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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:15 pm 
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I think if you are comfortable paying what you currently pay for your apartment, then keep that as your limit for what to contribute to a new place together? If the amount you're currently paying is a stretch and and makes life unnecessarily stressful, then decide what would be comfortable and tell him that's how much you can comfortably contribute. And then, don't feel bad if he ends up paying way more than you for rent if he wants to move someplace way more expensive! I would figure its his choice and his discretionary income, if he wants to spend more than necessary to live someplace really fancy then you get the perk of living someplace fancy too, but you shouldn't have to pay so much that its really stressful when you'd be happy living somewhere within your budget. And nobody wants their partner to be stressed and miserable all the time.

Also, everyone should make minimum wage for
a little while so they understand what its like!


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:18 pm 
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DC, sending you many many hugs!

Have you tried framing it in that you want to contribute (equally?) to the place you're looking to share and while you like the places he likes, it stresses you out because you can't afford to contribute equally?

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:54 pm 
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DC, I feel like everyone has already given the advice I would give, but I just wanted to say good luck!

As for me...I bought a new plunger that the guy at the hardware store swore would work, then brought it here and it's the same as the one he already has. Sigh. I tried plunging for a good 10 minutes, but to no avail. Most of the yuckiest bits are gone, but there are still some floating debris and it's not flushing right. He doesn't have any liquid plumber stuff, and I don't have time to go buy any before he gets back because I have to go back to work. So, I left a note on the lid of the toilet that says, 'I am good at a lot of things, but plunging toilets is not one of them. See, I even bought a new plunger, in the hopes that yours just sucks, but no. It's me. Sorry I'm gross.' Then I remembered that the last note (a sweet one) I wrote him is tacked to his fridge, so I wrote another note for below the first one that says, 'P.S. Please do not put that note on your fridge.' I'm hoping my adorableness outweighs my grossness.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:20 pm 
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DC, I'm currently on the other side of that equation, so this is my take if you're interested to hear it: I make a lot more than my BF, so we put a cap on how much he can contribute. If we find a place where 50% is less than that amount, he'll pay 50%. If I want a place where his portion is less than 50%, I will pay whatever the difference is. We do a similar thing with groceries. I'm used to getting nicer stuff than he is, so I just pay more, and it's not a big deal. The way I see it, I'm happy to contribute more to have a shared situation where we're both happy. I can afford it, and I get benefits from his job (health insurance and GREAT deals on bike stuff, plus he wrenches on my bikes for free). If it were a big deal, though, I could live in a cheaper place and buy less hemp seeds and fancy almond butter and keep the contributions 50/50. I don't want to put financial stress on him because of my financial situation and expectations; I want my financial situation to be a benefit to both of us, so that's the spirit in which we try to arrange our contributions.

That's probably not helpful, but there it is.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:38 pm 
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I agree with JP. My boyfriend makes way more than I do, and I'm currently under-employed. The "if you want it and you can afford it, get it" approach works pretty well. Since I have more time at home I do more of the laundry and dishes and stuff, but there's no way I can contribute as much financially. I'm assuming that since you live together, you're in a place where you can feel comfortable saying that things don't have to be technically "even" for everything to be ok in the relationship.

I do think it's good to have a conversation with your partner about saving money. Ask him straight up how much really has to change lifestyle-wise to save X amount of dollars a month. Chances are, if he's really living it up too much to save money, he'll figure it out if you both crunch some numbers.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:43 pm 
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Addendum: I just asked him if he had any advice from his side of the equation, and he was like, "it's hard on my ego, but I figure I'd do the same in your situation, so I suck it up." So there you go.

ETA: Not that either of us is saying to suck it up. Just that it's a fraught issue.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:56 pm 
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Yeah and as I said, I was the moocher (ok not really) but it was easier for us to figure out the finances if we didn't try to split things down the middle and my husband has always made a lot more money although I've closed the gap some since we started dating but it was a ridiculous difference when we started. Finances are tough and can ruin relationships although after a year in, I just took over all our finances and my husband was happy because he didn't have to worry about anything other than making sure the direct deposit went to the right place. (I also had other nuances like a mortgage that I was paying for and wasn't sure how well it'd rent in the beginning)

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 5:50 pm 
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linanil wrote:
DC - When my husband and I moved in together, he paid the rent, I paid the bills/groceries. We lived in a cheap apartment for our area, built sometime in the 70s/60s, had a washer/dryer that was probably that old, horrible parking, inconsistent water pressure and temperature, no good walking paths and bossy management company. We lived there 2 years while saving up for a down payment. Honestly, we loved it but knew it was temporary. I also knew we could've had a nicer place for nearly double the price.

