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Hurts so good

A little getting dumped into each life must fall

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I'm a 23-year-old guy and I have been dating my 21-year-old girlfriend for about two years. We did the long-distance thing for a year, and after she graduated, she moved from the East Coast to the Midwest to be with me while I finish my degree. Everything was great until she moved in with me. She has a 9-to-5 job and pays her bills. After work, though, all she wants to do is get high, drink, and watch TV. I want to study, talk, or go do things. I find myself cooking every meal, cleaning up after her, and doing all the laundry. On top of this, a very mean side of her has emerged. I love this girl, or at least I loved her before we moved in together.

I know that we all have our shitty qualities and that I am a complete shitbag for thinking this stuff, let alone writing to you about it, but what should I do? If I stay with her, then I'm neglecting my own future happiness. But if I dump her, then I break her heart, which is something I don't want to do. Plus, she moved halfway across the country for me.

Shitty Boyfriend In The Midwest

This is inelegantly put, I realize, but it came to mind when I read your letter and my particular blend of dyslexia and Tourette's requires me to put it in print: If not break her heart now, SBITM, then when? And if not you, SBITM, then who? Some guy she isn't treating like shit?

Look, darlin', people get dumped all the time. With the exception of the 12-year-old "brides" of creepy "fundamentalist" Mormon fucksticks, a little getting dumped into each life must fall. And you know what? Most of us require dumping in our 20s; getting dumped is good for us. Yeah, yeah: Hearts break. But very few run-of-the-mill dumps at 21 cause hearts to break irreparably. She will get over it. Which is another way of saying that one day, believe it or not, she will get over you.

Now, here's why being dumped is often good for us: After a person is done wallowing in a pain that no one else has ever experienced or can possibly comprehend -- although others' inability to comprehend never seems to stop a dumped person from yammering on and on -- the person begins to examine the failed relationship for clues. Why did it end? Whose fault was it? If the dumped person determines that fault lies with the asshole ex, the dumped person resolves to be on the lookout for telltale signs of assholery in the future. Thus does being dumped inspire a person to date smarter and more defensively.

But often a little voice in the back of the dumped person's head tells the dumped person that the fault is theirs -- that she, in this instance, was a stoned, drunk, inconsiderate, mean-spirited sack of shit -- and the dumped person resolves to change or date only people attracted to stoners and drunks and slobs.

So dump her, SBITM, and tell her why. Then, while she packs and verbally lashes out and fucks your friends, remind yourself that dumping her was the right thing to do for her and for you. There is no other option -- unless, of course, you're willing to spend the next seven decades cleaning up after this inconsiderate piece of shit because she moved to the Midwest.

For four years, I've been dating a gal who is freaking amazing in almost every way. The other 10 percent of the time she's the worst human I've ever met: super-violent, super-dishonest. (She tells our friends that I beat her to cover up for her violence toward me!) I've tried communicating, but she gets angry if I try to talk about it. I know I can either accept it or break up with her, but I was hoping you'd have a better answer. Any ideas? She's far superior to most humans I've met in every other regard and I want to spend the rest of my life with her.

Sick Of Getting Beaten Up

Break up with her now, SOGBU. Or, fuck, spend the rest of your life with this monster if she's that wonderfuckingful -- but go in with both (black) eyes open. Being with her means being abused. You would be a fool to stay with her, under the circumstances. But it's your call, fool.

Oh, and a woman who will tell your friends that you beat her will one day tell the same lie to the police, SOGBU. Just so you know.

I'm a 29-year-old single gay man with some major kinks: I'm into bondage (preferably inescapable), I'm into diapers, and I have a very subby fantasy life. I'm wondering how someone with my kinks should approach dating. Should I look for a partner in the usual ways and hope that I find someone open-minded? Or should I look mainly in kinky contexts?

I know that you've described diapers as "A Fetish Too Far." I'd be happy to find someone who's willing to get involved in some fairly serious bondage games and who isn't freaked out by my wearing diapers when he's not around. I doubt that an open relationship is the solution. Even if I had permission to play with others, I can't imagine being in a really serious relationship without being able to share at least some of my fantasy life with my boyfriend.

Kinkster Needs Open-minded Type

You are so lucky that you're gay, KNOT.

There are Web sites where you can advertise -- www.recon.com is a good place to start -- and kinky spaces (leather bars, gay BDSM groups, pansexual kink community events, etc.) where you can hang out. But your odds of meeting a kinky or kink-tolerant partner even "in the usual ways" are much better than the average kinky straight guy's odds. So put yourself out there in both arenas -- the kink ones and the usual ones -- and date and disclose, date and disclose, and then date and disclose some more. Diapers may be AFTF for some, but they won't be deal-breakers for other diaper guys (they're out there) or for a guy who loves you to bits and is willing to do anything for you (he's out there, too).

Download the Savage Lovecast (Dan's weekly podcast) every Tuesday at www.thestranger.com/savage. To ask Dan Savage a question, write to mail@savagelove.net.

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