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Too Close for Comfort

Emily Flake

By Mink Stole | Posted 5/7/2003

I'm 17, and had a boyfriend for two years. I really liked him a lot. My sister, who's a year and a half older than I am, had a best friend nobody liked very much. I kinda felt sorry for my sister's friend and was nice to her. We spent a lot of time together, even after my sister stopped hanging out with her. Well, my boyfriend and I started to have some problems, so we decided to split up for a while. After about a month we got back together, but then I found out that while we were separated he slept with this girl--the one I was so nice to. I was so hurt and angry that we broke up for good. And now they've been together for a year. However, everyone else in my family seems to think she's, like, I don't know, a queen or something. Now she's my sister's best friend again and comes over all the time. Nobody cares that she's the slut who broke my boyfriend and me up. I asked my mom not to let her in the house. All she said was that I should grow up and get over it. Shouldn't they be more considerate of my feelings?

Still Really Hurting

Dear SRH:
There are two different ways of looking at this. One is that you and your boyfriend had broken up, which made him free to date anyone who wanted him--including your girlfriend. You may not have exercised it, but you had the right to do the same. You might've even fallen in love with a new guy. It sounds like this is the position your family has chosen. It feels like betrayal to you, but it's technically valid. After all, you were broken up. Therefore, he was not your boyfriend. And therefore, you have no right to bitch. The other way of looking at this is that, technically and schematically, our friends are not supposed to sleep with our boyfriends whether we're on a break or not--or at least until we're really finished with them. And our families are supposed to take our side. Period.

But life isn't fair, and your family has to balance what you want with what your sister wants. In this case it looks like your sister wins. It'd be swell if your sister hated her for what she did to you, but she doesn't, so you just have to accept it. All this anger, no matter how justified it is, is hurting you and nobody else. So let it go. You don't have to forgive the girl or like her. You don't even have to forgive your ex if you don't feel like it. Just ignore her as much as possible without being overtly rude--you don't want anyone accusing you of behaving badly--while she's in the house. Keep telling yourself that one day soon you'll have your own home where you can make the rules. And if she ever tries to come over there, you can slam the door right in her stupid face.

Women are always accusing men of being insensitive and not caring about their emotional needs. Phooey. I was in what I thought was the perfect relationship for one year, and then my girlfriend tells me she wants to stop having sex. She said her lowered sex drive was probably just a phase. She hoped I would understand and not be angry. This threw me, but I loved her anyway. Since I didn't want to come off as a big insensitive jerk, I went along with it. For the next few weeks, I continued to be affectionate and sweet, reminding her that I'd wait until she was ready. It wasn't easy because she really turns me on. But, like I said, I was trying to be "sensitive." Well, what I was was a "stooge," because finally, after two months, she told me that she'd been seeing this other guy and having sex with him. She also said it was too confusing for her to have sex with both of us until she could decide which one of us she wanted. Now she says she only wants me. But I'm so mad, I don't care anymore. What do you think?

Bitter and Disillusioned

Dear BAD:
That's such a sad story, and I feel like apologizing to you on behalf of all the women in the world who claim they can never find a decent guy.

Dump the bitch. I don't know what was going on with your relationship when she decided to play this nasty little game. But regardless, if she had wanted to sleep with this other guy, she should've been honest enough to risk a clean breakup. It would have hurt you, but you would've been free to get on with your life and, perhaps, find a woman who could actually appreciate you. When it didn't work out with the other lover boy, well, maybe you'd have wanted her back--or maybe you wouldn't. But at least you wouldn't have felt like you'd been played for a sucker. Give yourself some time to recover, then try again. If you're really as nice as you say you are, you'll soon realize that there are women looking for you.

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