By Emby on Friday Open Thread
@farowl I've been in a similar situation to your dude, and from my own experiences, I think it would be better for you to break up with him. Every situation is different and I'm not claiming that's the 100% right answer, but in my situation, I was literally too infatuated and *in looooove* to do what I knew, deep down, was the right thing.
In my estimation, you're asking him to do the heavy lifting because you screwed up. That's really not fair, and I think you should break up with the guy and let both of you move on with your lives. My two, anyway.
LW#2: Oh man. So, I can't say that I've been there with a parent, but I have cut off members of my family, and here's how you need to think of this.
You're not choosing between your boyfriend and your dad. Your mom is creating a false dichotomy because she doesn't like the conflict (and really, who can blame her?). Your father is being racist, and not just racist in a vague sense, but racist in a clear, specific, and direct way toward someone you care about. Maybe you and boyfriend will end up getting married and living happily ever after, and maybe you won't, but either way, you'll never be able to look at your father again without remembering the vitriol and bigotry he spewed at you. When you cut him off, you're not really cutting him off, you're cutting off his racism.
He'll probably never stop being racist, but he can stop saying racist things and acting in racist ways. He can especially stop doing/saying racist shit around you. By having his racist hissy fit at you over the phone, as someone said above, he's choosing racism over a relationship with you, and that's not okay.
Cut him off, and tell him that until he's ready to stop acting like his life is a Klan rally, you're not willing to have any contact with him. It's okay to be sad about that, and to grieve, but it's also possible to come to terms with the fact that the dad you loved growing up isn't this man, like A Lady said. You do you.
If or when the time comes that he apologizes and tries to fix things, be as receptive as you feel you can, but you should never, ever let someone else bully you with their values.
1) If you are planning any type of action whatsoever that can be accurately described as "pulling a Britney" you should reexamine your life choices immediately.
2) This one is so tough, because you didn't do anything wrong and because there is no easy, painless way to deal with it. My boyfriend is a dude of color, and I was trying to imagine what it would be like if my dad expressed sentiments like this, and it's almost too painful to imagine - not just because of how much it would hurt my boyfriend (who has encountered that shit before) but because of how crushing it would be to my idea of my father, how much it would hurt that relationship forever. The only way I could ever imagine my relationship with my dad recovering after something like that would be if he actually got therapy - straight up, no fudging it, laying down on a couch and talking to Dr. Katz therapy.
Think about dealing with your dad the way we should deal with racism at large: the best solution is to try to get at the heart of racist feelings, to examine the root of those ideas and world views and try to stamp out racism at the core, not simply the expression of those racist thoughts. BUT, if that isn't going to happen, treat your dad the way we actually have treated racists in the last 50 years: make sure everybody he loves and holds dear lets him know that his feelings are deeply embarrassing, socially unacceptable, and that he needs to keep those ugly ass thoughts inside his head if he ever wants to have friends.
3) Sorry, A Lady, but this answer is kind of a cop-out. She is talking about these feelings in a very specific way, and you are responding with general platitudes about self-confidence. Maybe "most beautiful woman in the world" is pushing it, but wanting a man who "feels delighted to see me naked, and is maybe even proud at the thought that he gets to be in bed with me" is not an unreasonable desire or fantasy, nor one reserved for supermodels. It is not a sign of society's crazy demands for women's physical perfection that this woman wants to be considered particularly beautiful by her partner, it is a sign that this woman is a human being who wants to be considered special by somebody who is special to her. There's a world-swallowing gulf of difference between wanting to be the prettiest woman in the world (pleasing to any and all people she encounters) and wanting to be cherished by the man she loves (pleasing to one very special person).
LW3, the problem is that you are side-stepping this fantasy and barely able to name it. You talk about wanting to be special to your lover, but then you talk about being weary of societal expectations, lowering your expectations for yourself, etc, etc. What you want is a feeling in your relationship, but you are only able to bring yourself to speak about feelings in society at large.
To answer your question in a straight-forward manner, yes it is possible for a man to love you unabashedly even if you are not socially recognized as extravagantly beautiful. The proof of this is the bulk of Western literature. Go back and reread poetry and literature written by men passionately in love with the women in their lives; go back and reread the stories they wrote, the odes they composed, and the endless praise and exultation they offered to their wives and lovers. Go back and look at famous relationships in history (John & Abigail Adams, Teddy Roosevelt & his beloved Alice, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda, etc etc etc etc). Now go look at pictures of those women. They are no supermodels! They are lovely, kind normal-looking women, some prettier or uglier than others, but all adored by the men in their lives. It is completely possible for a man to be consumed with desire and adoration for an average looking woman, and the proof of this is in its happening over the whole course of human relationships. Keep believing! Find better men who worship your mind and your body will naturally be included in the process.
