iceberg

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Yup. I think they feel safe saying that shit to her because they know she's unavailable and won't call their bluff.

Jinxie

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I guess they do sound a little awful and I should probably not be jealous of LW1 because who wants dudes like that, really? (Though maybe I felt jealous because she wanted me to feel jealous? Like...living internationally has fuck-all to do with anything in this situation and so it sounds like she's bragging that she's lived abroad which then makes me wonder if she's bragging about all these guys being madly in love with her which then has the desired effect of me feeling poopy and being jealous.)

khaleesi

@Jinxie Clearly you need to go on some international jaunts. But really that does sound sucky but just because he won't say it, it doesn't mean he doesn't feel it. I have a tough time saying everything I feel to my boyfriend but I'm pretty emotionally repressed which he thankfully gets.

redheaded&crazy

@Jinxie The last two guys I dated also said they loved me after things had ended between us(okay not quite, one said he would have been in love with me, and one just signed something with love BUT WTF THOSE ARE BOTH STILL AWFUL AND SET MY BRAIN ON A PATH TO CRAZY TOWN). Soooooo I also would like to know how I can get somebody to love me while they are with me.

SarahP

@redheaded&crazie "I would have been in love with you" is the most passive aggressive way to string along an ex I have ever heard. That's like "I would have someday bought you a puppy." HOW CAN YOU KNOW THIS.

dj pomegranate

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I had a dude do that. He was truly douchetastic and pulled that line after 2.5 years of a miserable (for me) relationship. When I broke it off and started seeing mr. pomegranate, douche-ex called me and urgently NEEDED TO TALK and then at the bar where I (stupidly?) met him, he declared that he realized now that I was The One and he had made a Terrible Mistake and the only way to right it was for me to dumb mr. pomegranate and marry him asap. He even said, "I was going to buy you a ring on the way over here!" (THANKFULLY he did not do that because seriously, do not buy your ex a diamond ring.)

dj pomegranate

@redheaded&crazie wtf "I would have been in love with you" implies an "if..." So like, "I would have been in love with you if...you were a slightly different person?" I am trying to think of a good ending to that sentence but I don't think there is one.

antilamentation

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Yes. And also, some of the dudes are saying that to her while dating other girls. Groooossssss! They are the worst dudes.

MilesofMountains

@Jinxie Aww, it took my boyfriend a year and a half to say it to me, and before that he denied he did love me. We talked about it though, and his feeling was that he only wanted to say that to one woman in his life (ridiculous or romantic? I can never decide). That meant when he DID say it it felt very special. I hope it's something similar with your guy.

evil melis

oh my goddd a YEAR AND A HALF??? no no no no no no no no no oh my godddd no

lisma

@Jinxie My ex did this! As soon as he found out I was seeing someone else, he started calling me non-stop (once, even from someone else's number so that I'd pick up!). I agreed to meet with him once, just to talk, and he asked me where I wanted to live so he could find a place for us to live in together where we could get a dog and this time he was "in it. for real this time."

I was like, "dude. no."

evil melis

i hope that does not feel cruel about something you already feel sensitive about, but that is a million years of loneliness! someone should say that to you much sooner! you are definitely loveable within four months

Jinxie

@evil melis I know, I know! It's silly to put so much emphasis on a totally arbitrary period of time and anyway you can't force someone else's feelings into a timeline (nor should you want to). I will be the first to admit I'm Having Issues about where I am in my life especially as compared to many of my friends and I shouldn't be basing my life/happiness on what others are doing but I'm only human and sometimes it's hard to avoid the pity party.

Briony Fields

@Jinxie Awww, I wouldn't worry too much if I were you. My boyfriend (also of 1.5 years) hasn't said it out loud, either. I know he loves me though, it's clear in the way he treats me, so I don't really need him to say it. Also, he occasionally signs e-mails and texts with "xx" which to me means kisses, but he uses it as 'love' to other friends and whatnot. I get that it's nice to hear out loud, though. It probably also doesn't bother me because I'm not big on L-bombs either. I've only said it once, via email because emotions, ick!

evil melis

@Jinxie Oh, no, sorry, I'm not saying you should feel silly for wishing he would say "I love you," I'm saying it's enormously cruel to continue dating someone for longer than the entire run of Firefly without letting them know if you love them or not and you should find someone else with a human heart who will say it by, like, Bushwacked or at the very latest Jaynestown.

evil melis

If the best someone can muster after a year and a half is "jury's still out" it is time to burn their village to the ground, take their women and children as tribute, and salt their fields.

parallel-lines

@Jinxie This is how it works with these guys:

1) They're all like "OMG! Where did I go wrong? I love you!"
2) Boning ensues
3) You're like, "Okay, so we're gonna do better this time, right? This is happening?"
4) They're like, "I...uh...um...think you misunderstood. I mean loved you like a friend. You're such a good friend!"
5) REPEAT one year later. These dudes usually think you have amnesia

Dudes like to pull this when they're in bad spots, but it almost never works out. Take it from me, your cautionary whale.

ironhoneybee

I would really, really, really, like to read an entire advice column penned by evil melis.

