Ask Becky: Being an adult and the other woman

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Becky is BACK and she’s ready to answer your questions. I took a week off last week because my truth doesn’t come like clockwork, thank you very much, but here we are again. In my absence, I’ve been sent some burning questions in need of answering, and we have some outstanding enquiries this week.

Question #1: Anonymous asks, “How do you plan for the future and how do you ‘adult’?”

Well, planning for the future is a big process; you can plan for small, short term things, and large, massive life trajectories. Both are important and one feeds into the other. The first thing I’d suggest when planning for the future is understanding that you can’t. The future is unknown, unpredictable, and totally out of our control. If you spend all of your time resisting that fact, it can be harmful. Although there are a lot of things that you can plan for, accepting that there are a lot of things you can’t plan is helpful.

That being said, it’s comforting to have some kind of plan for your life and not feel so nebulous and like you’re not working toward something. The first step to that is to figure out what you actually want. Think big. There are lots of doors that are open to you, and the steps that you plan to take to get through them are all a part of planning for your future. Again, this starts with short goals like completing your assignment on time, which moves into larger things like getting your degree.

However, deciding what you want can be difficult, as well. There are plenty of people on this campus alone that will tell you that what they thought they wanted shifted drastically over time. It’s important to allow yourself that room to grow and change, and not to feel like your future falls apart because there is a change or a shift in what you want.

As for ‘adulting’? I’m starting a petition right now to have that word removed from the twenty-first century vocabulary. DO NOT MAKE WORDS THAT ARE NOT VERBS INTO VERBS, PEOPLE. ‘Adulting’ is just a stupid word for maturing, and maturation isn’t something that can be taught. It happens for (mostly) everyone, but at different times. Doing things like planning for the future and finding ways to meet your goals helps the process along, though. Sometimes we’re lucky and we have the time to grow into ourselves, and other times circumstances force us to mature very quickly. Either way, it’s situational, but the skills you develop in knowing what you want and going after it are deeply important.

Peace & Love,

Becky

Question #2: Anonymous asks:

“Dear Becky, I think I’m the ‘other woman’ in an emotional affair.

A friend is in a serious relationship with his girlfriend of more than a year (I’ve never met her). I’m single. He and I met last year and have become friends. Over the latter half of this friendship, what we talk about has become very personal, flirty and often about sex. I am attracted to him, and if we were both single, I think we could easily start a romantic relationship.

Nothing physical has happened, but we flirt a lot. I don’t flirt as ‘hard’ as he does but I certainly flirt back. Aside from the flirting and telling me I’m cute, sexy and mysterious, sometimes he divulges VERY personal things like details about sex with his girlfriend. He has also invited me out for drinks on multiple occasions via text, and I always decline (because there is never any mention of the girlfriend being there with these invites).

I don’t think the way we behave in person and through text is appropriate because of his existing relationship, and if I were his girlfriend I would feel betrayed. I haven’t addressed this yet because I’m attracted to him, and I’m afraid if I initiate a conversation about it, he will end the flirting between us. Is he just flirting because it’s fun or could he be interested? How do I talk to him about this without jeopardizing our friendship and avoid things getting awkward?”


Answer:

Here. is. the thing.

He might be the be-all-end-all of guys in terms of looks, but I see nothing but problems with his maturity level, his personality (as you have described it), and his treatment of women. People who respect and appreciate women don’t cheat on them (and that is what he’s doing with you, don’t doubt it). But they also don’t divulge private sexual secrets, and they don’t delineate you by assuming that you can be used for flirtation and sexual conversation in exchange for compliments. This boy is actively trying to cheat on his girlfriend with you, and there is no way around that.

As far as his implied desire, and your assumption that if he was single, the two of you could be together, I’m going to have to advise against that line of thought, and warn you that although it’s an old saying, if he cheats with you he’ll cheat on you. And if, by some turn of events, you do end up together, you will be in a relationship that was built upon lies, betrayal, and the fact that the two of you have harmed an innocent person. Relationships that are built on the back of that kind of thing are unhealthy from the beginning and I would really encourage you not to become a part of that any more than you already are.

This person isn’t a friend to you. He is drawing you into an inappropriate and morally wrong situation that you clearly feel torn about. I want you to know that the compliments and the nice talk is a form of coercion, and this is a person who seems very selfish and unhealthy. I think he’s interested, but not in the way you’re hoping. And not because you’re not great, you’re clearly uneasy and understand the wrongness of this, but because this person has a clear idea about his entitlement to women, and it doesn’t involve respectful treatment.

My advice is to get out. Remove yourself from this person as wholly as you can. You don’t owe him a reason, but if you want to give him one, link him here. Guys like this, sadly, don’t change. You are better than this, and you deserve better than this.

Send the girlfriend the screenshots and run.

Best of luck,

Becky

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