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*hocoholicforever

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Am I a bad friend? Should I let go of this one?

Q.   I have a friend that I had a brief liaison with but she ended it and we decided to be friends. This was about a year ago. At first things where ok. I struggled with feelings and had my moments because she really hurt me. But I am better (well I ...

A.   11 May 2012: I've been in the same situation and know many people who also have, I think it's a common and normal part of life even though it is painful, but to different degrees for different people. I've also been in situations where I was more in her role, ... (read in full...)

I am separating, but my male friend is dating someone else. Why won't he wait for me?

Q.   Here is my story. I am in the process of separating from my husband. The separation is in the beginning stages. We are going forward with it but are in the process of selling our home. Hubby works in another city and is rarely home which makes it ...

A.   26 April 2012: Did you give him a timeframe of when you'll be divorced? Its not fair to him to expect him to wait indefinitely since his criteria is he will only get involved with single women. Which is a wise decision on his part. If you want him to wait for... (read in full...)

Do you think he regrets not moving forward when the opportunity arose?

Q.   During a works party a co-worker expressed his feelings for me (I'm 45 and he's 49) - (I've had a crush on him for ages but I didn't realize he felt the same as I didn't think I was his type so put the signs from him down to my own imagination). He ...

A.   26 April 2012: I don't think he regrets it, in fact I think he feels relieved that he had the sense to stop it before anything further could develop. He probably saved himself, and you, a lot of pain and problems. ... (read in full...)

He cheated and had a baby with another girl, we broke up because of this but he still thinks he can get me back! How do I tell him he has no chance?

Q.   This guy and I were together for almost a year from 2010-2011. While we were together I thought everything was fine until 2011 came and he told me he had a baby. After finding that out, I ended it with him because the baby was a newborn meaning that ...

A.   26 April 2012: You don't have to tell him anything different, just repeat what you've already told him. If he's going to ask the same questions over and over again, then he'll get the same answer over and over again. Better yet, let your actions do the talking.... (read in full...)

Can abusive men change?

Q.   Can abusive men change.. I split from my ex who I know was abusive several months ago, unfortunately I.still have to have contact.as we had children. He has never openly admitted to being abusive.and had blamed me, he had apparently never been ...

A.   23 April 2012: if he doesn't even admit that he was abusive, and blames everything on you, then nope it's practically a given that he will not change. he 'needs' you for his own benefit but he doesn't love you or care one bit about you. he won't leave you alon... (read in full...)

I think that's his way of breaking up?? So I move on for good?

Q.   I am in need to vent. My ex-bf and I have been having some issues. We've been on and off for a while. He initiated the first two and I initiated the last one. I initiated because I was just so tired of him not responding to me and just wishing he ...

A.   23 April 2012: when you use break-ups as manipulation tactics (rather than to permanently end the relationship for real), not only do you lose credibility to the other person but it tends to weaken an already weak relationship even more. because now you have ... (read in full...)

I'm stressing out from taking care of my family

Q.   Basically, i have to look after my mum because she's got a lung disease and my sister because she has cerebal palsy and at the minute its all getting too much for me and i feel like i cant do it anymore. Everything my mum asks me to do i snap at and ...

A.   23 April 2012: oh hon, bless your heart but you're way too young to have to take on the weight of the world on your shoulders. You're to be commended for all you're doing for your family, but this is beyond your means and ability. I think you should try to find ... (read in full...)

My wife has one foot out the door. What should I do?

Q.   I feel my wife of 20 years has one foot out the door. Over the last year or so she has developed a lot of her own friendships, started going out a lot, and when we go out with others, she has become quite the party girl- bouncing from one person to ...

A.   17 April 2012: "Over the last year or so she has developed a lot of her own friendships, started going out a lot, and when we go out with others, she has become quite the party girl- bouncing from one person to another, like I am not even there. When we go out ... (read in full...)

How can I become more comfortable in counseling?

Q.   I've been going to my college's free counseling center for awhile now. I've always had major difficulty trusting and opening up to people, and that is one of the main reasons why I went there: to finally be able to do this. Sometimes my sessions...

A.   7 April 2012: It's OK, you're doing fine, don't beat yourself up over it. give yourself more time, don't put expectations on yourself. The counselor will understand, she won't be offended. She is trained to be sensitive to people's needs and vulnerab... (read in full...)

Stuck in a quandary between my wife and my married mistress

Q.   I know that I am going to be judged for posting this, but that's okay. I need guidance. I am almost 39. My wife is going to be 42 this year and is already in menopause. We have no children, mostly because my wife is just not a sexual being....

A.   4 April 2012: If you've been in a marriage that you really dont' want to be in but have been staying in for negative reasons like guilt or obligation, it's often only a matter of time before you meet someone new that you want to be with. People who are happy in ... (read in full...)

I am not ready for a relationship. Is it unfair to ask him to wait for me?