Dear Evil Melis,
What is the best way to appease the Dark Lord? Asking for a friend.

antilamentation

@dj pomegranate I would have been in love with you... If only you had lived internationally too. And also given me orgasms with your head massages. And not given me UTIs. And weren't my ex.

evil melis

Let's be honest, I would be a terrible A Lady.

redheaded&crazy

@evil melis hmm I kind of thought this one might be you (or at least your less evil counterpart which I suppose is a different matter entirely)

redheaded&crazy

@redheaded&crazie *and to be clear I liked it. Oh yes I did.

parallel-lines

@evil melis When it comes to be A Lady, yer the worst!

lora.bee

@melis I definitely thought you meant Bushwhacked the 1995 movie with Daniel Stern at first, and got really excited.

redheaded&crazy

@redheaded&crazie oh I see this discussion was already had. I'm on my phone okay its only a stupid blackberry OKAY

parallel-lines

@parallel-lines (JUST KIDDING! I would actually love this column. Tell me more about Eli & Bob)

Kulojam

@Jinxie You're absolutely right not to base your timeline on your friends' timelines and it is good to be self aware of that tendency. But 1.5 years is a long time to be with someone and I'd be pouty, too. I guess the question is: do you feel loved? Have you talked about it with him? I was with a guy who waited...gosh, 8 months, i think? And it had me feeling awfully insecure and terrible and I wish I had talked about it with him sooner.

LaLoba

@Jinxie Where do you live? You need to leave there, by air or by sea. If you are a witch that will be a problem but if you were a witch you could have afixed them with a pow'rful spell already made from bisby wax and sad caterpillars and smeared gleefully onto an oak. Go to England, Morocco, Vanuatu or Laos. You can't be from all four of those at once and if you already are, the problem is once again solved. Return home. Let their woeful words of love spill from their tongue onto yours and spit them back onto your shoes. Or marry them. Or put them inside their teeth and wear them on a necklace on your neck. By now I guess you're basically a witch anyway just craft a spell next time, afix it to them with honeycomb and twine.

(Halloween themed advice from Brunhilda the Dogwoman).

LaLoba

@LaLoba I only believe someone who says they "love" me if they write it in shampoo on my head as they wash my hair; then I couldn't see it anyway as the mirror is fogged with the steam of the hot pouring water and the shampoo words are quickly obscured as it is massaged into my scalp.

Maryaed

@Jinxie auggh I might agree with Evilmelis. Have you talked about it?

That is plenty of time to figure it out and if he doesn't, why continue?

PistolPackinMama

@evil melis Well, there is a difference between giving terrible advice and being a terrible A Lady.

fabel

Okay, I think hair-washing-lady & happily-married-but-high-after-drinks-with-my-um-"friend" girl have the same problem? Which is, your feelings of feeling bad about having happy-in-the-pants feelings towards people besides your husband/long-time lover are making you think these feelings are a bigger deal than they really are, which is causing you to revel in them even more & then feel worse than ever about it?

(Does this make sense? Can you all read between the millionXrepeated "feelings"? ugh)

Ellie

@fabel Perfect sense!

Lily Rowan

@fabel YES. And I think people get the feelings all the time! Even in relationships! Crushes and fleeting attractions and whatnot. It doesn't mean you do anything about it! Assuming you want your current relationship more than you want the object of the feelings.

IT'S FINE.

SarahP

@Lily Rowan I totally agree with you, and also I now want to write "IT'S FINE." on post-its and put them all over my house, for whenever I need them.

Lily Rowan

@SarahP I'm saying! Don't sneak out for one-on-one time with your crush, but I feel like smiling in your head is no problem.

RK Fire

@fabel: YES! This makes sense. It took me a long time to come to terms with that even though I have been happily in a relationship for years.

Currently my crush is on an athlete I saw on TV so I've just been rolling with it, mostly guilt-free.

entangled

@fabel Yes. Being in a relationship or getting married does not make crushes disappear. The tingly feelings still happen, you just need to recognize when it's inappropriate to act on them. I would like to think that most people can realize this, see the person who gives them the tingly feelings, and keep it in their pants until the crush subsides. If you can't, THEN stay away.