I wouldn't be worried too much about not being able to contribute as much but I would be worried about not making sacrifices for what both of you consider to be a temporary living situation. I'd ask him flat out, ask him about you contributing $X/month for rent, saving $Y/month for down payment and for the places he is interested in, ask him how much he expects he could save per month for a down payment on a place?


See, your above example is what I want to do... and he says he feels the same way, but when I find a REALLY GREAT option (seriously, bigger than many places we've found, loads of closet space, REALLY good price... the only drawback is a crappy kitchen), he changes his mind. And the rental market is too fast and too fickle around here--as soon as we turn it down, it'll be gone. This place is $1000 less than where we've been looking, and $900 less than our current combined rent. I really like it. He isn't willing to accept a small kitchen. And it is a small, crappy kitchen. But for a year while we save up a down payment? At saving $1500 a month, we'd actually have that in good time! But he's just not willing to do it.

I asked him to think about what his priorities really are--does he REALLY want to save for a house or not? If he doesn't, then we should get one of those really nice places he wants. But if he wants to save for a house, we're never going to be able to do it in one of those places, because we can't put enough away each month to make any progress on a down payment.

I'm fine with him paying more than I do, though I don't like it, but I want us to save money--and right now he's looking at places that not only don't have us saving, but have us both paying MORE than we already do, which is backwards of what we want.

I know it will get worked out, but right now it's frustrating and depressing, because I know we're going to lose this apartment that I really like that is such a good deal--the kind of thing that NEVER comes up in SF--just because he can't take having a less than perfect kitchen for a year.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 5:58 pm 
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I rather have $18k than a nice kitchen. I should say that place we lived in also had a crappy kitchen and I cook! but we worked it out.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:06 pm 
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About the toilet thing. Try some dish soap in there. Lubes it up pretty well. Heh.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 9:33 pm 
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ScooterDiva wrote:
lillianp wrote:
jordanpattern wrote:

In my experience, guys that make you feel like that, aren't guys you want in your life. You posted before about how you're his "second choice" and that whole situation, and honestly, it just sounds like it's an unbalanced and not terribly healthy relationship. I imagine you probably know that already. It sucks, and it's hard, but it sounds like you should move on. You deserve to feel better than you do, and it doesn't sound like that will happen with this guy.


All of this.


Thanks all. I went to a therapist for the first time today to talk about my relationship with him, my loneliness without him, and wanting to make friends outside the relationship. I got to see a lot of the red flags - my confidence has been taken away, I feel like a shell of myself, and I need to start making myself #1. Easier said than done, but I'm willing to work on me. If he wants to be a part of the journey, great, if not, get the hell out of the way.


i guess i just wanted to reply to this even though it was a couple of pages back. i was thinking about it because i've been in a similar situation and i know how hard it can be. props to you for walking through the therapists door-- that can take a lot of courage. i wish that someone had told me towards the beginning of my therapeutic pursuits that the labels, the new perspectives, and all that stuff that starts to come up in therapy... i wish someone had told me at the begininning that it was just a description, not an indictment. good luck and i admire your courage!


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 9:47 pm 
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DarthCupcake wrote:
linanil wrote:
DC - When my husband and I moved in together, he paid the rent, I paid the bills/groceries. We lived in a cheap apartment for our area, built sometime in the 70s/60s, had a washer/dryer that was probably that old, horrible parking, inconsistent water pressure and temperature, no good walking paths and bossy management company. We lived there 2 years while saving up for a down payment. Honestly, we loved it but knew it was temporary. I also knew we could've had a nicer place for nearly double the price.

I wouldn't be worried too much about not being able to contribute as much but I would be worried about not making sacrifices for what both of you consider to be a temporary living situation. I'd ask him flat out, ask him about you contributing $X/month for rent, saving $Y/month for down payment and for the places he is interested in, ask him how much he expects he could save per month for a down payment on a place?


See, your above example is what I want to do... and he says he feels the same way, but when I find a REALLY GREAT option (seriously, bigger than many places we've found, loads of closet space, REALLY good price... the only drawback is a crappy kitchen), he changes his mind. And the rental market is too fast and too fickle around here--as soon as we turn it down, it'll be gone. This place is $1000 less than where we've been looking, and $900 less than our current combined rent. I really like it. He isn't willing to accept a small kitchen. And it is a small, crappy kitchen. But for a year while we save up a down payment? At saving $1500 a month, we'd actually have that in good time! But he's just not willing to do it.

