Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Weekend Open Thread

I’m writing this from the labor and delivery ward in a hospital in St. Louis where I’m in town visiting family. I was supposed to go to my cousin’s wedding tomorrow but now I’m stuck in the hospital. Luckily, the baby is OK – and still swimming happily in my belly but I have a nasty kidney infection I have to get taken care of before I get on a plane home.

Anyway, posting will likely be light for a while so bear with me. I’ll post and update again when I’m feeling better. In the meantime, use this open thread however you’d like. I don’t have a prompt for you today so just talk amongst yourselves. If you’ve got a relationship issue you want reader advice from go for it.

168 comments… add one
  • avatar

    zombeyonce July 22, 2011, 6:26 pm

    I hope you feel better soon, Wendy! We’re all thinking of you out here in internet-land.

    As for a thread, I’ve got a question for you mothers out there. I’m getting married next year and we plan to start a family in a few years. Having never been pregnant, I’d love to hear stories from DW readers about their pregnancies and what I could possibly expect (that Dr. Spock won’t tell me). Advice, funny stories, anything. Teach me!

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    • avatar

      zombeyonce July 22, 2011, 6:27 pm

      I just realized that I didn’t actually ask a question, so here are some:

      -What surprised you about pregnancy?
      -When did you really feel like you were going to be a mother/father?

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      • avatar

        AKchic July 22, 2011, 6:42 pm

        I don’t think that any woman really “feels” the impending motherhood until they actually feel the kicking. Yes, they see the sonogram pictures, but unless they feel that little gut kicking (even lightly), it just seems surreal. Every. Single. Time. Each kid I had, it seemed a little surreal until that first felt kick.

        And here is a tip on kicking that nobody really tells you: early on, it feels like gas. Seriously. In your lower abdomen area, you feel like you have little gas bubbles moving around, but you just don’t have to pass it. That’s not gas – that’s movement. Most women don’t realize it because, well, being their first, and nobody wants to say “oh, your kid kicking will feel like you have to fart”…

        But, it’s the same with guys and grandparents. They don’t really feel the hit of impending fatherhood/grandparenthood until seeing the photos and feeling the baby move around.

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        Kim July 22, 2011, 7:39 pm

        I’m only at 23 weeks, so I still have more surprises down the road, but here is what I’ve found so far. I needed new pants within a week of a positive pregnancy test. This was weird because I also wasn’t really ready for maternity pants. I was SO bloated – and I didn’t gain any weight for about 14 weeks, but was almost 2 pant sizes larger by that point. None of my friends had that experience (at least not to that extreme), but some needed new shirts within a few weeks. So, expect some possible wardrobe needs early on. Also, I heard that it was common to feel tired in the first trimester, but there were a few weeks where I just felt so drained of all my energy. I couldn’t sleep more, but I was unable to really do much and spent a lot of time sitting on our couch. This was also timed with leftovers making me feel nauseated, so it was a lot harder to be healthy (eat well and exercise) for a big chunk of the first trimester.

        Some days I don’t even feel like I’m going to be a mother – and it still feels unreal. Other days it feels more real (most of those days are accompanied by some panic wondering how we ever thought we could actually raise a whole human being).

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      • avatar

        zombeyonce July 22, 2011, 8:12 pm

        “most of those days are accompanied by some panic wondering how we ever thought we could actually raise a whole human being”

        That made me giggle. I think I’ll probably feel the same.

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      • avatar

        daisygarfiel July 23, 2011, 8:03 am

        One thing that surprised me about pregnancy was that during the first trimester was that you could lose weight, just from morning sickness (espicially when the only food you can keep down is pecan icecream and slim-jims), and its not that surprising when you actually think about it.
        i didnt really feel like i was going to be a mother until i felt the kicking and got that first adorable little outfit.

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    • avatar

      JC Mccandless July 23, 2011, 12:10 am

      I had my son 2 years ago, one of the things I wasn’t prepared for was my baby kept pressing on my lungs, it’s not uncomfortable you just feel out of breath. Also, since babies are active when you’re asleep, my husband used to stay up and feel our baby do “somersaults” as he called it in the womb. It was how they bonded and I believe is my husband’s first real daddy moment so tell your fiancee to enjoy that if he wants to stay up a little late. I would also avoid watching anything sappy or heavyhearted, my hormones had me crying, and I mean blubblering, at every child sponsor or donate to stop animal abuse commercial. Congrats on starting a family! Waking up every two hours is beyond aggravating but the first time that little hand reaches up to touch you, you won’t know how you lived without them.

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      • Skyblossom

        Skyblossom July 23, 2011, 12:32 pm

        The thing that surprised me the most was that during labor the pushing phase takes a long time. On TV the baby is always born with a single push but in real life the pushing contractions come about five minutes apart and the baby moves a little during each pushing contraction. So you can spend a half hour pushing until the baby is fully born as opposed to doing it all in one pushing contraction.

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      • avatar

        zombeyonce July 23, 2011, 1:37 pm

        Oh man, this is disturbing! I didn’t know it took that long for the final part! I think I may just try and forget that you told me this.

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      Annette July 23, 2011, 5:22 pm

      First off, don’t be scared, you will survive and once you hold your new little one, you forget all the pains and worries you had while waiting for nine months to do so. I’ve had three kids, and what has stuck out in my mind as the biggest surprize was that when your water breaks, it isn’t cold. I mean, okay, if you think about it, you know it won’t be cold, but I just expected it to be cold and was so surprized in the delivery room, everyone there laughed. Nine years later, my mom still laughs!! πŸ™‚

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      • Skyblossom

        Skyblossom July 24, 2011, 2:32 pm

        Years before I had kids a friend told me that labor was uncomfortable and it hurt but it wasn’t so bad she would avoid having more kids and after having two kids I agree.

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    • becboo84

      BecBoo84 July 25, 2011, 1:38 pm

      This isn’t so much a surprise regarding pregnancy as it is regarding the first few weeks. I was surprised by how painful nursing was. It was seriously agonizing the first week to 10 days, but after that it gets much better, and I’m SO glad I stuck with it.

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  • avatar

    Lily July 22, 2011, 6:27 pm

    Feel better Wendy!!!

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  • avatar

    callmehobo July 22, 2011, 6:32 pm

    I’m getting a little verklempt here, talk amongst yourselves….

    Rhode Island is neither road, nor island- DISCUSS!!
    The radical reconstruction of the South after the Civil War was neither radical nor reconstructive- DISCUSS!!
    The jelly bean is neither made of jelly nor is it a bean- DISCUSS!!

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    • avatar

      Quakergirl July 22, 2011, 7:21 pm

      I always feel like people look at me like I kicked a dog when I say I don’t like jelly beans, but there’s just something about the texture. It’s like they’re disintegrating from the shame of being an impostor.

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      • avatar

        Morgan July 22, 2011, 7:46 pm

        I hate jelly beans! Glad I’m not the only one.

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        zombeyonce July 22, 2011, 8:11 pm

        I hate jellybeans, too. My ultimate nightmare is a black licorice-flavored jelly bean. Just the thought makes me gag.

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        honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:07 pm

        Black licorice jelly beans?? That’s a dream come true for me πŸ™‚

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        Painted_lady July 22, 2011, 8:15 pm

        Oh yay! Someone else! I have never liked jelly beans! I’m not crazy about anything gummy to begin with, but then jelly beans also have that kind of crunchy outer coating that just feels grainy and gross.

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      • avatar

        Christy July 22, 2011, 8:41 pm

        Agree! I love gummy bears but the crust on jelly beans is yucky.

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        neuroticbeagle July 23, 2011, 9:07 am

        Depends on the brand of jelly bean- starburst jelly beans are yummy.
        Also, jelly beans are a seasonal candy- only to be eaten around Easter/spring time.

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    • Ginger

      Adler July 23, 2011, 12:15 am

      Agreed! I’ve always hated jelly beans. They’re a weird texture and taste gross.

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    • avatar

      Callifax July 24, 2011, 9:49 am

      I read that they aren’t quite positive on why Rhode Island is called Rhode Island, but the predominate theory is that it’s named after the Isle of Rhodes. Thus the ‘island’ part. Those crazy founding fathers! πŸ™‚

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  • avatar

    AKchic July 22, 2011, 6:37 pm

    *hugs*

    Maybe your body is telling you to REST and maybe ease up on the traveling? You went overseas already this pregnancy. You’ve done more traveling in your first pregnancy than I did in ALL of mine combined.
    Not that traveling is a bad thing, but seriously… you don’t have to be supermom to be a super mom.

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    • avatar

      Tanya July 24, 2011, 9:43 am

      What a narrow-minded view. Unbelievable. Maybe she should also not leave the house while she is pregnant?

