Advice from the Feature Section

Q: I need to know what to do. I have a boyfriend back home who is starting to act funny because we are so far away from each other. Because I am starting to lose feelings for him, I am now starting to fall in love with this other guy who is spoiling me. But when I go home, I am afraid that my feelings are going to come back for my man and disappear for my “fling” (if that’s what you want to call it). What do I do?


Dear Confused,

You said it, I didn’t. It’s just a fling. I really think that you need to reassess your feelings for your boyfriend back home. I know you said that your boyfriend is beginning to “act funny,” but you have got to understand that your migration towards higher education cannot be easy for him. Imagine if the situation was reversed and you were the one stuck back home. Would you not feel a little left out of your sweetie’s life? Maybe that is how he is feeling: a little unsure about where he fits in your life right now. Just be patient.

However, if you really are beginning to lose feelings for your back-home boyfriend, you should be honest with him and tell him this so that he no longer continues to waste his time missing you and trying to deal with this long-distance relationship. You should not lead him on.

As for that tasty side dish that you claim “spoils” you to death, you should not mislead him either. You may think that what the two of you have is nothing but a mere fling, but does he know this? Is this just a fling for him as well? Usually when someone doles out the goods to “spoil” someone, they are in the relationship for the long haul; they have actually made an investment in the union. So you have got to be sure that you two are on the same page.

Whatever you decide, just remember that honesty and communication are the keys to any type of resolution.

Q: This is my last year at St. John’s and I’m supposed to graduate in May. But I am ready to leave NOW! I’m just really antsy right now and I really want to leave the country. I don’t want to be in school anymore. I have even gone so far as to save money so that I can leave. I have gotten enough to get me overseas; after that I plan to just see what happens. This is my problem: I know that my parents are not gonna be happy with my decision to go. What I need from you is advice on how to tell them. So give it to me.

-Gotta Get Goin’

Dear Gotta Get,

Do you even know where you “gotta get goin'” to? I’m as big a fan of the whole carpe diem thing as the next person, but you really should have some type of plan-nothing specific, just a basic agenda.

One more question: Are you crazy?! You have only one semester of school left and you absolutely cannot wait? You said yourself that you graduate in May, so at least try to stick it out until then.

I know that you did not write me for a lecture, but rather advice on how to tell your parents about your plans. However, I honestly believe that if you at least wait until after graduation to spring this on them, it will make it a lot easier for you and them. First, if you tell them you want to leave after graduation, then I’m sure they will simply chalk it up to you wanting to “find yourself” before settling in a career; people do that all the time. Second, if you go ahead and at least graduate, then your parents, more than likely, will not feel that you have wasted their or your money on your education. They will be a bit more supportive of your decisions, for you met them halfway and stayed in school.

My advice: Try to finish. You have come so far and I believe that once you have that degree under your belt, your parents’ willingness to let you follow any urges you may have with more confidence will increase.