I asked him to think about what his priorities really are--does he REALLY want to save for a house or not? If he doesn't, then we should get one of those really nice places he wants. But if he wants to save for a house, we're never going to be able to do it in one of those places, because we can't put enough away each month to make any progress on a down payment.

I'm fine with him paying more than I do, though I don't like it, but I want us to save money--and right now he's looking at places that not only don't have us saving, but have us both paying MORE than we already do, which is backwards of what we want.

I know it will get worked out, but right now it's frustrating and depressing, because I know we're going to lose this apartment that I really like that is such a good deal--the kind of thing that NEVER comes up in SF--just because he can't take having a less than perfect kitchen for a year.


Have you guys made a budget together? Seems like you got it all figured out, but maybe he needs to sit down and do the math, budget and make a five year plan to see how impractical it is. Or maybe he'll find a way to make it work and make everyone happy. Sometimes its hard to sacrifice nice things when you don't have a clear plan set out on paper that you ca't defy.

Also watching marathons of Til Debt Do Us Part and Princess scared me and my boyfriend straight XD

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:06 am 
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allularpunk wrote:
So, I left a note on the lid of the toilet that says, 'I am good at a lot of things, but plunging toilets is not one of them. See, I even bought a new plunger, in the hopes that yours just sucks, but no. It's me. Sorry I'm gross.' Then I remembered that the last note (a sweet one) I wrote him is tacked to his fridge, so I wrote another note for below the first one that says, 'P.S. Please do not put that note on your fridge.' I'm hoping my adorableness outweighs my grossness.

Okay, I'm laughing so hard but mostly because of how awesome your note is. My note would probably only say WHY DIDN'T YOU WARN ME? I feel like I know people who would cry and cry. I also feel like I would scoop it all out with a bowl or something and put it in a bag and ditch it. (Okay I'd just throw it in a dumpster.) I hope your situation made him laugh at least.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 9:53 am 
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Here's what happened! After he had been home for a bit, and I got sufficiently tipsy, I said, 'Oh, by the way, your spare bathroom toilet sucks!' And he said he should have warned me, that it clogs all the time and is almost impossible to plunge, so it wasn't just me! He thought it was funny. I tried to force him to go read my note, but he wouldn't for some reason. Guess he'll see it when he sees it, haha.

Mike (the dog) destroyed one of my favorite pairs of pantaloons, as a thank you? For taking him on awesome walks and giving him peanut butter in his Kong? Jerk. Anyway, we (T and I, haha) had the most amazing (MOST AMAZING) 'thank goodness we're together again!' sex. Like, whoa.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:50 am 
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allularpunk wrote:
Anyway, we (T and I, haha) had the most amazing (MOST AMAZING) 'thank goodness we're together again!' sex. Like, whoa.

High five!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:00 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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Mars wrote:
allularpunk wrote:
Anyway, we (T and I, haha) had the most amazing (MOST AMAZING) 'thank goodness we're together again!' sex. Like, whoa.

High five!


Ha, seriously! Usually he and I high five after a really great session, but we were too mind blown to remember to do it this time.

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But if one were to tickle Pluto, I suspect that it might very quietly laugh. - pandacookie

55k usd is like 4 cad or whatever equivalent in beavers you use on the island - joshua


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:48 pm 
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Forgot to mention that I think my guy sort of very casually gave me a key to his house. I mean, I know I was using it this weekend while I was watching his dog, but I took it off my chain and gave it back to him. He then put it on his car key chain, and handed it back to me, since I'm using his car until I get my new one. I asked if he didn't need it, and he said, 'Oh...it's just on that chain...' But it wasn't on the chain last week when I was using his car. Is he sneakily giving me a key? I guess I'll find out when I stop borrowing his car for good, we'll see if he takes back both keys!

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But if one were to tickle Pluto, I suspect that it might very quietly laugh. - pandacookie

55k usd is like 4 cad or whatever equivalent in beavers you use on the island - joshua


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:50 pm 
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Arg I think we have a problem of space in our relationship :( Ladyfriend seems to want to spend basically every night with me, while I need some fraction of nights to myself to avoid madness or just getting stressed out and irritable. But I feel bad saying no to suggested hangouts. I guess I just need to get over that and just say "yo, I need the evening to myself".


