My partner and I have been together for two years, and were friends before. I believe that he’s “the one” and he assures me that he feels the same.
We’re saving for a mortgage, hoping to buy a house soon. We’ve also spoken about children and marriage.
However, he’s saying that he cannot afford a ring now.
I understand, and have offered to pay half the cost, but says he wants it to be a surprise.
I’ve also suggested getting a cheaper ring, then upgrading when the budget allows, which he’s also not keen to do.
Then he says we can't afford a wedding now anyway.
It’s making me unhappy, as I feel he’s using the cost of a ring and wedding as an excuse.
But when confronted, he insists it’s purely the cost that’s the issue.
He doesn't understand that for me, it's the gesture rather than the ring itself. I'm not sure what to do.
The Ring Symbol
More important than a ring is a legal co-habitation agreement. Your guy needs to understand, beyond mortgages, that he’s making a life commitment.
Even if you have an early such agreement, you need legal advice on buying a place together, plus a contract regarding joint ownership.
He’s more likely to understand the ring’s symbolism for you, when he recognizes that you two are making a serious move together, and that the future is here, not far off.
If he still doesn’t get it, then consider delaying house buying till you’re engaged. The priority here is the relationship, not property.
I recently learned that a good friend of mine had been addicted to cocaine, heroin, and pain pills in the past, and is probably now into pain-medication abuse.
She’s told me that she "tried" cocaine and some other drugs, and smokes marijuana, but has never admitted to any problems with serious addiction.
I need advice on how to tell her that I know about these issues, but don't judge her or care any less about her because of them, and that I will be here for her no matter what.
There For Her
You need different advice than what you’re seeking. It’s no benefit to her for you to say you don’t “judge” her, because you should. She needs a reality check, not mindless approval.
If what you say is factual, she’s a habitually addictive person, still doing herself harm.
Tell her you care about her greatly, and hate that she’s risking her physical and mental health daily through addiction.
Tell her you can only be there for her in spirit, because only she can stop the self-harm she’s inflicting.
Say that you’ll help her find the right therapy program to deal with her addictions, and the right counselling to understand her triggers, so she can find healthier ways to respond.
As a “good friend,” you want to be supportive in a positive way, not as an enabler who just wants to hear the story.
FEEDBACK Regarding the “Shady Character “who asked for money (January 10):
Reader – “Regardless of anything you find on a credit check of this guy, do NOT lend him the money.
“I’ve been in this situation, and I was lucky enough to get most of my money back. I also had him charged by police.
“Please talk to your friend. Trust me. Asking for money very soon into the relationship - no matter how large or small the amount - is the biggest red flag ever. This person may also be a sociopath.”
A friend who suffers from some severe mental health problems has been putting me down a lot.
He’s insulting in subtle ways. Among some friends, he suddenly mentioned my crush. Then he said, "He usually likes small or petite girls."
He said this while looking me up and down, making me feel super insecure, since I'm 5'9" and size 10.
He constantly embarrasses me around others. When I respond, he says, "I'm depressed so you can't get mad at me."
I need to talk to him about it, but I fear that he might hurt himself.
Can’t be Hurt
He may be depressed, but he’s using it for passive aggressive meanness.
He’s testing you, pushing you, wanting a reaction so he can cry “Unfair,” and attract attention.
Walk away when he’s nasty; see him less for a while. If he asks why, just say depression doesn’t come with a license to hurt others.
Tip of the day:
Buying a house together is significant but not the same commitment as marriage.