DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I still can't believe I let this happen. A service man was here to install something. I was just about to have a drink. Well, one drink turned into a few and the next thing I knew we were making out big time. He had to leave because he had one last job for the night, but came back shortly after that. That's when he mentioned he had a girlfriend, but by that time the drinks had gotten to me, so I wasn't really caring. Well, we continued where we left off and I ended up taking him up to my bedroom where we really got to know each other! I've never done anything like this before. Before he left, he said he'd call me. Now what? I really like this guy because he's hot and he said I was even hotter, but he does have a girlfriend and I don't want to be just his side dish -- but I won't be able to help myself if I see him again. Please advise! -- Installation Girl
Dear Girl: People who indulge in a hook-up tend to go deaf just prior to the sex. This guy told you clearly that he had a girlfriend, so you could say no. It was a warning you'd just be a side-dish hook-up. There's absolutely no future in this as a relationship for two reasons: he's not leaving his girlfriend; and he knows you're dishonest enough to get involved in cheating situations, so your stock value is rock bottom. Double standard? Oh yes, but that's reality. He won't be back unless you know how to call him for another hook-up. He kept his own number secret, didn't he?
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I'm a male student at the University of Winnipeg in my early 20s. I've never been on a date or kissed a girl before. The reason may be that no one has ever been interested in me but mostly, it's because I am very quiet and a bit anxious and avoidant in general. I am a loner and I spend all my time at home. Sometimes, I'd like to go on a date with someone, but then I'd have to get rid of my anxiety and talk to her to befriend her. That is hard for me to do because of my inexperience at my age, I also can't go to many public places because I have a problem with crowds and loud noise and I am shy around new people. I actually once had a high school crush for three years and I never told anyone. Do you have any advice for me in case I find someone I want to be with? -- Feeling Undesirable, U of W
Dear Feeling: The Anxiety Disorders Association of Manitoba (ADAM) 925-0600, 100-4 Fort St. could help you with what is probably social anxiety. ADAM offers courses for people to help them change their reactions (reduce or eliminate the fears) by changing the way they think when they're in social situations. There are also medications offered for social anxiety, which have improved sufferers' lives considerably. I have a friend whose painfully shy niece says medication "opened up her life" and finally allowed her to enjoy friends and romance. Some medications need only be taken an hour before an event that would be anxiety-producing, or you might need something that calms and disinhibits you on a daily basis. See your physician for a referral to a psychiatrist (on provincial medicare, at no cost to you) who can diagnose, work with you and perhaps prescribe medication. You're smart to get this under control now.
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