Q.   Hello. I could sure use some advice about my situation. I have recently separated from my husband. I have a very good friend who cares about me. He's single. He would be interested in starting a relationship with me. But he tells me he cann...

A.   4 April 2012: I think it's fine to ask someone to wait for you, but you should give them as many specifics as you can so they can make their decision and have something to work with, and not ask them to be waiting indefinitely. He also has the right to say n... (read in full...)

Should I set a proposal timeline? Or just wait and see what happens?

Q.   I have posted to this forum a few times before and here I am again. I am back with my boyfriend and we are in couples therapy together (his idea ) to work on our communication issues and work towards our common goal of marriage ( he tells me that ...

A.   4 April 2012: I think you should only set a timeline if you are fully prepared to end the relationship and walk away for good if the timeline expires without your terms and conditions met. otherwise, what's the use of setting a timeline? why would it have any ... (read in full...)

How do you tell your boyfriend you can't see him as being the father of your children?

Q.   How do you tell your boyfriend that you don't see him ever being the father you'd want your child or children to have and that's the real reason you don't want children? And where do you go from there? Stay but remain childless or have children bu...

A.   2 April 2012: Tell him that the reason you don't want children is because of him. I mean, that is the TRUTH. It's also a very powerful indicator of how healthy your relationship actually is. To not want children is one thing. To want kids but not with your ... (read in full...)

Not quite sure how to present ourselves/our relationship to the world?

Q.   my husband and i have been together for 9 years( married for 5).We are now having somewhat of an open relationship for the last year and so far everything is good. We have made out with other people a lot of times even in front of each other, went ...

A.   27 March 2012: I think you should be honest with any third party from the very beginning. Otherwise, people will feel misled and tricked if you wait until you have developed some sort of relationship with them before telling them. However, if you and your hus... (read in full...)

Forgiving a friend?

Q.   Hey Aunts and Uncles Do you think friends should be forgiven anything or is there a line you draw? one of my friends needed nursing (cancer) which I did whenever I had spare time I also cooked cleaned shopped did injections and slept over if...

A.   27 March 2012: Well in a way you did contribute to the falling out, by sharing personal information about her with someone else. yes it was done with good intentions (or at least neutral intentions) but in the end it obviously really, really hurt her feelings. So ... (read in full...)

My parents have a low opinion of me

Q.   I'm feeling hurt to come to the realize that my parents have a low opinion of me. Growing up I had low selth esteem and no confidence but now I have bags of confidence and a good opinion of myself. I'm truly turning my life around for the b...

A.   27 March 2012: Life is too short to spend your time on people who don't value you due to their own personal issues. It's hard when they are your own parents, but not all parents are good parents. I suggest that you limit the amount of contact you have with them, ... (read in full...)

Mother-in-law!!!!!!!!!!! HELP! The woman is insane!!!!

Q.   My boyfriends mother is causing problems in our relationship. We've been together 2 years, we are incredibly happy and never argue as we're so laid back, compatible and very much in love. However.... he has an incredibly controlling mother. ...

A.   16 March 2012: your boyfriend's mother sounds really dysfunctional, and as a result the entire family system is dysfunctional because everyone else's behavior revolves around hers. Doing reward/punishment conditioning will not work if her behavior is self-rei... (read in full...)

I am tired of living with a dog I don't want and a wife I don't trust.

Q.   I live in a small 2 bedroom condo with my handicapped wife and our two girls, 8 and 5. We run a business out of our home as well. Needless to say, the place is crowded and life for me is restrictive. For years my wife has asked if she could get...

A.   15 March 2012: One more thing...Your kids are way too young to be given significant responsibility for the dog. Yes they can and should be taught to help out with some the dog-care duties like walking, feeding and so on. and it's a great way to teach children ... (read in full...)

I am tired of living with a dog I don't want and a wife I don't trust.

Q.   I live in a small 2 bedroom condo with my handicapped wife and our two girls, 8 and 5. We run a business out of our home as well. Needless to say, the place is crowded and life for me is restrictive. For years my wife has asked if she could get...

A.   15 March 2012: What your wife did was appalling, both to you and to the dog. A dog should not be put into a home where he is not wanted. This is not about the dog. That is just the manifestation of the underlying issues: 1. She knew full well that you were aga... (read in full...)

Very deep into a relationship but it's very hard to keep it going and even harder to end it

Q.   We've been together 9 months. She's been living in my house most of the time, where I pretty much pay for everything. She has spoken several times about marriage and expects to be engaged sometime in the next year. I love her, and i like the thou...

A.   11 March 2012: I didn't address your other question in my earlier post. you asked, how do you end it? First, you should confirm in your mind that you are going to end the relationship. Prepare yourself ahead of time for her likely reactions - such as crying, ... (read in full...)

I feel so damaged and undesirable...