Alli525

@SarahP This sounds great but I have a feeling that those post-it's would all end up taped to my ice-cream/oreo/chips stashes and then IT'S ALL OVER.

rainbow

I LOVE YOU SO, A LADY!

noodge

I've recently had a really life-changing epiphany: that there is no need to get "emotional fixes" (a la LW1) of affirmation and infatuation or love that I inevitably crash and burn from and feel horrible when I can't get them from people when I need them which why can't they just pleaSE GIVE ME AFFIRMATION FIX SO I KNOW I'M NOT A HIDEOUS MONSTER OF AN AWFUL PERSON WITH MUFFIN TOPS AT THE TOP OF MY SKINNY JEANS!!!
ahem.
i've started to catch myself when I find myself on that hamster wheel of chasing affirmation. and that wheel sounds like what LW1 is running on too, or it's at least a big chunk of what she's dealing with.
A Lady gave stellar advice re: finding your own inner strength (I find that helping others ie: volunteering or something similar gives me my strongest self-love mojo).
I've also been reading tons of Pema Chodron, and she addresses this in most of her books.
it may take a while, but you sound pretty self aware and cool, LW1, so I feel confident you'll find peace :-)

I'm Right on Top of that, Rose

@teenie Skinny jeans give everyone (me) muffin tops. Sigh.

iceberg

@teenie oh my godddddd. why do we do it?

noodge

@iceberg i don't knowwww but it's awful! life is so much more peaceful when i manage to avoid it....

lasso tabasco

@teenie YES! I had this same epiphany recently! Knitting, reading a LOT and cleaning and having potluck dinner with friends makes me feel like an awesome ninja and so peaceful and independent!

noodge

@lasso tabasco right? for me it's cleaning, doing work/schoolwork like I should be instead of like a lazy SOB, exercise, my clinical rotations (helping people YAY!), reading, and REMEMBERING TO CALL MY FRIENDS ON THE REG, which I seem to just be a complete nincompoop about for some reason.
oh, and meditation for sure. i definitely feel it if i don't fit in at least 2 small meditation sessions a week...

frigwiggin

@teenie I haven't figured this out yet, so my addiction to affirmation continues ever forward. I just so nakedly, desperately want people to like me, and even when they already like me I somehow can't believe that they'll still like me tomorrow when they liked me yesterday. (This interspersed with strong feelings that most other humans are morons is contradictory and confusing, but nevertheless persists.)

rowrow

@teenie yes, this.

i've been reading all these comments and feeling shamed since i really identified with LW1, but i recognize i do it to myself. of course there are still feelings with exes, but i seek out that intimacy and drama when i'm in a particularly insecure state because it's comforting and safe (i have no intentions of getting back together with them)

however, it always leads to more trouble. in my current situation, about to move internationally (HAHA) and therefore freaking out, i've been talking to a few under the guise of saying goodbye - and of course there are FEELINGS. i hope this thread gives me the strength to keep tonight's "let me make you your favorite meal" with the Big Ex purely platonic.

ugh, life. worst.

L1
L1

@rowrow Hey L1 here. The comments have made me feel a lot better! It's just made me realise that I've made this thing do much more important than it is. I get off on the fact my exes say they still love me. I've been seeking it out and it's normal but time to stop. But now I've answered 3 of the commenters and I'm thinking... Am I now seeking validation from the commenters?! FML honestly.

LlamaLlama

@Mira I agree with you on like of this lady (stranger?), annoyance with lw1 and queasiness about lw4.

Stranger did a god job being both Real and Kind with lw1. Lw1, stop being common and tacky. You will be a lot cooler if you do!

Hellcat

@LlamaLlama Was I supposed to read your last line in a Matthew McConaughey voice? Because I did.

ThisLittlePiggy

RE: LW1 -

I think the key to not needing the attention anymore is to need something else MORE. I totally had the same habits - keeping guys on the back burner just in case, tapping it every so often, breaking hearts. Then when I started dating my partner, I realized, omg, I need THIS PERSON more than I need the high of having other people like me. The need to keep this awesome guy in my life became MUCH more pressing than any other needs. It changed the way I behaved in both subtle and obvious ways, and ultimately was better for everyone.

Jinxie

@ThisLittlePiggy I don't doubt that this worked for you, but I'm hesitant to say this is or should be a universal rule. I'd advise anyone in LW1's situation to work on NOT looking towards other people (even if "other people" is one person and that person is your current partner) for validation and instead try to find it from within (easier said than done, I know). Or something - I'm having a hard time explaining my feelings on this. Basically, it worked for you because you found your partner. The energy you gave to the backburner guys is now directed towards Partner. But...what if you hadn't met Partner? What if you'd NEVER met Partner? Hopefully you'd find internal motivations for changing your behavior.

angelinha

@ThisLittlePiggy siiigh but how did you find that person?

