Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I got drunk and passed out crying on my mother’s couch while she was at work recently. Why? Because my boyfriend left me after five years, and he isn’t coming back. How do I know this? He’s with my so-called best friend.
I don’t know how long she’s been sleeping with him behind my back. She has her own little apartment and lots of privacy. My mistake was telling her what a great guy he was, particularly in the sack. I just trusted her completely — we’ve been best friends since Grade 1. I treated him like gold, so why did he leave me for her?
OK, maybe it was because I wanted him to make up his mind and marry me. He’d say "I love you and all, but…" and he’d never finish the sentence. Now he’s made it impossible for us to get back together, and I’m heartbroken.
How could she do this to me? He was my first love. From Grade 9 on, I was his in every way, but we were very careful. If he was curious about sex with some other girl, why did he have to pick my best friend? Or did she offer herself?
My mother warned me to stop bragging about him or I was going to sell him to some other girl, but I never listened. When Mom found me on her sofa passed out, she guessed what had happened and phoned my best friend a dozen times. No answer.
She wouldn’t answer my calls either. No surprise there! I don’t know what to do or say and we all live and work in the same town in southern Manitoba.
— Best Friend Betrayal, southern MB
Dear Betrayal: You can hold your head up, talk to anyone and see anyone you want. You didn’t betray anyone. The new couple is not likely to be very popular. In fact, dating in your town is going to be hard for them — "skunks at a garden party" come to mind.
Your feelings of hurt will wear off, particularly when you start dating someone new and better — and you will, given a little time.
The biggest takeaway from this is to stop talking too intimately about a love partner with girlfriends, sisters, cousins, and close workmates — especially if they don’t have their own man. The other lesson is to listen to what’s not said. When you’d ask about marriage, your guy would say "I love you and all, but…" and not finish the sentence. That’s a far cry from saying, "I love you, and I want to marry you ASAP!"
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: Unlike just about everyone else, I stopped overeating after COVID hit. I went from overweight to quite skinny, and I think it looks good to me. But people are getting ridiculously worried about it.
My dad and mom pushed me to go to a doctor, saying I looked like a skeleton, and the doctor said she was worried, too. I think I look like a model, but she doesn’t. After talking to me about what I eat in a day, she said I’m eating so little, my body isn’t getting nearly the sustenance it needs.
She asked me what might upset or depress me in my life, and I just started crying and crying. I was just a little upset, and she lined me up with a shrink, for God’s sake! All I needed was a Kleenex.
I feel embarrassed and angry. I’m not crazy — I just don’t weigh too much anymore. What’s wrong with being fashionably thin? I guess I’ll have to go to this head-shrinker, but I’m not happy about it.
— Get off My Back Everybody! West End
Dear Get Off: When you stop eating enough to survive, your essential organs and whole body are in jeopardy. When a parent is worried sick and a doctor agrees big trouble lies down the road, you really need to co-operate.
The right kind of professional can help free you from whatever is driving you to starve yourself — and help you get healthy again. Nobody is plotting to make you fat, they just want you to get healthy.
Look, you don’t have to be nicey-nice in therapy. You can talk openly, get angry and upset, point fingers of blame, cry and express your feelings about everything that bothers you. Opening up is the way to go.
You will feel surprisingly better doing this within the safety of a therapy environment. Please go, and get the help you need.
Please send your questions and comments to email@example.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.
Each year, the Free Press publishes more than 1,000 letters to Miss Lonelyhearts and her responses to the life and relationship questions that come her way.