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      • avatar

        anonymous July 24, 2011, 10:16 am

        There’s a difference between not leaving the house and reducing travel, no?
        The concern was well founded. Travel, whether air or car, takes a toll on the body. Pregnancy also takes a toll. The two together can become overwhelming at times. And, yes, your body does tell you to slow down at times. Having gone through three pregnancies myself, I can attest to the burden traveling while pregnant can be. No matter whether the reasons are work related or for pleasure.

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    emjay July 22, 2011, 6:49 pm

    I hope you start feeling better soon Wendy! Best wishes from NY!

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    Eagle Eye July 22, 2011, 6:51 pm

    Feel better and get well soon!

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    cmarie July 22, 2011, 6:53 pm

    Feel better! And definitely take it easy. My sister had a kidney infection towards the end of her pregnancy that kept sending her in and out of labor so she had to be induced because it was putting the baby in distress. Take care of yourself first and foremost.
    Random comment because I just have to share the amusement. The other night my girlfriend and I were watching the news and there was a story about a cat burglar that had hit like 7 homes already. She looked at me and asked, completely serious, “What would he do with all those cats he stole?”. I thought she was joking; she wasn’t. At least she’s pretty.

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    • avatar

      zombeyonce July 22, 2011, 6:59 pm

      That’s awesome. (The cat burglar story, not the kidney infection story.)

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  • caitie_didnt

    caitie_didn't July 22, 2011, 6:54 pm

    Yikes! Get well soon , Wendy!

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    PinkPanther July 22, 2011, 7:06 pm

    Hope you feel better soon!

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    Quakergirl July 22, 2011, 7:15 pm

    Get better soon Wendy! I can honestly say I’ve been in almost every STL-area hospital (thanks, genetics, for screwing me over), and they’re all great, so you’re in good hands!

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    • Dear Wendy

      Wendy July 22, 2011, 8:06 pm

      I’m at DePaul, which is a good one. My aunt is VP of nursing here, so everyone is taking good care of me.

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      • avatar

        beans629 July 25, 2011, 11:27 am

        I was going to ask which hospital you were in but I didn’t think you would want to tell. I hope all is well. Please stay out of the heat in STL it’s been unbearable even for us natives.

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  • avatar

    blackbird July 22, 2011, 7:32 pm

    Get well soon, Wendy!

    I know I don’t comment on here very often, but I always try to read through all of the comments on the posts. Even if you can’t relate to the LW’s problem, the commenters here usually give pretty sage advice and challenges you to look at whatever situation from many angles.

    That being said, I have a little problem. I just moved to a new city, and a friend of mine came to visit over my birthday. She is very naive and spoiled, but ultimately, a good person. Well, she ended up not picking up her tab pretty much everywhere we went and having my boyfriend or me (on my birthday) pay for her. She makes more than I do and I know she had enough to take care of herself, but never offered to pay for anything. She also got wasted on my birthday by 11 pm and we ended up having to take care of her, and was constantly complaining (although subtly) when we weren’t doing what she wanted to do and about us being affectionate (she just broke up with her boyfriend of 2 years). I’m hurt, broke, and upset. I have always considered her one of my best friends, and I was excited to show her that I was doing well in my new environment. I considered writing her an email explaining this, but I’m not sure how to go about it in the most diplomatic way. Any thoughts?

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    • avatar

      PinkPanther July 22, 2011, 7:42 pm

      Personally, I would call her or meet face to face rather than email her. I’ve always has really awkward experiences after trying to take care of a nasty situation via email (maybe it’s just me?). I’m not sure exactly how to go about addressing the problem though. I would definitely let her know that you are not pleased with how her visit went. If that was really unusual behavior for her, perhaps you could ask her what happened? Maybe she is really reeling from her break-up and unfortunately took it out on you? Hope everything works out!

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        Painted_lady July 22, 2011, 8:27 pm

        I agree that you should call. Maybe start with “Hey, I know you just went through a rough time, and I was so happy to see you for my birthday, but…”

        I would then go on to explain how hurt you were by her actions – hurt I think is key, rather than angry – and how uncomfortable she made you. Also explain you didn’t realize she expected you guys to pick up the tab everywhere, and if you’d known that you wouldn’t have invited her, not because you didn’t want her but because you cannot afford it.

        I know it’s awkward, but if she’s actually a good friend, she’ll be the one who’s more mortified than you. If not, then you’re well shot of her. But yeah, like PinkPanther said, don’t email, call. Even if the email garners good results, the next time you see each other will be TOTALLY AWKWARD because you’ll both be thinking about that email but can’t really mention it.

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    • avatar

      Anna July 22, 2011, 8:36 pm

      She might not have been aware of how she was affecting you. If you consider her one of your best friends, you should have this conversation in person. The therapist I was seeing for a little while gave me a great tip about confronting people who have wronged you without starting a huge fight. She said that if you use the word “I” more than the word “you” the person won’t feel attacked and have that panicky angry reaction. Say “I am feeling really hurt and upset about some of the things that happened the other night.” instead of “You hurt and upset me the other night.” I’m sure when she woke up the next morning hung over she immediately felt bad about the evening. We’ve all been there at some point. I hope you can work it out like besties should! Good luck.

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      • avatar

        blackbird July 22, 2011, 9:20 pm

        Thanks guys, I appreciate the speedy feedback! Talking to her in person would be my ideal – the only problem is that we now live 2,000 miles apart. Her behavior wasn’t really out of character; I’ve heard other friends complaining that she doesn’t pay for herself, but it’s never been directed towards me. I think she’s just been very sheltered her whole life, her family has money, and she’s always had a boyfriend, so she’s not used to taking care of herself or not getting her way. She regularly asks me for advice on how to be a “grown-up” and is moving out on her own for the first time next month.

        This is why I considered writing her an email. There’s a lot I feel that I need to cover and I’m worried that if someone isn’t frank with her about her behavior, she’s going to lose friends over it and not know why. I understand that it’s not my responsibility to teach her these things, but I feel like if I don’t mention it, I’m doing her a disservice as a friend.

        Anna, you had a good point with using “I” instead of “you.” I think I’m going to take a week to think over what I want to say to her, jot down some notes, and call her.

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      • avatar

        Painted_lady July 22, 2011, 9:46 pm

        You’re a good friend to care so much! If it were me I’m not sure I’d be so understanding, so you’re fantastic to want to help her out.

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      • avatar

        JC Mccandless July 23, 2011, 12:17 am

        tell us how it went and good luck!

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      • avatar

        blackbird July 23, 2011, 3:49 am

        Thanks, guys! I’ll let you know in a few weeks.

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      • kaluu

        kati July 24, 2011, 1:16 am

        if it was me i would be more subtle. phone her, thank her for joining you guys and asked if she liked the food/drinks.
        next time you are planning to meet up if its a go out and eat date ask her first if you can go half-half, and say something like, “sure that place is fine,” or “maybe somewhere less pricy because ….” or if its at someones house “i have some awesome cheese and crackers do you have any wine?” or “should we order in and split the tab?”
        the idea being hinting at her to acknowledge that the food is going to be paid for and some people have budgets unlike her wealthy parents.

        regarding her bad behaviour ask nicely (not sarcastic or snarky) if she is getting better about the breakup. maybe say she made you worry as you’d never seen her like that. the idea is to hint that she was acting kind of weird.

        im sure it seemed weird that she didnt offer to pay, but did you know that in miss manners (the book) it says the idea of a birthday party is for the host to INVITE his friends to share the special day. did she not even bring a present? in vancouver where i live it seems to be a common thing for birthday parties that a group goes out for food and drinks and split the bill evenly with the exception of the host. (im cheap plus im a cheap drunk so i kind of get annoyed at paying for other peoples drinking!) maybe thats done everywhere in north america? and you expected her to pay?

        another thing, 3 is a crowd! unless she has lots in common with your man you could have just celebrated twice (and maybe in going out with her for a girls night some nice man would have picked up your tab!)
        not trying to be a know it all here so sorry if i come off that way… just my ideas~~~

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      • kaluu

        kati July 24, 2011, 1:18 am

        ok i just want to add i get that most ppl would offer to pay on your bday. she is weird that way but i guess we can never assume

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      • avatar

        blackbird July 24, 2011, 3:21 pm

        We tried being subtle, and it didn’t work. It got to the point where we’d have to say, “Hey, go get $40 out of the ATM at the front now. We’re paying the tab and that’s what you owe,” and she’d STILL procrastinate and give excuses. A lot of the bars we went to were cash only, and we’d tell her that when we were leaving, and when we’d get the bill she would tell us she only had her card. By the end of her visit, we resorted to blatantly telling her she had to buy stuff (“hey, I’ll get lunch, you should buy the wine for later”) because we were running way low on money after a week of paying for her everywhere. I felt like I was being rude, but I could no longer afford it.