Q.   I need to move on from a relationship. I am in a really down place. I feel like I cannot trust even my family as they have walked all over me while I have been trying to recover from something really difficult. I am starting to believe that they ...

A.   11 March 2012: You are not damaged and undesirable, you're going through a very difficult time in your life, these feelings are a natural response especially when you've just come out of a relationship. First, just give yourself time. take the pressure off ... (read in full...)

Very deep into a relationship but it's very hard to keep it going and even harder to end it

Q.   We've been together 9 months. She's been living in my house most of the time, where I pretty much pay for everything. She has spoken several times about marriage and expects to be engaged sometime in the next year. I love her, and i like the thou...

A.   10 March 2012: You're very right that these are red flags, and it's wise that you're not jumping into marriage. It sounds like you have a co-dependent relationship, where she is the dependent (the person with dysfunctionalities and serious unresolved issues t... (read in full...)

Fewer HJs are making him feel unloved.

Q.   I have Head Job issues. Badly. Please help me work out what the sam hill is going on! So ive been with my guy for 15 years, we have always had really unhealthy verbal fights, always. But we have ALWAYS had a Rock On sex life, I have always loved to...

A.   10 March 2012: I think your bf is being manipulative and refusing to take responsibility for his part in the relationship breakdown. He says he feels unloved because you haven't been interested in intimacy anymore, even though he doesn't care that his own behavior ... (read in full...)

I want to leave abusive spouse but don't want to end up in a shelter!

Q.   Hi agony aunts, I'm in need of some help. I am married with three children and I am living with a physically and emotionally abusive spouse. He has cheated on me in the past several times and he said he would change but he has not. I want to leave ...

A.   10 March 2012: You can make a new home for your children, the one you have now with your abusive spouse is not the be-all and end-all. ... (read in full...)

Is she jealous that I'm a mom and shes not?

Q.   To begin I have this friend who when I first met was really nice! And really just cool-- I've known her about 2 years. When we first met I was engaged and she was single. Anyways last January I found out I was pregnant, we were so excited! Because ...

A.   10 March 2012: Maybe she is over-sensitive and insecure if she thinks that everything you post about your daughter is to rub it in her face. on the other hand, have there been times when you have been insensitive to her for example being too wrapped up in the joys ... (read in full...)

Should I give up on her and let her go back to her life?

Q.   Okay on the surface, my situation seems pretty cut and dry. I'm sure most people would tell me to move on and find someone available and worthy of my affections. But to me it seems more of a questin of unconditional love. I meet "Jess" 9 momths ...

A.   5 March 2012: It sounds like your relationship is a Co-Dependent relationship. If you're not familiar with that term, you should google it, there are entire books written on the subject of this kind of relationship. You will see patterns in your relationship - ... (read in full...)

How can I make him see that he is disgusting and needs to lose weight?

Q.   I have been married to my husband for almost 25 years and we have 4 children. When we got married I weighed 135 and he weighed 180. We looked and felt great. We did alot of outdoor activities. Now I am at 160 and he is about 310. He is fat! I can ...

A.   1 March 2012: You have to be honest with him that his obesity is making you feel very unattracted to him, because it's the truth, and hiding the truth makes it more difficult to solve problems. It's more important that you tell him the truth, no matter h... (read in full...)

An old friend wants back into my life, but I don't think I can handle his issues

Q.   Someone is trying to get back into my life, and I’m very conflicted about it. Bear with me while I try to keep this as short as I can and still give enough detail. We were buds in high school, but really bonded in our last year there when our g...

A.   1 March 2012: It sounds like over the years you've given a lot of yourself for your friend, were emotionally invested in his life for many years out of care and concern, and then felt that he threw it back in your face and violated your trust. Even though he ... (read in full...)

Could fate bring us back together?

Q.   Do you honestly believe if two people are meant to be together that they will meet again? Because I made a stupid, stupid mistake! I'm not going to go into what happened. It was down to miscommunication and things being twisted and misconstrued. ...

A.   28 February 2012: "Do you honestly believe if two people are meant to be together that they will meet again?" yes but only on hindsight, after they have met again does it then seem to be the case. Usually it's after people have been reunited then do they come to ... (read in full...)

I'm married, and falling to pieces because I had sex with another woman. What do I do now?

Q.   Hello. I did something really stupid. I had sex with another woman, therefore cheating on my wife. It only happened once and my wife doesn't know. I have no idea why on earth I did it. There's no chance that I'll ever see the woman I had sex with ...

A.   27 February 2012: I think you should confess to your wife. Either way whether you do or don't, your marriage will never be the same. Choices have consequences. Even if you don't tell her, there will still be consequences. while I do think you should be forgiven for ... (read in full...)

I want to break up with her, but I've never given her any indication that I have been unhappy. How do I approach this?

