Stop calling my man

Joey Garcia

My boyfriend of six months and I are in love, but a crazy woman is interfering. She goes after him to compete with me so she can prove to herself (and our mutual acquaintances) that she is desirable. Although not bad looking, she is loud and rude. We were at a bar recently, and when I left to use the restroom, she said, “I’m not going to give him a blowjob; don’t worry!” When I returned, she was sitting in my spot cuddled up to him. At first, I excused her behavior because she drinks. After she called my boyfriend at midnight (again), I was furious. (She has slept with men who are in serious relationships.) I told him to tell her that he is not interested and to stop calling. I threatened to tell her myself. Now he doubts that I trust him. I think about this constantly and am nervous when his phone rings. It’s obvious that she thrives on drama and chaos. Is it up to my boyfriend to handle this situation? I feel like it’s between her and me.

It is if your boyfriend bears the tattoo “Property of [your name here].” Otherwise, the only conversation you should prep for is one with your man. Of course, this should occur after you have a heart-to-heart with yourself and opt to stop competing with her. Hello! You’ve sized her up physically as not bad looking, but loud. You’ve assessed her sex appeal (sleazy). You’ve determined that she cannot be trusted (she’s the other woman and a drinker). Aren’t you competing? And how do you know she is only interested in your man because she wants to one-up you? Unless she said so directly, sweep that thought away. It’s not helpful. Instead, consider this: What is it that you are trying to prove?

If your boyfriend loves you, why would he be interested in her? If he considers her a friend, here’s a wake-up call: A friendship fraught with sexual tension is a romance-in-waiting. If you sense that this is the scenario between your man and this woman, no amount of policing him—or her—will alter the course of their headlong crash into each other.

I think you are in an unpleasant situation, one that I would not wish on anyone. But take care to avoid thriving “on drama and chaos.” Deprogram yourself from anxiety when your man’s phone rings or from anger when this woman’s attention addiction kicks in. Your boyfriend chose you. But if being flattered by this woman’s attention becomes more important to him than respecting the boundaries of a committed relationship with you, love yourself enough to end your relationship with him.

Hey, guys, stop with the whiny e-mails about the bling-bling engagement ring! [“Who gets the ring?” Ask Joey, October 13.] Stop strong-arming me in public places! If you read the column, as you all say you do, then you know I don’t give in easily.

So, here is my last word on the ring thing: If you give an engagement ring and expect it back if the marriage doesn’t take place, say so. Be direct and honest. If that scares you, ask your beloved to marry you but do not present a ring. If your sweetheart agrees to be your life partner, enter the business-transaction phase. Determine who will pay for the ring and who gets it if things don’t work out as planned.

Don’t assume that you should get the ring because that’s the decent thing for her (or him) to do. Remember fourth grade? When you assume, you make an ass out of yourself and the other person. Don’t set yourself up. Honesty is still the best policy.

Meditation of the week
I was a commentator at a retreat featuring Diarmuid O’Murchu, a Catholic priest working in London who lectures internationally and has written several books on spirituality. He pointed out that prior to the 1970s, spirituality was an escape from the world. The new emphasis of spirituality is to be engaged in the world, he said. So where are you? Stuck in the past? Or living in the now as it creates the future?

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