Dr. Tracy's Advice Column

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Ex Won't Let Go
Unwanted Critics
He won't Stop smoking Pot For Her

Ex Won't Let Go

Dear Dr. Tracy,

My ex and I started a relationship when She was 17 and I was 19. It was first love for both of us. We became so emotionally close and got engaged with the approval of our parents when she was 21. Soon after that she got a new job and made new friends, And sorta started changing. We'd have our occasional fights and arguments but only because we cared for each other, but we never let the fight last for more than a day. We used to spend at least 2 or 3 hours with each other doing something most of the days. There has been only 2 days in our 4 year relationship where we didn't speak even a word.

Suddenly one day she wanted to become a model, and I told her a modeling career is not for women who wants to get married and have babies at the normal age. She said she can manage it and we had an argument about it, she said she wants to break up. She said she wants to pursue her dreams and I that she doesn't want me anymore. I tried to stop it in several ways but she was stubborn and she'd yell at me and scream if I go to talk to her.

A week later she sent a beautiful voice mail with tears and told me she misses me, When i asked her if she wants to work on the relationship, she said "No I am never coming back, But i just miss you". So I assumed she is confused and I'd wait for some more time, She'd call again after week and say she misses me, and then after 2 weeks and this kept happening. She'd call me once in two weeks somehow for one reason or another. Particularly when she needed a trusting person to comfort her. And every-time she called, she'd say something like "You are the still the one", Or "I can't trust anyone else like i trust you"... She even made a duplicate Facebook account and became friends with me to see if I flirt with other girls and got mad cause I called her a "Prettyface" without knowing it was her, She said it was her and she was just checking if I was flirting with others. So all these things made me believe she'd come back to me.

But when she gives me false hope and then treats me like Cr*p when i call her, it hurt me. I had to go to psychiatrists and and take medications. I lost a lot of weight cause i didn't eat anything for 12 days once, I sorta gave a break to college once. I started speaking to myself thinking she was with me, because when i call to talk to her she'd act busy and ignore me.

Anyhow, One day she called and said she is engaged. Its funny cause just before she said that, i sorta sensed something was coming and I asked her to NOT tell me anything related to her personal life with another man because I wasn't ready to take it... this is after 1 year from the breakup. I didn't expect that she'd right away tell me she's engaged. It killed me, I didn't sleep for 3 days straight, I 'd get nightmares and dreams about her if i close my eyes... Somehow I managed and wrote to her and asked her to "Please stop talking to me", i told her I am not ready to take these things and I cant be her friends when i have strong feelings for her, I asked her to consider me dead.

I somehow managed to survive all this and concentrate on my life, I never dated any one else since the break-up... Now again two days back she contacted me 6 hours before my birthday and wished me Happy Birthday, and We spoke for some time... and she said "sometimes i think about how you used to make me smile and laugh when I am broke, no one could do that to me, I care for you, You made a big impact n my life.. My relationship isn't perfect but at least he comes back to me, You didn't treat me right... I am getting married..."

WHY does she have to tell me all these things and make me cry more? She wont let me go, I told her to not talk to me but she said she will talk to me every year on my birthday. I told her please not to! I don't know if she has second thoughts about her marriage or if she is just messing with my head or if she is talking to me cause she is guilty. How do i get out of this mess? Why does she do this? Kindly help

Dear Depressed,

This woman is a total crazy maker. She runs hot and cold and will continue to make your life miserable as long as you let her. Some people are toxic and she is one of them. Get her out of your life. She is like poison for you.

Why does she keep calling even after she is engaged to someone else? Because she feels powerful knowing that she can still have you if she wants you.

It makes her feel good, knowing that you are miserable without her. The best way to put a stop to this is to simply stop taking her phone calls. And find someone else to love.

You deserve a better woman in your life. Your ex will make her new husband miserable because that's what she does to the men in her life. Consider yourself lucky that she's with someone else and that you didn't wind up married to this one.

She will probably end up unhappy because she couldn't make it as a model and will blame her husband for her failure. Be happy that you're not the one who will take the blame for that.

