Not as sexy in the morning

Joey Garcia

I went out with a guy who works for the same company I do, but in a different department. We had a lot of drinks and then did the deed. I can’t remember if we used protection. After sex, I tried to get him to leave, but he fell asleep. He snored all night, so I couldn’t sleep well. The next morning, he got up, used the bathroom and left in a hurry. He left the bathroom totally disgusting. I never want to see him again. I wish I didn’t get so drunk and that I didn’t have sex with him. (It wasn’t very good.) I don’t know what to say if I see him at work.

Use the same word that would have slipped out of your mouth naturally, before your night of regret. Say hi. Then keep stepping, chatting, waiting for the elevator or whatever you were doing before you noticed him.

Finding the right thing to say is a minor issue compared to your choice to live dangerously. You risked your health and professional standing to open your body and home to a man you didn’t know and now want to avoid. If booze is a regular prop in your story lines, join Alcoholics Anonymous and devote yourself to sobriety. If you justified your one-night stand by telling yourself that it’s been a long time since you had sex, take a breath. Let yourself fully feel the dead weight of remorse you’re dragging around. Then shake it off and vow to make sane choices. You deserve to cherish yourself.

I’m a stay-at-home mom with a new neighbor who has become a good friend. The problem is that he is a stay-at-home dad. My husband and his wife are suspicious and uncomfortable. I really don’t want to stop getting together, because I was really lonely before he moved here. What should I do?

Be honest. Are your feelings purely platonic? If so, do you have the self-discipline required to remain faithful to your husband if those feelings change? Some people do. Others do not. What matters is that you do no harm to your family or his.

My 63-year-old mother had financial problems brought on by her job loss and shopping habit. I found this out when she showed up on my doorstep with all of her belongings. We have never been close, and even though we live in the same town, I usually talk to her once a month. I am a 40-year-old professional, and after 35 days of her nagging me about the way I live, how much I work, what I eat and what my dog does or doesn’t do, I nearly kicked her out. Help!

Your mother’s style of parenting by disapproval distracts her from facing her life issues. She would probably be startled or hurt to hear how her words feel to you, so save that touchy conversation for later. Talk to her now about your willingness to help her find a job and a room to rent within 30 days. Be honest about the fact that you enjoy living alone and want to return to that lifestyle. Then gather her shopping bounty and post it on eBay or have a garage sale. Scour Craigslist and send an e-mail to your friends (hey, they have parents, too) to locate a room to rent. Help your mom apply for jobs close to bus or light-rail lines. Guide her out of your house quickly and into a new life for herself. The extra effort may seem overwhelming at first, but in the long run, you will be grateful you chose compassion over just kicking her out.

Meditation of the week
Jim Lopez, president of Pinnacle Pest Control, gets inspired when he reads bad news in local papers. “It makes me work harder and look for ways to simplify my expenses,” he said. How do you move forward financially?

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