It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in three sentences or less, because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great, being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go. Today we discuss what to do when you fall for an FWB, dating an ex’s friend, and loaning a significant other money.
After a hurtful break-up with my ex, I decided to gather myself and have some fun. Last month I met this guy in a bar and we had a one night stand, which was amazing. The experience was so fun that we decided to develop this friends-with-benefit situation on a regular basis. So we met every other week just for sex, sometimes dinner too. The thing is that other than sex I find him really my cup of tea. I think of him often, however, I can tell that he is not emotionally into me. Do I want to go on a date with him? Yes. Do I just wanna fuck him? YES. I’m wondering if I should keep this feeling to myself in order to keep the FWB status or if I should go ahead tell him even if I will definitely scare him away? Or should I just disappear because I am pretty sure he doesn’t like me? Or should I wait to tell him until it’s too hard to hide? Meanwhile, we are both busy so a relationship sounds really unpractical. — Fallen for my FWB
You’ve seen this guy, like, three times, and you’re already feeling this much anxiety over him? On top of still healing from a “hurtful breakup”? Girl, you are not emotionally prepared for a FWB situation, so tell the guy you’d love to go on a real date with him and get to know him better, and if he’s not interested in that, you need to MOA before you really screw up your head and heart.
I broke up with a boyfriend of three years over the summer and instantly knew I made the correct choice. In the short time after, I began spending a lot of time with a close mutual friend of ours. We began dating, and though I felt guilty for dating my ex’s friend so soon, my new relationship just felt right. I was honest with my ex from the beginning and told him I had feelings for his friend. Eventually, he questioned my new boyfriend about our relationship, and they basically agreed to disagree, and realized their friendship would probably not work anymore. My new boyfriend and I have been dating about six months, but he won’t tell our other friends about us. Some very close people know, but outside of that I’m supposed to act like there is nothing going on. He says that he doesn’t wanna seem like a bad person and doesn’t want mutual friends to have to choose sides between him and my ex. I understand his uneasiness, but my feelings are hurt, and I hate going out places and seeing other girls sit next to him without them knowing that I am his girlfriend. Am I crazy for feeling upset that he doesn’t want everyone to know? Or is it still too soon like he says? — Secret Girlfriend
So, basically, your boyfriend is choosing the approval and respect of your mutual friends over the approval and respect from you. Hmm … doesn’t sound like much of a boyfriend if you ask me. I’d tell him that you’re tired of being disrespected and if he’s so ashamed of dating you that he won’t come clean to his friends about your relationship, you’re going to MOA.
I’ve been dating my boyfriend for just over a year now and everything is going well. The only thing that has been bothering me lately is the amount of time we spend together, or should I say the lack of time we’re spending together. We’re both very busy with graduate school and we talk daily, so I’m totally fine with not getting to see him all the time. The only thing is when the weekends roll around we’ll hang out for a few hours one evening — maybe watch a movie or some TV — and that’s about it. He spend the rest of his free time with his friend. He’s with this friend all day and night at least one day out of each weekend. I have NO problem with him spending time with his friends, but I guess I’m sort of jealous that his friend gets so much time with him while I only get a few measly hours a week. I don’t want him to think I’m some kind of crazy jealous girlfriend, because I’m not! I just can’t figure out how to bring up this issue, or if I should even mention it at all! Maybe it would be better to just let it go and hope things change? — Tired of His Leftovers
The way to bring this up is to say, “Hey, as your girlfriend of over a year, it hurts my feelings that you don’t want to spend more than a few hours with me each week, especially when you seem to have much more time for others. I need to know I’m important enough for you to spend quality time with or I’m going to have to re-think whether this relationship is working.” Asking for what you (very reasonably) want is NOT being crazy; it’s practicing self-respect.
My boyfriend and I have been in a long distance relationship for about a year now. We were friends for a few years before we began dating, so it feels like we’ve been together a lot longer now. I’m very much in love with him, and I’m moving to be with him and start fresh in May. In the last few months, he has borrowed about $500 from me. Most of this has been towards extending visits (paying extra to stay a day late). Two out of three times, it has been to keep me in his city with him. He doesn’t have a credit card so he asked me if I could make the payment on my card and he would eventually transfer the money to my bank account. He assured me he would pay me back, and I told him to take his time. He’s in a salaried management position, so I figured it wouldn’t take that long. Meanwhile, I make minimum wage and I’m afraid I won’t be able to pay my rent next month. I don’t want to ask my parents for help, and I don’t know how to ask my boyfriend for some of the money he owes me in a polite way. — Giving Girlfriend
Try this: “Honey, I’m sure you didn’t mean to forget, but my rent’s due in a few days and I’m really struggling to pay it this month after I loaned you $500 dollars over the last few months. When do you think you’ll be able to pay me back?” And if he doesn’t pay you back ASAP, or give you a very good reason why he’s taking so long, for God’s sake think long and hard before uprooting your life to go be with him.
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.