Fun-Sized Advice

On fun-sized advice

I know I’m not gonna fall in love with this guy but I’m still having a good time with him. At what point does it become disingenuous to keep dating? Just when I’m no longer having a good time?
It becomes disingenuous the moment you catch yourself being emotionally dishonest for the sake of having a good time. Also, who ever said the point of dating was to fall in love? Where did you learn this? Is that why you’re here? I doubt you even know what it means to fall in love, to be in love, to simply love, or to distinguish from these variations on a theme. Do yourself a favor and start thinking beyond the unspoken rules of modern courtship. The rules do not exist to make your life better. They exist to perpetuate a very specific flavor of contemporary Western culture. It’s fine if you want to participate in that culture, but learn to do it on your own terms, and don’t confuse the culture’s interests for your own.

I’m the one who broke it off because I can’t handle a LDR right now. So why am I the one lying in my bathtub at noon with too many glasses of wine feeling numb?
Because you’d rather anesthetize yourself with Pinot Grigio than begin the painful task of grieving the loss of your relationship.

My teenage cousin is in the hospital with a rare and terrifying auto-immune disorder. She went from being a girl who does CrossFit to a patient in physical therapy in a very short amount of time. You’d think she’d be scared, but in the face of the very real threat of becoming paralyzed, she posts duck-face selfies from her hospital bed. Pretty sure she’s not afraid of anything.
Nah. Pretty sure she’s angry and terrified, but when you’re in that hospital bed as teenage girl, you’ll do anything to break the boredom and achieve a brief sense of normalcy. You’ll also do an extraordinary amount of emotional labor to keep friends and family from acting weird. No doubt your cousin is strong, but don’t confuse her strength for fearlessness.

I hooked up with a filthy rich guy (it was really good) but his wealth disgusts me and makes me envious at the same time. I don’t want a guy in my life who makes me feel these feelings. Is that weird?
Here’s an idea: Tell him. Be brutally honest about your disgust and envy and see how he takes it. You’ll learn something about his character and yours.

I miss when you wrote about dipping your tits in glitter. We’re so far removed from those days as a society. It’s really frightening.
It’s not frightening. It’s all quite predictable. The aughts were a decadent moment. There will be others. I’m a mild believer in the every-other-decade theory, and I’m hopeful for another slice of decadence in the 2020s. I won’t be the one dipping my tits in glitter on the next go-around, but I’ll be able to enjoy the experience vicariously as Post-Millennials find fresh ways to celebrate the pendulum swinging away from austerity and repression.

You said you’d marry your ex without hesitation – did your views on marriage change? What about him, or you, or the two of you together made you feel that way?
I just think we could pull it off and be happy. It’s not gonna happen, so it’s a harmless statement to say that I’d marry him without any hesitation.

I love how your haters can’t stop reading you. They can’t even keep themselves from getting knee-deep into your comments section. Respect.
I love my haters. Our relationship is symbiotic. I have learned a lot about myself from them, and they have learned a lot about themselves from me.


17 thoughts on “On fun-sized advice

  1. Perspectivator says:

    Having been in that hospital bed I can tell you that it can also just be fucking boring as shit. When you’re not feeling any pressing symptoms, it’s not terrifying…it’s dull. I almost died on my first day of high school. After I got out of surgery, and after the pain medicine was gone…there was nothing. Tv sucks. When you’re a kid you think watching tv 24/7 would be a cool job…but then when it happens you want to kill yourself.
    A life threatening disease is less scary when the life you’re living is boring as fuck. If she’s tired from being medicated, that’s a torture by itself.
    Let your cousin say when she’s afraid. Don’t be afraid for her.

      • flblbl says:

        hospitals can feel very much like prisons, especially to kids. it’s good for them to try and pretend like “everything’s normal” while they’re there, imho.

    • Grouch says:

      I guess you can make a deep statement about being resilient and brave, but I imagine it’s more of a combination of not wanting to do the work of making other people feel better about your disease, and hospitals being boring as shit, and she’s still a teenager.

    • J Lynn says:

      Glad you made it through that! I had some health problems a couple years ago, nothing to put me in the hospital, but enough so I couldn’t work for a while. Yes, you really do get totally sick of watching TV & movies.

      And for me, there was like a baseline fear, but active fear is sort of an aroused state, and oddly I even got bored of the fear … my brain wouldn’t let me be actively afraid all the time, so that slumped into general dissatisfaction/frustration/boredom when the symptoms weren’t overwhelming.

  2. Confused says:

    What exactly is the difference between falling in love, being in love, and to simply love? Is to ‘simply love’ to love unconditionally and without expectation, whereas being in love requires those expectations to be met? Whereas falling in love, well, describes that said process of falling for someone over time, where both unconditional and conditional expectations of what you exactly want or how you even love them are still forming? Am I just speaking incoherent nonsense?

    • Strangely Rational says:

      “In love” is your emotional state, with “falling” or “being” or “falling out of” simply describing whether it’s increasing, level, or decreasing. “Love” (verb) is about your decisions and actions. But people use them interchangeably all the time.

      You can have either one without the other, or both together, but it can fluctuate a lot over time depending on the current nature/experience of your relationship, your overall emotional health, your need for stability, other life circumstances, etc.

      Personally though, I think that the word “love” is useless. It can mean way too many things to too many people. I prefer words like “bond” or “connection,” because that’s really what we’re talking about when we want to love and be loved. Those words are better because they don’t indicate an on/off switch. What’s important to understand is the strength of your bond/connection and how that affects your emotions, attitudes, and decisions.

  3. pesto says:

    I asked the question about falling in love because I know that’s what he expects, and I don’t feel like I can continue a relationship in good faith knowing that I’m not able to meet that expectation. We gotta talk about it, I’m just garbage at communicating this type of thing and always clam up. Coke your answer was spot on though. Thanks for answering

    • lolitsjesus says:

      Just want to say that I love this. I’ve learned so much from Coke about being emotionally honest and your question/her answer was super helpful to my own life, which is why I keep coming back here. Thank you.

  4. Ev says:

    You hit the nail on the head regarding emotional labor to keep friends and family from getting weird. I’m recovering from being hit by a car in September, and when I was exhausted, traumatized, post op in the hospital I quickly learned that people are extremely afraid of despair and tend to counter it with cheery-positive hallmark flavored statements rather than just listening. I certainly wasn’t fearless, but it’s way easier to make a joke and say everything’s fine rather than be vulnerable and hear in response something like “this is tough, but you’re tougher!!” (That’s a direct quote, by the way).

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