by Sarah Smart
Q. I accidentally overheard a woman I’ve been dating for several months refer to me as a “jerk.” She doesn’t know I overheard her, and I’ve been unable to talk to her since because I’m greatly disturbed that the remark was not made in anger. I am suddenly intimidated by female contact because I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. I would think by most standards, I would be considered a prize compared to other guys. I am 44, have my own business and considered handsome by most standards. I really don’t know who to discuss this with and I’m hoping since you appear to be very knowledgeable in these matters, you can give me some insight. I don’t want to ask her because she won’t tell me the truth.
A. I would ask her anyway. She’s the only one who can really answer the question. If not, I suggest you enlist the aid of a close friend or family member, to help review your personality and the way you may come across. In most circles, it is an uncomplimentary term that usually relates to obnoxious behavior, poor social skills…you could have just done one thing that prompted her to describe you as such. If you don’t succeed in getting your question answered, I would advise you to seek professional counseling since it seems to have immobilized you from other female company.
Q. My boyfriend is white, but we have a problem. Though we’re in love, he will not be seen with me in public because he can’t stand the stares. Our relationship is totally in the dark from the world. My friends and family know of him, but he refuses to go around them. I’m very unhappy and tired of this secret affair. I have accused him of being ashamed of me, which he denies. He says, he just cannot bear what he sees as the disdain of a disapproving world. What would you do in my place? Would you sever the relationship or continue hiding in the dark for the sake of love?
A. I would give him an ultimatum, and if he was still paralyzed by his fear, I would step out of the relationship and seek happiness elsewhere.
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