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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 12:33 am 
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The bf and I have been dating for six months. We have talked about moving in together come June when my school year ends and I'm in transition between jobs. But today, we went to a pickup party at one of the wineries he belongs to. And his ex was there. An ex that I have always been under the impression was not that important and hadn't been that big of a deal.

But then we're all hanging out--me, him, her, mutual friends--and she's talking, and cold-shouldering me, and talking about all these things they've done together... And talking about when they did things that he has talked about doing with me, and when they took these trips together to stay with his family, and all this... And it just made me realize and feel like what we have isn't special where I thought that it was. I'm just another girl in the same category as all the ones who have been here before. I know that this isn't the case because his friends have told me over and over, but I can't stop having this awful feeling. It sucks. It's stupid. But there it is. BLARGH.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:22 am 
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DarthCupcake, sounds like his ex was intentionally trying to make you feel insecure or alienate you. Wonderful!

But I can relate to the feeling you're describing. I dated this guy for a long time who had been married once before, and even though I knew he wasn't still having romantic feelings for his ex-wife it felt weird when he introduced me to friends that had been their mutual friends, when he took me to hang out at places I knew they'd frequented together, or even to meet his mom, who still had their wedding photos in her house (not out of spite towards me, I think his mom was just a bit spacey and forgot they were out even though they had been divorced for a couple years!)

But you know what? That doesn't mean you're a placeholder in some sort of girlfriend category or that what you have isn't special. You're a totally different person to her! Even if you do the same exact stuff she does you're going to do it in a different way! So he took his ex to meet his family before? That seems natural if they were dating. But she isn't his girlfriend anymore, you are. If you end up going some places or doing some things he had done with her that isn't really that weird either, because in his mind it's probably just an interesting experience that he's done before and thinks you'd appreciate. If he acts like their relationship wasn't very important, maybe it wasn't to him. It's probably just her.

Sorry if that seems ranty, it's just that I remember my own insecurities from back then, and in retrospect I felt silly for even thinking about things that way. Just be awesome and enjoy what you guys have, because as long as you guys make each other happy and are good to each other it doesn't matter what happened before.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:28 am 
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Oh, DC. It's hard to have to think about our significant others having had others who were significant before us. But the longer we're on this planet, the more life they've lived before we came along. Biker boy was married once and even though I was married once too and my ex is such a closed chapter of my life, and I know intellectually that she's a closed chapter in biker boy's life, I can't help but have wee pangs of envy for the woman who inspired him to propose. It does suck. And it is stupid. But I think it's probably pretty normal to feel that way. It's just a part of loving someone and wanting to know that you're special to them.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:34 am 
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My partner dated a LOT of people before he met me (and was, in fact, married before me) and between that and being a bit older, it seemed for the longest time like everything we did, I found out later he'd done with someone else. (Or multiple someone elses.) And it is really hard not to get sucked into feeling like, oh yeah, I'm just another person in your string of people. It took me literally years to get over it and I still have my bad days every once in a blue moon.

But the thing I've come to realize is that doing anything is totally different when you're doing it with the right person.

(And, stick around long enough and you'll eventually get to have *some* experiences no one else has had with that person...)

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 2:45 am 
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DarthCupcake wrote:
The bf and I have been dating for six months. We have talked about moving in together come June when my school year ends and I'm in transition between jobs. But today, we went to a pickup party at one of the wineries he belongs to. And his ex was there. An ex that I have always been under the impression was not that important and hadn't been that big of a deal.

But then we're all hanging out--me, him, her, mutual friends--and she's talking, and cold-shouldering me, and talking about all these things they've done together... And talking about when they did things that he has talked about doing with me, and when they took these trips together to stay with his family, and all this... And it just made me realize and feel like what we have isn't special where I thought that it was. I'm just another girl in the same category as all the ones who have been here before. I know that this isn't the case because his friends have told me over and over, but I can't stop having this awful feeling. It sucks. It's stupid. But there it is. BLARGH.


Six months isn't that long and maybe he's just more cautious now. There IS a reason why she's his EX, so I wouldn't trip. I get a little more jaded every relationship, so maybe he's just playing it a little cooler since his last. I don't know him or you, but I do know me, and maybe he regrets doing all those things with her now. Also she seems REALLY tacky talking about that stuff in front of you. Obviously some stories would come up, but it sounds like she's a douche. When that shiitake would happen to me, my ex and my current would just shiitake talk me.
That said, hopefully he's aware enough to be like: hey sorry, she was being kinda lame? Maybe?