She doesn't feel guilty, she feels happy that you are unhappy without her. Stop letting her mess with your head. She can only do it if you let her.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Unwanted Critics

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I am a 24 year old female with a good career, no children, and I have never been married. My boyfriend of nearly 2 years is a former Marine. He is an amazing man. He has severe PTSD. We have had our ups and downs, but have really learned to communicate well. When his anger or anxiety is too high, we now know how to deal with it and he knows how to let me know he's upset without blaming me for things that are out of my control.

While we are great and growing now, we face many critics. I earn the primary income, but he does receive disability and money from the GI Bill as he is in school full time. He is not lazy and I've never had to cover rent, although I pay for many dates. I do not have a problem with this as he takes care of me in different ways. I have always been fiercely independent and he is someone who can handle and accept that.

Most times we see our friends, his, mine or mutual, they comment on money or his lack of a job. It is becoming increasingly wearing to have people explain why our relationship would not work for them. We are beginning to stay in a lot more since these conversations anger him greatly and I hate feeling as though we have to defend our relationship. What can we say to people to let them know we'd like to still go out with them, but neither he nor I want to hear their opinions on our somewhat un-ordinary relationship?

Dear Independent Woman,

You have decided on the relationship that makes you happy. You are mature, independent, have resources and no problem with the man in your life. So why let others bring you down with their criticism or judgements?

It's time to tell your friends exactly what you think. That you enjoy their company, but you won't be seeing them if every time you do, you have to listen to their opinions of your relationship. Tell them you've heard what they said and they're entitled to think what they want, but you don't want to hear it any more.

Be very firm and if necessary, talk to them privately before you go out. Explain to them that you are entitled to make any kind of arrangement that makes you happy, and their criticism is insensitive and upsetting to you both.

Many women are the primary earners these days. There's nothing wrong with it and you shouldn't feel as if you have to defend yourself to others. Don't let other people ruin your relationship. It's always easy for people to say what they would and wouldn't do, but the truth is, you have no idea what kinds of compromises they make. Who knows, they could be putting up with lots that you wouldn't accept.

So simply say, "We've heard your opinion and we want you to know that we don't want to hear it again." Use the broken record technique and say it over and over again if needed. They will get the message.

You've been with the man for two years and you think he's amazing and obviously you care a great deal for him. That's what's important.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

He won't Stop smoking Pot For Her

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I have been in a long distance relationship for the past 2 years, and it is becoming more and more difficult. One of the main reasons that is stopping us from living together is the fact that he smokes a great deal of pot. I've known this from the beginning, and it's always bothered me, and the more serious we get, the more uncomfortable it makes me.

I've asked him not to do it around me, but I know when we decide to live together he isn't willing to do that. I've tried compromising, but he simply won't budge. He tells me I just have to accept it. Is there a way to meet him halfway on this issue without me having to live with it and around it?

Dear Pothead Lover,

You knew from the beginning that this guy was a total pothead. He made no secret of it and didn't lead you to believe he would ever stop, not for you or anyone else. It's his first love, his primary addiction, and he's not going to give it up. So if you weren't willing to accept him the way he is, you had no business getting into the relationship in the first place.

Don't drive him crazy and make yourself frustrated and upset. Either accept him with his pot smoking or let him go. Only he can decide to stop smoking pot and he's showing no signs of doing that.

There is no way to meet him halfway. You'd definitely have to live with it and around it. So if you're not willing to do that, forget about this guy and find someone who isn't a pothead. Go to match.com or eharmony.com and put in your profile that you don't want any druggies, no pot, and while you're at it, no whatever else bothers you.

Only you know if this is a deal-breaker problem. Frankly, it sounds to me as if you are never going to be happy with him as long as he smokes, whether he does it in the backyard or the bathroom or in his car. You are always going to resent the pot and try to get him to stop.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

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(Featured art from cover of Letting Go, by Zev Wanderer and Tracy Cabot, published by "Bitan" Publishers, Tel-Aviv, Israel)
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