Dr. Tracy's Advice Column

Cartoon Kiss


His Fantasy Woman
Driving Him Crazy
When To Get Out

His Fantasy Woman

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I am now a single female 35 years old. My boyfriend of 2 years has been having an online relationship with this girl in Japan for 6 mos. and she came here to be with him. He has never met her only through email and photos. He told me 2 days before she came. She is staying with him for 4 weeks. He didn't want to break up he just wanted to take a break while she was here and get back together when she left or if he didn't like her. Basically, he wanted my permission to have sex with her. I told him if she came and stayed with him he would lose me for good. He told me he wanted to meet her and wouldn't budge, it was worth more to him to fulfill his Asian sex fantasy and destroy a really good relationship with me. I am shattered. He never told her he had a girlfriend. I think he thought it was all pretend until she made plans to come here. He was really upset and cried a lot but it wasn't enough for him to tell her not to come or to stay with friends or tell her he had a girlfriend. He broke up with me once before to date an 1/2 Japanese girl. So this was always a fear of mine. Because there is no way I can ever be that. I am blonde and blue eyed.

Over the last year he began to become more and more into Asian porn and naked Asian girls. I knew he liked it and we joked about it. But I never thought he would go so far as to bring someone all the way here. The whole time he was getting closer to me he was writing her. He knew what he was doing. We had even had the "relationship talk" his idea to become closer. He told me he never wanted to hurt me so I told him you know what hurts someone so don't do it. I followed his lead, he began calling more and integrating me with his friends. We got along great, lots of laughs, great sex, talked a lot. Always giddy when he sees me.

Then he drops this atomic bomb on my psyche about the girl. He told me he cared about me too much and it scared him, he didn't want to let me go but he had to do this. so instead of facing his feelings he ran the opposite way. How can you love someone and do that to them. So she is here right now and I have seen her. She is really unattractive (i know it doesn't matter) and he is getting it on with her. She is in the place I stayed 2-3 nights a week for the last couple years. With him having sex with her. I am in hell. I just wish he had just broken up with me and not told me about this girl. But he wanted his cake and eat it too. Eventually I would have found out but I wouldn't have to go through knowing he is with this person 24/7 as I live and breathe. This is one of the most painful hurtful things I have ever had to go through. I don't understand this kind of behavior. How can you love someone and destroy them. I don't know how to move on. I am obsessed with the situation. I want to know if he misses me, or if he is in love with her. I know this isn't healthy. I feel as if I am standing between life and death. I have been trying to keep as busy as possible but I find myself crying in public and feeling as if I am going to faint. I can't eat or sleep and my mind races with memories and shoulda coulda woulda scenarios. I feel like I am in an evil alternate universe. Please if you have any understanding I would greatly appreciate it.

Dear Obsessed,

Stop and think about this. If a man told you he loved chocolate ice cream, would you keep serving him vanilla and hope he'd learn to like it? Of course you wouldn't, but that's what you've done with this man.

You are in a horribly painful situation. However, the writing was on wall - or at least on your man's computer screen - a long time ago. He was looking at Japanese porn, he was writing to Japanese women, he'd even broken up with you before to date a half Japanese woman. And you're blonde with blue eyes.

Now it's obvious you weren't his fantasy, no matter what he said and did. You knew you'd never be his fantasy, yet you continued to get more deeply involved in this relationship. No woman should pursue a man whose fantasy is the opposite of what she is. Even if a relationship develops, it's not stable. Eventually, he's going to start yearning for his fantasy woman. The favorite American male fantasy is a blonde with blue eyes. So how come you've found the rare man who wants a short, dark-haired woman? And why do you insist on wanting him still and letting him break your heart?

You didn't have to agree to stay with him through all his Japanese or even ½ Japanese affairs. You say you told him that if she came and stayed, it would be over with you for good. So stick to your word. You'll be better off. I'm amazed that you remained "his girlfriend" during the six months he was having an online relationship with the Japanese woman. You should have dumped him as soon as this started.

You have choices here. You don't have to keep obsessing over him. You can come to the realization that even if you humiliated yourself and took him back after his current Japanese fling, you'd never be his fantasy and eventually he'd be back to looking for his next Japanese woman.

He's probably a man who's afraid of intimacy and may want a woman who will be subservient; subservience is part of the Oriental woman fantasy that many men have. They think they'll get a woman who never talks back, who bows and tiptoes around bringing him things. In spite of the fact that most Japanese women aren't really that easily dominated, American men still have the fantasy that they're going to get a geisha who will do everything for them and let them be boss no matter what.

Is that the kind of man you want, a man who wants a subservient woman? If you're smart, you'll dump him, even if he begs you to take him back. This is the second time he's pulled this stunt. Don't give him a chance to do it a third and fourth time. Past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior..

Don't shoulda on yourself. There's nothing you can do to become Japanese. Read my article on Letting Go for tips on getting over this creep, and next time, use the techniques in When Love Happens Easily to make sure that you fit a man's fantasy before you get involved.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Driving Him Crazy

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I have been a fan of your website for years, however I haven't seen very much written about people that have met off of the internet. Here is my problem and I hope you will post it.