ThisLittlePiggy

@Jinxie Boy, I hope I would have. OR I would have lived the life of a libertine. It's impossible to say! All I can witness to is what worked for me.

ThisLittlePiggy

@angelinha I crashed his birthday party, got really drunk, and made out with him. Then assumed that he was too hot for me, dated someone else for two years, then started dating Partner (who had secretly loved me the whole time, awwww). So...party crashing? I don't know, at this point it was a while ago, not sure I would have the same battle plan today.

purefog

Maybe I am only a voice crying in the wilderness, but I kind of hate these "funny" advice columns. I liked it back when people presented real problems and (flawed, but trying, and sometimes succeeding wildly) advice-givers tried to suggest either solutions or, at least, new ways of grappling with those problems. These recent columns (except AQC, who continues to rock out) are just puerile wastes of paper. Or ether. Or something. IMO.

noodge

@purefog I like them, myself. I think sometimes where a lot of us falter is in being So Serious All The Time. It seems like there's some legit advice here, just clothed a bit more lightly.

evil melis

From the first Ask A Lady, without commentary:

Thoughts on cum? Specifically, what part(s) of your anatomy do you most enjoy having it deposited on? You guys can't really be all that into the facial thing that's so prevalent in porn these days, right?

"The only facial a girl wants is blah blah blah day spa blah blah the worst lolol!"

Anyway, yeah don't cum all over a girl's face. Unless you hate her, I guess, but then also don't be fucking her. If you don't hate the girl you're fucking (you seem great) the the best place to cum is probably wherever she wants you to, which means you're gonna have to ask her.

purefog

@evil melis But, you see, that's GOOD advice!

thebestjasmine

@purefog You know that column a few months ago about sarcasm and how it's the way to ignore all genuine feelings? I feel like the most recent Ask a Dude (which I hated) and your feelings toward this Ask A Lady (which I like fine but understand why people don't) are prime examples of too much sarcasm and no real feelings. I guess some people like that because mocking the world is cool or whatever, but it just seems so mean and dismissive to me.

stuffisthings

@evil melis But people come to the Hairpin Ask A _____ because every other advice column available on the Internet is not Earnest and Serious enough. Right?

tea sonata

@thebestjasmine I was kind of expecting a "J/K" somewhere. I'm all for Snark'n'Sarc, but it's advice, not just a column. Aaaaaanyways.

stuffisthings

I'm just imagining some poor LW who has waited months for her letter to appear here, she's got her "Dump Him" and "Marry Him" letters all written out and sealed in perfumed envelopes, thinking "FINALLY I'll know what to do!" and then she loads up this column and is all, "WTF, argh? NOW I'LL NEVER KNOW!"

Or, you know, she's already married to her ex and pregnant with her hairdresser's baby and is all, "Oops! Shoulda waited!"

Jinxie

@stuffisthings I come to the Ask a ___________ columns both because they are awesome and because I love reading advice columns but Dear Prudence is usually TERRIBLE. Like today, for instance:
http://www.slate.com/articles/life/dear_prudence/2012/10/dear_prudence_my_girlfriend_grows_hair_on_her_chest.html

purefog

@thebestjasmine I'm sorry if I'm being dense here, but: You write that "your feelings toward this Ask A Lady. . .[is a] prime example[] of too much sarcasm and no real feelings." Are you taking me to task for being overly sarcastic and unfeeling? Or agreeing (sort of) with what you take to be my point about this columnist and another recent one? Scratching head here. . .

thebestjasmine

@purefog No, the opposite! Saying that the columns were all sarcasm and no feelings.

Scandyhoovian

@Jinxie UGH PRUDIE TODAY. "I'm OK with my lady's hair everywhere else except on her nipples, how do I tell her to get rid of it?" is replied to with "IF SHE WANTS TO KEEP IT SHE GETS TO KEEP IT," not "tell her to get laser treatment!"

Jinxie

@Scandyhoovian SERIOUSLY.
(Also, what are the odds she'd be happy to get her nips zapped when she adamantly refuses to take a razor to her underarms or legs?)

stuffisthings

@thebestjasmine Although I don't agree with your assessment of this and previous Ask A's, I'm pretty sure "disdain" is a feeling.

