Friday, September 21, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: Needy partner should find his own circle

Q: Is there a way to help someone else build his social circle? My partner and I are both in our 30s with a fair amount of free time. We do spend quite a bit of time together and go on regular dates.

I am a "joiner" and am involved in things that occupy the rest of my free time. My partner does not, and has begun complaining that he feels lonely when I am away from home for a few hours in the evening.

I don't think I can be happy in a relationship where I forgo my hobbies and time with other friends in order to keep him constant company. Where appropriate, I invite him to join me, but I can't always do that, and he often declines and counter-proposes doing something at home.

He has a handful of close friends, but he does not make a meaningful effort to spend time with them and defaults to wanting me to do everything/go everywhere with him.

What next? I don't want to think this is a relationship killer.

Active Partner, Lonely Partner

A: You don't want to, but you may have to, because you can't make a person social who isn't — nor is it your job to.

But first, it sounds like it's time for the "This is the way I am" conversation, where you spell out that:

— You are a joiner, like being a joiner, and don't intend to stop being a joiner;

— You are happy to include him where appropriate but it won't always be;

— You don't see such inclusion on its own as a solution for his loneliness;

— You understand he is lonely and will support him in his effort to find more companionship but you won't agree to be the sole source of that companionship.

Once you've spelled this out as a non-negotiable part of being with you, then he gets to decide whether he's willing to accept you and your relationship on those terms, or if he wants something different.

Mark your calendar for these Halloween events

Mark your calendar for these Halloween events

13 Ugly Men Halloween PartyThese "ugly" men sure know how to party with three floors offering new tricks and treats, DJ dancing and a light show making the 10th annual Halloween party a "Party with a Purpose." Benefits Beat NB. 8 p.m. Oct. 26. Yborís...
Published: 09/19/18

Tell Me About It: Frequently displaced wife has had enough moves

Q: I have been married to my second husband for 24 years. We have a 16-year-old and I have two adult children.I have moved seven times in 17 years for his job. He didnít have to quit and take another job, but they were opportunities for him to climb ...
Published: 09/19/18
Where to find kid-friendly, not-so-scary Halloween fun

Where to find kid-friendly, not-so-scary Halloween fun

Spare the gore and take the kids to these family-friendly Halloween parties planned at theme parks and attractions in the coming weeks. Creatures of the Night at ZooTampa The weekend nighttime Halloween party at ZooTampa at Lowry Park returns with...
Published: 09/18/18

Tell Me About It: Busy couple seeks ways to downsize for the future

Q: Over a decade, my salary has tripled (Iím quite well-paid now), my work hours and responsibilities have increased, and ó because Iím so frequently tired or short on time ó my "outsourcing" has increased, too. Think: frequent takeout, a dog-walker,...
Published: 09/18/18

Tell Me About It: Parents want bully brother to be his best man

Q: Iím getting married. Thatís awesome. However, my parents want me to ask my brother to be my best man. The idea of letting my brother, whoís spent his whole life being the biggest jerk he can manage, stand up and give a speech about me makes me wan...
Published: 09/17/18

Tell Me About It: Mom is frustrated by teenís dislike of academics

Q: I have a 15-year-old son who is obviously bright but hates school. My husband and I canít helicopter him to success because (a) we donít want to be helicopter parents, and (b) he has developed ninja-like skills when it comes to evading any attempt...
Updated one month ago

Tell Me About It: In search of ways to stop the family over-talker

Q: During extended family get-togethers with my side of the family, there is one person who does 95 percent of the talking. When I ask someone else in the room a question about their lives, this person always jumps in and takes over the conversation ...
Updated one month ago
Busch Gardens reveals plans for Tigris, Florida's tallest launch roller coaster

Busch Gardens reveals plans for Tigris, Florida's tallest launch roller coaster

Busch Gardens will open Florida’s tallest launch coaster in spring 2019, company officials announced Wednesday. The triple-launch, tiger-themed roller coaster called Tigris will hurl riders 150 feet into the sky, turn them upside down and swirl...
Published: 09/12/18

Tell Me About It:

Mom-to-be decides who will join her in deliveryQ: I am six months pregnant with my first child. Iíve been fixated a bit on who to have in the delivery room with me, I think because itís one of the few elements I can control in this pregnancy. Should ...
Updated one month ago
Tampa’s first KittyCon is coming, and cat lovers are purring

Tampa’s first KittyCon is coming, and cat lovers are purring

Kitten Lady and the owners of Cole & Marmalade will be at KittyCon.
Published: 09/11/18