Behold, "Dear Girl... - OutsideLeft's version of the tried and true sex column. Erin Pipes, the girl in "dear girl... is a fully qualified expert in the field of sex - mainly because she has the most of it on the staff - so rest assured, you're in good hands.
This one has been bothering me for a while. After dinner at a restaurant, my girlfriend will reapply her lipstick at the table - sometimes she does the powder on her face as well (I'm not sure what that's called). Now before I call her on it, is this practice acceptable? I find it a little uncouth - isn't this why women excuse themselves and go to the women's room?
Thanks, S.G. - Long Beach, CA
I showed this question to MY boyfriend, who immediately said something like "Is this dude a dapper gentleman running for office in 1940?" While I agree with you that it's sort of off-putting to witness the immediate application of ladies warpaint after a meal - - it is, more importantly, 2005, SG. Within reasonable limits, gone are the days of strict table etiquette. Not to mention, this sort of after-dinner touching up has been going on for, oh, DECADES. If it bothers you, say so. Better yet: ask if she wouldn't mind doing it elsewhere. But be prepared to back things up with a good, solid reason because you're being a little silly about this, don't you think? Just like we can change the channel when commercials come on during the premiere of Big Brother, so can we look away from whatever bothers us, as often as we like.
+ + +
Is it worth it for me and my boyfriend to go to couples therapy if marriage hasn't even been talked about yet? We've been dating for two years and although I like the guy, it seems like couples counseling is a waste unless we're married or engaged.
- - Name withheld by request
I always think it's kind of interesting when the answer reveals itself inside the very question about the issue. Here are some key phrases: 'marriage hasn't even been talked about'; 'although I like the guy'; 'seems like a waste unless we're married or engaged.' It could indeed be worth it to go to couples therapy if marriage hasn't been discussed, but only if you're both committed to the relationship. Given your word-choice, given that you already think it's a waste since you're not yet planning a clear future together, given that you only "like" this guy....well. I don't know how boyfriend feels, but you might not want to waste any more of his time, if you know what I mean. Unless I'm imagining your lack of conviction. Relationships take work, and anything is worth it if you're in for the long haul. Think about it, hmm?
+ + +
How can I convince the guy I'm dating (it's been about three years) that I'm not out to cheat on him just because I wear slightly revealing clothes (skirts, halters, tubetops, low-rise jeans). I just lost 35 pounds and I just want to wear clothes that I was never able to before. Yes, he's insecure, but he never was until I lost the weight.
Thanks, J.K - Studio City, CA
Hey, congratulations, hot stuff! I've actually experienced this, so I've got a few paths for you to consider. First, try to bring your guy into the world of having a piece of ass on his arm. Maybe snuggle into him when you're out together? Clutch onto his arm, rest your head on his shoulder, keep in close contact while you're looking your finest. Or if you're going out alone, when you see him again, make sure you let him know you're 100% his. Could you imagine a positive reaction if you were to lean over and purr in his ear "These days there are so many guys checking me out and I only want YOU..." Would that get him going? Think of it this way: you just lost a lot of weight and are reaffirming your attractiveness (even if only to yourself) by dressing more provocatively, yeah? So why not offer your guy the same kind of reaffirmation by letting him know you'll love him no matter how slim and sexy you get? Anyway, no matter how insecure he's feeling, my guess is he's already reaping the benefits.
+ + +
Gotta problem? Of course you do. Send them in email form to Dear Girl (or as we at the office call her, Erin) at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our intern-monkeys will be sure to pass them on to her.
Outsideleft exists on a precarious no budget budget. We are interested in hearing from deep and deeper pocket types willing to underwrite our cultural vulture activity. We're not so interested in plastering your product all over our stories, but something more subtle and dignified for all parties concerned. Contact us and let's talk. [HELP OUTSIDELEFT]
If Outsideleft had arms they would always be wide open and welcoming to new writers and new ideas. If you've got something to say, something a small dank corner of the world needs to know about, a poem to publish, a book review, a short story, if you love music or the arts or anything else, write something about it and send it along. Of course we don't have anything as conformist as a budget here. But we'd love to see what you can do. Write for Outsideleft, do. [SUBMISSIONS FORM HERE]