Advice

Miss Information

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Have a question? Email erin@nerve.com. Letters may be edited for length, content and clarity.

Hi Miss Info,

There’s a woman who’s married who’s constantly responding to my personals profile looking for an affair. Not interested. This last time she was stupid enough to give me her personal contact info. I was doing some Googling and I found out all sorts of information about her! I know where she works and her street address. Her last name. I don’t do anything. Then she sends me a naked picture. This is out of line. (Although to be honest, she did look superb.) I want to go to her husband. I know who he is — he’s her number-one friend on MySpace. I’ve been in his situation. Looking at the pictures of the two of them I can only think that what she’s doing is disgusting. I want to tell him her secret. Do I? — Cheater Bait


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Dear Cheater Bait,
Here’s what happened the last time I went vigilante: I was waiting in line for the bathroom at a local bar. All of a sudden this guy comes sailing up, cruises past me, and starts trying the lock on the door. "Ah, EXCUSE ME," I say bitchily, tapping his shoulder. "I’m waiting. These people are too." Guy turns around, looks at me like he’s contemplating murder, and goes, "I work here. I’m putting toilet paper in the bathroom. Touch me again and I’ll throw you out of this bar."
Ouch. Awkward. I still don’t regret what I did, but I wish I had assumed less and waited more before I opened my mouth. I could have also weighed the relative importance of letting someone pee before me in lieu of getting in an unnecessary confrontation with someone who could put a huge loogey in my Brooklyn Lager if he so desired. The take-away: You never know who you’re fucking with. You have no ties to this person. Therefore, there is less reason than ever for you to get involved. Block her from contacting you and move on.

 

Dear Miss Information,

I have a long-standing crush on a married former college professor. He is really flirtatious, but I get the impression it’s how he remains faithful. I hit on him by email to no response, but he still flirts with me when I see him in person. Recently, my best friend started talking to him. Innocent enough, but I’m suddenly consumed by the notion that if he were to sleep with anyone, it would be her. I know the whole thing is somewhat far-fetched, but I’m no less upset.
Nothing seems more pathetic than asking a friend to regard someone who has rejected you as hands-off, but I wish she would just do so without my asking. Instead, she playfully talks of a threesome between us and has begun mentioning him frequently in casual conversation. She used to scold me for pursuing a married man — shouldn’t it seem doubly bad that she would entertain the idea of the same married man whom her best friend really wanted? What can I do? — Too Preoccupied For a Clever Pen Name

Dear Preoccupied,
Your BFF is probably talking shit in a misguided attempt to bond with you. As in, "You like this guy. I like this guy. We both like the same guy, even though neither of us stands an eagle’s chance in Azerbaijan of sleeping with him." He’s a married authority figure and a chronic flirt. Unless you’re a call girl and he’s a dumb-as-a-box-of-hammers state governor, chances are nothing’s going to happen between you two. Her either. This makes Miss BFF feel like it’s safe to talk about it. I doubt she knows just how much it’s hurting you.
And about that, why are you eating up your energy pellets, Preoccupied? Say everything goes exactly the way you want it and you and the professor get in a relationship. What then? You’ve got a married guy with a ton of baggage, working in an occupation where he’s super-likely to cheat on you (not counting the sex he’s already having with the missus). Even if you’re only after him for special adult alone time, I’m sure there are more emotionally and physically sanitary options. This is one of those situations that’s only going to end with you feeling bad about yourself. You might feel comfortable with that, but I think you’re top banana and deserve more.
Talk to your BFF. You need to communicate or it’s just going to fester. Try saying something like: "I don’t know if you realize it, but you’ve been talking a lot about Professor Fuckbody. I know it’s silly, but I really like him. I don’t own him and I’m not your life coach, but there are a lot of dudes out there and I would feel bad if you dated this particular one. If you are dating him, or plan to in the future, I’d appreciate if you told me and just basically treaded lightly. Alright? Alright. Let’s go snort pizza rolls and buy some skanky tops."
I don’t know enough about your history or her personality to know how she’s going to react. Good or bad, you need to get some new dick on your radar. I mean it, Preoccupied. Take your focus off the ambiguous prospect and make an effort. Now.

Dear Miss Information,

My fiancé is a trust-fund baby. He says he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me, but why does he want me to sign a pre-nup? I’m hurt and offended. I don’t want to sign it, because it says to me he is not 100% committed to our relationship. How can I tell him this without starting a huge fight and sounding like a manipulative gold-digger? I’m not. I fell for him before he let on that he had some cash. — Confused Bride-To-Be

Dear Bride-To-Be,
Next time you get in my car, I don’t want you to wear a seat belt. You’re implying that I’m a bad driver. I know 40,000 people die in car accidents every year and the majority of those went bareback. But I don’t give a wheat penny. If you were totally committed to our friendship, your belief in my being able to control my car as well as those of everyone around me should be enough. Now here. Hold the steering wheel while I do this shot of absinthe. . .
Marriage is not for pussies. It has a pretty high failure rate, and you need to go into it with your peepers wide open. I can see not wanting to maintain detailed dossiers containing contact information for your second-, third- and fourth-choice partners. But not planning for a very possible outcome because you find it insulting and a sign of distrust is naïve and juvenile.
Don’t look at it as him being protected from you. That’s an easy trap, and I’m sure it’s why you’re feeling so hurt and defensive. A more accurate way to look at it is working out the details of a partnership. Because it is. Don’t forget that you could get rich, too. For instance, say he gambles away all his money, and you start your own business and make a fortune selling pasta makers to dogs. (Hey, it could happen. Someone get me more absinthe!) Then you’ll want to be protected, right? Okay, if not you, then what about your dad? Your mom? You don’t know what’s going to go down in the next twenty years. Life is freaking nuts.
Do some research. Talk to people online. Get a lawyer. The more involved you are, the less you’ll feel like you’re losing control or being fucked over. Draw up a new prenup, or hire an independent source to look over the terms of the one he’s already prepared.
If you’ve read all this and still want to tell him to get bent, that’s your prerogative. But by all means have an alternative: trusts, estate planning and keeping finances separate are all viable options. It’s a touch old, but CNN has a good starter article on this topic. Check it out.


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©2008 Erin Bradley and Nerve.com