DR. WALLACE: For over a year, I dated a guy I really liked. Before he met me, he was going steady with another girl, but she dumped him for another guy, and that's when he met me. We made a good connection and had a great year dating and spending good times together. However, about a month ago, his ex decided she wanted him back, and to my utter surprise, she got her wish! My guy broke up with me to return to her! I was very hurt because he had previously told me he was glad to be rid of her.
Well, fate has now stepped in and changed things again. His ex and her family moved to California (we live in Indiana), so the two of them decided to end their relationship once and for all.
Last night, this guy called and said he was sorry he broke up with me and wanted us to get back together. I must admit that I still care for him very much. He is a great guy and treated me like a lady every time we were together. I'd like to say yes, but my sister is telling me to "punish" him and refuse to get back with him.
Even my parents are split. My mom likes him and thinks I should go back with him and says if I don't, I'll be making a huge mistake. My dad, who is a major in the U.S. Army, thinks this guy is a "snake" and I'd be foolish to "slither" around with him again! My dad sure has a way with words, and he did not hold back his disdain when discussing this matter with me. I need a tiebreaker to help me make my decision. Please give me your professional advice. I'm looking forward to your comments because you don't know us or any other specifics beyond what I have written here. I feel you will be able to provide a neutral, objective opinion. By the way, all three of us are 16 years old. — Stuck in a Tight Spot, via email
STUCK IN A TIGHT SPOT: Great guys who treat their dates like ladies are indeed in short supply in some communities. Because you care for him and want to go out with him again, go ahead. Playing the "punishment" game, as your sister suggests, will get you nowhere. But go out with him with your eyes wide open. He was fickle once, so do not be surprised if you find yourself back in this situation at some point in the future.
Let him know that he is beyond lucky that you've decided to forgive him, and firmly tell him your graciousness in this department will not be repeated again. From there, carefully monitor his behavior and his interactions with you. It could be that the two of you grow stronger together, or this fracture could develop into future problems.
The good news here is that you, at your tender young age, are in the midst of a valuable learning experience either way. The odds are high that the two of you will eventually go your separate ways someday. But it is possible that your bond will grow and develop over time. Be sure you stand up for yourself from here, and be sure he treats you even better than before if you grant him this one last opportunity.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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