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ETC. – UM

Dear V,

We love our roommate, but we have problems with her. When we started the year out, we really didn’t know her very well, but we all got along and we thought that it would be a good idea to live together. Since then, she has withdrawn completely from the group. She never opens up to us and disappears at random intervals, yet we know that she is having problems. How can we approach her to let her know that we care about her and more importantly, need to know what is going on?

Sincerely,

Three’s company, right now.

Dear Readers,

It is always unfortunate to run into roomie issues, yet there is bound to be conflict when you live with people who are basically strangers. I mean, you probably argue with your brothers and sisters, and even your mom and dad, and they’re family for God’s sake! You really can’t expect things to be golden all the time, because they’re not going to be.

Your specific situation is perhaps exceptionally more delicate than the common “she doesn’t clean the bathroom” crisis. Have you done anything to ostracize her? Or, perhaps somehow done something to inadvertently leave her out of the loop? Have you kids done any type of real bonding? You mentioned that you really didn’t know her at the beginning of the semester, but have you made an effort to get to know her beyond her bathroom habits? Likewise, just how much time do you spend with her?

If you’re going to approach her about the void between yourselves, you need to do it in a way that cannot be perceived as prying or as snooping; basically, you don’t want to offend her in any way. I would suggest sharing a meal with her and dwelling on common elements in your lives-school, love lives, family, holiday plans. Any subject where the two of you share something in common is safe territory, for it will automatically deepen the connection that you share. Furthermore, full bellies equal happy people!

After furthering the connection, I would then start to ask the tough questions. You need to be straightforward, not sneaky. Please remember though, that you can’t force her to tell you anything that she doesn’t want to tell, and that if you try to push her, she might withdraw farther away from you.

Good luck!

V.

Dear V,

My boyfriend is in graduate school, and will be graduating in May. The problem is, he has a job interview out of state, and I don’t do long-distance relationships. Everything between the two of us is really good right now, but I don’t know if it’s better to break things off now (if he gets the job) or wait until May.

Dear Reader,

First of all, he hasn’t gotten the job yet, so maybe your worrying is a tad premature. If, however, he is offered the position and chooses to accept it, leaving you here without him, there are a variety of options that might work for you two.

First off, are you sure that you don’t do long distance relationships? Maybe you had a bad experience in the past with another boyfriend, but that shouldn’t hold you back from at least trying something long distance with him. Why would you want to lose out on something that is so good and has the potential to be lifelong? In my opinion, which is always humble, I think that you should at least give the long-distance thing a chance!

Think about it in this demented way-in a long-distance relationship, you have the opportunities to really expand your social horizons and spend a lot of time on yourself, yet you still have a boyfriend and everything that he has to offer (albeit, he won’t be offering it all the time, although when he does, whoa! will you appreciate him!). A nice balance, if you ask me.

If you do decide that you just can’t live within the confines of a long-distance relationship, which is understandably very taxing and stressful, more so than a close distance relationship, please don’t break things off with him right now. Why not suck the good out while you still can? I think that you would be making yourself needlessly miserable if you broke it off the day you heard of his departure. Likewise, waiting until he really has to leave would give the two of you a chance to really think everything out.

I know that every couple discusses these hypothetical situations that might face them in the future, and blah, blah, blah, but if you’re really faced with a split, your solutions to these situations might be vastly different than you once thought.

Good luck!

V.

Tuesday’s Factoid – The oldest sex manuals written in the world were authored by the Yellow Emperor Huang-Ti of China approximately 5,000 years ago. The Yellow Emperor is said to have had three female sex advisors, the Plain Girl (Su-nui), the Mystery Girl (Shuen- nui) and the Harvest Girl (Tsai- nui) to help him, ahem, practice his craft.

Happy Turkey Day!

Please submit all questions, comments or concerns to DearV@hotmail.com or to the Dear V box in the offices of the Hurricane. All submissions are strictly confidential. Dear V. is published on Tuesdays and Fridays, and yes, V will respond to almost (don’t push it) anything.

November 23, 2004

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


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