        I don’t think I’m selfish enough to expect her (or anyone else) to pay for everything for me on my birthday. I didn’t expect my boyfriend to pay for me either; we split everything on my actual birthday and the day before. We ended up paying for her ticket to the show we went to beforehand, and splitting her bar tab when we went out (she paid 25% of it). She did bring me a thoughtful gift, which I appreciated, but I expected at least a drink.

        Also, we actually met my boyfriend at the same time, so it never seemed like there would be an odd (wo)man out. He was the one who invited her to come visit on my birthday as a nice surprise, and they have an older brother-little sister relationship. We had a few “girls’ nights out,” and she did what you suggested: got some guy at the bar to pay for her, which was a little disgusting, in my opinion. I’m all for attractive strangers buying you a drink (and vice versa), but dumping your whole tab on some guy? Not cool.

        I don’t mean to nitpick and I hope it didn’t come off that way, but I thought that maybe some details would help.

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      • avatar

        Kate July 24, 2011, 3:26 pm

        You didn’t sound nitpicky at all.

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        Britannia July 25, 2011, 12:15 am

        Are you SURE that she makes as much money as you think she does? To me it sounds like she may be greatly exaggerating her financial stability so as to save face, since when she literally has to put her money where her mouth is, she doesn’t have any.

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      • avatar

        blackbird July 25, 2011, 6:16 pm

        I would have considered that, but based on the facts at hand, I don’t think she’s faking it.
        1.) She has two bills – rent – which is $300/month. She lives with her grandma so she occasionally buys groceries for herself, but they share, and her phone bill.
        2.) She told me as recently as two months ago that she has $3,000 in savings.
        3.) She spent a good amount of money on buying clothes and records while here.

        She’s also a very honest person. She’s just a little immature.

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  • avatar

    VioletLover July 22, 2011, 7:34 pm

    Oooh, I live in St.L and the heat/humidity is BRUTAL out here. Take care, Wendy, and make sure you stay cool and hydrated!

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  • avatar

    Kim July 22, 2011, 7:41 pm

    I hope you feel better. Take care of yourself and your mini-you.

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    • Dear Wendy

      Wendy July 22, 2011, 8:31 pm

      Thanks. Here’s hoping your pregnancy is going a little more smoothly than mine is at the moment…

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      • avatar

        Kim July 25, 2011, 11:54 am

        Thanks – it’s going swimmingly (as in she seems to be constantly swimming around in my belly). Hopefully after this min-scare, your belly-invader will stop messing with your health.

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        abby July 25, 2011, 5:13 pm

        Belly Invader might be my new favorite term for an impending child.

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    Maracuya July 22, 2011, 7:53 pm

    Oh, no! I was wondering if you were sick or something was wrong since you had only posted one letter today.

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    PinkPanther July 22, 2011, 7:57 pm

    I have a question for everyone. How do you keep from going crazy when your significant other who you’ve been dating for several years and who you have been living with for almost a year moves to another state for graduate school? With the economy, it would be extremely hard (if even possible) for me to find another job in my field if I moved. If I plan on getting another job in the future (he is planning to do post-grad work at a different university after his master’s), I’m going to need more experience than what I currently have (hence why I am staying here). We are going to do long distance for two years tops. Then I will relocate and do the best that I can to find something in my field. We have quite a bit of experience with long distance (study abroad, relocating for jobs, etc). We’re three years out of undergrad, so a little older than most grad-aged students. We just recently seriously started talking about getting married and adding the fact that he is moving to now wondering when we will actually get engaged, is making me feel a little… wow! and maybe a little crazy? Any thoughts?

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    • avatar

      JC July 23, 2011, 12:19 am

      what’s the question? I’m confused.

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      summerkitten26 July 23, 2011, 6:52 am

      hi! seeing that your comment got kinda lost here, so I figured I’d drop in my two cents. my boyf and I have been together far less time than you’ve been with yours, but we’ve been long distance for most of it. skype. is. golden. seriously, we have”dates” where we queue up the same movie on netflicx and order in and watch it over the phone together, or when we just need to see each other’s face. frequent communication is key, so at the very least I’d upgrade to an unlimited texting plan if you both don’t have one already. also, and this was my fear going in when the long distance started, if you know that you’re just going to absolutely see your boyf every now and then or else your head will explode into mopeyness (like me), discuss! again, open communication is vital. I was upfront with my boyf about how physicL contact (hugs, kisses, hand holding) was something I definitely needed, and we came up with a plan to visit each other every so often. we split the super expensive plane fare, or he cleverly figures out some way to travel put here for work, and I get all the hugs and kisses I can get and mentally ration them until next time.

      it’s good that you’ve put a limit on it, because you can feel as if you’re working towards something while that time passes. and don’t worry if you feel off or anything, long distance is HARD. open communication and being able to call my boyf up to say “I’m having a rough day because I’m missing you something hard” has made me fully understand how difficult it is, but also value that I’ve got someone emotionally supportive as he is. he even started calling me for the same reason (although he’s totally a guy’s guy, so at first it was “just calling to hear your voice”!). point is, those feelings are normal, and only you can decide whether they’re too much, but don’t freak out or feel alone if you feel the negative lonely sides of and LDR.

      I hope this helps somewhat! I apologize for any spelling or grammar mistakes; it’s me and my fingers on the phone on the train πŸ™‚

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        summerkitten26 July 23, 2011, 7:02 am

        oops! just reread this and realized you probably don’t need any of my previous advice! sorry! although, I would say that IMHO prospects look good for you and your boyf. moving super quick compared to your regular speed and so many heavy things up in the air at once, I still say good communication and leaning on each other will help you through it. just be honest with each other. good luck!

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        PinkPanther July 23, 2011, 9:57 am

        Thanks for your response! I was really hoping that someone would answer and I really like your Skype movie date idea. We’ve used Skype before and it is really amazing! The first time I ever used it, I was studying overseas and it was so incredible to be able to see people back home.

        I’ve actually already started going through my work calendar and his school calendar and planning when we could visit each other and discussing how often we need to/can afford to see each other. We’ve done distance before but this is the biggest ordeal so far. We’ve done three to four months without seeing each other twice and almost a year of being able to see each other every two weeks. This time we are looking at every six weeks (give or take) for more than likely two years.

        Like you, I’m also big on physical contact and I’m not looking forward to making the change from living together to long distance.

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        GatorGirl July 25, 2011, 9:06 am

        One issue my BF and I had during our all most 3 year LDR was our differing expectations of going out at night. I am a homebody and he went out with his school friends so that he wasn’t home alone. This was cause for several arguments, so I would recommend discussing what both of you expects.

        Also, if you are worried about intimacy, try phone sex or sending racy pictures. While it’s not the same as real physical contact, it’s better than nothing.

        Good luck!

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    Anna July 22, 2011, 8:50 pm

    I’ve got a quandry for everyone to weigh in on…

    I’m 27 and been with my boyfriend for 8 years. We have lived together for 7 of those and I love our little family. Sometime last year, in the stress of post-college life, I started feeling like I need to work on a more permanent family structure because I do want to have 2 kids before I’m 35. My boyfriend loves kids and is excited to someday be a dad. I’m totally in love with him and don’t ever want to date anyone else again. The only problem is that he doesn’t want to get married. He doesn’t see the point; says he doesn’t like legally binding documents, especially religious ones. It’s very important to me to get married before having children so I refuse to go off my pills until there’s a ring on my finger.

    Recently, his family announced that they are moving to NC. He’s pretty miserable in his job here so he said he is going too. After giving it some thought, I decided I’m not moving to a different state where my only support system is him and his family unless we’re engaged. We talked about it and I told him how it was going to be: if there’s no proposal, he’s moving alone and we’re done. They are moving around mid-September. He has said that he wants me with him and thinks we would have a great family, and that we “can get married if that’s what you require.” But it’s been at least a month and he doesn’t seem any closer to proposing. I wasn’t bluffing, I’m seriously not moving out of state with someone that won’t marry me after 8 years together.

    Did I make the right decision? Am I stupid to want to get married before having kids? And if he doesn’t propose, how do I get through leaving the man I love more than anything?

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      Anna July 22, 2011, 8:55 pm

      Oh, and is there anything I absolutely should or should not be doing during this excruciating “waiting room” period? I am going insane worrying about it all the time!

