From the forums:
So now comes my question: Is it okay for me to add her as a friend on FaceBook (she was wearing a name tag with her full name, which is how I know her last name)? I very much enjoyed talking with her, and found her very interesting. However, she was just my bartender, right? In this day and age, it’s hard to tell how people will react to things. We will probably never see each other again, but we could stay in touch over FB. We each have obligations keeping us on our respective sides of the country, and I am in a complicated relationship situation, so anything more than friendship seems implausible. Are a few conversations between a bartender and a patron enough to warrant a friend request, or does that come off as creepy? — Jack N. Coke
It comes off as creepy not because she was a bartender and you were a patron but for a few other reasons: she didn’t give you her last name, you simply saw it on her name tag; you didn’t discuss keeping in touch or connecting over social media; you are in a “complicated relationship situation.” If you weren’t in a complicated situation, the former two points could probably be overlooked, but when you live on opposite sides of the country and have obligations that keep you put, what’s really the point in keeping in touch? When you factor in your complicated situation, then keeping in touch with an intriguing bartender on the other side of the country whom you felt some spark with seems like a way to emotionally cheat or, at the very least, emotionally escape your complicated situation and avoid giving it the full attention it probably needs from you.
No dude who is happy in his relationship pursues some online friendship with a woman he felt a spark with who lives across the country and whom he’s likely never going to see again. Doing so will only make your “complicated situation” more complicated. It won’t make you happy. Uncomplicate your situation in whatever way makes the most sense and THEN go ahead and friend random women on Facebook to your heart’s content. If they aren’t into you, they can always decline your invite.
While she was in jail, many people told me she had cheated on me. When she got out of jail, I confronted her and she denied everything. Then she apologized and said she would fight for me and change for me. She has a drinking problem she’s been working on, but she relapses once in a while. She’s the sweetest when she’s sober and treats me with respect and love.
My family hates her and wants me to stay away from her, but she promises she will get help because I’m the love of her life and she will fight for me to forgive her. I want to believe being in jail helped her realize a lot of things she’s at risk of losing. But I don’t know if she’ll go to an AA meeting or if she can get a job and start supporting herself. I’m lost, confused, and depressed now because I want to believe she will change but don’t know if she will. — She’s Sweet When She’s Sober
It takes a lot more than going to jail or going to a single AA meeting for an alcoholic to “change.” Even if your ex really, truly wants to change (and SHE has to want it—-that’s the first step), it will take months and months of dedication and commitment for her to even get to a point where she can potentially juggle the emotional obligations of a relationship with the demands of staying sober. Staying sober will be a full-time job for her, and it’s one, should she decide to take it on, that she is going to need to focus on 100%. She can’t give a relationship — particularly a very rocky one with multiple people who don’t support it — the attention it needs if she is to have any chance at achieving sobriety. She’s going to have to be sober for a whole year before she can even consider starting a relationship with someone, and if she does make it to that point, probably the last person she should be in a relationship with is a person she went to jail for abusing.
I know it’s painful and depressing to end a relationship with someone you love, but you two are not good for each other. You have a history together that likely will lead to move drinking and more abuse. Long-term happiness between you two is not in the cards.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy(AT)dearwendy.com.