DEAR NATALIE: My boyfriend and I have been together a few months now, and recently he has been acting really moody toward me. Cold, aloof and not as excited to see me. When I ask him what's wrong, he either ignores me or tells me I "wouldn't understand." I don't know what set this off. What should I do? My friends are telling me to dump him, but I like him (or I thought I did, but now I'm not sure). Any thoughts? -- Confused Gal
DEAR CONFUSED GAL: My grandma always says, "Weather someone in all four seasons before deciding to get serious about them." (She is full of awesome advice, clearly!) I would take her saying to heart. If you are already seeing red flags four months in, you have to decide -- do you want to go further down this path? People show you who they are, so believe them. If this guy is acting moody, aloof and uncommunicative, why do you think this would suddenly improve the longer you are with him? In fact, he probably feels more comfortable being this way around you because it has been a few months and he is showing you this other side to him. If the idea of walking on eggshells around someone doesn't appeal to you, listen to your friends and get out of this situation. If, however, you want to give him an opportunity to shape up, say something like, "While I respect your privacy and desire to work out whatever it is you are dealing with, I cannot be in a relationship with someone who doesn't want to share their ups and downs with me. If you don't want to be with someone like that, maybe it's best if we go our separate ways." If that doesn't shake him up enough to talk with you, it's time to walk away.
Natalie's Networking Tip of the Week: Rejection is part of the game. Don't take it personally if someone brushes you off or just doesn't seem interested in who you are or what you have to offer. Those aren't the people who are worth networking with, anyway, so just politely excuse yourself from the conversation and it's on to the next!
Please send your relationship and lifestyle questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet them to @NBSeen. You can also send postal letters to Natalie Bencivenga, 358 North Shore Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
(This column was originally published by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.)