Quantcast
A Lady

A Lady

Most Recently: Scrub?

Scrub?

Hi Hairpin,
I am desperately in love with someone TLC might call a "scrub." He's kind and sweet and smart and charming, but he also doesn't have a bank account or health insurance or a "real" job, and my parents think he's not good enough for me. I know he is good enough for me because he makes me so happy, but I do feel very anxious about this. I love him, but I'm nervous about what our lives would be like if we ended up together. I am a teacher, so I don't make tons of money either, but I sometimes worry that he is completely impoverished. It makes me feel so shallow to worry about money, but I know that money problems cause divorce and tons of other unhappy life problems. It would just be nice to know that you could be with someone you loved AND also take a vacation once a year and go out sometimes and all those other bougie things. My friends say that it's great that we love each other so much, but sometimes that isn't enough, and they know it hurts but I have to move on. What do you think? Is love enough, or is it more important to take into account practical concerns? Is there any way to talk to him about this without sounding like a shallow jerk?
READ MORE

When to Tell Someone They Might Be Gross

Dear Hairpin,

So, I am still friends with a guy I dated for a while, like, a decade ago. We get lunch or dinner a couple times a year and catch up. He's been pretty much single since then and is bummed about having a hard time finding a girlfriend (he wants to be in a committed LTR hopefully with marriage and all that jazz).

I'm pretty sure one of the things keeping him from finding someone special is that 1) he dresses the way he did ten years ago, like badly matched sort-of Goth attire that doesn't fit, 2) he often, like every time I see him so I'm extrapolating that it is normally this way, smells kind of bad, for whatever reason, I think maybe lack of attention to things like dental hygiene or being sort of musty or whatever, and 3) is generally unkempt and kind of gross, like has gross dirty fingernails.

There are other reasons that I can see why the ladies would not be all about him, but they all fall into the category of Harmless But Annoying, and he's a decent, kind guy who would make a loyal and affectionate boyfriend. But I can see that it would be really hard for someone to look past the surface crud when they meet him.

Soooo, I'm wondering — first of all, when someone sadly comments about how hard it is for them to find someone and seems to be genuinely bewildered about it, is that the time to just nod and murmur comfortingly, or, after enough years (YEARS!) of this have gone by, is it permissible to say something? I'm not asking him to change his sort of geeky but mostly adorable personality, just to clean his fucking fingernails. It's a little infuriating that something so basic seems to escape him. Can I say something like "hey you have a great personality and are kind and funny and everything, but you smell like a wet hamper and that is probably also preventing you from finding a lady?"

I mean if there were something like that about me that I could easily fix, I'd like to think I'd want to be told, like I want to be told if I have spinach in my teeth or whatever. I also see him infrequently enough that if he took total offense it wouldn't matter all that much, and in general he's not an offense-taking kind of guy.

Isn't this everyone's nightmare? To be one of the musty-smelling people? But although it sounds like this guy really could use some general/objective tweaks, it's also possible that he smells delicious and excellent to someone else, right? Which is why I'd hesitate before telling someone they smelled bad. Some people's B.O. smells hot to me, but then other people — clean people — generally smell revolting.

But anyway — and I guess this is obvious – if you really want to say something, think of how you'd like him to say it to you, if you were the gross one. And maybe you are! We're all gross. If it were me, the next time he complained about finding people to date, I'd say, basically what you suggested, "Dan, I realize this might be kind of out of line, but I'd hope you'd do the same for me, so I'll just say it — you are handsome and awesome, and women might be able to see that more immediately if you showered a little more and cleaned your fingernails! And now is when you tell ME that I could stand to use more deodorant, or whatever, by the way." It'll be awkward, but maybe not as bad as you think, and then ideally you could find a way to laugh about it or something else right after.

I don't think you have to mention the clothes, though.

Or the next time you see him, you could pretend it's a funny and startling new thing you just noticed. "Whoa, haha, Dan, you smell! Are you showering?? Haha, I love it, you're so gross." Or like, "Oh my god, Dan, your fingernails! Hahaha, oh my god you have to clean those, you nutcase!!"

One other thing is that you don't mention how the relationship ended, or what your dynamic is now. Because if you dumped him, it might be trickier — I'm now envisioning ex-boyfriends who broke my heart sitting me down specifically to tell me that I stink and dress like shit, and, wow, yes, I don't know if I would like that so much, but also whatever.

Anyone have any better ideas?

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

Photo by Ina Schoenrock, via Shutterstock

Friends' Relationships, Sex, and the Ones Who Get Halfway Away

1. Is there a loving, appropriate way to handle a friend who you feel moves too fast in relationships? Like maybe a friend who moved across the country to continue a relationship that you suspected should have ended a year before it did, who then finally gave up trying to win that person back and moved back home six months after the relationship ended, but who is now asking you to analyze conversations they are having on OkCupid? And also every time you GChat, this friend tells you when the person they are talking to last logged in to OkCupid? Or is that normal now? I am a married person and so am admittedly already not wholly able to empathize with this situation. How would one let this friend know you love and support them, without engaging them in behavior that seems like it is maybe not healthy? READ MORE

Shop Talk

Can we talk about vibrators again? It's time, right? There must be a half-life on women's websites for when certain topics can come up after the last time they came up? Maybe? Oh my god, the internet. I'm going to throw my computer away. But first I'm going to use my vibrator a bit. And then again. And again. Anyway, what do you use? READ MORE

The Bestworst Guy

Please help me get over the Best/Worst guy possible. The worst: He was my boss. He is essentially married, and cheats prolifically on his lady, taking many mistresses. I was one. He might be involved in illegal activities. He is pretty bad news. He is what my mami would call amujerigo. He might be a sociopath. READ MORE

Ask a Clueless Lady

1. I'd really appreciate some advice. I've been dating a guy for a year and a half now and everything is great, wonderful. Except that I don't feel very important to him. I've mentioned this to him and he said that he would try to improve. And yet, there is no change. He is still not making plans with me, not bringing me round to his parents, or inviting me on nights out with his friends. READ MORE

Crushes on Professors and "How Can I Tell If I'm Boring?"

1. I'm going to keep this brief. Basically, like many before me, I have a crush on one of my college professors. I wouldn't consider anything other than a little flirting until after I'm done with his class, but do you have any tips for seducing him? Maybe some subtle-but-effective flirting techniques? Also, without really knowing much about the situation, what are my chances? READ MORE

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. READ MORE

Photo Etiquette and the Modern Family

1. I need some honest, impartial advice here. From you, from other Hairpinners, from anyone really. READ MORE

On Quickie Weddings and Frustrating Fantasies

I'm not really sure who to ask.  I'll try to keep this short: I recently met a guy who's my age (30, if it matters), and even though we only spent about four days together (I was in the process of moving), we really got on well. My soul is always just screaming "I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU," but I thought I was old enough to be past that (that is, for lack of a better word, "puppy love"). Basically, we barely know each other but it seems that we're perfect together. I'm thinking of pulling a Britney and getting married in Vegas next month. He feels the same; he brought it up. Is this the worst idea in the world? It worked for Dharma and Greg ... right. I'd love your opinion and also love to hear what the Hairpinners have to say.  READ MORE