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:33 am 
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monkeytoes wrote:
Oh, DC. It's hard to have to think about our significant others having had others who were significant before us. But the longer we're on this planet, the more life they've lived before we came along. Biker boy was married once and even though I was married once too and my ex is such a closed chapter of my life, and I know intellectually that she's a closed chapter in biker boy's life, I can't help but have wee pangs of envy for the woman who inspired him to propose. It does suck. And it is stupid. But I think it's probably pretty normal to feel that way. It's just a part of loving someone and wanting to know that you're special to them.


Yeah, I'll agree. Mr Nil was married before too and I think that brought up feelings in me that I hadn't felt with anyone else I had dated before. I think having a long relationship/being married before can also make them more cautious with you. We've also created experiences that he didn't have before because I've created them because they were things I wanted to do. I know it is hard but I'd say don't think of yourself as competing with a former relationship but feel free to suggest things like "hey, I'd like to do this!" and start planning things out.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:11 am 
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My fiancé just said that talking to me "feels like work", and has done for months.

Not really sure what to do with that. Ouch.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:49 am 
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That's messed up. Not a good omen. First, it is concerning that he would be feeling that way, like as if he is putting everything on you. Second, relationships require work and if he doesn't think that it is important, worthwhile work, that is a problem. I'm sorry. I wouldn't let that comment slide.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:53 am 
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Thanks... I appreciate the perspective. Feeling a bit lost right now.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:08 am 
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Yikes Morgyn...yeah, if that's the best he can do for communication...maybe make a relationship therapy appt? {hugs}

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 11:38 am 
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It's been interesting to read about the experiences people have had with feeling not special because of their current partner's past. I've been kind of feeling that with Older Man (I'm not ready to call him my boyfriend...manfriend?), and trying to play it cool. Because he is so much older than me (14 years), he's obviously been dating for a longer time. But never married, never even lived with a woman (is that a red flag?). Still, I'm trying to think about it with perspective. I've been dating for 15 years, and have had plenty of partners and serious relationships, so he's not the only one with experience.

My main concern is how quickly things are moving between us, emotionally speaking. I know that sometimes people totally fall in love right away and that's that and it's amazing (we haven't said the L word yet, but it seems to be heading there with a quickness), but I have a hard time believing it is happening to us. Why? I mean, I really have known him for almost 4 years, so it maybe isn't that surprising that just taking our relationship to this next level made sense in a way that neither of us realized it would. And it's not that I don't trust him, because I definitely do. I don't think he would mess around on me, and we have agreed to not see other people. It's just that...he's so great, and he's dated so many women, I can't imagine why he would suddenly be feeling these incredible feelings for me of all people. I guess that's not up to me to determine, and I should just enjoy the ride. Who knows where it may lead?

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:48 pm 
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Embarrassing admission about something that has been on my mind a lot lately:

After having finished my read of Stephen King's Dark Tower series, I've been having daydreams about infinite universes in which I end up in happy, long-term, and lifelong relationships with all my exes. For some reason, every time a relationship ends (for whatever reason), I like to imagine it working out in some far-off land for a different version of me. Maybe I married my high school sweetheart in Universe X or maybe I ended up in a committed polyamorous relationship with another ex in Universe Y. It sort of lessens the pain for me, albeit in an incredibly nerdy and admittedly emo-ish way.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:03 pm 
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camuscando wrote:
Embarrassing admission about something that has been on my mind a lot lately:

After having finished my read of Stephen King's Dark Tower series, I've been having daydreams about infinite universes in which I end up in happy, long-term, and lifelong relationships with all my exes. For some reason, every time a relationship ends (for whatever reason), I like to imagine it working out in some far-off land for a different version of me. Maybe I married my high school sweetheart in Universe X or maybe I ended up in a committed polyamorous relationship with another ex in Universe Y. It sort of lessens the pain for me, albeit in an incredibly nerdy and admittedly emo-ish way.


I kind of totally love this.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2013 1:40 pm 
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So dude who broke up with me and I are working things out- neither of us actually wants to quit or get out of the relationship, it's just been hard. He's been working a ton, I've been stressed because of work and needing to see him more, etc. Which is fine, but it's straining our relationship. And every time we start getting good again, something makes it falter.
Like last night was his birthday and I was getting sick and already exhausted, so I was entirely out of it. I even went home at 9.30, and I feel wildly guilty, because, between the two of us, we've never had a good birthday together. They always end badly. I know it isn't my fault I was sick and tired and just wasn't having drinking or socializing with people I already dislike, but I know I could've been a better girlfriend for the little time I was around him. I tried, I was just..ugh. And I'm just waiting for him to read my apology text this morning so I know we're ok. Or not.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:16 pm 
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missdelaney, that sounds really stressful. I hope you guys are able to work something out soon.

