DEAR NATALIE: I slept with this guy on the first date. Not my proudest moment; I got pretty drunk at the bar when we went out the other night and stumbled back to my place. You know the rest. Anyway, he didn’t call me afterwards and my friend said it was because I was acting “too easy” and “now he won’t see me as girlfriend material.” I’m not sure I even want to be his girlfriend, but I would like to see him again. What should I do? If I call or text him first, do I look desperate? It’s been a few days and no word from him. Should I just let it go? -GIVING IT AWAY
DEAR GIVING IT AWAY: There are no rules when it comes to when and if and how you share your sexuality with someone. The only thing you have to keep in mind is that your expectations after the fact may not be in line with your partner’s. In this case, it seems as though you were hoping for a follow up action from him, and he hasn’t given that to you. So, now you have two options. Either reach out to him or don’t. But regardless of what you decide, please don’t let your friend’s ridiculous comments get in your head. I would be mindful of getting drunk around men you don’t know because they may try to harm you or push you into things you weren’t consenting to do. Regardless, if he is the kind of guy thinks you were “easy” why would you want to entertain seeing him again? Doesn’t that make him “easy,” too? Why are we giving him the power here? Anyone who tries to use your sexuality as a weapon against you doesn’t deserve another minute of your time. Reach out to him if and only if you want to because it’s your choice. Not because you feel as though you have to prove something.
DEAR NATALIE: As we all know, the pandemic has made everyone’s finances feel rather unstable. Recently, my husband was laid off because his office downsized due to Covid-19. On the other hand, my business is booming. He has become moody lately and not interested in having much sex with me. I keep telling myself he’s just depressed about losing his job, but every now and then he will make a snide comment about what I do for a living. I’m not sure how to handle him right now. I love him, of course, but he is being really difficult. Any advice on how to help him through this rough patch? —PUNISHED FOR SUCCESS
DEAR PUNISHED FOR SUCCESS:The pandemic has taken a toll on so many lives in so many ways, but for some people, the past 16 months have been good financially. Why should you shrink your successes down just because your husband is feeling inadequate? I’m certainly not suggesting that you rub anything in his face, but if he is lashing out at you for what is going on with him professionally, that is unfair to you and to your relationship. Being married -- or in a committed partnership -- means building each other up and also supporting each other through the tough times. He is clearly going through it right now and I’m sure having you by his side means a lot whether he can admit that or not. But, if he continues to berate and belittle you, please let him know that it is hurtful. You don’t deserve to be emotionally abused just because he is having a tough time. Support him as best you can, but also protect your space from his negativity. You deserve to shine.
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