LoveFAQ is a weekly advice column for geeks, by geeks about love, life and maxing out your romance meter. Got questions for LoveFAQs? Send them to [email protected].
Dear Love FAQ,
I've been with my girlfriend for a while now and we're both very serious about each other. I love her deeply and am really happy with her.
The problem is, this is my first relationship ever, and from time to time I wonder what it would be like to be in other relationships. It's not as though I'm attracted to other women, and even if I was, I wouldn't dream of leaving her. It's just this feeling that occasionally bothers me.
Do you have any advice on how to deal with it? Because I don't want to be with anyone but her.
Cupid Rolled a 20 On His First Shot
Sorry, dude. That feeling never goes away. Whether you're in your first relationship or your twentieth; whether you're a blushing virgin or married 80 years, the grass will always look greener on the other side. Given long enough with the same person, it's only natural that you inevitably become curious about your alternatives.
And that's okay. Doubt, curiosity, fantasy - none of these things mean you love your girlfriend any less. In fact, they only make your relationship stronger, because unlike someone who just thoughtlessly coasts through the motions from simple inertia, you have weighed your options, evaluated the issue from all angles, and still decided to stay with the person you love.
That means something, and don't dismiss it just because today you thought the choice was easy. Because it won't always be. And when that day comes, you'll be glad you'd already allowed yourself the practice.
Dear Love FAQ,
I'm generally a nice, energetic guy in high school who treats girls respectfully. I was raised in a house with four females, so I've also been raised to be more emotional. Most of my friends are of the opposite gender. I'm also a member of our schools local GSA (Gay Straight Alliance), since I believe in pushing for rights for others. Unfortunately, the average person generally translates this to "Emotional+energetic+member of GSA= Gay".
Now, I'm not bothered by this so much: I'm not gay, my friends know I'm not gay, and I could care less about those who don't believe me when I tell them I'm not gay.
The real issue I have with this, though, is that some girls just assume I'm gay, and so when I do ask them out, it's led to awkwardness. I'm just wondering if you have any suggestions on how to be myself without sending out these mixed signals.
The unfortunate thing about high school is that everyone likes to stuff everyone else into pre-defined boxes, regardless of whether you actually fit. No shades of grey allowed: Just Jock and Nerd and Drama Geek and Queer. Everyone must have a label, and there's no switching once you've been assigned.
And then there's someone like you, who defies stereotype, who refuses the box, and let's be honest - that can scare the shit even out of adults. So no wonder you confuse your friends, who are just teenagers, still trying to figure this social-interaction thing out.
Good news is, once you escape the gerbil cage that is high school, you'll notice these labels start to lose their power. People gravitate toward the people they like, not the arbitrary labels they share. But that's not much help to you now.