my 26 years, I’ve had my fair share of relationships. I’m
usually the one spooning up advice to friends hungry for wisdom.
Sadly, I’m helpless to aid myself in my current situation.
I met this girl four months ago, and she’s “the girl of my
dreams.” If you met her, you would know that angels exist
on earth. The problem is that she’s married and has four kids.
Her cheating husband is abusive to her (verbally, physically,
etc.). He’s raped her twice (once using a “date-rape” drug),
and he was tried for the rape of a girl in the first year
of their marriage. His kids seesaw between loving and fearing
She has never reached out to anyone for help until me. If
things were different, this would be my wife and kids. I know
she feels the same for me as I do for her, but she is unwilling
or unable to sever ties with her husband. She says she knows
that one day he will kill her, and it seems as if she’s resigned
herself to this fate. I have offered to remove this problem,
but she fears losing us both. How do I save her from this
nightmare before it’s too late?
Is Faithful Eternally
the mail is sooooooooo depressing that I just want to think
about other things.
Like Next. Last weekend I was stuck in a hotel room
in Portland, Ore., on account of a teensy, weensy hangover,
and I caught a marathon of the MTV dating show. Here’s how
the show works: One person—say, a boy—goes on a blind date
with a girl. If the boy doesn’t like the girl, he says “Next!”
and one of four other girls, all waiting on a bus, takes the
first girl’s place. The rejected girl returns to the bus to
be cruelly mocked by her rivals. The boy continues barking
“Next!” until he finds a girl he likes. Sometimes there are
five boys on the bus and a girl barks “Next!”; and every once
in a while five gay boys are on the bus and another gay boy
While the gay episodes demonstrate to MTV’s impressionable
viewers that young gay people are really no different—they’re
every bit as shallow, vapid, and crude as their straight counterparts—not
one of the gay episodes really worked. Instead of anxiously
waiting to see which of the five will be chosen, viewers of
the gay installments of Next anxiously wait for the
five boys on the bus to strip down and get it on. The gay
boys on the Next bus aren’t rivals, MTV, they’re all
potential matches, which makes the one guy who isn’t on the
bus nearly irrelevant. In all three of the gay episodes I
saw, the boys on the bus were more into each other then they
were into the boy for whose affections they were supposedly
competing; in gay Next the boy who “won” a second date
with the boy-who-wasn’t-on-the-bus declined, preferring to
run off with one of the other guys on the bus.
Recreating the “five bitchy rivals” dynamic that makes the
hetero episodes of Next so entertaining wouldn’t be
that hard, MTV. Here’s all you need to do: Put five hairy
bears on the bus that are only attracted to pretty twinks
and let them compete for the, er, hand of one pretty
twink. Or five white guys that are only into Asian guys competing
for an Asian guy. Or five tops and one bottom. Or five Log
Cabin Republicans and one CPA. Take a little more care with
the casting and preinterviews, MTV, and you’ll be able to
solve Next’s gay problem. You’re welcome.
As for your problem, LIFE, I don’t even know where to begin.
Maybe I’m just shocked that the girl of your dreams—the girl
of any man’s dreams—would be a married woman with four children
and what may be the worst taste in men this side of Denise
Richards. Can this angel-on-earth pick ’em or what? She married
a bordering-on-homicidal asshole and now she’s sneaking around
with a bordering-on-homicidal dumbass, a guy so stupid that
he would threaten the life of his lover’s husband in a newspaper
column. (You offered to “remove the problem,” but she fears
“losing you both.”) Nice work, LIFE. Let’s hope your lover’s
husband doesn’t have a fatal accident anytime soon—an actual
accident, not an “accident”—or LIFE isn’t just going to be
Since you will probably ignore the only sensible advice I
could offer (“Run, LIFE, run!”), I’m not going to bother.
Instead I’m going to pour a little poison in your ear: Have
you bothered to confirm your lover’s story? Your letter makes
this woman’s husband seem monstrous, perfectly monstrous.
In fact, he seems a little too perfectly monstrous. Have you
entertained the possibility that you’re being fed a massive
load of shit, LIFE? Some cheaters invent elaborate tales of
woe—the frigid, manipulative shrew of a wife; the abusive,
suspicious, but somehow easily fooled husband—because the
cheater wants to have her infidelities and her victim status
So, LIFE, again, before you run off and kill anyone: Have
you bothered to check her story out? If your lover’s husband
was tried for rape, then there are records out there somewhere—trial
transcripts, newspaper articles. Have you looked them up?
It’s something you might want to do before you “remove” anybody.
I’m an 18-year-old female. My version of senioritis
took a psychotic turn and I was hospitalized. After. A. Pitiful.
Suicide. Attempt. Now I am pleased to be alive. However, my
problem lies in the ever-challenging world of teenage boys.
Having formerly been the most prudish of virgins—I’ve. Never.
Been. Touched.—I now realize that life is short. I want to
get fucked, sir. I’m attractive, but the boys I know have
concluded that I am crazy because of my recent history. What.
The. Fuck. Do. I. Do?
Unfairly, Now Traumatized
To. College. Far. From. Home. Meet. Some. New. Boys.
I love my husband so, so much. He’s so, so good to me,
we have a great life together, and the sex is good. But there’s
another man I’m so, so attracted to. I don’t want to jeopardize
my marriage, or hurt my husband, but I’m afraid I might give
in to the attraction in a moment of weakness. At the same
time, I don’t want to give up the activity where I see this
other man, because the activity (martial-arts study) is a
really important part of my life.
what a predicament! The more time you spend with this other
man, the likelier it becomes that you’ll cheat. But you can’t
stop seeing this other man because you study martial arts
with him and that’s such an important part of your life—unlike,
say, your marriage—and you couldn’t possibly give it up! And
as everyone on earth knows, there’s only one martial-arts
school on the whole freakin’ planet, so you’re pretty much
condemned to spend time with this other man—what other choice
do you have?—until the inevitable inevitability inevitably
Puh-leeze, SSM. If your husband doesn’t rate the supreme sacrifice
of switching to some other martial-arts school, then nothing
I can say is going to stop you from getting what you so, so
desperately want. But after you fuck this other guy, SSM,
don’t run around pretending that you were just a victim of
cruel circumstance—martial arts made me do it!—and not the
so, so guilty instigator.