Hello everyone! Are you reading Ask Bear at Bitch? It is great. So is Ms. Opinionated, especially this one about sexism and the service industry.
O Captain, My Captain,
I searched the archives and came up with nothing that directly addressed my awkward situation, so here it is. A few months ago, I started dating a guy. This was not my idea, but we were really good friends. I let him convince me that we really ought to give it a try. This wasn’t the last instance of pushiness on his end. He’s been dropping hints about us moving in together, looking at random kids in restaurants and comparing them to our own future children, you get the hint. I’m still feeling kind of raw after my last relationship with a super intense guy, so even if I did like this new one as more than a friend, I’d still be hearing the alarms loud and clear. I broke things off this week and blocked him since I’m pretty sure he’s got a moderate to severe case of the “but whyyyyyyys?”
I need to figure out what to do with his stuff. He loaned me a couple books he thought I’d find interesting. I didn’t find them interesting, but I took them anyway, because it seemed important to him, I guess. He’s also given me a bunch of little gifts, like inexpensive jewelry, T-shirts, a recipe book, stuff like that. I want to give all of this back to him without being subjected to a FEELINGSBOMB. This probably means sending it back, but I don’t want to pay for shipping when I know it’ll probably be expensive and the post office will be crowded right now. Can I get away with dropping a box on his front porch when I know he’s at work? Do I have to send him a courtesy text to let him know? Should I suck it up and pay for shipping?
Dear Too Gifted,
Return the books he lent you. Drop them in the mail. Don’t text, just let the Postal Service do its work and return them. Don’t bother including a note; he’ll know exactly what they are and who they are from. My reasoning is 40% “they were lent, not given” and 60% “he will use asking for them as an excuse to contact you, so head him off at the pass.”
Trading favorite books can be a really fun thing to do, but raise your hand if you have had an annoying guy push all his favorite pop culture on you right at the beginning of a relationship but mysteriously doesn’t read or listen to anything you like or ask you for any recommendations?
:raises annoyed hand at past self for putting up with this:
Donate or toss the gifts. If they were like, family heirlooms or could be sold for significant $, giving them back would be a nice thing to do, but they aren’t, and gifts belong solely to you now, so returning them is like an extra “fuck you” at this point. Since you want to disengage from him and not re-engage via hostility, let the gifts go out of your house where neither of you will think about them anymore instead of back to him where he will maybe dramatically throw the jewelry into a nearby body of water like he’s in a student film and smell the shirts to see if they smell like you.
It sounds like you made exactly the right decision to end this, and it sounds like you won’t be talked into a relationship by someone pushy and smothery any time soon, so, good talk everyone.