Q.   Hello agony aunts, I'm in a bit of a bind. I've been dating a girl for a year now and everything has been going pretty well.... from her perspective. When we started dating I noticed she was incredibly quiet. I'm a very talkative person, so ...

A.   22 February 2012: well to be honest it's unfair to her that you were being fake all this time and never told her that you were unhappy so you never gave her a chance to change. Yes she's a very quiet person by nature and that's opposite of you, but if she had known ... (read in full...)

I should be happy in my life but unhappiness with job is making me depressed

Q.   Dear cupid, I am hoping someone can help me with this issue. I'm nearly 28 and engaged to a fantastic guy, we live together. Ive completed uni and been in a great professional job since uni. Over the past 6 months or so i feel like my mood ...

A.   22 February 2012: I think you place too much weight on other people's opinions and perceptions, and this makes you feel out of control of your life. There is no blanket answer to whether you should stay in a job you hate, or make a drastic career change, or start... (read in full...)

Relationship gets worse - emotional girlfriend is never happy about what I do

Q.   Dear all, I am together with my girlfriend for almost 2 years and we moved together 6-7 months ago. She is in a medical doctoral program (class based) and I am in a Engineering doctoral program (research based) as well. School is very stressy for...

A.   21 February 2012: Your gf is emotionally abusive. Emotionally abusive people often feel desperately out of control of their own problems and lives, and they take it out on you by trying to control you. When it is the woman who is emotionally abusive, her male par... (read in full...)

He's confused, I'm confused, what's going on?

Q.   I am 47 and my boyfriend of five years is 60. We had a wonderful relationship and I know he loves me very much. He recenlty started pulling back without explanation. He then told me he didn't think he cared as much as he use to. We broke up and over ...

A.   19 February 2012: If this was a sudden and drastic personality change I would actually be concerned that there is a medical or psychiatric basis for it. e.g. head injuries or the long term effects of some kinds of medications can have the effect of altering someone's ... (read in full...)

My daughter is planning on having IVF with her partner, but I know they are unhappy and she has been having an affair. What can I do in this situation?

Q.   my daughter is soon to be forty and has decided to have ivf with her partner of 6 years. it appears that for the last 4 years she has been having an affair.her partner is manipulative and calculating and i think he knows what has been going on her ...

A.   8 February 2012: Talk to her, don't shy away from expressing your concern because you may regret it further down the road when you see how unhappy she is you might think if only you had "said something" earlier would it have made a difference? but when you talk... (read in full...)

Why do people assume I lack self esteem?

Q.   I have been told by many people that I lack confidence or self esteem over the years but I don't even see that in myself. I like who I am, I think I'm a funny, smart person, and am a great catch as a partner. I've appreciated my journey and I ap...

A.   6 February 2012: Without seeing you it's hard to know if it's due to how you present yourself, but maybe it is? for example your body language, non verbal cues or your tone of voice could give the impression that you're not confident even though the words you're ... (read in full...)

Help me write a meaningful message to my Dad

Q.   It was my dad's birthday last week and bought him a birthday card. I'm having "writer's block" because I want to write a meaningful message to him to show how much I've appreciated his support since starting out at university. Also, because my...

A.   3 February 2012: How about if you use this card to invite him out for a birthday dinner, just you and him? Tell him that it's been awhile since you've had a chance to catch up one-on-one and you'd like to do that again. it might be a bit too brash to say "without ... (read in full...)

My husband supports everyone else but me. Why does he do this to me?

Q.   My husband of three years will not take my feelings into consideration. Whenever there is a disagreement he will always take the others persons side against me. He will never defend me or stand up for me in any way. His sister and I do not get alon...

A.   3 February 2012: My personal opinion is that if you really don't want to be around his family, because his sister is verbally abusive, then you have every right not to go. But your husband has a right to his own opinion too. He's not obligated to side with you... (read in full...)

My wife doesn't want sex any more. Can any one suggest what things need fixing to improve this situation?

Q.   My wife and I have been married 15 years. We have a miserable sex life and have for a long time. It started very early in our relationship where within a year we went from: "I have never been so loud during sex. Can we do it again?" to "Do...

A.   3 February 2012: It sounds like your wife has a lot of issues, so it's not about you per se, she probably really can't handle her life as it is, and your presence or attention doesn't feel comforting to her instead it feels like one more stressor. Her depressi... (read in full...)

I am always the 'bad guy'!! What should I do?

Q.   Okay, what do I do?! I'll try and be as detailed as I can. I was with a girl for about 6 or 7 years off and on. Now I'm going to be totally honest. At the beginning of our relationship I didn't treat her well. I was young so I'd rather be out wi...

A.   2 February 2012: true you may have behaved inappropriately at the beginning of the relationship, but since then she's done more than her fair share of inappropriate behavior. I don't think you can "get rid of her" if she's friends with your brother's wife. Bu... (read in full...)

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