Written by Sasha

Dear Sasha, I'm 25 and single this year for the first time since before I could even legally drink. I'm fairly new to the dating scene, and am not actively looking for yet another serious relationship, but I'm open to meeting new people and casually dating. However, I'm currently finding myself "casually dating" 3 guys at the same time. I like all of them in different ways but don't want to be exclusive. Right now, I am basically planning to keep seeing them until I either grow tired of them or I feel like they're wanting more of me than I'm willing to give (or vice versa). I've been honest with each of them from the beginning, in the fact that I've told them that I'm not looking for anything serious and really just need to be on my own for a bit, but they don't know about one another. Not sure if this is relevant, but I've been intimate (safely, obviously) with two of them. I've talked to friends about it and they've all said I'm not doing anything wrong by these guys but they may just be being supportive. I just want to have fun without anyone getting hurt, but I can't help but feel like I'm being dishonest. Am I being a horrible person? Or am I just so used to being monogamous I feel like I'm doing something wrong when I'm not? Thanks. –G

You little slut.

Oh I’m just joking; of course you’re not a horrible person. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with throwing it around, especially seeing as you’ve been in relationship lockdown for most of your formative f-cking years. So you’re totally entitled to have some fun and get your swerve on. And I think it’s great that you’ve put yourself out on the dating scene again. A lot of girls I know have the habit of jumping from one serious relationship to another, whatever floats your boat I guess, but I do think it’s important to remember who you are WITHOUT a guy in your life. So good on you for taking charge and giving yourself some breathing room.

Now I’m all up for you having fun but don’t think it’s gonna to be super easy breezy. I know you don’t want to hurt anyone but that’s some wishful thinking, because I’d be willing to bet that one of these guys will probably be more down with your cause than you are with his. So beware – there will most likely be some hurt feelings.

And one more bit of advice - make sure to still keep your standards high. I tell you this out of love and experience because during my brief skank phase there was one bucked-tooth guy that slipped in under the cracks. And to this day I always shake that sh-t off like a bad case of head lice. So in other words, just maintain a healthy level of sobriety. Other than that G, enjoy this time and savor the moments of this new found autonomy.

Hi Sasha, An old friend of mine comes to the town every year during the holidays, and usually we see each other. We have been friends since college and used to be really close. We drank too much, made bad dating decisions together, and moved across the country together after college. I have always been close with her family. Last year, we didn't see each other when she blew me off by not calling me at all when we made plans. I was really hurt, crying and everything. This kind of behavior is nothing new from her, she has always been something of a user and when she drinks, she doesn't care about anyone at all. It is not the first time she treated me like crap. In fact, one time we made plans to go to New Orleans for a week following a conference I was going to, and she canceled the DAY BEFORE (I flew, she was driving in) because her new boyfriend wanted to come see her for the weekend. We had reservations and everything, and I had extended my stay in the city for four extra days. When I told her that it really hurt me, she told me "I did what I did and I'm not sorry." So after last year holidays, I didn't contact her at all, because I'm not interested in cultivating a relationship with someone like that. She sent me a nice apology, said our friendship is worth more than that blah blah. I accepted her apology and we have been friendly since. We talk on the phone every once in awhile, and surprise! it's all about her. Seriously, we never talk at all about my life at all. I hear about her damn hair, her hick neighbors, her work. Never once has she asked me about my job or my husband. Now it's around the time she is coming back into town, and to be honest, I don't care to see her at all. What's the point? But some of my other friends are all "it's too bad you can't put it behind you". They are people who have never been as close to her, and see her as the fun party girl who is always laughing and bringing cute little presents to people. They don't know how mean and cruel she can be. I am still friends with an ex-boyfriend of hers, and we have discussed how most people don't really know what she is like and how she treats people. What happened in the past happened, whatever. I don't want any drama or any showdown, I am not holding a grudge or waiting for an apology. I just don't feel like interacting with her. I can't deny, we had tons of fun together in the past and I wouldn't trade those years for anything. But now...things are different. What do you think? ~LB

LB I feel your pain. I had to break up with one of my really close friends a few years back. It was a totally bizarre experience because having to tell your friend that you no longer want them in your life is straight up awkward. But for me, my sadness outweighed the awkwardness. There were parts of our friendship that were so much fun but for the most part it was like constantly swimming in a thick stream of sh-t – the toxicity was too much. I was just so tired of being treated badly and I didn’t want to suck it up anymore. So I get where you are coming from.

So LB you have two options. Option A is to sit down and write a Dear John letter. I’m not saying this is the easiest option but it’s the most honest one. Here are a few editor notes:
1.Be careful not to bash her personality or point too many fingers, because that’s not what this is really about. The letter should be an expression of how you feel and how over the years you’ve seen the demise of the friendship.
2.Next I think it’s important to express, as you did with me, all the great moments that you guys have shared.
3.Don’t leave the letter open ended, there should be no questions like ‘why did you do that?’ etc. The tone of it should feel like you’ve put an end to it, that it’s over and it’s not up for debate.

