Not allowed to date

by Natalie Dee

Q: I'm dating a girl whose parents have explicitly said that I'm not allowed to date her. Initially, her parents did not realize we were dating, but recently they found out a little, and turned rather suspicious. So now, they won't let us hang out together because they think we're more than friends.

This led my girlfriend to suggest covering our trails, which she would do by starting to date this Christian guy. Since he's Christian and cares for his reputation he won't be doing anything funny to her cause they're not married, so she can use him as a cover until she turns 18 and her parents can't keep us apart anymore. Basically she's gonna pretend to be in love with a guy to make her parents not suspect that she's actually in love with me. This way her parents won't prevent her from seeing me, which means we won't have to be apart for an infernally long time.

Still, as you can probably see, the whole thing leaks a little. It's sort of mean towards the cover-up guy, and it seems like a somewhat unstable solution. Plus, I'm a little scared that she might actually have a crush on the cover story guy. Should we go ahead and trick the parents, or should we face the music and be kept apart for six months?

I really hate to be predictable here, bro, but I think you ought to think about calling this relationship quits. This whole scenerio is so shady, and is no real way to start things off.

Her parents don't approve of her seeing you, for one thing. I know that she will be 18 in 6 months or whatever, but if her parents have that much of an influence on her social life, I do not think she will be able to just cut herself off from them completely, immediately, just because of you (because, regardless of how old she is, her parents are not going to just roll over and love you as soon as her birthday hits if they have this big of a problem with you now.)

Perhaps more convincing, though, is the fact that this girl seems DIABOLICALLY CALLOUS AND SCHEMING. I mean, come on. She is willing to have a sham relationship with a guy who's only crime is being a religious kid who is trying to be good. That is COMPLETELY CRAPPY. Do you really think a person like this is someone you should have a committed relationship with? Plus, you're not even sure that she doesn't have a thing for this Christian kid. Cut your losses, boss. This seems like a real fishy situation that is only going to end up fishier, and you're going to be really happy if you don't jump through hoops to keep this crazy relationship afloat.

Q: I recently found out that my mother had an affair with my girlfriend's dad. This was before I started dating my girlfriend and supposedly both parents were seperated at the time, but I still feel really weird about it. What should I do?

Just relax.... You don't have to do anything. You have nothing to feel weird about- you two aren't related or anything. Your parents aren't together anymore, and their relationship was so inconsequential that you didn't even hear about it until now. Any (unlikely) weirdness that would need to be sorted out would be between your parents, not between you and your lady, or you and your mom. If your parents were actively dating, that would be one thing, but that's not the case, so you can just chill out and this can all be something you and your girlfriend joke about.

Q: I am immigrating to Canada from the states, and therefore am not legally allowed to work. I have a very supportive husband so money hasn't been an issue, until now. With the holiday season approaching, I am looking for thoughtful yet inexpensive presents to give him. It is our first Christmas as a married couple so I want to give him something significant. I could always use his money to buy him something, but I donÕt feel right doing that. I am not overly artistic and heÕs a pretty typical guy (meaning I don't want to write him a poem or paint him a picture). Do you have any ideas?

You know what I would do?? I would make him a really nice dinner, with all of his favorite foods, and make him a pie or cake or something for dessert. Then, I would buy him a new hat and gloves and scarf, cause Canada is fucking cold, and it would be touching as hell if you let him know you are concerned about how freezing to death he is gonna be.

Q: I am a non drinker and all of my friends drink. I feel like I don't fit in when we go to parties because I'm always the only person not drinking. I am also the only one of my friends who is a virgin.

I feel like I am the only person I know who has any morals and believes in being a good person. I have trouble finding a boyfriend because once a guy gets to know me and they find out I actually care about my life and my future, the dump me. Any suggestions?

Quit hanging out with your friends. Seriously. Make new friends. It is glaringly obvious that you have nothing in common with them, to the point that you think that everything they do is beneath you.

They aren't doing anything wrong. They can go out and have a few drinks, or have premarital relations, and still have a fulfilling and successful life. You're not doing anything wrong, either, but instead of respecting your differences and not judging the decisions your friends make, you are using what you perceive as mistakes as a reason you put yourself on some moral upper-ground. If you can't hang out with people who have different values than you without thinking they are immoral or not good people, then find new friends with similar interests and moral codes. It will lower your blood pressure, and will save your old friends from having to be judged on someone else's ideals.

Natalie Dee is a Columbus-based artist and writer whose work can be seen at To Ask Natalie, e-mail

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