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    • katie

      katie July 22, 2011, 9:36 pm

      all i would say about getting married before having kids, is to try to think about why it actually means so much to you. a guy who is married when his wife has kids is no better or worse then the guy who isn’t. both could be really amazing fathers. both could be really terrible fathers. and that goes for the mom to – marriage doesn’t equal anything real, except legal issues like credit and hospital visits. honestly, i would have much more respect for the family whose parents arent married, but who live together, love each other, and raise their children in the right way then a married couple who hate each other, throw things, and have no regard for their children. the reason being is that a marriage isn’t a necessity; the love, care and attention (for the partner and the children) are a necessity.

      i agree with you about marriage, i want to be married as well. i dont know how i feel about having kids so i cant really comment on that… but i mean if thats what you want thats what you want, and if he cant agree with you for that, if he is so totally on the opposite side of the marriage spectrum, it would be worse to prolong the relationship anyway. let him move by himself.

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        ForeverYoung July 23, 2011, 9:37 am

        I don’t think it’s necessary to discuss why marriage isn’t important for children. She said it is for her, so that’s all that matters. Frankly I think kids would be the only reason I do think marriage is required. Live together, share bank accounts, do whatever else you want while just dating, but kids bring a different dynamic. I think kids should be raised with two parents in the home (i’m not bashing people that it doesn’t work out for, just saying it should be ideal) who are married because if the parents aren’t getting along about picking up the socks, they can’t easily leave, and it forces couples to try therapy and exhaust all options before splitting.

        Sorry for the rant – i’m all about progressive views but it still kind of irks me when people think marriage and kids shouldn’t be ideal. Yes it doesn’t always work out that way, but I think responsible parents should strive for it. It always reminds me of a Chris Rock stand up where he was discussing single moms and said, “ladies, it can be done, but that doesn’t make it a good fucking idea”

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      • katie

        katie July 25, 2011, 9:16 pm

        The only reason I said that was to get Anna to think a little deeper about marriage. From the small paragraph that she wrote, I kind of got an impression that she might see marriage as this perfect thing that would solidify her relationship and create a good foundation for her kids. While that can and does happen, we all know from the many letters on here that is not reality all the time. Marriage does not automatically mean a happy, stable life, and a good enviornment for children. Thats why I wrote about the two couples with kids- one married, one not. The couple who has the right love, care and attention are the winners, regardless of marriage. In that little senario also, i mean the un-married couple as still living together, acting as a couple, just not legally married. Thats all I meant- and if you read to the end of my comment, I actually do agree with her views, and yours as well. I just think that people should think very deeply about their own values, and also think deeply before making a decision like leaving an 8 year long relationship.

        I would also like to add, that regardless of what Anna thinks about marriage, or what anyone else does, she should stick to her guns, no matter the issue. She should not compromise herself for a boyfriend or anyone else. Stay strong!!

        Also, can we talk about why one half of an 8 year long relationship has just up and decided he is moving STATES away? I read the other comments and I hadn’t even thought of that… and that seems bad..

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        ape_escape July 25, 2011, 1:57 am

        I would argue that legal issues like credit, hospital visits, child support in case of a breakup, etc…are definitely “real.” Even more so with kids involved.

        (Otherwise I agree with what you wrote)

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    • katie

      katie July 22, 2011, 9:38 pm

      oh and you are going to have to know that if he does propose, it is not something he is doing because he wants to, he is doing it just for you, like a chore or something…. to me, that doesn’t really sound like a good situation.

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        Anna July 23, 2011, 3:44 pm

        He would get used to the title. I know him very well; it’s hard to get him to initiate change but once he does he gets hooked. He used my email address for years because he didn’t want to have his own and get into the whole “electronic communication”thing. It’s only been for the last 2 years that he started his own. He also used to despise texting, now he texts all the time. This is just one more “moving on up” step he’s afraid to do but I know he wouldn’t regret. He tells me all the time how great I am and well I take care of him.

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        justpeachy July 23, 2011, 7:16 pm

        I have to disagree with you a bit on this one. If she gave it as an ultimatum, she doesn’t have much wiggle room now. But when I was choosing between two graduate schools, my second choice where my boyfriend lived and my first choice where he didn’t. We sat down and had a discussion that I wasn’t going to give up my first choice for him if our relationship wasn’t going to be taking the next step soon.

        After 8 years together, she knows she wants marriage and this is the tipping point. She doesn’t want to uproot everything she has just to realize six months down the line that they don’t want the same things.

        If I were you, as nerve-wracking as it sounds, ignore the issue. Give him time to propose if he’s going to do it and hope that he does before he leaves. If he leaves, well, you have your answer.

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      katiebird July 22, 2011, 9:59 pm

      I think you should just propose to him instead of waiting around for him to propose to you.

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        Anna July 23, 2011, 3:45 pm

        Ooh he definitely wouldn’t like that! That would be wayy too much pressure on him all at once.

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        Christy July 23, 2011, 7:52 pm

        But you would find out right away if he were serious about what he said, and wouldn’t that be a good thing? No more excruciating waiting, and you can get on with your life (whatever that might be!).

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      MissDre July 22, 2011, 10:06 pm

      OoOoOo this is a hard one. I totally feel you on this because I would want exactly the same thing as you. I really want to say stick to your guns and don’t go if he’s not willing to give you the commitment you truly want. But I know how gut-wrenchingly agonizing it must feel to have to walk away from what is an otherwise great relationship.

      Sigh.

      Ok. IF for some reason, you decide that it’s ok to not be married, that he is a good enough partner and father and the relationship itself is worth more than the title of husband, are you going to end up resenting it? Are you going to secretly continue wishing that you were married and years down the road grow to resent him? Really think about that before making a decision.

      Another thing is, if you are not his wife, you may not have certain rights that you should have. Power of attorney over him if something were to happen to him… the right to stay by his side if he were in the hospital…. access to family benefits through his job… I guess it depends on where you live but the laws may not be on your side. If not, propose some sort of legal document that gives you all of those rights. If all he’s averse to is the “institution of marriage” he should have no problem putting together that legal document so your rights and benefits are protected. If he does have a problem with it…. well that is a bad sign.

      Another option is, stick to your guns and let him go. He may not come back and that will break your heart. But you can move on with your life and one day find a man who wants the same thing as you. You’ve been with him since you were 19… you never know what other amazing person is out there waiting for you.

      OR it’s possible that without you with him, he’ll realize what he’s missing and he’ll decide that a marriage is worth it to keep you. But don’t hold out for that.

      I guess in short…. decide what is most important to you. A) Your relationship with this man or B) legal rights/benefits/protection of being his partner or B) the institution of marriage.

      Good luck and I’m sorry you are going through all this hurt and stress and anxiety of the unknown.

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        Anna July 22, 2011, 10:47 pm

        Well, I am a bit old fashioned when it comes to family structure. I’ve always wanted my prince to propose to me, then we have (a cheaper and slightly rednecky version of) a dream wedding, then go on our honeymoon and throw away the birth control pills. I’ve always known I want to take my husband’s last name too. If I have a kid out of wedlock, do I give the child my last name or the father’s last name? If my child gets his last name but I don’t I will be very bitter and resentful about it. Like I can go through 9 months of pregnancy and however many hours of labor but I’m still not worth an official commitment? No, that’s never going to work for me. And I also worry about the legal matters, hospital visits etc. He has diabetes so it’s highly likely he will have medical complications later in life. If they won’t even let me see him, that’s not going to fly well with me.

        I’m pretty firm on my decision to MOA if September comes and there’s still no ring. Of course I entertain the possibility of him running back to me after that happens and begging me to marry him because he misses me. But if I end up letting him go, it will be the hardest decision I ever have to make. Honestly, I’m not sure if I’m strong enough to do it.

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        honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:43 pm

        It sounds like you know what you want and have very good reasons for feeling that way. Unfortunately, if you do get a proposal it may end up being him doing it just because he thinks he has to and he may end up resenting you. I’m sure this is tough for you, especially after so much time with him. I definitely think you are making the right decision by sticking to your convictions and if he does go, its going to hurt. But on another note, I found it extremely alarming that he decided he was going to go. After such a long, committed relationship I think that should be a joint decision, not one person just declaring “hey, I’m gonna move to another state now.”

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        MissDre July 23, 2011, 12:00 am

        I agree with you… It’s strange that he just decided to go without discussing your future plans (after 8 years together??) If a marriage is what you truly want, stick to it. Be strong. As bad as your heart may break, as gut wrenching and sickening as it may feel, you will make it out alive. You will get to the light at the end of the tunnel. Think positive. This decision you are making, it’s a step in the right direction. It’s a step towards a marriage, whether with him or another wonderful man someday. Be brave. Love yourself first. You can do it!!

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        honeybeenicki July 23, 2011, 12:04 am

        “Love yourself first.”

        If more women (and people in general) would follow this guideline, so many people would be much happier.

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        blackbird July 23, 2011, 3:36 am

        I can see both sides of this. It was mentioned above, but it is strange that he pretty much decided he was going to move without having a conversation with you. You would think that after 8 years together, he’d include you in more of his plans, especially relationship-changing ones.

