Q: I've been dating a woman off and on for nine months and the whole thing is driving me crazy. She was engaged to a man in New York, broke up, met me. We hit it off right away. Smart, fun, beautiful, I was wondering if it could end in marriage. Then, three months in, she breaks up and goes back to New York guy. But we stay in touch, and two months later, she breaks up with him! Then, two months later, at Thanksgiving, she goes back to him. I don't know what to do. Give it up? If I keep it up, I'll probably lose my mind.
Steve: Here's what you need to tell her, "Did you ever have to make up your mind? And pick up on one and leave the other behind? It's not often easy and not often kind. But you damn well better make up your mind." Then, if she comes back to you, tell her she gets a last chance, but if she returns to the New York guy again, it ends your relationship forever.
Mia: Dude, do you just enjoy the thrill of the chase, or are you really into this woman? Some guys get all hyped by the excitement of pursuit, but once they've nabbed bae, they're bored. Other men enjoy a hot pursuit then are content to settle down. Which guy are you? Figure it out, and keep that in mind as you decide what to do.
Q: I hate the holidays! I have to spend time with my in-laws, who are very conservative politically and poorly informed, yet they are very loud with their opinions. Also, they invite my husband's ex-wife, and I hate having to see her. I think that since she's an ex (she cheated on him while they were married), she's no longer part of the family and shouldn't be invited out of consideration for me. It's not like she doesn't have her own family. My stepkids are all grown up. I think she should move on already. My husband doesn't agree. He says its tradition, and he doesn't want to upset his parents. What do you think?
Mia: Why are you all in your feelings over who else is going to be around the dinner table? Girlfriend clearly hasn't moved on, and neither have you. Forget about her already. There's a reason she's an ex. Your in-laws probably still invite her to come around out of pity. Would you want to be in her shoes? Since being in her presence is so difficult, I suggest you cut your visit to your in-laws short this year, and while you're there, focus on your hubby. Shouldn't making him happy be a priority over nursing your own insecurity?
Steve: Well, if that's the only time he sees her, you have little to complain about. Unless, of course, you don't believe in compromise. In that case, you could end up sinking your marriage.
Between them, Steve and Mia have logged more than a few decades in the single-and-dating world. They're also wise to the ways of married life. They don't always agree, but they have plenty of
answers. Contact them at S&M c/o Daily News, 801 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19107 or firstname.lastname@example.org.