Megasus

LW #1: Here is some actual advice: for the love of God, just stop talking to them. The end. Going to read the rest now.

lasso tabasco

LW #1: This girl just needs to STOP. That whole situation just sounds tedious and boring. It's so much more fun to be emotionally independent!

LM#4: DANGER DANGER DANGER!!

Koko Goldstein

SHOW US YOUR TITS.

(this is my favorite lady)

Reginal T. Squirge

Who are these assholes that reconnect with their exes all the time?

bibliobotic

what net of shimmering strands do your amber eyes cast around their souls; you did not ask to wield this power and it weighs heavy in your alabaster bosom

I feel like this Lady really gets me.

antilamentation

LW1, it sounds like an epic dramafest. Also it sounds like everything is based on fantasy, since as you say you are not the marriage and babies type anyway. So whatever those guys see in you is a reflection of their own fantasies, rather than based on a real sense of you and your needs. It is also sad and disgusting that they say these things to you while they are with other women. What a bunch of losers! In terms of letting them go, stop making contact with them. Cut them off. If you feel like you need attention, do something nice for yourself: learn a new language, take up knitting, run a bubblebath, fix yourself a nice meal, get your friends to give you a makeover - whatever requires the least amount of drama, and feels practical, real and nourishing. Because the drama won't fill the hole.

LW2, you say you're in relationship: how about asking your partner for an intimate head massage? Or giving them one, and seeing if you can replicate that amount of pleasure for him/her? The stylist is doing his job. You sound like being touched has awakened something in you - and that's not a bad thing. But following through with that probably doesn't belong with the stylist, who is just doing his job. Take it home, and play hairdresser with your partner, maybe and see what happens?

LW3, it's not your dude's fault you got the UTI. If the situation was reversed, would you feel OK with him blaming/resenting you for that? There's nothing wrong with wanting some comfort, as long as it's not secretly about blaming/resenting the other person. Maybe tell him you're feeling low and would appreciate some TLC? When I feel ill my boyfriend gives me cuddles, offers to fix me cups of tea, or to fetch me groceries if there's anything I need, and that helps me feel loved. I do the same for him when he feels ill, so it's balanced and again, it's not about secretly being resentful of the other person.

LW4, kind of like with the hair stylist situation: I would be inclined to treat your reaction as information about something you want, or something you enjoy, and then take that back to your relationship with your husband by seeing if you can find something similar with him. What would you need to do with your husband to leave the night on a lovely high?

Basically, I think if people are in a relationship, and then feel as if they get something elsewhere that makes them question things, there is information there which is useful, about what the person wants in a relationship. And the challenge then is to see what you can do in your existing relationship to play with that new information.

Or: the action that needs to be carried forward doesn't so much belong with the hair stylist, or the ex. They are the catalyst for something, but the container for whatever you do with that reaction needs to be the primary relationship. Then you don't have to feel guilty, or make overtures to your stylist. If for some reason it's difficult to do those things with your current partner, that then is more information and needs to be processed as well - but again, that is not so much about the stylist or the ex. Otherwise everyone ends up a bit like LW1's awful dudes, hanging their fantasy stuff on LW1, rather than investing in their current relationships.

Go for what's real. See what's possible there.

Bloodrocuted

@antilamentation Wow, you are really good at this! I especially like your answer to Lw2.

antilamentation

@Bloodrocuted Thanks!

dracula's ghost

I did not read all the comments but I just had to say DO NOT EAT ICE CREAM WHEN YOU HAVE A UTI!

Don't eat any sugar! Not even fruit!

NOT EVEN CRANBERRY JUICE, unless you are going hardcore hippie co-op "no other juice added" toxically sour style.

The bacteria that make you have a UTI love nothing more than sugar. Indeed, many women with chronic UTIs find that cutting down on their sugar intake actually solves the problem! I think many of us may not realize how much sugar we eat in a given day. The average American eats like 40 pounds of sugar a year or something insane.

NO ICE CREAM. No apple juice! Avoid anything sweet like the very plague! TAKE IT FROM ONE WHO KNOWSSSSSSSSS

RogueState

@dracula's ghost

THIS IS THE BEST

PatatasBravas

@dracula's ghost I am going to interpret this to mean that my angry-eating bags of potato chips is an acceptable coping strategy. Salt ain't sugar so it must be fine.

do not tell me if this is not the case, i do not want to be corrected

Super Nintendo Chalmers

@dracula's ghost I have had so much of that hippie co-op juice that the taste has totally grown on me now.

There is also hippie co-op unsweetened cranberry tea you can make, which is "good" for certain values of "good."

eiffeldesigns

@dracula's ghost I <3 the unsweetened cranberry juice. OceanSpray BS makes me cringe it's so sugary.

