That's why life is awesome

by Natalie Dee

Q: I met a girl at a party last week and we went home with each other that night and had some awesome sex. The next morning I drove her home, and since then we've hung out a few times and it had seemed to be developing into something more than just a one-night-stand.

But here's the problem: She can't handle the way I show affection and concern. There's a way that I talk or act when I'm trying to comfort her or be caring or affectionate that she says makes her feel like she's "playing a role." As far as I can tell, and as far as I've been told in the past, I'm not doing anything outrageous or innapropriate. In fact, I really have difficulty telling the difference between when I'm doing something that she likes and when I'm doing something that she can't stand. To sum up, this roadblock is pretty much an effective relationship-ender. But I like her and we have fantastic sex and she likes me. But it's now making me feel like shit and that I have to walk on egg shells around her. So here's my question: Do I say "fuck this" and just bail, or do I attempt to work things out, maybe figure out what I do that makes her uncomfortable, and try to stop it?

I would just bail, dude. If you are having so many problems communicating with this broad now, just one week into your relationship, then just IMAGINE what kind of crap you are going to have to shovel in a year, when things aren't so fresh and you guys aren't on your best behavior anymore. It's not fair that you should have to guess what she wants since what she wants is so vague. Cut your losses, and find another girl who actually knows how to have a relationship instead of one who will dis non-specific personality traits of yours right out the gate. Just cause the fucking's good doesn't mean you will have anything else in common, or that she is a good person. Everyone you meet has genitals, they can be good to fuck without making you doubt every single thing you do.

Q: I have this friend who is pretty great, he's funny and charming and been there for me through a lot. I'm lucky and I know it, but I like him...too much. I have a suspicion that a dating relationship with him wouldn't work and, more importantly, that he's not interested, because otherwise we'd be dating. I know all these things but I can't get him out of my head.

I haven't been in a relationship for a very long time and mostly it doesn't bother me because it'll happen eventually, but no guy seems to measure up to him. I have friends that say its a problem because its preventing me from moving on. How do I move on? I don't want to stop being his friend but I do want to stop being in love with him.
- Janet

You don't have to stop being friends with him, as long as you get yourself out of love with him without letting him in on it.

You said yourself that you haven't been in a relationship for a long time. Sometimes when chicks go are on the market, they sleep around, or get in relationships with any guy who looks at them, or drive everyone they know crazy with their lack-of-boyfriend laments. Other girls, like you, turn their pals into surrogate boyfriends. Once you know you've crossed the line between chilling with your buds cause you are free and single and planning your and your friend's wedding, you have to take emotional inventory. It seems like you have done this already, and come to the conclusion that it won't work, which is totally fine.

You know it wouldn't work, and if it would work, it would have worked already instead of you pining away. You just gotta get out, maybe talk to your friend a little bit less, and try to meet other guys. They might not be as awesome as your friend, but you will meet guys who aren't half-bad, then one day you will meet a guy who you dig a lot. If you just keep reminding yourself that it would not work, and stop comparing guys to your friend, you will eventually stop thinking of your pal as some ideal mate. But, I am going to stress again, if you don't want to date him, don't tell him you are so smitten. If things won't work, they won't work, and telling him anything about it will just make it harder for you to get over it.

Q: I am currently on track to marry my girlfriend of 3 years and 9 months shortly after graduation. We have been together for a long time and I am happy when we're together, but I've never actually dated anyone else and so I find it hard to convince myself that I'm really in love. I honestly think I am sometimes, but there's always this nagging feeling that I don't really know because I've got nothing to compare it to. I want to spend the rest of my life with her, but I also want to know that this uncertainty will eventually go away. They say when it's true love you just know but I just don't. What should I do?

If you want to spend the rest of your life with her, that's it. That's the only question you need to ask yourself. People might say that YOU WILL KNOW because sparkly rainbows and birds will fly around your head and scream it in your ear, but dude, those are the same people who are trying to get you to buy greeting cards. And, if there were birds or whatever to let you know, they would have told you, oh, I dunno.... FOUR YEARS AGO?!? The actual feeling of being in love only lasts for a few months, after that you are either in a good, solid relationship with someone who is supportive and reliable, or you are in a hateful, resentful one with someone who is a real shit.

The only thing you can do is just take the fucking leap. You know you love her, you want to spend the rest of your life with her, that is good enough. People have based relationships on less. You will never ever be able to know what is going to happen, you just gotta make decisions based on what you KNOW RIGHT NOW. Even if there were trombones and rabbits and confetti and all that, you could still get the shaft in 10 years. That's why life is awesome.

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

(c) 2001-2006 Natalie Dee. Images and text on may not be used in print, online, or other media without explicit written permission from natalie dee. Read the FAQ for contact information.