DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: My partner wants us to get matching tattoos as our Christmas present to each other. This has brought up an inconvenient truth: I love him, but not enough to marry him. This relationship is not a lifer for me. I don't want to get stuck with any one partner forever and I think this relationship with him has about a six-month shelf life left. What do I tell him? -- No Tats For Me, Winnipeg
Dear No Tats For Me: You could start by telling him the truth so he can make an informed decision about his love life. When someone is more attached to you than you are to him, it's up to you to cut the ties. The other person simply can't do that until you've made him so painfully miserable he does it out of self-preservation. If you don't want to break up before Christmas, just tell him you're not into the tattoo thing and you can revisit the issue later. The new year is a much better time for endings, but don't drag it on much longer than that, now you know it's going to end.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I've been married seven years to a great guy. Now I'm suddenly going crazy for this younger single guy at work who's in his late 20s. I talk to him and blush furiously. I accidentally brush by him, and my whole body is on fire. I stutter. I look at his face and all I can see is his lips. Oh my God! This all started after he dropped it at the Christmas party that he had a crush on me when he first started working here last fall and it took him three months to get over it. He has a brand new girlfriend his age and she looks like a model (tall, flat, lots of hair) but my mind and body doesn't process he's taken now. Did I mention he's very smart and a great soccer player? I can't stop thinking about him. Help, please. -- Hot Little Fool, The Maples
Dear Hot Fool: Ever rubbed up against something that makes you break out in hives? That's what chasing this guy will do for you, especially since he says it's too late now. You aren't the kind of person who can hide anything, and the results won't be pretty. Take a critical look at this guy. He was nothing special until he flattered you and then showed you his beautiful new girlfriend. He has accomplished what he set out to do -- make you burn hopelessly like he did. Now he's acting like he's happy with this younger woman, but it wasn't always like that. You didn't see him as anyone significant, until now. The bottom line is he didn't innocently tell you about his past crush, he told you as a subtle form of revenge. Now he has a new girlfriend and a feeling of power and safety from your hold on him, so why not give your little head a spin? Don't go for this! Your blushing reaction makes it so satisfying for him. Reinvest in the wonderful guy at home instead.
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