Everybody is being mean to me about Older Man. Ok, full disclosure: He owns the restaurant I work at. Yes, I'm aware that entering a relationship with this person is probably super dumb for lots of practical reasons, but I was quitting anyway (or at least, thinking about it, and this gave me the push I needed). I told my mom about seeing him and how awesome it was and she was kind of a bisque about it, saying what a bad idea it was, which I get, but... Why can no one just listen to me when I tell them how happy I am? So she told my dad, of course, who then posted something ON MY FACEBOOK about it! Basically saying, 'oh hey, yeah, you can quit your job I guess since you're forking your boss', which I didn't realize until I had just called to chat with my dad and he told me he posted this thing on Facebook, so I rushed home and deleted it and had to, like, chastise my dad for being a crasshole. I am a grown up! Just because I'm not married or a mom or a homeowner doesn't mean that I'm not an adult who can make her own choices. They treat me like I'm such a fuck-up, and I'm not. It's tiresome. So I just get to listen to my dad tell me how dumb I am for doing this thing that is making me all squishy and happy inside and he won't listen to me when I try to explain about it. Then! I went over to my best friend's house and SHE was being a bisque about it, too! I was trying to gush a little, and she said, 'This just has disaster written all over it.' what the fizzle. I mean, is it not possible to get involved with someone older and be happy? If we're happy, then why the fork should it matter? Also, I think she just likes me miserable, because her life is sort of miserable all the time (for reasons that she can't and won't change).

Anyway, fork them. I'm not going to write them off, I'm just not going to talk to them about it. If it ends up going somewhere (which it seems to be), then they can just hate it and deal with it on their own. Because after all that, I went over to his house and he washed my jeans with the rest of his laundry and we watched Lost and The Terminator while drinking wine and chatting about all things awesome and then went to bed and didn't have sex (because it's not just about sex!) and just had the soundest sleeps ever. And he got me cashews to munch on. Also his dog is awesome and he likes to cook and he is a good driver and he pays his bills on time and is generally responsible and he makes me laugh so much.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:22 pm 
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My husband isn't older than me but I lost 2 friends due to dating him. One friend I lost because she couldn't stand the fact that I was dating someone seriously and she wasn't. The other because she couldn't stand that there was someone else in my life besides her.

I say go you, dating your boss is yeah a little (lot) iffy but you are quitting but I wouldn't worry about the age thing unless it bothers either of you which it sounds like it doesn't.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:34 pm 
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My husband is 17 years older than me and we have been married 20 years. Do what's best for you and don't listen to anyone else. They are not the ones living your life.

My parents' only criteria is that he makes me happy. Other than that, I could have married E.T. for all they care.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:36 pm 
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Yeah! Thanks! Seriously, the only thing off is that he is my boss, but that is soon to be not the case! I've needed to quit there for so long because I hated working there SO MUCH. And really, yeah, he's technically my 'boss' because he owns the place, but I have 4 managers that are my direct bosses in between and they run the place, not him. He pops in and makes sure things are going smoothly, pays the bills, etc. He doesn't interact with the servers as a boss at all. Anyway, whatever, he's been my friend for years and we've hung out socially before this.

Becca, my friend, was pushing me so hard last month to start dating this friend of hers and he never called me back. Then when we talked about Tony (Older Man), she was like, 'You just got out of a relationship.' Uh, you didn't care when it was your friend. She just is in this stagnant, unhappy relationship that she refuses to extricate herself from and she has all these eye problems which she can't help, but it all kind of compounds to make her really unhappy and any time I talk about how happy I am about anything, she gets grumpy with me. Too bad, I'm not putting my happiness on hold for anyone anymore. I've been doing that for pretty much my entire life and I'm sick of it.

He makes me feel good. There's nothing illegal and no one is getting hurt, so I don't see what the problem is.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:41 pm 
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It's a fine line. On the one hand, having friends who will actually call you on your shiitake (or tell you when they think something is amiss in your life) is a valuable thing. On the other hand, only you really know what's up with your relationship. Your friends and family aren't in the relationship, so they can't know how it truly is.