        He “doesn’t like legally binding documents.” What does that mean? Is the responsibility too much for him to handle or does he have problems with commitment? I also don’t know how I feel about marriage licenses being exclusively religious, in my eyes it’s always been a legal commitment. I think the religious part comes in to play in the eyes of the couple being married, not the law.

        His excuses sound a little flimsy, but maybe he’s just really scared. I have a friend who just recently got engaged to her boyfriend of 6 years. She told him that being married was one of her life goals, and while she wants to be married to HIM, she didn’t want to continue the relationship if he didn’t want marriage either. They took a break and he realized that he wanted to spend the rest of their lives together, and they seem really, truly happy now. Compromise is part of a relationship, but are you willing to compromise something that you can’t see your life without?

        Also, you say you’ve lived together 7 years now; I’m not sure what the laws are in your state, but in mine, you’d be common law married already. Have you guys talked about what would happen if that were the case? If he’s told you that he plans on spending the rest of his life with you, has he considered insurance, hospital visitations, end-of-life decisions, and wills?

        I apologize for rambling and asking a million questions, but it’d be helpful to hear the answers if you guys have already discussed them. I think you’re very strong for standing your ground and knowing what you want. “Love yourself first.”

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        blackbird July 23, 2011, 3:38 am

        So many grammar errors. I apologize, I’m sleepy.

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      • Ginger

        Adler July 23, 2011, 12:23 am

        A friend of mine is in a similar situation. She’s been with her bf for over 5 years, they have a 2 year old son and more than anything she wants to be married to him. *Note: She doesn’t want a wedding, she actually just wants to go to city hall, have the quick ceremony and that’s all. But her bf refuses because according to him “the ring has powers” and marriage changes things. They’ve been living together for years and all she wants is to feel like her and her son and him are all part of one family. She’s tried telling him this but he just reiterates his comments about “the ring having powers”
        Sorry to ramble but basically what I’m trying to say is if marriage is important to you then stick to your guns, because you def don’t want to end up like my friend who is being made miserable by a guy who calls her his wife, but balks at signing the damn papers even knowing how unhappy its making her.

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        neuroticbeagle July 23, 2011, 12:50 am

        “the ring has powers”

        Where is he getting the ring from — Middle Earth??

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        Laurel July 23, 2011, 6:27 pm

        Ugh I feel bad for your friend. She should cease all cooking, cleaning and sex until he gets the damn marriage certificate signed. Stop acting like a wife and see where that leaves him.

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        Quakergirl July 25, 2011, 9:53 am

        The ring does have powers…which is sort of the point, no? You get all the powers, privileges, and benefits of being each other’s closest legal relative. If he doesn’t want to give her those things, well, that says a lot.

        *note: obviously, the ring is not the important part, but figuratively speaking the sentiment holds.

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    • kaluu

      kati July 23, 2011, 5:47 am

      “But on another note, I found it extremely alarming that he decided he was going to go. After such a long, committed relationship I think that should be a joint decision, not one person just declaring β€œhey, I’m gonna move to another state now.””
      i found this alarming too.
      also his phrasing: ‘legally binding” why doesnt he want to be bound to you? i would be more empathetic to hear ‘i hate that we have to pay money to sign a paper for society” , but it concerns me that it is specifically the binding he ojects to.
      he doesnt seem like a catch to me. have you thought about other options and if they might be better? is his personality really awesome otherwise or is there maybe another type of guy who would match you better? is your bf doing well financially? great in bed and as your friend? kind? would he be a great dad? helpful?

      now if you do like him and you think he is your best match out there, i think you have to compromise. ask him the budget for the rings and go buy them and have a date at city hall set. its reasonable that you want a ring and his last name. however i think if you cannot compromise and just marry civilly without everything that you hoped for (excitement of engagement, planning a grand or at least personalized wedding, him initiating the whole thing) then maybe he is not the one for you because you are not making each other happy and he is not enough for you on his own. also, if he has such strong opinions how will parenting decisions go? is he going to tell your future kids not to ever marry? is that cool with you or will you eventually find him an embarrassment?

      i bet if you do break up you will find someone better and just be happy to be rid of him as soon as you did. many girls want to be with someone who wants to marry them, its not unreasonable.

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    • MissRemy

      Ally July 23, 2011, 6:16 am

      So he decided without you, that 8 years into your relationship he’s just going to up sticks and move away to another state? Then when you tell him that you aren’t willing to go with him without a firm commitment he keeps you waiting? You actually told him that without a proposal your relationship would be over and still he keeps you waiting?!

      If he knows that marriage is important to you then that should be enough to make it important to him. If he plans to be with you for the rest of his life then what difference does a piece of paper make really? Now maybe I’m not understanding the whole situation but it sounds like he’s being really selfish! Are you sure that you want to move away from everything you have to follow a man who let’s face it, doesn’t want the same things from your relationship as you?

      It seems so cruel of him to leave this hanging over you, have you tried to talk to him about it since you initially brought it up? How did he react when you gave him the ultimatum?

      I think you have made the right decision, if he can’t give you what you need then it’s better that you find out now. It’s not stupid to want marriage before kids, it’s something that a lot of people want, unfortunately your boyfriend doesn’t seem to be one of them. Maybe if he sees you getting on with plans for your life without him it might give him the kick in the butt he needs, or if he still keeps you waiting then you follow through with those plans. I’m sure it will be horribly hard, but if he can walk away from you without looking back, was he really worth your love?

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      Amanda July 23, 2011, 6:48 am

      “He’s pretty miserable in his job here so he said he is going too.” Did he talk about this with you before he announced his decision? If not, that’s definitely a BIG red flag. What about your job? Can you easily relocate to NC? Where would you live in NC? With his parents?

      Your letter implies (to me, anyway) that your boyfriend is pretty selfish. You’ve expressed how important marriage is to you and he is not interested in marrying you after 8 years (!) together. If he was really interested in continuing your relationship through the move then he would man-up and propose. But, it seems that he won’t because he doesn’t want to marry you. And why would you want to marry someone who doesn’t want to marry you?

      Marriage may not be important to him and that’s absolutely fine, but marriage is important to you. So you have to decide for yourself if you can continue in a relationship that will not become a formal marriage. Lots of people do and you have to decide if you can too. But it sounds like that’s not what you want.

      I think that you made the right decision. If he doesn’t propose within the next month, let him move without you and MOA yourself. Best of luck to you.

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        Anna July 23, 2011, 3:59 pm

        Yeah, he talks about how much he hates his job all the time. He always has to work mandatory OT every night and every weekend so he basically has no life except going to work. He’s been very depressed about it. Unfortunately, we live in a very economically depressed area of Ohio. In order to get a new job in his field now, he would have to take a drastic pay cut. I want to see him happy again so I think a new job is definitely in order.

        Another thing I didn’t mention before is that NC is a hotbed of young professionals and it would be very financially lucrative for me to move there. In Ohio, I haven’t been able to find a decent job in the field I went to college for. There are a ton of them in NC, and I could make $10,000/yr more than I make now (as a starting salary.) My boyfriend and I would be able to afford to get a house there together, we wouldn’t have to live with his parents.

        I really appreciate all the feedback on this. It seems a little mean to say he doesn’t sound like a catch but everyone’s entitled to their opinion. From the moment I met this man, I felt like I had met my soulmate. He’s funny, generous, kind, hard working, honest, and I know he would be a wonderful father. I feel in my heart that he may be coming around, but I’m keeping my guard up for now until something official happens. I will update the story as it unfolds.

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        Yammy July 23, 2011, 5:53 pm

        I don’t think your guy sounds so bad. He seems a little like mine. My Jason doesn’t like bank accounts, Facebook, legal documents, etc. It’s odd but I think if it as a personality quirk.

        It’s possible that when he said “we can get married if that’s what you require” was your proposal. Does he know you’re expecting him to do something romantic? It’s sounds like he agreed to get married, so if you want the ring before y’all move, perhaps you should just ask him when he wants to go ring shopping?

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        Rita Mae B July 23, 2011, 9:33 pm

        That’s how my Dad proposed to my mom. They were at a crossroads living a couple hours from each other and my dad was tired of making that kind of commute back and forth. He kept begging my mom to move back and when she said “why so it can be the same old thing” (after 6 years together, not always living that far from eachother), his response was “I suppose we should get married.” They got married around a year and a half later and they’re still married…almost 28 years later.

        If you leave the proposal up to your boyfriend, it is may not be the big romantic gesture you’re hoping for. That may not be his style. I know I probably won’t end up getting any kind of romantic gesture if and when my boyfriend make that decision. He’s just not the romantic type.

