DEAR ABBY: I dated a guy named "Jake" for two years. He was my first love and he meant everything to me. Well, things happened and he broke my heart.
After a year of not really talking, Jake is now texting and calling to convince me to be his "friend with benefits." He tries to sweet-talk me by calling me pet names. Of course, I say no over and over each time he asks on the phone. But the minute we come face-to-face or hang out, I just give in.
There will always be a soft spot for Jake in my heart, and I don't know what to do. I want to stay friends because he's important to me, but I don't want to be his FWB. It brings back painful memories.
How do I say no? Am I overreacting? Should I go with the flow because it's not a big deal? I feel like I'm in a script for a bad movie. -- WANTS TO MOVE ON IN HOUSTON
DEAR WANTS TO MOVE ON: Your ex-boyfriend appears to be a super salesman. The best way not to buy what he's selling is not to listen to his pitch. The sooner you accept you can't be "friends" because you lose control whenever you see him, the sooner you'll be able to write a happy ending to this drama. As long as you sleep with Jake you will not be able to replace him with someone who can give you what you want and deserve, which is a real relationship.
DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend of three years, "Patrick," is smart, successful and wonderful in every way. He dresses extremely well with attention to detail. Many of his friends call him a "metrosexual."
Patrick never had braces as a child. Now, as an adult, his teeth have caved in and are very unattractive. It surprises me that he would let his teeth go or hasn't noticed how crooked and deformed they are. I'm afraid to mention it in case it would hurt his feelings. As we are thinking about marriage, the prospect of having to look at Patrick's bad teeth, that will likely worsen with age, is a deterrent.
Am I being petty and superficial or should I suggest adult braces? Patrick can more than afford them and isn't afraid of pain or going to the doctor. My own lower teeth could use some work, so maybe I could suggest we both get braces. I'm not sure what to do. -- BRACING FOR AN ANSWER IN BOULDER
DEAR BRACING: By all means talk to your boyfriend about the condition of his mouth as well as good dental health. If his teeth are as crooked as you have described, his bite is probably also off -- which can cause jaw problems when he's older. Your idea of getting braces with him is a good one, and I agree it's worth pursuing because you won't appear to be criticizing him. I hope he heeds your suggestion.
DEAR ABBY: My landlord likes to wander around the yard and driveway wearing only a towel around his waist. Sometimes he goes out of his way to talk with me while "dressed" that way. Should I be concerned? -- CALIFORNIA RENTER
DEAR RENTER: Probably not, unless his towel "slips," or California experiences more gale-force winds such as the ones that occurred last December.
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