Posted by Some Dude on August 6, 2012 at 3:08 pm
Got a relationship question you want to ask, or a situation you want thoughts and advice on? Email me at email@example.com, and watch this space for my answer! R. asks,
My boyfriend and I have been together for three years, and we both just graduated. We’re planning to stay together, we have jobs in the same part of the country, and we’re thinking about moving in together. But I’m worried that I’m only staying with him out of inertia. I don’t know if I’m ready to settle down. What should I do? Am I leading him on?
This is a complicated issue. A year and a half ago I fielded a question from a guy in a similar position. On the one hand, should you break off a relationship when nothing is wrong? On the other, does something have to be wrong for you to be unsatisfied? As Prof. Gilbert has observed, we’re really bad at anticipating what will make us happy, so don’t necessarily rely on your instincts to make this decision. You’ll get a more accurate prediction of how you’ll feel by observing what others have chosen in your situation, and how it turned out for them. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted by Some Dude on March 8, 2012 at 12:42 pm
Got a relationship question you want to ask, or a situation you want thoughts and advice on? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and watch this space for my answer! M. asks,
What if you realize that you want someone, but someone else had gotten there first? How do you steal someone else’s boyfriend?
In a nutshell: you don’t. You move on.
You might think I’m saying so because it’s wrong to the third party who is currently dating the object of your affection. But that’s not actually the reason (although, needless to say, that is a good reason). I’m saying so because, if you want this guy, you need to be more attractive to him than the girl he’s seeing now, and trying to break up his current relationship will make you look desperate and unattractive: while you might succeed in ruining his relationship, you won’t be able to hold onto him afterward.
The better strategy is to move on. Look for other people. Have a good time. Be as attractive as you can be. But stay close and visible to this guy.
There are multiple benefits:
Most obviously, if this guy becomes single again, you’ll be obviously present, available, and attractive, and therefore ideally positioned – and this works especially well because in this scenario he’s the one who chooses you, which will create a relationship with more staying power than if you were jumping through hoops and making a huge effort to win him over from someone else. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted by The Voice Staff on December 4, 2011 at 3:38 pm
Posted by Some Dude on November 29, 2011 at 5:37 pm
Got a relationship question you want to ask, or a situation you want thoughts and advice on? Email me at email@example.com, and watch this space for my answer! Today, I’m going to respond to a recent HFML:
Can’t get the guy I’ve been seeing to ask me to formal. FML.
This does seem to come up a lot at this time of year! Broadly, the best way to handle this to this is to ask, not wait to be asked. But this is a good opportunity to think about some of the reasons guys don’t ask in situations like this:
He’s afraid you’ll say no. Overwhelmingly this is going to be the real reason. If you’ve been seeing each other but haven’t been to an event like this before as a couple, it may seem to him that this is a big step and he’s not sure you think the two of you are ready for it – even if he does. That good ol’ fear of rejection rears its ugly head, and feels very difficult to overcome. So he’ll play it safe and keep the relationship on the same level it’s been. This is pretty easy for you to overcome just by asking him to go. Or, if you come off as someone who thinks Valentine’s Day exists because retailers have willed it to be so, he may think by extension that you believe formals are phony and shallow and beneath you. Again, easy to overcome if you do the asking. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted by Some Dude on October 31, 2011 at 3:56 pm
Got a relationship question you want to ask, or a situation you want thoughts and advice on? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and watch this space for my answer! JMEO asks, in much the same vein as this recent HarvardFML post,
I’m female, sophomore, and single. There’s a guy I’m interested in and he might be interested in me. He’s a senior; what’s your view on starting something with him at this point?
I don’t see a reason not to. Age is a crude and imprecise measure of maturity, and 2 years is in any case a small difference. I’m guessing your hesitation is that you’re afraid of what might happen come graduation — but far from being a problem, your situation is ideal!
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted by Some Dude on October 27, 2011 at 10:26 am
Hi all! You may know me as a prolific commenter on HarvardFML; this is my new and improved means of doling out relationship advice! Got a question you want to ask, or a situation you want thoughts and advice on? Email me at email@example.com, and watch this space for my answer! Today, I’m going to answer a question I was asked on HarvardFML and which has come up many times since:
I need to meet new people. How do I do [that]?
There are two parts that go into meeting new people: where to meet them, and how to meet them.
Where to meet them?
- Pick up a new extracurricular. There are lots of groups on campus that don’t have an elaborate or selective process for new members. For instance, just show up on load-in day for any student theater production and help them build their set. I’ve met lots of new people that way. There are 20-25 productions each semester, so a new load-in is happening at least every week.
- Go to a party on campus or at a nearby school. This is easier to do with a friend or two, but can be done solo as well. And there are a ton of nearby schools in Cambridge and Boston. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted by Anonymous on October 17, 2011 at 8:23 pm
This piece is a response to the HarvardFML post, “The girl I’m dating doesn’t want to have sex because she thinks ‘we’re too young for that.’ We’re 20. FML”. This piece is written by the commenter on the post with pseudonym Sdsdsds. The writer is a Harvard Voice editor and is distinct from the Voice’s regular sex columnist, Only Girl in the World.
In reflecting on my personal experience with sex education, I can’t help but feel that I got the short end of the stick. My environment was certainly more progressive than that of many students. I attended a public high school in an affluent suburban area, where abstinence was not the only birth control method preached. We were accurately informed about the biology of sexual contact. However, amidst illuminations about the 28-day menstrual cycle and overviews of the differences between hormonal and non-hormonal IUDs, some basic points were, without fail, left out. Like the fact that the clitoris is the only known organ whose sole function is to give pleasure. And that sex, when participated in by informed, consenting adults, is something that can be enjoyable, a mutually pleasurable experience for two or more human beings.
This informational gap extended beyond school. While my parents are not particularly conservative, sex was never talked about in a non-“hush-hush” manner. I think they assumed that I knew about it, and they would have been more than willing to answer the technical questions if I had asked them. However, the idea that sex, when practiced safely and with enthusiastic consent, could be a fulfilling part of my life, was never discussed.
And while I certainly won’t suggest that my version of sexual education is universal, I also don’t think it is a stretch to say that my experience isn’t unique. And the result of such lapses in information is that, despite decades of liberal progressive thought, sex is still oftentimes categorized within a very traditional framework. Instead of instructing youth that sex can be a pleasurable and life-enhancing act, it is still oftentimes viewed – using the words in my original HarvardFML comment espousing this opinion – as something that is scary, unknown and potentially damaging.
Read the rest of this entry »