Megasus

@PatatasBravas Only if they're plain. I know most of the flavoured ones tend to have sugar in them.

Mariajoseh

@dracula's ghost I've been drinking pear juice all and had fruit for breakfast and I am battaling a UTI right now. FML

Aphrodite

@dracula's ghost
I get UTIs a LOT- correction, USED to get! The magical solution is CRANBERRY PILLS. Not juice, not tea, GEL CAPSULES FULL OF DRIED CRANBERRY. They are AMAZING. You can get them pretty much wherever you can get vitamins and other herbal supplements. THEY MAKE ME OVERUSE CAPSLOCK AND EXCLAMATION POINTS WITH JOY!!! The not-so-fun-fact of the matter is that with every UTI you get, your chances increase of getting another, so my doctor finally prescribed "prophylactic antibiotics." When I started to get that UTI feeling, instead of going on a course of antibiotics I only had to take one antibiotic pill and, like, seven cranberry pills and drink a ton of water, and I was set. The infection doesn't win! It's seriously the best. At this point, I don't even take the antibiotics every time. Cranberry pills are AMAZING.

sevanetta

@Aphrodite seconding this - I keep cranberry tablets with me all the time - my naturopath told me to take 6 in one go at the first sign of an infection and it works.

vunder

I quit reading after the misspelling of "seperated." Actually that's not true, but I did start skimming.

parallel-lines

Everyone is probably secretly in love with you*.

------------------------------------------------------

*Or maybe they just want to bone you? Exes are kinda like that.

adorable-eggplant

@parallel-lines True also of hairdressers.

phipsi

LW2 Can you give me the deets of your hair dresser? Cuz daaaayum I love a scalp massage. Will fly 4 scalp massage.

allyscully

@phipsi I also want to know who/where this hairdresser is.

stuffisthings

I'm convinced this Lady is actually just Drunk Edith.

Bittersweet

@stuffisthings I got more of a Jane after a Few Glasses vibe, mostly because of the Sephora reference.

angelinha

@Bittersweet Yes! I forgot I wasn't reading a regular public Jane article for awhile!

Kira-Lynn@twitter

Yo as someone who did shampoos for years - that is just their job. Your hairdresser's shampoo felt amazing because he is more experienced or cares more than the assistant you usually get. That assistant gets paid minimum wage and you probably never tip them. Your hairdresser makes 50% or 100% of what you pay for your cut, and you tip them well. But his assistant called in sick or was busy or something.

Oliver St. John Mollusc

Will you guys hate me if I tell you I've never had a UTI? I don't even know what I'm doing right/not doing wrong. I'm convinced it's because I'm a disgusting human being and my body is like "psh, this man bacteria is NOTHING."

Judith Slutler

@Mo Cuishle A good immune system is nothing to be ashamed of.

dj pomegranate

@Mo Cuishle I'll be over here in the never-UTI corner with you and our disgusting bodies. :-/

tea sonata

@Mo Cuishle Actually, and me makes three. Can we have a flag now, or something?

thebestjasmine

@Mo Cuishle Me neither.

PatatasBravas

@all Do not feel bad for not getting UTIs! Put that shiz on your resumes, even, definitely, be pumped about the disgustingbacteriaproof systems.

WaityKatie

@Mo Cuishle Me neithers. But I think it's maybe true that some people are prone to them and others are not? (I also used to be able to brag about never having had a cavity...and then I got 5 at once. So I'm kind of afraid to even say out loud that I've never had a UTI.)

Mila

@Mo Cuishle How old are you? I had my first (and I think only? My memory is fading) UTI when I was 27. Right when I moved back from having lived INTERNATIONALLY. I don't know if that had something to with it, new germs or whatever.

SarahP

@Mo Cuishle I've never had one either, but I've had a bunch of yeast infections, so... kind of on the same page.

Bebe

@Mo Cuishle I never have either, but I think that's because I always, always, even when it is inconvenient, must pee immediately after sex, which I hear is a good way to prevent them?

OTOH, I did go through a time when I got about 1-2 yeast infections a year, which are from the devil, so it all evens out.

Oliver St. John Mollusc

@Mila Haha maybe! I'm 32 but I didn't start getting nekkid with boys until I was in my mid twenties, so I already knew about lube and stuff by then (I don't know if anyone has mentioned lube upthread? But I'm told that condoms + inadequate use of lube sometimes = UTIs or yeast infections)

Lurkasaurus

@Mo Cuishle Me too! And I also hold to the "disgusting human being" hypothesis, because I do everything else wrong. Something like 50% of my diet is sugar and I'm not even very good about peeing after sex (I know) so about the only thing I have going for me is dumb luck. Which now I have now scared away forever, probably. Serves me right.

