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Parallax - Advice

July 8, 2002

Life's Little Games

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An old Chinese proverb says, 'Those who play the game do not see it as clearly as those who watch.' That observation fits this week's letter writers, as they focus in on their myopic wants while ignoring the big picture. After two months, number one is still hosting a pity-party, complaining his ex isn't miserable; number two has to realize it's better to have loved and lost than to live with a psycho for the rest of her life; and number three must stop playing the 'virgin drama queen.' Will our creative advisors provide direction?


Misery loves company.
She left Misery!
 Date: 07/08/02

Lose the lover.
Don't love a loser.
 Date: 07/08/02

Virgin territory.
Not interested.
 Date: 07/08/02

More from last week...
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Misery loves company

Dear Conversely,

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Do women handle breakups better than men? My ex ended our relationship two months ago. We had been going out for four years and she broke up with me over the phone. I was shattered and spent the first two weeks pleading with her to get back together. Then I turned to drinking and sex, and went off the wall, but it didn't make the breakup any better. She seems so strong—the last four years must mean nothing to her. How come I'm still hurting and she doesn't give a damn? We've only talked once since the breakup.


Her view:

Dear Pity-pot,

Two guesses. One—she's seeing someone else. Two—she fell out of love with you a while ago. I'll bet on number one.

When a woman walks away from a four-year relationship without a care in the world, it is often due to a swanky new distraction. She is probably busy with her new guy and living it up in that early 'getting to know you' infatuation stage.

Your question is not about women and men—it's about you and your ex-girlfriend. She moved on swiftly, which means it was likely coming for a while. I am guessing your four years together were not perfect.

So, she suddenly finds you revolting or she is too busy with her new suitor to give it a second thought. Either way, she has given you a very clear signal—it is time to move on and let her go.

Pining and drinking and whatever else you're doing will not help. Just let it go gracefully.

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His view:

Dear Pity-pot,

In your current circumstances, it would be nice to believe that women are cold when it comes to breakups and men are all just a bit more vulnerable and human. If you want to believe this (and thus feel better about yourself in some twisted gender-centric way) then don't continue reading.

Regardless of gender, some people can handle breakups; some can't. Those who can are usually the ones who have lost interest in their partner, have found someone/something else or have a stronger constitution and sense of self-respect.

Those hapless souls who can't are more likely to still be in love, have few friends and hobbies, display a tendency toward self-pity and be unable to put things in perspective.

I'm guessing you're in the latter camp. But don't feel too bad about yourself—so are most of the rest of us.

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You Vote!

You Vote! 47% of Women agree with HER VIEW and 53% with HIS VIEW.

29% of Men agree with HER VIEW and 71% with HIS VIEW.

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