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Fence, Aisle, Fence

From a Distance

In Love and War

Conscience and Communication

Cleaning, Confusing, and Mothering Woes

Love's Liabilities


No Love for Me

The Internet, the Pain, and the Trust

Doubt, Lack, Doubt

Compromised, Cramped, and Cantankerous


Al Veoli: Love's Liabilities

Al Veoli

Dear Al Veoli:

My boyfriend and I have been together for almost 3 years. Just recently my step dad and his dad got into a fight and my dad hit his dad in the nose. Well they kicked me out and now my boyfriend and I are just friends. He wants to see if his parents get over it or not. I am so confused and don't know what to do. Please give me some advice.

-nosing around

Dear nosing around:

Well, dearie, a couple of things. First, not a great peace offering for your stepfather to hit his father in the nose. In fact, as a general rule, fisticuffs do not solve any problems, just as stalking people at their jobs do not solve problems, just as making up charges to police do not solve problems. If there are contentious issues at hand, and there often are in dealing with couples, then the pen is mightier than the sword. It is understandable that his parents think you are a problematic entity. That being said, you are not your stepfather and are not responsible for his actions, just as generally speaking, if one's parents are disturbed, or even nice as pie, or darn right in defending your honor, you are not responsible for however they act. So your now ex-boyfriend should remember that, and carefully consider whether he wants to lose you because of these crazy shenanigans. You, too, should consider what is more important to you: loyalty to the puncher or the punchee's son.

Dear Al Veoli:

I have been dating this guy for a year now. About 4 months ago I discovered a secret he had been keeping from me. He revealed that when we had at one point been broken up, he had slept with another woman, and then got back together with me the next day. Ever since this secret has been discovered I have failed to trust him and we fight all the time. I know it is not technically cheating but it felt like it to me and I still worry if he actually cares about me. Help me, these doubts are ruining our relationship and my sanity.

-secret other

Dear secret other:

Well, dearie, a couple of things. First, one could say that he had every right to sleep with all of Seattle, Las Vegas, and then some, while you were broken up. However, there are really two important issues stemming from his tryst. One is that he did not tell you about this involvement, and although that is technically his right, as his partner, one would hope that he is straightforward and honest with you about everything, high and low. Another issue is his commitment to you: if he slept with one woman, then got back together with you the very next day, what are his intentions? Are they honorable? Certainly one could argue that they were less than stellar with the other woman. One can understand your doubts and your concerns regarding the profundity of his love for you. If it bothers you that much, and you've expressed these issues to him and still feel dragged down by them, move on, honey, and forge a new path sprinkled with honest men, trust, and self-confidence.

Dear Al Veoli:

My life isn't perfect but I'm thankful I have a wonderful sweet boyfriend whom I can depend on. He's basically the highlight of my day. The problem is that we hardly ever see each other. Both of our parents don't encourage dating, and he's afraid to do anything that would get us in trouble. That limits our personal activity to the computer and phone calls, and it's not much. Sometimes I feel as though I provide some sort of entertainment when he's bored. Though I hear from a trusted friend that he's been extremely faithful, I can't help wishing that He would take a risk and come see me. How can i tell him that without hurting a sensitive boyfriend's feelings?

-absent gf

Dear absent gf:

Well, dearie, a couple of things. First, one can question how sensitive your boyfriend is if he makes very little effort to see you. Your interest in direct and personal communication is heralded; in this day and age there are too many sad individuals who rely on the internet and phone to do all their communicating for him. Basically you need to draw the line in the sand. Tell your wonderful sweet boyfriend that you are interested in seeing each other and that you'd like to try to meet for even an hour sometime. Maybe you could even meet at a library, a market, a...pool. Really, wherever the parents would be amenable to. And then take it from there. If he says no, absolutely not, you need to question how important this long distance/ cyber relationship is to you.

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