On the Morning After Pill and Taking a Leap of Faith [Dear DBN]

So often we doubt our gut feelings and ignore what we know is good in favor of testing the waters for what might be OK, what might be normal and reasonable and fine. This week, stop waiting for someone else’s OK and do what you know is right, ‘cause at the end of the day, the only one you can rely on to look out for you is you.

“Not boyfriend/girlfriend status but talking. Condom broke, he didn’t offer to even split for the morning after pill. I paid for it all. It’s not about the money, it’s that I feel like he isn’t really sharing in the responsibility of a mistake that took two. Deal breaker? I want to at least talk to him about it, but it’s been a few days and I feel petty bringing it up to him now. What do you think?”

Is it a deal breaker to you? Is being in-tune to women’s rights and reproductive issues something you require in a mate? It’s OK if it is. I am asking, is this a deal breaker to you? Now, is being a little bit of a doofus a deal-breaker? Because that’s what he sounds like to me. Does he know how much it costs? Did he go with you? Does he know the side effects? Did you ask him to split it? Guys are oblivious. To all sorts of things. But especially to the nuances of women’s health. That’s not to say they’re correct in their ignorance, but it needs to be acknowledged that it exists. There are men who have been elected to Congress who literally do not know the simple science of how pregnancy works. They’re in Congress. Their wives have had babies. And they still don’t know.  You are in the not-so-unique position to help educate a young man.

Is it petty to be concerned about your health? It is petty to want a partner who shows a shared sense of responsibility? Is it petty to wonder if you’re with someone who will share responsibility with you in the future? Do you really think that’s petty? Or are you just worried he’s going to think you’re being ridiculous? That you’re being too sensitive? Are you worried that he’ll show you what’s really a deal breaker? An unkind and selfish soul? Taking the morning after is not a big deal. What is a big deal is feeling supported, comfortable and safe with the person you’re sharing a bed with. Don’t be so afraid to speak candidly about what’s good for your body and what’s good for your relationship. Give him a chance to show to you that he’s a good man. And if he shows you something else, then you’ll have found your deal-breaker.

“So I had a promising beginning of dating period with someone I very much liked… and then he moved away, potentially forever, but maybe just a year. I’ll be visiting that area soon because I might go to grad school there. Should I try and keep in contact/visit him or is it just dumb to wait around in the hopes he’ll be back next year or that I’ll go to grad school there? Am I being stupid?”

Dumb and stupid are redundant when it comes to matters of the heart because we’re all a bit daft when we’re in love. I’m curious about the absence of his actions in your question. I am a supporter of big gestures and bigger dreams, but I do ask that people only take a leap of faith when they have something to have faith in. Does he want to see you? Does he call you? Has he shown the same vacillation over your love affair that you have? Read the signals that he’s giving. Is he making time in his day for you? Is he making plans to include you? To see you? To keep you?

Forever is an awfully long time and as someone who has moved seven times in the past seven years, let me assure you that people do not always move somewhere “forever.” Let life happen. Let schools and jobs come and go as they may. Both of you are in a time of change, of growth and opportunity. This isn’t the time to worry about a relationship, this is the time to have a little faith that life works out the way it should. Your future is boundless with or without him. And maybe you’ll end up there and maybe he’ll end up coming back and maybe you’ll end up together, but maybe is all it is. Be hopeful, but don’t be foolish. When the winds of life pick up and you’re looking for something to hold onto, sometimes it’s better to just let go and see where life sets you down.

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