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      • kaluu

        kati July 24, 2011, 1:25 am

        sorry, maybe i phrased that too harshly! but you didnt mention any of this originally! i guess i meant that from what info you have provided, i dont know why you are with him, however, those things are good to hear. glad he is coming around

        “From the moment I met this man, I felt like I had met my soulmate. He’s funny, generous, kind, hard working, honest, and I know he would be a wonderful father”

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        Mary July 24, 2011, 7:00 pm

        Just so you know, the economy is still in terrible shape here in NC. Our unemployment rate is higher than the national average and the state is making drastic cuts (North Carolina now spends less money on education than any other state in the country. Yes, even less than Mississippi). A number of years ago during the economic boom, NC became The Place To Be, topping all sorts of lists of Best Places To Live. Well, that encouraged tons and tons of people to move here (especially from New England). Then the economy tanked and a ton of those people lost their jobs. I know multiple people who’ve been unemployed for a year or longer – professional people who do good work, but the companies he just can’t afford to hire everyone. One thing is for certain: if you want a job in NC, you need to network. The people who *are* getting jobs are often getting them because they know people. If you don’t already have ties and connections here, it’s likely to be a very difficult transition.

        I’m not saying you or your boyfriend or his family should not move here. I simply wish you to be informed. North Carolina is not the land of milk and honey. It is ROUGH.

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        Mary July 24, 2011, 7:10 pm

        Goodness! I came off more gloom-and-doom-y than I intended. Forgive me for that. I participate on a forum where we hear from a LOT of people who are trying to move to NC and they all seem to think that moving here will solve all of their problems (and more often than not, they’re wrong). Clearly that has had an impact on me! People can do well here, of course. Just be prepared for the competition (it’s fierce) and make sure you have enough money in savings to get by for 9 to 12 months.

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        Anna July 25, 2011, 1:54 pm

        The specific area they are moving to is Raleigh/Cary area. According to the economic statistics I’ve read, unemployment is around 7-8% there. In Cleveland, OH it is about 11%. I’ve also searched job boards and found far more entry-level openings in my field than I’ve ever found in Ohio. So it may not be paradise but Cleveland is where careers go to die so in comparison it seems good.

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        kali July 25, 2011, 12:38 pm

        Just be careful, Anna. My ex was an excellent father – still loves kids and is a terrific grandfather now – but it’s because he’s a big kid who never grew up. That shit gets old too.

        Also, your ‘soulmate’ statement scares me a little. There’s no such thing. You also talked about ‘your prince’ proposing to you in a previous letter. Try to keep in mind he’s a real person and not some idolized character from a dream or romance novel.

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    • caitie_didnt

      caitie_didn't July 23, 2011, 1:03 pm

      You have to do what’s best for you! I’m pretty traditional and I definitely agree with you on the marriage thing. I think a guy that truly loves you would either:

      – make his intention to never get married clear early in the relationship
      – be willing to compromise for your sake.

      But honestly, if you want to be married, particularly before having children, you don’t need to justify that desire! it’s completely reasonable.

      And yes, it is alarming that he just decided to move to a different state without consulting you- it sounds as though he may have just been staying in this relationship because it’s comfortable/familiar/ the status quo?

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    anastasiachs July 22, 2011, 9:16 pm

    Get better soon, Wendy!

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    Britannia July 22, 2011, 8:39 pm

    I hope you feel better soon, Wendy! We love what you do here on the site and I, at least, am very grateful for the daily conversations!

    I have a question for everyone! I am planning a 1990s-themed party for my birthday on Saturday, the 30th. Everyone will be dressing up in stereotype costumes… like, Britney Spears in “Hit Me Baby (One More Time)” or as Will Smith as the Fresh Prince, etc. It’s a typical party with beer pong, hookah, hot tubbing/swimming in the pool, and dancing, and I will be putting out a few sheet cakes so that everyone has cake. Do you have any suggestions for what snack foods I should provide, any “party favors” that would fit the theme (like Tamagochis or The Simpsons or Beavis & Butthead paraphernalia?), and what songs should definitely be included in the playlist that will be playing the whole time?

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      Anna July 22, 2011, 8:52 pm

      Anything by Everclear, Foo Fighters, Nirvana, Cake, Eve6, Sublime. Oh, and you have to do the Macarena! lol

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      Rachel July 22, 2011, 9:01 pm

      Anna’s got some good suggestions! I would also add that “baby got back” should definitely make an appearance.

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        Anna July 22, 2011, 9:47 pm

        Oh HELL yeah! You can do side bends or sit ups but please don’t lose that butt!

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        Britannia July 22, 2011, 9:06 pm

        I’m not sure if this is too long, but here is my track listing so far!

        California Love + Keep Ya Head Up – 2Pac
        Intergalactic + Sabotage – Beastie Boys
        Where It’s At – Beck
        No Rain – Blind Melon
        All the Small Things + Dammit + What’s My Age Again – Blink 182
        Along Comes Mary + The Bad Touch + The Ballad of Chasey Lain + I Hope You Die – Bloodhound Gang
        Song 2 – Blur
        Cannonball – The Breeders
        Never There – Cake
        Zoot Suit Riot – Cherry Poppin Daddies
        Unbelievable – EMF
        My Name Is – Eminem
        Amphetamine – Everclear
        Inside Out – Eve 6
        Praise You + The Rockafeller Skank – Fatboy Slim
        I Think I’m Paranoid + Special + Stupid Girl – Garbage
        Here In Your Bedroom + Superman – Goldfinger
        Basket Case + Longview – Green Day
        Flagpole Sitta – Harvey Danger
        Jump Around – House of Pain
        American Woman – Lenny Kravitz
        Nookie – Limp Bizkit
        Sex & Candy – Marcy Playground
        All Apologies + Come As You Are + Smells Like Teen Spirit – Nirvana
        Just A Girl – No Doubt
        Big Poppa + Hypnotize + Juicy + Mo Money Mo Problems – Notorious BIG
        Come Out and Play + Self Esteem – The Offspring
        Peaches – Presidents of the United States of America
        Smack My Bitch Up – Prodigy
        Roots Radicals + Time Bomb + Ruby Soho – Rancid
        Sell Out – Reel Big Fish
        Walking On the Sun – Smash Mouth
        Fly – Sugar Ray
        Hell – Squirrel Nut Zippers
        Badfish + Santeria + Smoke Two Joints + What I Got + Wrong Way – Sublime
        Secret Agent Man – The Toasters
        Buddy Holly + Say It Ain’t So – Weezer

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        Britannia July 22, 2011, 9:09 pm

        Also, A Tribe Called Quest and various other hip hop.

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        LTC039 July 24, 2011, 10:46 am

        She needs “Tubthumping” by Chumbawamba “I get knocked down, but I get up again, you’re never gonna keep me down…”
        Totally 90s!

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        ncp July 22, 2011, 11:25 pm

        What about “Loser”? Can’t have a 90’s soundtrack without that one!

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        Britannia July 22, 2011, 11:29 pm

        I’m trying to keep the “sad” songs to a bare minimum because we have this one friend who is recovering from a breakup and is super mopey, and the songs might exacerbate that. Besides, it’s a dance party! That song isn’t very dancey, but believe me, I love that song and I did consider it!

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        Kate July 23, 2011, 11:05 am

        How is Loser a sad song…?

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        Rachel July 23, 2011, 8:56 pm

        In the time of chimpanzees I was a monkey? Doesn’t sound sad to me.

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        Britannia July 23, 2011, 9:41 pm

        “I’m a loser baby, so why don’t you kill me?”

        Are we talking about the same song?

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        Kate July 24, 2011, 10:48 am

        Yes, but the entire song is just silly. It’s a funny song. Maybe you had to be there πŸ˜‰

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        honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:48 pm

        I was gonna recommend Who Let the Dogs Out (Baha Men) but I think that came out in 2000. I think it was voted one of the most recognizable songs a few years ago.

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        SpaceySteph July 23, 2011, 12:45 am

        You need a little boy band in there.
        Try a little LFO for giggles. Summer Girls came on the radio yesterday and I died laughing at those lyrics. Hornet rhymes with sonnet apparently.

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        G July 24, 2011, 3:49 pm

        Yes… BSB and N Sync! Definitely makes for some good dancing…

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      shelllo July 22, 2011, 9:15 pm

      Well maybe snack foods you can have memorable ad campaigns or pop culture references during that time. The only ones I can think of off the top of my head are 7 Up (make 7 up yours) and snack packs a la billy madison. But definitely don’t forget Gangstas Paradise by Coolio! or cmon’n ride the train by quad city dj’s (had to look that one up ha) Also, I dont know if you were a kid in the 90’s to remember this fad or not (and it could hav been a regional thing) but during the late 90’s those milky pens were huge! we would draw all over ourselves at school

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      • katie

        katie July 22, 2011, 9:29 pm

        ohhh gel pens right? and you would buy them in like the one million pack and it came with a carrying case? omg. you gotta have these!! lol

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        Britannia July 22, 2011, 9:31 pm

        Gel pens are a great idea! I’ll definitely try to find some πŸ™‚

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        Painted_lady July 22, 2011, 9:54 pm

        Art stores still carry them I think! Oh my god, as far as food goes, you gotta go for something strawberry-kiwi flavored – that crap was EVERYWHERE in 1995 and 1996. Also, the confetti cake should make an appearance as I don’t think I went to a single birthday party in third grade (1991-1992) where the inside of the cake didn’t look like it had been attacked by fingerpaints.