Maybe I'll go against the grain and say I've been married for 6 years now an tied the knot at 5 months. Yeah it was cray-cray but the right thing for us to do. We knew about a week in that we wanted to be together and making it official was the right thing--for us-- to do.
That being said I generally cringe when people tell me they want to marry someone they barely know. I think hubbie and I packed what some people spend at least a year doing in that short period of time. We had lots of what we cal "Emotional Intamacy". I told him deep dark secrets and broader life desires after date three and he did the same then. We had those conversations people sometimes take a year to have less than a week in.
Is it a bad idea? Maybe? Should you wait? Perhaps? I think in the end you're both going to do what you want. Writing to an Internet advice column means to me even you have your doubts.
@HeyThatsMyBike Say something. Just do it. She is a grownup and responsible for herself. If she's okay with marrying someone who would say things that an HR department would fire you for or a campus would nail you for chalking on campus property, then it's going to cause her a world of hurt at some point. Might as well make it clear before she walks down the aisle rather wait till after. Because you KNOW someday he will say something around/to you that you can't let slide.
Man, this is why I really can't and don't do ANY social networking (facebook, twitter, etc.). Not because I don't feel the same voyeuristic and narcissistic urges as the next 20-something, but because it makes life so much more *complicated*. I'm already awkward as fuck in navigating real life human interactions. Having to worry about a whole separate set of social protocols just makes me curl up on the floor in a little ball.
@MmeLibrarian (That being said, I have had a couple of acquaintances who took pregnancy as a license to eat like absolute crap and stop exercising, which is a TERRIBLE idea when you are growing another person. I kind of think that a doctor would be within their right to step in there and say something.)
@carolita I like carolita's response the best out of this whole thread. Sexual attraction is weird! All long term relationships go through phases of grrater/lesser sexytime attractions. How you deal with and get through the hard times says more about your relationship than the amount of hard times you have. What's sexy to me is knowing that my husband thinks of me as a priority, and has a desire to be attractive to me. It seems like the problem in this marriage isn't that her husband is fat, it's that he is blatantly deprioritizing being sexy to his wife. And she, in turn, seems like she is using her own weight successes as fodder for being cranky. In situations like this, the crankyness and bitterness and stress-behaviors just build and build in a vicious cycle. Lets ignore the fat trolling and health trolling and focus on what's actually going on: bad communication and a lack of following the golden rule.
@Sarah Rain My BF isn't overweight at all, he's actually quite buff for an older guy, but when I see him overindulging in junk every now and then, it affects me the same way his smoking used to (thankfully, he quit smoking), or the way one of my ex's excessive imbibing of gin used to. It repulses me. So maybe she's not necessarily shallow, and is simply not articulating the problem very precisely, since the weight-gain is so connected to the new and disturbing eating habits? Or am I shallow for being disgusted when my BF can't stop stuffing nachos into his mouth and it makes his breath smell like dog feet? I don't know! Sexual attraction is not to be confused with love. Sexual attraction (or the diminishment of it) can hinge upon the smallest things, even random things. I once read about how in the middle ages just changing a sow's feeding time or amount can make it stop eating for long enough to ruin a family who'd been counting on fattening it and slaughtering it. It reminded me of certain boyfriends, who'd get turned off by the weirdest stuff, and never get over it. People can be really weird! They can't help not being turned on. There's no way you can morally judge a person who suddenly is not turned on anymore by their spouse. It could be weight gain, or it could be a change of politics. Seriously, if my BF went Republican on me? It would be curtains for us! No joke! Call me superficial.
@i make lists -- I did something similar for a time. It wasn't Keto specifically, but it was essentially high fat, some veggies, no carbs. I did this on the advice of an actual physician of Western Medicine, and I felt great while I was doing it. Except that I didn't really. MY BODY felt great and was working with efficiency and zeal, but the diet kind of took over my life. No beer became no social life. No pizza became nothing to look forward to. Oh, but I could glance condescendingly over at the mere mortals who needed calories to survive. How quaint and old-fashioned they were with their omnivorous digestive systems. All that to say that the diet turned me into a self-obsessed, antisocial, smug nihilist. AND THAT IS WHY CELEBRITIES LOVE DIETS.
If your friend's mental health is OK and she is still the person she was before, the diet itself isn't harmful. If it is changing her outlook and personality, you're veering into the land of eating disorders.
Myself, I decided exercise is a small price to pay for the joy of carbohydrates.