My partner and I broke up seven years ago after living together for 12 years. We remained close friends. About a year ago, I moved to South Florida to stay with him and to start a new life. I had tried living in different parts of the country but couldn’t seem to cope—everything I did, every job I had turned to failure. I went back to my ex because I had nowhere else to turn. I was even in financial ruin. My problem is that I feel that I do not like living in South Florida at all. I want to move again, but I am distraught over the possibility of not having my friend nearby. Also, he is purchasing the condo we share and needs me to help pay the mortgage. I am frustrated and confused. I want to start fresh in one of the places I left, but I am afraid to.
The challenge is not finding the right place; the challenge is to allow yourself to be successful. Failure only teaches us where we have resisted giving or receiving love. Experiences that end in ways we do not expect can be labeled as failures, but this is only information. It is not a predictor of future fortunes unless you insist on sabotaging yourself in order to be right. (“See! I told you I was a failure! Nothing ever goes right for me!”) That satisfies the neurotic ego but ultimately breaks the heart and spirit.
There is another way. The fresh start you desire must begin inside you. For example, your former boyfriend invites you to co-create a stable place to live, and the invitation elicits a drive within you to move. Are you afraid of responsibility, commitment or a deeper relationship with him? Regardless, if he is relying on your income to pay the mortgage, you must tell him, now, about your desire to bolt. If you prefer life with him, be honest with yourself and him. Challenge yourself to discover something good about South Florida every day for 30 days. Focusing on what’s wrong only gets you what you already have: frustration and confusion. It’s time for a change.
This girl was showing me around an apartment complex, and while she was doing this, I was slowly falling in love with her. She was so calm and alluring, but she also had this other side to her that was deep and enigmatic. I worked up the nerve to ask her out, but she said she has a boyfriend. I was wondering if there are rules that I should follow. My guy friends say that I should pursue her because “women are always looking to upgrade,” while my women friends say that I should either wait or move on. What should I do?
Pinch yourself awake, honey. You are not in love. Genuine romantic love requires knowledge of the other person. This occurs over time through open and honest communication; observation of the person’s actions; and the sharing of values, beliefs, goals and dreams. The 30 minutes or so that it takes to view an apartment is only enough time to become infatuated or attracted.
So, what should you do with these feelings? Nothing. She clearly stated that she has a boyfriend. If she were interested in “upgrading,” she should have indicated that to you. But if you wish to be certain, call her or send a note telling her how much you enjoyed meeting her and that you would welcome an opportunity to spend more time together. If she does not respond, leave her alone. Do not send flowers or gifts. Be respectful of the boundary she created when she said that she has a boyfriend.