Dr. Tracy's Advice Column

Cartoon Kiss

The Terrorist Attack
A Younger Woman Burns Out
Mates Before Dates

The Terrorist Attack

Dear Readers,

At this time of tragedy for our nation, with the death of so many loved ones, we should all be thankful for the love we have and the love we can share.

We spend so much time worrying about what we don't have that we often forget to be thankful for what life has given us. If you haven't already done so, take a moment to stop and appreciate what you have. Today is a good day to tell someone you love them, to hug someone you forgot to hug, and to be grateful.

I get so many letters from people who are worried because they're not getting enough sex or because their mate isn't living up to all their expectations. This is a good time to remember that you are responsible for your own happiness. Your mate is not here to make you happy. That's not their job.

If you are not happy with your life, today is a good time to reevaluate where you are and what you're doing. Now is the time to make your life fulfilling, not tomorrow. If you're in a relationship that is toxic and destructive, get out. If you're in a relationship that is loving, but not perfect, remember that there is no such thing as perfection.

Life is uncertain. There are no guarantees. If your life or the life of someone you loved were to end today, would you say, "I wish I'd made another business deal," or would you say, "I wish I'd told my loved ones how much they mean to me?"

I am frequently reminded of a dear friend who was dying from ALS, a crippling disease. We all knew she was at the end of her life, and I asked her what wisdom she had to give me from her unique perspective. She was unable to speak, so she typed out, "Love more, hug more."

The mystical author Carlos Castanedada said you should live as though death were standing just behind you, over your shoulder, and to use the idea of your death to push yourself out of your usual habits. What better time to do that than now?


Dr. Tracy

A Younger Woman Burns Out

Dear Dr. Tracy,

I have a dilemma. My husband and i have been married for 4 years and have a wonderful son together. We have had our share of problems and always seam to work thing's out, But lately I cant stand to talk or even be around him.

I have told him before that i'm not in love with him and he just say's that that happens, But i'm not happy at all..I'm 27 and he's 52. That never use to bother me, But lately it has and it's just getting worse. My problem is he's in love with me and would do and give me anything that i want, But it's just not enough anymore..

I cant stand to have sex with him anymore. We will go weeks and even a month at time before I will feel guilty and give in and then I have to think about other thing's and I feel so sad that this has happened to us. He's a great guy, Just not for me.. What should i do? Every Time i try to talk to him about anything he make's me feel so bad that i cant leave,

There has to be more to live then just being comfortable.. Isn't there ? I'm not sure what to do. I want to leave and get on with my life but i also don't want to hurt a great guy. And take his Only Son away from him. Please let me know what you think.

Confused In NY ...

Dear Confused,

You are obviously in a relationship that doesn't work for you now, and maybe never did. You are not in love with your husband and show no desire for him either physically or emotionally. Why would you want to stay with him?

If you're bored or indifferent or out of love now, it won't get better. You've been together for 4 years and you can't stand to even be around him, let alone make love to him. In four more years, you will be even more unhappy.

You want to know if there is more to life than being comfortable. The answer is yes, there is a lot more. You are too young to settle for a life without love.

Just because you and your husband divorce doesn't mean you have to take his only son away from him. You can have joint custody or you can let him have custody.

You say you want to leave and get on with your life. The sooner you do just that the better off you and eventually your husband will be. He's much older than you, but not too ancient to find someone else to love. Give him that chance. Give yourself a future. Give your son a chance to grow up in a home with people who truly love each other.

Being comfortable can't substitute for being in a loving relationship.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Mates Before Dates

Dear Dr. Tracy,

This is one I had a little trouble finding info on in the library you've compiled there. Hi, I am a 21 year old male from Australia who is looking for a bit of help regarding whether or not to enter a certain relationship. I have fallen for a girl 2 years younger than myself who also happens to be my best mate's sister.

The deal is my mate has always been there for me, and at the same time, has always made his intentions clear about his sister as a no-go zone. His reasoning behind it is that he wouldn't be real happy if for example I came round to his house, said g'day to him, then spent the rest of the arvo in his sister's room (they live together). Fair enough in my mind, but I was recently posed with the same deal yet with my own sister and another mate of mine. My reaction to this was mostly positive, so it opened up my eyes to the fact that maybe my best mate was being a little unfair with his denying me a relationship with his sister.

The other night I kissed her. We spent a wicked night, and through the morning, walking around the city I live in, really enjoying her company in that way. I realised she feels the same way as myself and I don't think I have ever been so stoked before!

Yet I woke up in the morning to see my mate's disappointed face (he tried to hide it but didn't do too well) and I felt like crap. The thing is he values his buddys so much, like so much, and I suppose that is why I am aching for his sister, I see a lot of him in her?

Well my take on the situation is that as the saying goes, 'Mates before Dates'. (do you have that saying over there?) Well I would seriously choose him over her if it came down to it but I'd love to know how to prove to him that it wouldn't change things. Or would it, is he right?

Cheers, I'd love a reply, or in that column you've got there. Sorry about the Twin Towers also, its just plain wrong.

Dear Mate,

You are already out of integrity with your mate. You've betrayed his trust and sneaked off to be with his sister in spite of knowing the rules.

If you think your best mate is being unfair, the ethical thing to do was to talk to him before, not after, you spent time with his sister and violated his no-go zone. Your spending a "wicked night" with his sister is exactly what he didn't want. You knew that and yet you did it anyway. You should apologize to your mate and ask him to forgive you. Then you should tell him you'll never do it again and see if you can regain his trust.

Since you would seriously choose him over her, then that's what you should do. However, your making that choice is going to hurt his sister and perhaps that's what he wanted to avoid.

There's no way to tell your mate that your being with his sister wouldn't change things. It would. He is right. Instead of being his best mate, you'd be his sister's lover. He'd never be able to look at you the same way again. Unless you want to marry his sister and become his brother in law, which is not the feeling I get from your letter, then you should back off and hope that you can salvage your relationship with your mate.

We don't have the saying "Mates before Dates" over here, but it's not a bad idea. Dates usually come and go, but friends can be friends forever.

Thanks for the kind words about the Twin Towers. You're right there, it's just plain wrong.

Good luck,

Dr. Tracy

Submitting a Question to this column

Dr. Tracy regrets that it is simply impossible for her to answer all of the hundreds of questions submitted to this column each week. However, she does read every question, and tries to select the three which are of the most general interest to the visitors here.

Dr. Tracy says, "Is your question urgent? Many of the most beseeching, desperate messages I get are not answered in this column because the answer is just a couple of clicks away in my Love Library. Have you tried my Love Library? I know that nobody goes to libraries anymore, but check this one out -- it's so easily searchable that it's fun and easy to use!"

If you can't find your answer in the Library and you feel you MUST have an answer, you can get a personal answer from Dr. Tracy within two business days by availing yourself of her inexpensive private counseling.

You may submit your question to Dr.Tracy's column by e-mail here. (Tips: to increase your chances of having your question chosen, state your age and your marital history, and remember to use paragraph breaks so that your question isn't just one big, hard-to-read clump of words. Also, questions in all caps won't be answered.)

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