Dealing with ex-girlfriends causes man consternation
Published 10:46 am Friday, September 11, 2020
DEAR ABBY: What is acceptable after a breakup occurs? Several years ago, I reached out to an ex-girlfriend. We had dated for six months, but she broke up with me to take a job in another state. A year later, I heard through mutual friends that she had recently moved back. I didn’t call or text, but I did send an email asking how she was doing and if she’d like to talk.
She completely freaked out! She threatened to get a restraining order and told many of our mutual friends that I had been stalking her for a year. From that experience I learned never to contact an ex-girlfriend if they initiate the breakup.
Fast-forward: I recently ran into another ex-girlfriend who initiated the breakup. She told me that for an entire year after that breakup she hoped I would call her and, when I didn’t, it proved I had never loved her. Abby, I feel like I can’t win. It’s similar to how some women say they won’t let a guy kiss them unless they ask first, and others say if a guy asks, he’s a wimp and they would refuse. As a man, I feel like I’m in an impossible position. No matter what I do, half the women on the planet will either view it as too aggressive or too passive. Help! — CONFOUNDED IN OREGON
DEAR CONFOUNDED: Welcome to reality. Accept that no matter what you do, you can’t please everyone. If the only contact you had with that first ex-girlfriend was ONE email after her return to your city, then she was either grandstanding to get attention or it was a symptom of emotional instability. As to your second ex, men with self-esteem rarely call back after being rejected because once is enough.
Please don’t let those two “dolls” sour you on all women. As you know, the #MeToo movement has highlighted the importance of consent. Asking a woman before you make a move is always prudent.
DEAR ABBY: I have struggled with my weight for years. My husband doesn’t eat sweets, but we have a friend who insists on dropping off trays of dozens of cupcakes, candies, cookies, etc. I appreciate the time, money and effort, but I’m finally on an eating program that’s working for me. I told her (nicely) that while I appreciate her gesture, I can’t be trusted alone with such goodies, so please share them with folks who have better self-control. Well! She swore at me and told me to lose her number.
To say the least, I was shocked. Abby, I was as gentle and appreciative as could be. I explained that I have a problem and I’m the only one here who indulges in such foods. Was I wrong? What gives? I would donate them, but since I have a problem with sweets, I prefer not to have them in my house. — SWEET LOVE/HATE IN NEW JERSEY
DEAR SWEET: You did nothing wrong; you did yourself an important favor. That woman is not only not a friend, but she is also someone who cares nothing about your health and well-being. She is a “saboteur” with a vested interest in keeping you heavy.
I admire your determination to take a stand on behalf of your eating program and your health. It took courage, and I applaud you for doing it. Sadly, too many people are afraid to do what you did.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.
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