I'm 32, single female, no kids, who meet a wonderful man, Tom 35, divocred no kids on the internet. We met in April and broke up at the end of July. I broke up with Tom, as he rarely called, never made plans etc. Everything else seemed to be a priority other than me. He told me when we first met that his work was his top priority.

I really missed him once we split up, and I realized that rather than dump him, I should have just spoke to him and told him that I wanted more time, attention and affection. Plus I felt since we were only seeing/dating for a couple of months, that maybe I was over-reacting. He is a great man, kind, caring, gentle, etc. So about a week after splitting up, and after having days of this dread feeling, I met Tom for lunch.

I told him that I missed him, and that I wanted to reconcile. He was surprised. He had decided at that point that we would just be friends. He said the brake up was a "slap in the face", and that he needed time to think about this. Well, I waited about 3 weeks, occasionally called etc, and finally this last Wednesday after a long discusion he said he wanted to start seeing me again. He was very tense following his decision and when I asked, he told me firmly "let's take it one day at a time, that nothing is written in stone." He said he couldn't forget that I dumped him.

I was so happy, thinking we were going to try again. Than reality set in - I had gone online to see if he had taken his ad off (personals site), as he had put it back on over the last month while we had split up. I was under the impression that he would take it off. But to my shock, he still has and continues to go online several times a day.

My friends are saying it sounds like his is stringing me along, leading me on until he meets someone else. I think he is just not sure about us, and maybe is proceeding cautiously. Instead of confronting him, I have decided to just back off and see what he does next. What is your take on the situation? Should I confront him?

Confused and hurt in California

Dear Confused,

Interesting that you feel like you're the hurt party here. Apparently, you have no idea that you're the kind of woman who drives men crazy. You have no one but yourself to blame for this. Stop being a crazy-maker and get a grip. You broke up with him. He left. Then you decided you want him back.

He's a man, not a dog. He won't just come and go when you want. Even if he were a dog, you wouldn't treat him that way, giving him away and then wanting him back. Once you give a man the boot, he's free to get on the Internet and find someone else. As a matter of fact, he's smart to do that.

You acted as if you don't know what you want. He told you in the beginning that his work was his prime focus, yet you were unsatisfied with the attention you got. Have you considered that you might need someone who has more time for you? Maybe he has.

Now you want to confront him because he's not willing to instantly forsake all others because you've changed your mind. Sorry, but he's entitled to go online and find all the women he wants. Maybe he's looking for one who's not ambivalent or unable to communicate what she wants. In any case, you have no right to ask him to stop going on the internet. He's not committed to you, and until he is, he's a free agent. If you want him, you'll have to compete with other women he might find.

Let this be a lesson to you. If you're not getting what you want in a relationship, the first thing you should do is ask for it - not break up. At this point, all you can do is be on your best behavior and hope he'll eventually be able to forget that you dumped him.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

When To Get Out

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I'm 32 years old and have never been married. I'm now dating a man, 36, who I've known since I was a teen. We have been seeing each other for 3 years now.

He acts like he cares about me, but can never find the time to stop by or call anytime before 10:00p.m. (in his defence he works the graveyard shift and sleeps during the day). And in the time we have been together, he has never once let me meet his family, with whom he is very close. If I lived across town, I might understand the consistent lateness or him not coming to see me, but we all live in the same neighborhood.

Even when we have plans on a Saturday night, he can't make it on time because right then, for some unknown reason, he has to go visit his family. His mother raised him alone, so I understand them having a special bond, but it seems that his mother is his partner in life and I'm just a date on the weekends - if he shows up on time!

Is there any sense in investing anymore time into what seems like a no-win situation? Is seems like I'll never be allowed into his "real" life. Is it normal for a grown man to eat dinner with his mother more often than with his long-term girlfriend? In fact I never have a meal with him. Yet he is on time to eat dinner with his family 4-5 times a week and I'm never invited.

Please Help!

Dear Invested,

You are at an age when you need to make a decision. You can't wait another three years for this guy to have a meal with you or show up before 10 PM.

He hasn't give you any reason to think he takes this relationship seriously. He hasn't introduced you to his family, he hasn't been able to show up on time and he's not allowing you into his "real" life. A man who only shows up after ten at night is showing up for one reason and one reason only - for sex. And since you've been putting up with this behavior for all these years, he's learned that it's okay.

Now there's only one thing to do. Tell him you will absolutely not put up with this for another day. Let him know it's over unless he can do what you want, and then give him a list.

1. He has to introduce you to his family.
2. He has to show up for your dates on time.
3. You will no longer allow him in your house when he shows up after 8.
4. He is to have dinner with you.
5. 6. 7. - You add your list, which I'm sure has a lot more.
Remember, don't be negative, by telling him what you don't want; instead, tell him what you do want. If he won't comply, which I strongly suspect, then find a man who will. In your next relationship, speak up the first time the man does something that doesn't pass the tummy test. Don't wait three years. Let him know right away that his behavior isn't acceptable, and that if he wants to be with you, he'll have to change.

You've gotten into trouble in this relationship because you don't have the strength to ask for what you want and let your boyfriend know when you are dissatisfied. Sometimes you have to be willing to risk losing the relationship to save your self-esteem.

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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