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Forget and Forgive

Emily Flake

By Mink Stole | Posted 2/2/2005

I recently made an ass of myself and so I need some advice. After being interested in someone for a while and after several failed attempts to get to know him better, I finally up and asked him out to dinneróby e-mail because I am a big dork. The response was something like, ďOK, I donít mind hanging out with you, but if youíre talking about a date, which you didnít say exactly, I should tell you that I have a girlfriend.Ē Fine, this is normal, right? Except for the fact that now I think that it was obvious to anybody but me that this girlfriend existed and that she was someone I see almost every day. So now Iíve now made an ass of myself in front of both of them. How can I reaffirm my respect for the sanctity of love and relationships and absolve myself of the sin of attempted home wrecking before it gets any worse? Please help. My world is too small to have this floating around.

Oh Dear God

Calm down, honey. The fact that you were temporarily blinded by desire does not make you a deliberate scofflaw of the rules of love. All homes are intact, ODG, and your soul is unstained. Your face may be red, but thereís no need to sew a scarlet letter on your clothes or to crawl through the streets in a hair shirt. All you did was tell a guy you thought was unattached that you liked him enough to want to know him better. Even though it turned out he wasnít single, this is not a crime. Actually, he should be flattered, and if he were really swell he would have said so, instead of making you feel so damned awkward.

I know this seems like a huge deal in a small world, but a bit of the truth mixed with some all-purpose self-deprecating humor should be just what you need to defuse the situation and make everyone comfortable again. Since this conversation started with an e-mail, it may be easier to keep it electronic. Just e-mail him one more time saying something light like, ďOops, I didnít know you had a girlfriend. Thanks for telling me. Sheís a lucky gal.Ē Then smile and be pleasant whenever you see either of them, and before you know it everyone but you will have forgotten the entire incident. And pretty soon even you wonít care any more.


Iím 28 and have a 7-year-old daughter. I was with one guy for eight years, a real strong-willed manís man who rarely showed his feelings, wore jeans and work boots, and kept his beard and hair scruffy. We broke up, and soon after I met a guy who is his exact opposite. Heís beautiful, with lovely soft skin and hair, and he wears great clothes and diamond earrings. And heís very in touch with his feelings. These differences attracted me at first, but now theyíre getting on my nerves. This guy cries at least once a day. Either I didnít hold him long enough in bed, or maybe I snapped at him. He constantly tells me how much he loves me, and if I donít respond in kind he accuses me of not loving him. No matter how busy I am, heís constantly after me to hold and kiss him. He worries constantly about his appearance and actually cried once because he lost a piece of jewelry. I love him and I try to be patient, because I know he was abused by his dad as a child, and he is a couple of years younger than I am, but sometimes I act mean to toughen him up. Then he cries and I get angry inside. Am I just a bitch? Is it every womanís dream to have a beautiful man this much in love with her? Or is something very dysfunctional going on here?

Fed Up With Feelings

Lots of women dream of having a beautiful man to adore them, FUWF, but this new guy of yours is a nightmare. Heís not looking for a girlfriend; he wants a mommy. He may be only two actual years younger than you, but Iím surprised heís not begging you to burp him after each meal and keep his diapers changed.

Itís easy to understand how, after being with Mr. Tough Guy for so long, you would find the beauty and gentleness, not to mention the grooming, of this lovely young lad irresistible, at least at first. But the only thing change guarantees is difference, not improvement. If you had met him a bit longer after your breakup, and had a chance to be single for a while, maybe youíd have seen him more clearly before you got involved , but perhaps not. Regardless, until he grows up, it would far better for you to focus your maternal instincts on your real child and toss this overgrown baby out with his bath water.

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