Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in just a few sentences because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great that being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go.

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Friday Links

Photograph by Elinor Carucci for The New Yorker

Here are a few things from around the web that may interest you:

Speaking of being young and making bad dating decisions, this short story in the New Yorker captures that experience perfectly.

10 things everyone wants to know about their relationship, according to Google

Alabama Women ‘Make a Stand’ in First Election of the #MeToo Era

Black Women Are A Political Organizing Force. They’re Not Unicorns.

Related: Black voters just saved America from Roy Moore. Black votes matter.

Oy, this is sad: “Women are happier after they reach 85 and their partners have died”

2018 will be the year of women

Thank you to those who submitted links for me to include. If you see something around the web you think DW readers would appreciate, please send me a link to [email protected] and, if it’s a fit, I’ll include it in Friday’s round-up. Thanks!

Follow along on Facebook, and Instagram.


This week in the forums, we’re discussing:

“This [Work Issue] Makes Me So Mad!”

“He wants to watch me have cam sex with other people”

Husband’s weight problem and depression – need advice

Is my boyfriend’s relationship with his sister bizarre or is my barometer off?

Boyfriend keeps interrupting me

Engagement party or wedding?

Is he too old to be my man?

Boyfriend’s mom passed away. I was one of the last to find out.

This whole Trump situation just gets worse and worse everyday

Anyone going on awesome dates?

Follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at [email protected].


Today’s letters are in honor of all the young women 25 and under who are struggling in love, throwing themselves at guys who give them barely a hint of recognition, hanging the whole value of themselves on whether or not their feelings for some guy are reciprocated, imagining their lives as essentially over if their future does not include the guy who only calls at night when he’s a little drunk and kind of horny. Ladies, I see you, I hear you, I was you once. Consider me the ghost of Christmas Future here with a message for you: It gets better. Your feelings for the guy who only calls at night when he’s a little drunk and kind of horny are not reciprocated and your future does not include him, God willing (please use birth control). Love, you will learn, is not anxiety over unanswered texts or spending hours trying to decipher the meaning behind one-word responses. It is not an hour of physical intimacy in the shadow of late nights, banking weight behind tender forehead kisses that really don’t mean what you think they mean, followed by days of silence as you try to “stay strong” and not “act needy” by, like, reminding him you exist.

Love helps you look for your dog who ran out the door without his leash, and love brings you Prosecco when you get a raise at work, and love reminds you that you need to pick up toilet paper on your way home. It is romantic, but not always obviously so. It is caring, and tender, and sometimes messy, and you will find it one day, but not by begging and not by strategizing and not by waiting three days before you send a text. Today’s letters are dedicated to those of you still waiting and still hoping the guy who only calls when he’s a little drunk and kind of horny might be The One:

My boyfriend and I started dating at the end of high school and everything was wonderful. However, once he moved away for university, I only got to see him once or twice a month and he would often ignore me. I would tell him I was upset and he would try to fix it, but overall things would go back to the same pattern; we were losing our spark. I tried so many ways to keep it going with him — I’d share intimate photos, I became close with his family, I brought him gifts, and I always tried to be supportive and loving. Still, after seven months of dating, he told me that we should break up.

I was in bed next to him and was torn apart, but I tried not to cry. I stayed strong, but he went on about how long-distance was bad and that maybe if we were single in four years, we could try again. He said we could stay friends and that I should give Tinder a try, a joke which I was not pleased to hear. He said he should have broken up with me at the end of the summer. I told him we could have a clean slate next semester when I go to university and it’ll be a lot better since I won’t demand too much out of him emotionally or anything. I practically begged him for a second chance, and he reluctantly agreed. The rest of the night went well, and I kissed him goodbye the next morning.

After that, he didn’t talk to me for a whole week. I was trying to see that if I didn’t initiate a conversation, would he? He never did. I was hurt as hell and eventually sent him a voice recording (since he dodged my call) saying how hard I tried to be a good girlfriend, how he was the one who gave me expectations for the future (I met his mom at three months), and how I wanted a clean slate but I can’t force him. The next day he responded saying how he shouldn’t have placed those expectations, how it scares him that I’m attached to him, and how he doesn’t know what he’s doing and needs more time to think. I responded with a long message trying to work out his commitment issues and said he could take time for his decision. I was really lovey dovey and hopeful in the message. I sent that message three days ago, and he hasn’t talked to me since and did not reply to the message.

I don’t know what to do. I don’t know if I should wait until final exams are over for him (in 1.5 weeks) for his response or if I should just tell him right now that it’s over. But do I really want it to be over? No. I just want it to seem that I’m confident and that I have the upper hand. We clearly aren’t talking and I can’t convince him to stay with me. What should I do? How can I make him miss me or change his mind without talking to him? I’ll accept if he doesn’t want to date anymore, but I feel like I’m unable to start the moving on and start the recovery process if I’m not even sure we are dating.

Please please please help. I just want him to be the one missing me this time. How can I make him feel the lack of me? — Lacking Me

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I wrote before (letter #2 here) and you told me to leave the guy because he wasn’t ready and that I should move on. So I did, and once I started dating someone else seriously he came out of the woodwork and said he is in love with me and doesn’t want to lose me to someone else. Since then, he’s invited me to his work Christmas party, has invited me to his friend’s holiday party, and has bought me a very special birthday gift. I’m worried he is only into me now because he thought I was moving on and he got jealous. He said he still doesn’t know if he wants to be girlfriend/ boyfriend. Although he is 30 years old, he has never had a girlfriend and I think he is nervous. He deleted all dating apps, says he wants to be exclusively intimate, and is making a huge effort. I’m just obviously nervous. Should I trust this new situation? After five months of his saying he knows you’re not the one and he doesn’t like you romantically, wow, does a guy just flip a switch and all of a sudden want you again? I told him I was nervous and cautious, and he told me not to worry. Any advice? — Unsure of What He Wants

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