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      Kat July 22, 2011, 11:33 pm

      spice girls!

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        Britannia July 22, 2011, 11:38 pm

        Yes! I’m still deciding on whether to dress up as Ginger Spice or a rave kid. I looooooooved Spice Girls during the 90’s, I still have all their songs memorized, and my Posh Spice barbie doll inside its box! I’m thinking Ginger Spice might have to be my costume of choice, since I have combat boots with the Union Jack emblazoned on them already πŸ™‚

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        honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:44 pm

        I still love the Spice Girls and have passed that love onto my stepdaughter and (to my husbands annoyance) even my stepson!

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    • EscapeHatches

      EscapeHatch July 22, 2011, 11:36 pm

      Hmm… my birthday is July 30th…..

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      JennyTalia July 23, 2011, 1:48 am

      Favorite VH1 special of all time…

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      Caroline July 23, 2011, 3:16 am

      DUNKAROOS!!!!!

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      blackbird July 23, 2011, 3:16 am

      That is an awesome idea! Was Bill Cosby advertising Jell-O in the 90’s or was it the 80’s? I feel like I remember the ads coming on during Sesame Street, and that was in the early 90’s. I was thinking it’d be cool to make some different flavors and use cookie cutters to cut out shapes a la the commercials.

      If you’re into party games, why not get a couple bike helmets from Goodwill and glue plastic cups to them, and pretend you’re on Double Dare? And make green slime!

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        blackbird July 23, 2011, 4:14 am

        Also: ROLLERBLADES.

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      Nikoe4sho July 23, 2011, 3:06 pm

      If you could find Zima online somewhere, that would be great.

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      • avatar

        Nikoe4sho July 23, 2011, 3:09 pm

        …or slap bracelets, or anything Lisa Frank!

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  • avatar

    MissDre July 22, 2011, 9:55 pm

    GET WELL WENDY AND BABY!

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  • avatar

    Jen July 22, 2011, 9:56 pm

    Hope you feel better soon!!!

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    SpyGlassez July 22, 2011, 11:01 pm

    Hope you get to feeling better soon, Wendy.

    Ok, I have a question – and I would like guy-feedback if possible too.

    My boyfriend is 28 and just finished his associate’s degree as a Medical Administration Assistant. We have been going out for almost 2 years. After graduating high school, he tried college for a year, dropped out, and worked at a couple different places. Most of the jobs he left because of conflict with authority, one or two he was let go from because of showing up late constantly. He was with a temp agency for a year before going back to school. He hasn’t had a job in 3 years other than on-campus. That’s all just back-story, to lead to my question: how do I support him without coming off as a nag? I have tried finding job links for him, sending him information, passing his name on to others…he has done jack except play Team Fortress II, or StarCraft II, since he graduated in May. We have talked about getting married, but frankly at this time I don’t see it happening. I’m 30, and while I’m not in a mad rush for the altar, I don’t see any reason to wait another 4 or 5 years if we already know 100% that we want to be married. I have 2 jobs (adjunct instructor and tutor) and am comfortable *enough* but I definitely cannot be the sole wage-earner on what I make. Also, when I envisioned my future, I never saw myself as trying to raise my husband.

    He is a smart guy. He’s gotten better at dealing with authority. He’s got a good heart and I love him very much. But is there anything I can do besides just stand aside and watch him fritter every day away playing games online? How do I help inspire him to look for a job? Should I even bother?

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      honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:35 pm

      To be honest, it seems to me that you have gone above and beyond with sending him job information, passing his name on, etc. He is being extremely disrespectful by ignoring that help and playing video games instead. He can also possibly be damaging your reputation. I don’t know how its working with you passing his name on, but if he isn’t responding to anyone you have passed his name onto or isn’t following through that looks bad on you.

      I’ve been in the same situation, although I was much younger. My ex did nothing but play video games all day and I worked 3 jobs and went to school full time. I tried putting in a good word for him, sending him links to job websites, getting him applications, etc and he never really followed through. You know how I got him to do something other than fritter away his days? I left. Now, there were other issues besides the job issue, but within 2 months of me leaving him, he got a job. He did it to apparently try to get me back (that didn’t work), but at least he did it.

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        SpyGlassez July 23, 2011, 3:57 pm

        I’m hoping it hasn’t looked bad yet; it’s mostly been of the “Oh, yeah, my BF is looking for work and I noticed you had an opening?”

        I’m not at the point where I want to leave, and I think he has begun to see how much this bothers me. I’m hoping he can start turning it around. I’m willing to give him a little more time. For now.

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      MsBorgia July 23, 2011, 1:06 am

      I too was in a similar situation. My ex was so smart and it made me so sad to see how he was wasting his potential… two and a half years after graduation he’s still mooching off his poor mom. Like you, I sent him jobs, pestered him, offered to hook him up with possible employers… That’s a big part of why he’s my ex :/ Honestly, I don’t know if guys like that ever change without a huge shock to their system.

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        SpyGlassez July 23, 2011, 4:01 pm

        At least he isn’t mooching, and to be fair, he does not let me pay for him. He just…spends his savings, without anything coming in to replace it. He pays his share of rent and groceries, at least.

        We had a talk yesterday night which basically ended with me saying that I can’t see being engaged, getting married, or having kids when he’s refusing to grow up, and that did seem to sink in, so hopefully things will start to change for the better?

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    • kaluu

      kati July 23, 2011, 5:53 am

      get out asap. im sure you can find someone who can take care of his own career (when he has a job AND when he doesnt) your bf work ethic doesnt match yours and it will cause you much stress in the future especially with parenting responsibilities if you have children (i am dealing with it now, and its enough of a problem that talking about it upsets me)

      i like that you seem ok with getting out, and you’re not desperate for him. hope you do it

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      • kaluu

        kati July 23, 2011, 6:00 am

        oh, by the way my man has never been unemployed! and he doesnt watch porn and does like sex (more frequently than i want but still a normal amount) and does some chores, so i dont want to give the wrong impression but truthfully even when some things are normal enough the video game habit is very very hard to take when you have kids and you want things for them; time, experiences, more money, a clean house everyday, a dad who sets a good example
        even if he finds a job soon, he might never apply for promotions or look into other opportunities, it might be his last job..he just sounds unmotivated

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        kali July 25, 2011, 12:45 pm

        kati, he might also be depressed. This recession has been a long, drawn-out one and many people are out of work who’ve never been unemployed before – or not for such a long period. While playing games all day isn’t helpful, he might just be escaping rather than actively disrespecting SpyGlassez.

        SG- keep the lines of communication open, keep sending him the job links and putting in a good word for him. But if you need a deadline for your own peace of mind, then I support that too.

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        SpyGlassez July 25, 2011, 12:59 pm

        Actually, during a car ride yesterday, he and I had a long talk. I didn’t come down on him like a ton of bricks, but I explained that I wanted a future with him, NOT just a present. Starting tomorrow (today is too busy) we’re going to go over his resume and then he will start actively job-searching.

        I agree, Kali – it seems a lot more like trying to escape than anything else, and that’s why I have tried to be patient for so long. It isn’t even that I get angry – I just worry for him and for our future.

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        SpyGlassez July 23, 2011, 4:03 pm

        I love him, and I want to be fair to him, but I also want to be fair to me and I know that if I just wait for him to get it together forever, then I will start to resent him. I’m a little type-A, and I’ve never been known for my patience. If he were trying and not finding anything, or if he had a job but made less than me, it wouldn’t bother me – it’s just hard to try to look to the future and not be able to see anything settled.

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    • caitie_didnt

      caitie_didn't July 23, 2011, 10:02 am

      I dunno, this would definitely be a dealbreaker for me. I don’t need a man to “take care of me” and I’m comfortable being the major earner in a relationship, but I NEED someone who has at least some ambition and motivation. And frankly, there is a line between being supportive and being a parent, and I think you may have crossed that line with your boyfriend.

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        SpyGlassez July 23, 2011, 3:42 pm

        Yeah, I definitely don’t need him to take care of me, but it would be nice to have someone who kept up with me. When I first got together with him, he did have motivation (as far as finishing school). It’s just that now it seems to have…fizzled, or something.