Poubelle

@Bebe When I was about 14 I read a Cosmo article that said you should always pee after sex so as not to get UTIs. I credit that Cosmo article with the utter lack of UTIs in my life and with having the only useful sex tip I've ever gleaned from that magazine.

Citizen Cunt

"Really, this all turns on whether or no you have lived internationally."

LOLOLOL

WaityKatie

I just made up my own game where I imagine that the guy in each of these letters is actually the same guy. He's a hot ex who is being strung along by an internationally-living vixen, who dishes out sensual hair washes and UTIs with equal abandon.

stuffisthings

Hang on need to go search RapGenius.com for the phrase "rub dirt on my dick"

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Some smart dude once said it's white devil sophistry.

bluewindgirl

Hm, I might be in a very judge-y mood, or just not as morally flexible as most grown up people, but I think it is totally possible to lead someone on, string someone along, all those things. Typical scenario: hahaha you are awesome, let's make out and have intense conversations/joking marriage proposals/naming of hypothetical children ---> RADIO SILENCE.
Leading someone on! It's real! I have done it, people have done it to me, it isn't always (or probably usually) malicious, but it is certainly a thing that happens. It is the usual symptom of being terrible at communication and not knowing what you want. Am I crazy here? Are we all just supposed to be such emotionally defensive people that we take full responsibility for being idiots and believing *words* rather than *instincts*?
... Rant over?

SarahP

@bluewindgirl Personally, I think your example would be leading someone on if there were actual spoken promises (like "this was great, I'll call you tomorrow"). Otherwise (again, to me) it's having a good albeit noncommittal time with someone. I mean, I wouldn't like that scenario, but I think coming away from it with unspoken hopes/expectations is about equally on the shoulders of both parties.

stonefruit

@bluewindgirl I don't think you're crazy, and I absolutely think it's possible to lead someone else on. So, maybe that means we have our own crazy club about it, but maybe we could also admit the lucky ladies whose UTs have never been felled by an I?

This is my new username

@bluewindgirl I think that leading someone on, is definitely a thing when people are telling you something, and it turns out they did not mean it (as you have described). I think were leading on is not a thing, is when you are say hanging out socially with someone, but have never expressed any romantic feelings for suggests that they have been led on. As engaging in platonic behaviour is not leading someone on. Telling someone you want their babies and a white picket fence, but having no intention of doing those things is leading someone on.

bluewindgirl

@stonefruit I am a member of both those clubs, apparently. But I feel like the meetings would be kind of depressing?

bluewindgirl

@This is my new username Are there platonic makeouts? I like the sound of that.

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LW1 - Get rid of your exes. Seriously, they are revolting.

Chrestomanci

I got mad at my ex-boyfriend for my UTI. But that's because he refused to drive me to the doctor. You see, his friend was coming over to do bucket bongs and couldn't I just walk there?

TARDIStime

@Chrestomanci putting the "ex" in front of that boyfriend was a good choice.

Chrestomanci

@TARDIStime yeah, I feel pretty good about that decision

The Frozen Head of Dorothy Zbornak

I'm just going to chime in to say that I don't think it is unreasonable for LW3 to ask her boyfriend to chip in for UTI meds. It's certainly not healthy to actively resent him for her UTIs, but women tend to bear a disproportionate amount of the burden when it comes to sexual economics.

If UTIs are a consistent recurrence in their sex life as a couple (i.e., essentially a built-in cost of having sex for them), I'd say its perfectly fair to split it, especially because she is already bearing the UTI's physical cost. Relatedly, I think it is perfectly legit to split the cost of birth control in a regular-sex-having relationship. Mutual benefit; mutual cost. (SMASH THE PATRIARCHY)

Hella

@The Frozen Head of Dorothy Zbornak Hells yes. I will not be in a relationship with someone who will not chip in for birth control, and I feel no embarrassment whatsoever in demanding it! More sexy times for all!

paddlepickle

@The Frozen Head of Dorothy Zbornak Yeah, I felt like her question started off crazy and got sane and that kind of got overlooked. No, you can't be mad at him. Yes, he should chip in for the meds and be nice to you.