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:53 pm 
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Tea wrote:
Arg I think we have a problem of space in our relationship :( Ladyfriend seems to want to spend basically every night with me, while I need some fraction of nights to myself to avoid madness or just getting stressed out and irritable. But I feel bad saying no to suggested hangouts. I guess I just need to get over that and just say "yo, I need the evening to myself".


I used to have this issue with a former partner all the time. She would feel like I was rejecting her when really I just needed some time on my own. It got a lot better when we had a talk about it and we discussed how we had different needs for alone time.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 2:55 pm 
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Yeah, I would try to just bring it up very diplomatically and gently. People must understand that other people need alone time. I thought I was going to have this problem with my dude (we have hung out/stayed the night together every single night for almost 2 months, except when he was out of town), but it turns out that we both just really like hanging out together in the evenings. We do spend all day apart, and sometimes we don't start hanging out until 8 or later, but we always end up in the same bed. Which is so so so weird for me (and him). I've had to have that conversation in other relationships, though. Just a short, 'Hey! I really like hanging out with you, but I need a little me time this week. Perhaps Tuesday?' That way it's not like she's expecting to hang out that night and then she finds out at the last minute that those plans aren't going to happen. That's the issue for me, I look forward to something and then it changes and I'm like, 'Ok...what do I do with myself now?' So maybe you have a set 'me!' night each week? (I'm a crazy planning OCD control freak, though, that might not work for everyone.)

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But if one were to tickle Pluto, I suspect that it might very quietly laugh. - pandacookie

55k usd is like 4 cad or whatever equivalent in beavers you use on the island - joshua


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 3:19 pm 
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Tea wrote:
Arg I think we have a problem of space in our relationship :( Ladyfriend seems to want to spend basically every night with me, while I need some fraction of nights to myself to avoid madness or just getting stressed out and irritable. But I feel bad saying no to suggested hangouts. I guess I just need to get over that and just say "yo, I need the evening to myself".


I'd say tell her something along the lines of having important things that you need to take care of, so you need the evening to get those things done. And "those things" might just be sitting around in your skivvies, watching bad TV, and drinking OJ straight from the carton (those are my important things I do when I don't see the bf), but she doesn't need to know.

I agree with everyone about being tactful. Your need is not at all unusual, though! Just make it clear that sometimes you need time to take care of your own things and responsibilities and maintenance and whatnot, and it's not because you don't like her or care about her or enjoy spending time with her, it's just that you need to be able to keep your life running smoothly and it's too easy to let a relationship take up time and energy such that other things fall to the wayside, and then one becomes stressed and angry and that strains the relationship and can pull it apart. You taking evenings to yourself is a demonstration of how much you care about the relationship and want to make it work!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 5:45 pm 
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Oh my gosh! We've been emailing (he's out of town on a business trip) and working out what's going on with us and he says I should call the really affordable place with the small kitchen and see if they can meet our terms (specific move-in date, taking some doors off the hinges and stowing them in the basement) and if they will, that I should get it for us! PROGRESS!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 5:48 pm 
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Yay!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 6:21 pm 
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Tea wrote:
Arg I think we have a problem of space in our relationship :( Ladyfriend seems to want to spend basically every night with me, while I need some fraction of nights to myself to avoid madness or just getting stressed out and irritable. But I feel bad saying no to suggested hangouts. I guess I just need to get over that and just say "yo, I need the evening to myself".


Just play this song over and over until she gets the hint:



On second thought, do what everyone else said.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 9:19 pm 
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Tea wrote:
Arg I think we have a problem of space in our relationship :( Ladyfriend seems to want to spend basically every night with me, while I need some fraction of nights to myself to avoid madness or just getting stressed out and irritable. But I feel bad saying no to suggested hangouts. I guess I just need to get over that and just say "yo, I need the evening to myself".


Oh my god, I have been this person. I am this person. (Well, not exactly.) My gf had to tell me that she needed alone time about a month into our relationship and I freaked out. Literally. I would cry and cry and tell her that I felt like she was abandoning me. Then I went to therapy and it got a lot better. I realized it was my own issues. I'm not saying tell your ladyfriend to go to therapy. I am saying that you could tell her that you know someone in a similar situation who it worked for (if she doesn't respond well. Hopefully she'll be like yeah, I need alone time too.)

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