Dear Donna: My friend has been divorced for four years and has had several relationships that have not worked out for various reasons.
He is a 44-year-old professional who is currently in a relationship that has been going on for nearly a year. Just recently, he was told that he is emotionally unavailable by this current love interest.
He is feeling the heat of an upcoming ultimatum if he continues down his current path. He knows from past relationships that he is unavailable to these women. I think he wants to get past this issue but finds it tough. Several of us at the office think he could be making a mistake if he lets this current girlfriend go. She seems to be a real keeper.
What can we do to help him get past this issue? Thanks for your help. — Concerned Friend
Dear Concerned Friend: If your friend is not emotionally available, an ultimatum from his current love interest will not make him emotionally available. Your friend’s problem could be that he simply has not met the right woman.
However, whenever a pattern occurs in a person’s relationship history, I ask them this question: “What is the one common denominator in all your relationships?” YOU are the common denominator.
If he is not emotionally available, he shouldn’t be dating. He should be exploring why he is not emotionally available.
If he were my friend, I would recommend professional counseling. Giving someone an ultimatum is rarely a good sign that the relationship will succeed long-term.
Dear Donna: I have been dating a man for two months and I am unsure of what to do about a Christmas gift. I don’t want him to feel uncomfortable if he does not have a gift for me. I don’t want to spend too little or too much. I don’t want it to be too personal or too generic. — Amy
Dear Amy: Here are some thoughts:
1. Keep the cost under $50 — it’s not to little or too much.
2. A gift certificate to a romantic restaurant, hopefully you will be invited. You might want to spend a bit more if you are sure you will be invited.
3. A nice bottle of wine in a holiday wine bag.
4. A Christmas card with tickets to a movie or an event you would both enjoy.
5. Nothing says “I waited until Christmas Eve and the only thing open was a convenience store” like lottery tickets. It would be a better idea to put a bow on yourself and hold a piece of mistletoe over your head.
Donna Shugrue, a 35-year resident of Colorado Springs, is the owner of Perfectly Matched. Her column runs bi-weekly in The Gazette. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and visit her website, perfectlymatcheddating.com.