In my experience, you just have to take in everything that's coming at you and try to make the best decision for you. I know there have been times in my life where after a breakup, friends have said that they never liked my former partner, and that always made me feel like, "well, why the hell didn't you say so!?" At the same time, it's really hard to hear people criticize your relationship or your partner, particularly when everything is new and squishy and nice. I guess you just have to keep your eyes open and try not to be too bothered by the haters, since hopefully they're motivated by concern and protectiveness of you, even if they're expressing it in a douchey way.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:55 pm 
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Yeah, I do appreciate honesty. I just wish they would listen to what I'm telling them. They'll just cut me off mid-sentence with a bunch of hatin'.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:13 pm 
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JoPa speaks wisely. I wish I had listened to more people when they had commented on my previous relationships because it probably could've spared me a lot of heartache and unhappiness. (The fact that everyone has universally ADORED my current beau actually weirds me out now, though. Where is the wariness? Where is the scorn? WHAT HAS HAPPENED)

That said, I also totally understand what you're saying. I have a friend who is a constant and repeat offender with ending a relationship and then IMMEDIATELY jumping into another one that is super serious, super fast, and they are usually with men she works with (she changes work places, she gets a new fellow), and another friend who tends to line up new boyfriends (including testing them for sex) before breaking up with the old boyfriend, and doesn't have her own apartment... she just moves from place to place. So I see this potentially incredibly toxic behavior and I have to always remind myself to be open-minded about the guy and give him a chance and not just sit there being a judgmental bisque to my friend, because if I am going to do that, why am I her friend? It can be tough. I doubt you are a chronic offender like my friends, so your friends ought to have an easier time of it, but they're probably just bringing in all their baggage and assumptions and having a hard time being fair.

Quitting is particularly important in this case. I think once that's out of the way, people will be able to be a little more cool with it.

And older men are a-okay. My fellow is 11 years older than I am, and it's not an issue! If it works, it works, and that's all that matters. Your happiness is paramount!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:20 pm 
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But if a friend told one they didn't like your boyfriend/girlfriend, does anyone ever listen? I feel like if anyone listened, that would be kind of unprecedented in my experience. I feel like when someone's in a relationship, they ain't gonna listen to anyone. Love is blind, deaf and dumb. That doesn't mean one shouldn't speak up if they feel something damaging/heartbreaking is afoot but I can't think of a single instance in my own experience where anyone has ever acted on a friend not liking their boyfriend or not. Unless they're in high school and it's a peer pressure/popularity thing--like a cheerleader couldn't be seen dating a nerd or whatevs.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:49 pm 
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It's definitely hard to hear that kind of stuff when you're in a relationship. I think maybe the important thing isn't necessarily to do what your friends say, but to have people in your life who will be honest and make you think about this stuff. I know I have appreciated that, even when I haven't done what my friends wanted.

In my current relationship, one of my best friends had a lot of misgivings about it at the beginning. It didn't have to do with the guy so much as with how she perceived me to be acting. It was tough to hear what she had to say about it, but in the end, talking to her about it kind of made me take a good, hard look at the situation and ultimately made me more sure of my decision.

Sure, it sounds like allularpunk's situation is a bit different. Her friends sound like they're being more difficult and hostile than mine, and that's too bad, but maybe their objections will make her think more about her situation and enable her to feel ultimately more confident. Or maybe it will encourage her to dump her friends. I don't know - I just mostly mean that sometimes being challenged on your shiitake can be a good thing.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 3:16 pm 
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Oh, yeah, that's important that your friends can be honest and all that.

Not that anyone else here is dating a crasshole, but when I was dating a crasshole, I knew full well I was dating a crasshole and he was MY crasshole. Until I got tired of his poop.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 3:18 pm 
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I was just thinking how nice it is to hear about people doing so well and being so happy after they leave a long term relationship. When I broke off an engagement when I was 35, a friend of mine congratulated me and said that it was brave to do so, because at that point most people just stay put and complain to their friends about their partner. And I think that has always stuck with me.

Its so hard to break up with someone, especially if you've been living together for a while, and it generally feels so difficult and bleak before you do it and its been nice seeing people like pickledtreats and allularpunk having so much happiness afterwards. I am sorry people are down on your choice allularpunk, but it is nice to hear you happy.

And as far as friends go, while it can be good to have people who care about you give you their input, provided its from a place of genuine caring, their advice is often informed by their own fears and in my experience it tends to err towards the pessimistic, DTMFA side of things. Its hard to find someone who makes you feel wonderful and even if that relationship doesn't last forever, feeling wonderful even for a short period is a good thing.

And SV, I think people do listen, they may not act directly on another's advice, but the doubts and the questions do seep in - I know they have for me. And sometimes that can help you end a bad relationship, which is a good thing.

Good thoughts to everyone in this thread!

_________________
But on a cold winter night, when the wind whispers through the trees and a bright, white moon hangs heavy in the air, you might hear a sad cry like someone thinking he knows what's best for you, and that'll be the white man a-passin' you by. just mumbles


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