Now the other option is the slow phase out which is the less painful option. You don’t live in the same city, right? Which means the chance of a random awkward run-in is out of the equation. And it sounds like you’re not talking on the phone all that frequently, so if I were you I’d stop calling her all together and when she calls you, don’t pick up. She’ll get the hint. Just treat it like you would when you wanted to cut bait on an annoying boyfriend. And that’s how you should look at it. You wouldn’t force yourself to be in a sh-tty ass relationship with a guy who emotionally abused you so why would you put yourself through it with a girlfriend? The whole point of having friendships is to improve life, to make it fun, to make it meaningful, and if your friendship doesn’t meet those standards, then fu-k it. Life is too short.

I am 26 years old. Never had a boyfriend Why? Dunno. Just the guys liking me were not the ones I liked. Whatever - I'm happy with my life, family, friends and college are keeping me busy enough! Now, my problem. I've met a guy. Who's a neighbour in the city were my parents live. When we met, there was instant chemistry, talking for hours, laughing a lot together. And very soon many were talking like we were the new couple. Well, one night we were having an evening together with my friends, drinking and eating. In the end everyone but him was gone, and we clearly crossed the line between friendly and touchy-feely. The following weeks we were like teenagers, not able to keep our hands off each other. Did we talk about that? No. Was that stupid? Yes. Because I started to be able to think about the possibility of us becoming more. But then we had the "talk". He was drunk, and that was why he probably was able to talk with me in that moment. Telling me that he likes me very much - as a friend. That he doesn't understand why he doesn't have deeper feelings for me - but wishing he had. Since I was not that loved up and that our friendship became very important to me up to this point, I thought "O.K.!". Of course I wasn't happy (who likes to be told "I don't love you!"), but it really was okay. Well. Didn't stop there, though. Even if we told each other that we wanted to stay friends (very good ones, even!) - we ended up having sex. Again not my smartest move, but damn it - he's hot, and the sex is fantastic (Chemistry, again...). That went on for a few months, with him having doubts whether or not he's hurting me. I told him that I was fine - which was the truth! But still. He's really a good guy, and he is scared that he'll hurt my feelings. The twist comes now: He has left the country (5000 miles) to fulfill his dream (And for a not yet defined amount of time! Maybe one year, maybe two?). It has been a few months, and we talk regularly over Skype and Facebook. About three times a week. Still we have some very flirty moments (he's missing me - and my body), and our trust has grown deeper. Both of us are always surprised that we have known each other for only 10 months, but still feel so close to each other. Today we had the "talk" again - He cares deeply for me, but does not love me. Still we worry how it will be between us when one of us finds a partner - it will be awkward, we both conceded. Only new thing is? He asked me if I would want a real boyfriend-girlfriend-relationship. Not in the way that he asked me to be his girlfriend, just to know how I feel about that. I told him that I wasn't sure, and in the end said no. I guess I'm lying to myself with that one. But I have a distinct fear how he would treat me if I told him that. Next year I want to visit him, and I guess until then I should make my mind up. Thank you very much for listening to my whining (sorry 'bout that, but I'm confused...) , but I need a neutral opinion! E.

E I don’t want to sh-t on your parade but I’m not digging this situation one bit. I’m really afraid that in a few months you’re going to be left with a broken heart. Now, I totally get that it takes some people longer to fall in love but this guy seems to keep reminding you, IN BIG CAPTIAL LETTERS that he DOES NOT LOVE YOU. And you’re playing it off like you’re okay with that, but, I’m sorry, I’m not buying it. That sh-t’s gotta sting and I don’t want you to bury your true feelings just to save face for his sake. I think it’s great that you want to hold on to the friendship but is the friendship really worth that much or is it just a cover? If you knew there would never be a real romantic relationship with this guy would you still want to be close friends?

And just so you know, I’m not saying this dude is a bad guy - he sounds like he’s being very honest with you - but I can’t help but feel annoyed that he’s walking away with a win/win. You know the saying…why buy the cow when you get the milk for free? (Yup, I’m officially a grandma for using this phrase). While I don’t think he’s using you per se he is getting everything he wants out of the situation, while you, well, you aren’t. I know you might think you’re content right now but trust me, if buddy finds a new girl, you’re going to be mega pissed.

So here’s the thing, I get that the boyfriend department has been a bit dry for you, so don’t get me wrong, I’m totally game for you to get your rocks off with this guy and have some fun. But I just don’t want you to invest too much because when it comes down to it, this guy isn’t in it for the long haul. Do I hope he changes his mind? YES. Do I think you should wait for that moment? NO.

So please just be honest with the guy - who cares if it changes the dynamic of the relationship. If you’re not being straight up with him then your ‘friendship’ is just sitting on a foundation of lies anyway. However I do say take one more shot at it. Go, visit him and suss out the situation BUT if he still tells you he doesn’t love you or see any future, let the mutherf-cker go.

File photos from Wenn.com