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      • caitie_didnt

        caitie_didn't July 23, 2011, 6:51 pm

        I’d maybe suggest depression (because extended unemployment can total trash your self-esteem), but your initial post says he’s had longstanding authority issues. Which to me, would be a red flag because problems with authority make it really hard to hold a steady job. I dunno, like you said, keeping up with me (intelligence and drive-wise) is a must-have in a relationship for me. I’m also a total type-A control freak so I wouldn’t be able to handle the uncertainty of “will he or won’t he get his act together”? You have my sympathies- it’s a tough call.

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      Christy July 23, 2011, 8:08 pm

      You can’t be his mother, and you probably don’t want to be his wife as long as he’s slacking off. I think you should step back and drop the marriage talk until he’s shown that he can be a stable wage earner. He may just need some time to get used to real life (he just finished two months ago), so why rush marriage? If you get married now, and he doesn’t shape up, you’ll be in for a messy separation or divorce. If you wait and he shapes up, you can get married confidently. And if you wait and he doesn’t shape up, you can MOA without getting a judge involved!

      As for how to support him, maybe you should just stand aside and let him figure things out for himself. Or ask him if there are ways you can help–do those things and no more. He can’t grow up if you treat him like a child.

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  • avatar

    honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:39 pm

    Get better soon Wendy!

    I don’t think I have much I need advice on. I wrote in to DW awhile ago about my sister getting married on her 2 month anniversary with the guy and also sent an update, but for people who are familiar with it I figured I’d just take this opportunity to let everyone know it is actually going pretty well so far. It’s only been a few months, but I’ve had more time to interact with him alone, with my sister, and with my niece and nephews and I must say that he treats them quite well. They all seem happy and all 3 kids are doing so much better with a stable male figure in their life.

    Anyway… does anyone watch America’s Got Talent?

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    • avatar

      honeybeenicki July 22, 2011, 11:54 pm

      (If anyone is interested – original letter

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      Anna July 23, 2011, 4:07 pm

      I love America’s Got Talent! My bf won’t watch it anymore though since he saw the pole-fessional guy who pole danced in high heels. It disturbed him greatly. lol

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        honeybeenicki July 23, 2011, 8:19 pm

        That guy is one of my favorites πŸ™‚ He just made it through to top 24 and I was so excited!

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  • avatar

    Elle July 23, 2011, 1:35 am

    Hope you kick that infection out of your system soon, Wendy! Thinking of you

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    Caroline July 23, 2011, 3:23 am

    Get better quickly, Wendy!!!! Sending good thoughts towards you and Baby πŸ™‚

    So, kind of a weird topic but…I could use some advice. My boyfriend and I haven’t had sex yet because his back always gives him a lot of pain (he has a condition similar to scoliosis, but worse) so I’ve been trying to think of positions that we could utilize that wouldn’t put so much strain on his back. I don’t think he’d mind me being on top some of the time, but I know he would rather be able to take charge, you know? Plus, I like him taking charge and being kind of forcible. So, any ideas?

    It’s not like we don’t do other stuff, we’re always going at it, just not having sex. Thanks for the advice!!

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      anonymous July 23, 2011, 11:56 am

      What about you lying on the bed with your feet dangling off the side? He can then kneel on the floor and ravish you while keeping his back straight.

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      Britannia July 23, 2011, 1:16 pm

      Spooning sex is a good way to do it with minimal strain on his spine… Or lay on your stomach and have a pillow on your back that helps support his chest and provides a good angle so that he won’t have to strain so much.

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        Morgan July 23, 2011, 5:08 pm

        Second on the spooning, especially if his back pain is in his lower back.

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      SGMcG July 23, 2011, 6:05 pm

      My husband does have schliosis to the point that he has a rod in his back. His favorite position is doggie-style. He’s able to do a deeper, penetrative thrust, with minimal lower back strain. He also has the option to raise and lower my pelvis to his preference based on the amount of pillows he places under me. You could either apply this position at the edge of the bed or smack dab in the middle of it.

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    summerkitten26 July 23, 2011, 6:59 am

    oh no!!! feel better wendy! my fingers are crossed and prayers are said for your health πŸ™‚ and wishing the best for you, drew, and baby drewendy!

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  • avatar

    LT July 23, 2011, 10:23 am

    Feel better Wendy! Before you head back to NYC, let me know if you need any suggestions for STL fun/relaxation/food. Also stay cool! It’s a scorcher out there.

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  • Skyblossom

    Skyblossom July 23, 2011, 12:34 pm

    Good luck and great health to both you and the baby Wendy. Luckily there are great doctors everywhere and it sounds like you’re receiving the care you need.

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    Skybird July 23, 2011, 1:11 pm

    Wendy, take care of yourself, and I hope you’re feeling better soon. Drink lots of water and be kind to your body, yourself and your baby! You’re in my thoughts!

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  • avatar

    SGMcG July 23, 2011, 6:06 pm

    Goodness! Hope you and Wendrew are doing OK now. Glad that your family is near at this time. Feel better!

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  • MissRemy

    Ally July 23, 2011, 6:07 pm

    I could use a little advice: My boyfriend’s best friend is a great guy, and he’s since become one of my best friends too. His relationship has just recently ended and I’m not sure what to do! I know how to support a girlfriend through a break up, but I’ve never been on this side of the equation. From what I can tell he’s a little upset, but he’s not an emotional kind of dude. Apart from being available to listen if he wants to talk is there anything I should/shouldn’t be doing to support him? Or any general advice? Thanks in advance!

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      Laurel July 23, 2011, 6:37 pm

      Take him out drinking or to parties or whatever you guys usually do on the weekends. I’d say as a fellow female, don’t bash his ex unless she was truly vile.

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      Lolabeans July 24, 2011, 9:14 am

      Ahhh… I just went through this last year with my boyfriends best friend and roommate. For me, I tried to play the role of a mom to him, weird iknow. But none of us live too close to our families. I would make a big batch of food at dinner and have him eat with us, pack it up for lunch etc. I knew he wasn’t eating so I thought I would make it easier on him by doing this.
      Honestly, just being there is enough. Let him know the hurt will pass, that he is ok without her etc. Take him out with you and your boyfriend.
      Maybe NOT talking about it is what he needs, who knows, I guess everyone is different.

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  • avatar

    Bekah July 24, 2011, 2:57 am

    I could use some advice. I am flying home with my boyfriend of two years to meet the parents. I have never brought a guy home and I am 26 years old. So he will be the first guy my father has ever met. To complicate things, my family is right-wing christian conservative, I’m not. We live together which is common knowledge and extremely looked down upon. I want things to go smoothly, and have been trying to communicate that to all involved. I was wondering if anyone has gone through something similar or just has some advice! I mean all stories as welcome, good and bad ones, because I know it is an interesting time and practically a rite of passage I have yet to go through. Thanks for you help!

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      anonymous July 24, 2011, 10:56 am

      Are you planning to stay in your parents’ house? If not, you might consider splitting up for this visit — he stays in the hotel and you sleep at your parents’. This can give them some parent-daughter time that they might want. Also, it will respect their wishes that you NOT sleep with him on “their” turf.

      If you are planning to stay in your parents’ house, prepare for separate bedrooms and GO with that assumption. They’ll appreciate the thought.

      Also, give your guy the heads up that he should offer to grocery shop, take garbage out, etc. Let him bowl them over with his thoughtfulness. That’s so much more inviting to a parent than having to give him the benefit of the doubt. Let them SEE what you love in this guy.

      Good luck!

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        Bekah July 24, 2011, 7:40 pm

        Thanks! I always knew we wouldn’t be sharing a bed. That would be unheard of in my family, but we definitely can’t stay in separate places since we are traveling half way around the world to visit. Our teacher’s salary is enough, but we will be quite tight on money for this trip… Thanks for the input!

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    Dennis Hong July 24, 2011, 3:57 pm

    “Talk amongst yourselves.”

    You sound just a teacher whom the kids think is cool and laid-back, but really just doesn’t feel like teaching anymore and doesn’t give enough of a shit to think of something productive for the kids to do. πŸ™‚

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    • Dear Wendy

      Wendy July 24, 2011, 6:14 pm

      Well… I was/am in the hospital was 103 degree temperature, a kidney infection and pneumonia, so, yeah, I guess I didn’t feel up to much more than that. Anyway, sometimes a true open thread is the best kind.

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      • avatar

        Bekah July 24, 2011, 6:48 pm

        I hope you feel better and this time gives you a good opportunity to rest. Hopefully it will give you time to prepare mentally for you upcoming arrival! Best wishes for quick healing for your baby and body.

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      • avatar

        ape_escape July 25, 2011, 2:28 am

        blehhhhhhhh sounds awful. I hope you start to feel better super soon!

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