Dear Savvy Sister: How do I let go of a snake in the grass?

Reminder: the questions posed in this occasional column are written by actual people. 

Dear Savvy Sister,

I dated a guy I loved for quite a while. Recently he told me that he cheated on me while we were “on a break,” revealed that he loves me, but said we have to cut ties completely. He is now in a relationship with a girl he met in Atlanta three weeks ago. He will only say that he’s sorry and that nothing ever happened while we were together and that he wants me to be happy. 

I think this guy is emotionally stunted: Did not give me what I wanted or deserved. Did not give me enough orgasms. Could not communicate. I am attached to his good qualities and miss him, but am glad it was a mere six months spent taking care of a man-child. But I’m insanely up and down. I want to talk to him about what he did and why he did it so we can both make amends and move on, but he won’t respond. Today I feel fantastic. Tonight I could be weepy. Tomorrow I could be livid. 

How do I get through this? I feel replaced and cheated, basically. Heap massive flattery upon me and massive fuckery upon him and the nerdy girl he is now with. 


the ex-GRRRRRlfriend


Mel Gibson is a Jew-hating drunk. A self-righteous abuser of women. A hypocrite. For all I know, he hates puppies. But did you see him in Braveheart? FREEEEEEEDOM!!!! Holy Scotsman, lift that kilt, dude! In other words, I am attached to his good qualities – his acting ability and the epic cinematic dramas he helped produce before the whole Passion of the Christ debacle.

Most people have good qualities, dear GRRRRR. But in order for them to matter, those virtues must outweigh the bad. So this man-child was a poor communicator, a cheater, a liar, a chronic disappointment, and didn’t do it for you in the sack. Is he a gazillionaire? Because that’s the only good quality I can think of to outweigh all that. (Oh, shut up. In my opinion, marrying a bad man for his money in order to eventually win a big settlement is not nearly as immoral as critics of Anna Nicole Smith made it out to be.)

So don’t tell me you loved him for his good qualities. I can tell you right now that you loved him because he was a little bit cute, he paid attention to you, and perhaps he made you smile. By those standards, I love most bartenders. Seriously. I love most bartenders. And you’re absolutely right to be grateful that you only endured six months of him, particularly if your orgasmic action was limited. By the way, how long have you been out of batteries? They’re on sale at CVS right now.

But although I’m happy to heap massive (un)fuckery on him – May your next sexual encounter end without a bang, Sir! –  I cannot heap flattery onto you. Because not only did you choose a bad man, you now are choosing to give that man the gift of your attention. You say you want to talk to him about the whats/whys/hows of this break-up, but he has made it clear he’s incapable of doing that. What you really want to ask him is this:  Why are you not the man I wanted you to be? And now, reading it in indelible cyber-ink, even you must realize the inanity of the question.

In closing, I’ll recount a brief history of my own. For six months I dated my dream guy. Sexy surfer dude. Introduced me to sushi. Except he only called me at the last minute, and when I housesat for him and his dog, brought me back a coffee table book as a gift. And he had some…um…performance issues. And when I broke my arm and called him to drive me home from the hospital, he said he couldn’t because he had a big meeting the next morning. I LOVED THIS MAN! But really, I loved the idea of him. I got over it by realizing he was only half the man I needed. So I latched onto Hot Firefighter Husband, made him learn how to surf and introduced him to sushi. She-BANG!

If you really, really, really want to “talk” to this douchebag, remember that he’s not going to talk back. So just write him a letter. Save it for a couple of days, then re-read it, and if you still want to send it, go ahead. There. Now you can move on. There’s no need to make amends here – he screwed you over. Forgive him silently, and let him stew in the vitriol of your missive.

And for the sake of the goddesses of flirtation, go enjoy the single life for a while. Your prince will come, I promise. If you have to grope a few dashing dukes in the interim, so what?


the Savvy Sister.




5 responses to Dear Savvy Sister: How do I let go of a snake in the grass?

  1. Katie says:

    Girlfriend…you are so good at this! Love your responses!

    Except to my issue last Christmas…bc the hubby’s brother and wife haven’t talked to us since then. Even had a baby but never old us until 3 weeks after the fact only bc MIL said they should tell us. Oh! And let’s not or get the dear john letter they sent us the week we moved to the other side of the world. Nice, huh? but none of this was your doing! I am glad I took your advice!

    I need a glass of wine now….xoxo

    • tricia says:

      Wish I could have one with you! And sorry about your relatives….but they too will grow up. We hope. xoxo

  2. suzy says:

    Update: not only are the batteries on sale at CVS, they actually carry a small supply of the devices you put the batteries into. Maybe not the variety found at the Blue Boutique, but should get anyone through a particularly rough night or ten.

    • tricia says:

      Excellent! I didn’t know assistance was so readily available!

    • tricia says:

      And who cares if it’s small? Does size really matter? ; }

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