Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I have a shoe and boot fetish -- women's shoes, and I am a man. I have had several girlfriends and ended up buying them a lot of shoes and boots because it turns me on to look at them and touch them. My girlfriend of eight months knew I liked footwear on her, but she didn't know about the collection of large-size women's shoes and leather boots I have for myself, until I left her alone in my house. When I came back she had "that" look on her face, and had several of the high-heeled shoes out on the coffee table -- like evidence. She'd been snooping WAY in the back of my closet and found them. I just shrugged and said "What can I say? They're mine. You're a snoop and I have a shoe and boot fetish. What do you want to do about it?" She started crying, and I teared up and she said she "couldn't be with a weirdo," and then she left. I don't know what to say to explain it to her. I don't understand it myself. -- Embarrassed and Hurt, Winnipeg
Dear Embarrassed and Hurt: It's interesting you left your large ladies shoes in the back of your closet where they could be found. You have to know many women are snoopy when left in their guy's place alone. If you NEVER wanted them to be found, you'd have locked them in a trunk. Start by talking with a psychologist who can analyze your particular history with shoes and boots, and help you gain an understanding of the origin of your fetish. That helps to give you more control. The mystery is gone, and the fetish may lose a good part of its grip on you. Until you know, you'll still feel overly interested, and it will have greater power to excite you... If you already had an understanding of your fetish, you could have explained about the fetish and reassured her of your heterosexuality. With no explanation, she's probably wondering if you're a drag queen with trunks of clothes and wigs hidden elsewhere. It's hard to keep a secret of this proportion from someone you care about, which is probably why you left the shoes there and took a chance at discovery. Your future partner will need to be someone who is a sophisticated and open-minded kind of woman, who may even have a little fetish of her own to balance things out.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I spent almost three days -- Friday to Sunday suppertime with the new love of my life and then he didn't call me until five whole days and nights later. THEN he had the nerve to say he "might be ready for another marathon." He didn't sound eager or excited either. He said, "So, let's go to the store and get some groceries and some wine and have some fun," in a flat voice. I heard myself saying, "No, thanks, if sex is all you want." Then he said, "Well, I thought that's what you wanted, too. You started this!" I said, "That's not ALL a woman wants." I'm confused. My husband and I used to spend weekends like that with movies and puzzles and big dinners and hot tubs. I thought this guy cared about me and now I just wonder if he just wanted "it." By the way, we are both in our 40s, with one marriage behind us each, and we have been dating one month. -- Missing Him Now
Dear Missing: Three days of 24/7 sexual intimacy obviously set your "love" of only four weeks back. It was an overdose that took this man five days by himself to get over -- and please note you didn't pick up the phone to call him, either. You've conveniently blamed that on him, now. But, he recovered. He'd been five days without you (and sex) and he thought he might be ready for another big weekend. That would have been the time to say, "I think we overdid it a little bit. Why don't we spend Saturday night together -- have dinner out at a restaurant, go out to a movie or a play or a walk in the leaves and you can stay overnight after that?" It's likely he'd feel some relief in that idea. So, call him back and see what he says. Plan something to do with family/friends in the late-afternoon (like Sunday dinner), and let him go home with both of you wanting more. By the way, men often step back for a bit after assessing if they want a deeper relationship with a new woman. It doesn't mean he doesn't care. You know you still care. So, initiate a little heart-to-heart and then direct him into doing things that make the emotional and fun part of the relationship grow. Love and sex are meant to be a balance. The more intimate you become emotionally, the more sex your relationship will sustain without tipping and tanking.
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