Aphrodite

This is the best Lady EVER. I laughed so hard throughout, and seriously good advice!

cageybee

I had a boy I was dating move away abruptly and leave me a UTI as a parting gift. Such rage I felt.
Also, a doctor once told me that once you already have one, the whole cranberry juice thing doesn't help, it's only for prevention, and that if I wanted to avoid antibiotics, to just drink a ton of water, and I did, and it worked! I haven't had one in a year or so now because I'm super diligent about peeing IMMEDIATELY after sex. A bit of a buzzkill, but UTIs are so unpleasant I figure it's a fair trade.
Oh, and I used to go to this salon where the owner (a man) cut my hair exactly how I wanted to look every time, except he would always graze my boobs when he was checking the evenness of the front sides of my hair? And he would straddle my knees when he trimmed my bangs. I only stopped going to him when he gave me two bad haircuts in a row, which I suspected were revenge because I told him I wanted to grow out my short hair.

Betsy Murgatroyd

Oddly, the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows addressed question 2 just yesterday. It's called the Contact High Five.
http://www.dictionaryofobscuresorrows.com/post/33689920728/contact-high-five

TARDIStime

@Betsy Murgatroyd haha, who wrote this? It's great!

Betsy Murgatroyd

@TARDIStime The man who writes the Dictionary wrote it. He comes up with all these words and definitions on his own. In fact, the Hairpin is where I first found this link.

TARDIStime

@Betsy Murgatroyd haha, who wrote this? It's great!

TARDIStime

@Betsy Murgatroyd haha, who wrote this? It's great!

downcomforter

Ugh, I am just like LW1, THE SHAME. I just emailed an ex who is "living internationally" stringing him along, and he still has feeling for me. WHAT IS OUR PROBLEM LW1????

L1
L1

@downcomforter I knowwwww. It's balls. But at least none if them gave me a UTI. Sounds like that shit us common round these parts.

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Dear A Lady: what ought I to do with people who don't like your advice? Should I pay more for it?

Myrtle

Hey a, LW4, the all you can eat smorgasbord of men generally ends once one is married to the dish that fills ones plate. Going back to "pick" is therefore considered rude. Eat what's on your plate and leave some intact for the rest of us who were caught in traffic and got here late.

aguacate

I have "lived internationally" on different continents for years and before that in New York City. +10,000 points, right?! RIGHT?!?!

Sorry to be a huge bitch, but L1 seems to be sort of writing an actual question and sort of telling herself that she's awesome.

I am VERY weary of people who claim that everyone is in love with them. Not just one or two people but absolutely EVERYONE THEY HAVE EVER DATED EVER. Ugh.

People with this mentality are the same people who brag about living internationally out of context.

She's probably young and just needs a few years to grow out of this obnoxious and insecure stage.

paddlepickle

@aguacate That is an interesting point, because the only person I know who claims that all their exes are in love with them is definitely lying, to the extent that you just know she is stating that the dudes said things they definitely did not say. But if this lady is like *that* the whole thing is just EXTRA insane.

aguacate

@paddlepickle I don't understand the psychology behind this stuff because I was always in the "everyone hates me" camp. LOL. And maybe I'm wrong about this, too, but that phenomenon has always fascinated me.

WaityKatie

@aguacate I used to know a person who believed that virtually everyone she KNEW was in love with her. Guys that ever even smiled or said hello to here were clearly secretly in love! And they never made a move because they were too INTIMIDATED by her amaaaazingness. She really believed this. Yeah, total narcissistic freak.

aguacate

Oh, she's 30. Ok, time to move on.

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I don't know if it's ever wise to admit to being a LW here, especially after being so fervently mocked but heck, I'll do it anyway. I am LW4. I haven't seen the ex-guy for a while now. My issue was that I thought his feelings for me were more than platonic and it felt like I was leading him on just by hanging and having a generally wonderful time with him. I'm not going to stop contacting him forever, I'm just gonna wait for an opportunity for him to come hang with a group of people so he can meet my husband and if the friendship can be maintained after that then there will be no reason to be a weirdo and he'll just be another friend. For reference, my sexual attraction to this ex was pretty well non-existant.

I am happy with my husband, I don't yearn for anyone else. I do have quiet crushes that I never pursue just as I'm sure my husband does. It's not a big deal.

L1
L1

@Miss Beans I'm L1! I came on here and holycrap the comments made me laugh. I've been really down and it just made it all seem a bit ridiculous. I can not believe the shit I got for saying that I lived internationally. I'm from a small town in New Zealand and that kind of makes a difference. I don't live in the same country as any of my exes or my close friends and family. I wrote it not even thinking but it's the one thing that everyone seemed to take away from the article. I have also commented the heck out of this now which probably proves I'm a narcissist. Truth is I was depressed for sometime but I'm coming out of it now. So yay me! Time to get some hobbies as I gave been consistently advised to do. I'll probably just take up crack.

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