Monday, April 23, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Proceed with caution in new relationship

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Proceed with caution in new relationship

Q: So, long story short, I met this woman with whom I am infatuated. I think she likes me, too. The problem, however, is that only a few short months ago, she broke up with her boyfriend of four years. I am looking to develop a long-term relationship; she said she is not ready for that yet. But, she still wants to keep in touch with me.

Is it ever prudent to wait around for someone, or is it just fruitless? I have been hurt in the past by wanting someone who was unavailable, so I feel scared about getting hurt again. I think she's a good person and so is not intentionally keeping me on the hook, but, still, I am worried about that stabby feeling in my back. Any advice?

Rebound?

A: The only sure chance you won't get hurt is never to care about anyone again.

If what you're worried about is getting hurt in an exact replay of past hurts, then that makes more sense — but it's also less of a threat than you think, because you have your experience to inform you. Are there some familiar signs that you ignored in the past and shouldn't ignore now?

In that case, then it's fine to say to her, "No, thanks" — or even, "Sure, let's keep in touch," where you then see if she means what she says.

If instead you see no signs you're chasing someone unavailable again, then go ahead and cultivate the friendship.

The effort might still be fruitless in this case, but that doesn't automatically mean you should feel around for steel between your shoulder blades. Her intent in saying "Let's keep in touch" can be honorable, and honorably come to naught. Whose fault would it be if she hoped to fall for you but didn't?

Proceed slowly, make sure your efforts are being reciprocated, and keep your expectations in check — that's really all you can do to lessen the chances that you get sucked in again.

Rudeness reflected badly on guest, not host

Q: I am still in shock over a recent incident between a party guest and the host. Guest yelled across the crowded room, "Host, there is something on the plate I picked up; that's disgusting." She was not kidding. The host looked flabbergasted and embarrassed and finally said, "Well, then please get another plate." I am friends with both of them but I was appalled by Guest and felt so bad for the host, who spent a lot of time and money putting a great party together.

My boyfriend said I was right not to say anything, but I feel like I should have defended the host. What is your take on this?

Bizarre

A: I think a comment to Host shortly after the incident, along the lines of "Great party, you've outdone yourself" would have been just right.

But, even then, it's okay to trust that Guest was the only one who looked bad. Though Host was no doubt embarrassed, Guest was so rude that you could assume everyone sympathized with Host.

Victims of subtle rudeness tend to question themselves, and thus need validation. That's the one beauty of shocking rudeness: It elevates the victim to hero by default.

Comments

Tell Me About It: Sister’s remark is a teaching opportunity

My husband’s sister, "Kate," is expecting her second child. They have a 3-year-old girl. My husband and I have two girls, 8 and 6. At our house this week, Kate talked extensively about her hopes that this next baby is a boy. Some of her reasons are c...
Published: 04/23/18

Tell Me About It: Mom fears she has discussed sex too soon

Q: This week I was in a discussion with a bunch of other third-grade parents about what our kids know about sex. The vast majority of these parents said their children were "clueless" and they wanted to maintain their kids’ innocence. I was one of th...
Published: 04/22/18
Underoath’s Spencer Chamberlain talks breakup, reunion, getting sober and returning to St. Petersburg

Underoath’s Spencer Chamberlain talks breakup, reunion, getting sober and returning to St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — HGTV fanatic that he is, Spencer Chamberlain sees a metaphor for his band in the ever-evolving St. Petersburg skyline."When you go downtown and you look at the ONE, that used to be a dirt parking lot," said the singer, referring to a...
Published: 04/20/18
Updated: 04/23/18
Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of April 23-29

Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of April 23-29

St. Anthony’s Triathlon: World class athletes and Olympians race around St. Petersburg’s Vinoy Park on Sunday ($160-$180), while kids and novices race Saturday in the Meek and Mighty. A free kick-off celebration Friday has a concert by co...
Published: 04/23/18

Tell Me About It: Family reconsiders taking group trips

Q: Should there be expectations about taking vacations/trips with other family members? We have two issues:(1) We have three kids, including teenagers, and my brother and wife have two kids. The younger is 6. My wife and I find it hard to plan someth...
Published: 04/20/18
On its 20th anniversary, Disney's Animal Kingdom credits conservation with longevity

On its 20th anniversary, Disney's Animal Kingdom credits conservation with longevity

ORLANDO — When Disney’s Animal Kingdom opened 20 years ago, it was light on thrills and heavy on conservation. On April 22, 1998, Earth Day, the Orlando park had a single thrill ride, Countdown to Extinction, and a handful of shows like ...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18

Tell Me About It: How to deal with conversation dominators

Q: We have a few relatives, including a sibling, who we don’t see or hear from often, as we are busy or live far away. We meet over a meal or for an hour or so, or at family gatherings requiring a drive, and I am so frustrated that they dominate the ...
Published: 04/19/18
Huge concert week in Tampa: Foo Fighters, Kenny Chesney, 98 Rockfest, more

Huge concert week in Tampa: Foo Fighters, Kenny Chesney, 98 Rockfest, more

PURE NIRVANA: Foo FightersDave Grohl may be America’s last unquestioned rock god. He’s played with Kurt Cobain and Jimmy Page, Tom Petty and Trent Reznor and St. Vincent, and he also leads a pretty decent group — perhaps you’ve heard of them — called...
Published: 04/18/18
Updated: 04/20/18
Plan your weekend: Kenny Chesney, ‘The Producers’ in the park, Mainsail Art Fest, Sugar Sand Fest, Earth Day

Plan your weekend: Kenny Chesney, ‘The Producers’ in the park, Mainsail Art Fest, Sugar Sand Fest, Earth Day

The top things to do April 20 to 22 in Tampa, St. Petersburg and the whole Tampa Bay area.
Published: 04/18/18
The newest trend for Tampa date nights? Indoor ax throwing

The newest trend for Tampa date nights? Indoor ax throwing

Axe Throwing Tampa and Raider Axe Lodge are bringing the axe-throwing trend to the Tampa Bay area.
Published: 04/18/18