Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Tell Me About It: He has a new job, in his ex's hometown

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Question: Yesterday I was offered a good job in the hometown of my girlfriend, whom I planned to marry. Our plan was she would follow me there when she could figure out her own career, and live with me while we planned a wedding. Yeah!

Then, last night, she told me she wasn't sure she was "all in." She said she was conflicted by her feelings about me. Long story short: We broke up. Boo!

I'm heartbroken. And I don't know what the heck to do about this job. I fully expect to be laid off from my own job in the next few months, so I need the job. Plus it's a good job and I'd be excited to do it. But I don't know anyone in this new city other than my girlfriend's family. And I'm grieving.

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  • There are also financial issues. I'm way underwater on my mortgage and couldn't sell my house except at a steep loss. (I could possibly rent it.) Anyway. I'm not even sure I have a question. I just need some clearheaded, I don't know, guidance, from the Haxster. Any thoughts you have are warmly welcomed. P.S.: If my girlfriend is reading this, she definitely knows who she is. Baby, I'm not mad, just sad.

    Answer: The Haxster feels your pain. How big is the girlfriend's hometown - we talking Mayberry or Manhattan? I think anything big enough for you not to risk running into her every time you go out for a beer is probably big enough for the both of you (assuming she still plans to move back).

    It would also help if you moved not to her town proper, but to one within comfortable commuting distance from the new workplace - especially if you could find one that has a nightlife of its own. College town, say.

    You'd have to go, though, with the clear understanding - stated to your now-ex - that you would be moving to her town as if you knew no one there, and would not lean on her or her family, and would not entertain hopes of winning her back. This is pure economic necessity.

    It's a setup that's weird and difficult and will feel more than a little contrived, and will plop you amid reminders of her that will likely make your pain worse before it gets better. But, when you're looking at layoff + underwater mortgage, the certainty of employment (+ renting your house) comes close to trumping all.

    If you squint, maybe it will look like a fresh start?

    Now I need you to promise me I didn't just give you permission to harass this person. You really really really can't get in touch with her when you get there, or hang out at her favorite spots, or go over to talk to her when you see her outside when you "accidentally" drive by her house. Any and all moves to stay in touch are hers, and if you can't live by that then moving there is a terrible idea and forget I endorsed it. One pot of bunny soup and all advice is off.

     


    tellme@washpost.com

    Chat with Carolyn Hax online at noon Fridays at www.washingtonpost.com.

     

    Carolyn Hax
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