So I’ve tried writing in before but I couldn’t quite figure out how to put my situation into a question until today. The question you ask? “How do I deal with someone obsessively in love with my significant other?”
To avoid names, let’s call the person causing the problem Ox, for obsessive ex; Ox and my current SO used to date, SO broke up with her over a year ago (heck, it may be closer to two years now) and she’s never been over him, ever, and it drives me absolutely nuts. What Ox does is send him texts, it used to be close to ten times a day which has been cut back to one maybe two, thanks to my asking him after he started a bad habit of ignoring his phone assuming it was the Ox, leaving my and some other friends’ texts ignored. Ox also sends him rather costly (for someone in grad school) presents, which okay, I can deal with and roll my eyes at if it weren’t for the love letters she sends along with them.
The big thing about all of this, is that my SO is used to this behavior from her, tunes out the parts about adoration, and is generally happy to have a nice new pair of slippers and hear how his friend is doing. To me it’s annoying to see someone telling my friend that they have something special and belong together, even if I weren’t dating this guy, she’s just starting to go the psycho route and I’m worried about what could happen to him if she cracks.
In the meantime, I have talked with my SO about this and about how much it troubles me, he recognizes it and doesn’t blame me for being nervous. However he always refers to her as a “dear friend”, someone he wants to be friends with even though he has said she has co-dependence problems and purposefully didn’t contact her or respond to her ~10 texts a day for months.
We all live in different cities so I don’t feel like there’s anything I can do, but I’m hoping maybe there just is something out there I’m not thinking of, or maybe by writing this someone else can be helped with their similar problem.
Feeling Like The Other Woman
There’s a whole lot of “not cool” all around, TOW. And I hate to say it, but at least a little of the blame goes to your significant other.
It’s bad enough that his ex is apparently obsessive in her attempts to reconnect and – in her view – win his heart back from the hideous Jezebel who stole him away (which is to say, you)… but your SO is enabling her in doing so.
Now, I’m all in favor of staying friends with your ex-lovers, assuming the breakup was amicable and the both of you have had time to recover, gain some perspective and – critically – get over one another. I think wanting to be friends, legitimately friends, afterwards is can be quite noble. In this case however, it’s a great big, giant fucking bad idea. Because, frankly, neither your guy nor his ex are actually trying to be friends. She wants him back and he is rather clearly tripping on the adoration he’s getting from her – despite his protests to the contrary.
I don’t think there’s any real worry that your guy’s going to dump you and head back to his ex, but his behavior is emphatically not cool, either to you or his ex. He may say she’s a dear friend and someone he wants to keep in his life, but his actions speak otherwise. I mean, I don’t have too many “dear friends” whose texts and phone calls I ignore constantly after all.
No, let’s be honest: your guy is using her and her devotion towards him. He may insist that he’s ignoring her adulation of him, but his actions speak otherwise. He’s putting up with her because he enjoys the attention and the gifts. Straight talk: he may not see it that way but he’s using her. It’s not fair to her and – considering how much this spills into your life – it’s not fair to you.
Now, you’re right: there’s nothing you can do about it. This is his problem and his damage to solve. You need to let him know that how he’s treating her – and you – isn’t cool. He’s enabling her in her unhealthy behavior and he’s disrespecting you by letting it continue. I’m sure he thinks it’s harmless, but the best thing he could do all around is to take the nuclear option and cut all ties. This means more than just ignoring her texts (and ending up ignoring yours and other people’s by accident) – it means cutting off all forms of communication: Facebook, Twitter, texts, emails, all of it. He needs to send the presents back unopened and marked “return to sender”, block her number on his phone and otherwise cut her out of his life.
It’ll suck – I’m sure he thinks that she really is a good friend, despite the way she acts – but if he actually cares about her, he should realize that this is the kindest thing he could do. Until he does, he’s stringing her along and that is an incredibly shit thing to do.
I keep on hearing all this shit about porn causing erectile dysfunction. I’m a young guy (22), and obviously don’t want ED (It’s the same reason I haven’t started on Propecia or Rogaine) but the only way to prevent this porn induced ED seems to be quitting masturbating altogether. What the fuck man?!
Slow your roll there, chief.
First of all: You’re 22. The only time you should be worrying about erectile dysfunction is when you actually have it happen to you. Even then, the odds are good that it’s a temporary issue brought about by stress, exhaustion or too much alcohol.
Now, the issue you’re talking about is the idea that excessive consumption of porn can degrade one’s sex life by inhibiting dopamine release and training one’s brain to require increasing levels of intense sexual stimulus to release the same levels of endorphins that it had before you’d gone on a nightly RedTube binge. By OD’ing on porn – so the theory goes – you make it harder to actually have the expected sexual arousal or desire with a person because you’ve desensitized yourself to erotic stimulus; you don’t get hard for your girlfriend because you’ve watched so much vanilla porn that you’re bored and you’ve had to move on to harder core stuff to get the same charge.
Now there are questions as to the validity of this theory (and a lot of jokes to be made about scientific rigor) but it’s hard to argue that overconsumption of porn is a bad idea in general… same as with overconsumption of anything that triggers the reward response in your brain. Addiction to just about anything is going to have negative effects on your life, whether physical, emotional or social.
The cure isn’t to give up masturbation – although if you’re masturbating to the point that you’re tearing the skin or you’d rather masturbate than actually have sex with another person, you’ve got a problem – it’s to not binge on porn. Moderation is the key here. I am, as I’ve said before, unabashedly pro-porn – but it’s not there are limits. If you’re the sort of person who’s got RedTube open in one window, running a compilation of Brandy Talore’s greatest
tits hits in a Quicktime playlist and a Skype session with a webcam model in yet ANOTHER window in order all in order to get off then yes, you’ve definitely got to cut back.
If you’re worried that your porn habit is affecting your ability to achieve and maintain an erection or your arousal levels with a person (rather than a video) then take an enforced break from porn. Resolve to to take a 60 day no-porn challenge – no webcam girls, no Playboy, nothing – and see how you feel at the end. Draw your own conclusions at how your porn consumption has or has not affected your sex-life and make the adjustments accordingly.