WHAT IF SHE HAS A SPLIT PERSONALITY?
Women Don't Lie - Men Don't Listen
Success Coach - Doc Love
Ive got a dilemma that Im looking to gain some insight into.
Im 32 and living with Debbie, the same age, who works for the same company as I do.
We work in two different departments, two different floors, actually. We have found
something pretty special with each other and we both know it. Its an amazing feeling
to be this in love, this satisfied with someone in your life. Im a very lucky man to
have what we have.
So whats the problem? Well, its small actually, and maybe I shouldnt
sweat it, but here goes. In the past year Debbie got a divorce. A rather civil one, I
might add. (No kids, by the way.) The issue is this: shes afraid of looking like
that kind of girl to people at work; in other words, she doesnt want to
look like shes diving into another serious relationship so soon after her divorce. I
understand that. Shes worked there a long time, knows lots of people, and wants to
save face, but still have me, the love of her life.
While I dont expect mushy stuff at work (I, too, dont want that sort of label
on either of us) she tends to overcompensate, and I cant help but feel hurt by this.
When we go to lunch with other people from work, people that know were dating, even,
she tends to almost act like Im not there. This makes me feel a bit like a tagalong.
Ive tried talking to her about it, but she always feels attacked. The conversation
becomes negative, and I start to think that maybe I AM making a bigger deal out of it than
I need to. We have each other outside of work and what we have IS wonderful.
Doc, is Debbie just trying to be professional? She acts buddy-buddy with everyone else at
work except for me. Its almost like shes afraid to look at me in an improper
way or say something that would give people the idea that something is up between us. She
doesnt treat me in a mean way, nothing like that, but it just seems as if shes
really trying to NOT let on to anyone that she likes me. This can be an embarrassing thing
to people who DO know that were a couple, because then they tend to wonder if
were having problems.
Lately, this problem seems to have infiltrated our lives outside the office. I almost feel
now as if Im chasing Debbie and the mutual desire we had for each other
seems to be dwindling. I am a very romantic and sensitive male by general standards and
usually speak to and treat her with respect. But it almost seems as if she is distancing
herself from me.
Im not sure how to approach this. It could be temporary, but Im a bit
concerned. Debbie is the best thing thats ever happened to me and I don't want to
scare her off or make her think shes made a mistake. Help!
Brian - who doesnt know how to handle her work personality
When you say that you and Debbie both know that you have something special, I
have to wonder where your evidence is. I know that YOU know it, but wheres the
evidence that DEBBIE knows it? Theres really no proof whatsoever in your letter that
Debbie is as sold as you are on the whole deal. Im not saying she isnt, but
like I always say, you guys have to become forensic love scientists, which means you
always have to be on the lookout for hard evidence. And when you ask me for help, please
be specific -- no generalities, please.
But on to what we know of your problem. First of all, why is it that everybody but the
janitor at your company knows the two of you are dating to begin with? This never should
have happened, pal. You two let the cat out of the bag and now you have to suffer the
consequences of being a public item. And the fact of the matter is, your coworkers always
know more than you think they know. And, by the way, which one of you is the blabbermouth
Debbie or you? The evidence points to you.
Of course youre going to know lots of people at your place of employment. But what
do most people love more than anything? Gossip. And if theyre not batting the rumors
around in the lunchroom, theyre jealous. So what good can this possibly do for you?
Why in the world would you go and spill the beans about your private lives? Just plain
dumb, buddy. This is your biggest mistake and your biggest problem that everyone
knows youre together. It creates all kinds of pressures that shouldnt be there
in the first place.
Compounding this situation is that youre being way, way too sensitive. Your
girlfriends just playing a role here. Shes acting like a female James Bond on
a top-secret mission. (And the word is HUSH -- keep your trap shut!) You tell me that you
agree with Debbie on what your strategy should be, but when she does her undercover act,
you arent willing to go along with it. You cant have it both ways.
The truth is that Debbie should feel attacked when you bring up this ridiculous subject --
because youre wrong here. Like my Uncle Jethro Love says, Youre making
the Grand Canyon out of a gopher hole!
So yes, Debbie is merely trying to be professional. Thats it, no more. Shes
doing exactly the right thing she doesnt want to give your coworkers the idea
that somethings up between you. What business is it of theirs? Your
girlfriends smart and youre a dummy!
But what you want to do is pout, like a little boy throwing a tantrum. Sure, Debbie acts
buddy-buddy with the people at work, but who is she kissing at night them or you?
Thats what counts.
Mutual desire isnt dwindling in you, Brian. Its dwindling in Debbie, because
you keep having these stupid arguments over her not paying enough attention to you at an
inappropriate place. Youre becoming less of a Challenge, and Debbies Interest
Level in you is beginning to dip. To you Psych majors, work is for BUSINESS, not for LOVE.
Stop being weak, because thats what sensitive and romantic
really means. Dont be a wuss -- forget about your feelings when
youre on the job. Pretend like you dont know her at the office and Debbie will
be flying back into your arms.
Remember, guys: if she wants to play a game at work, go along with it as long as she loves
To send me your love questions or to find out more about The "System," visit me
at http://www.doclove.com or call (800)
Doc Love is a talk show host and entertainment speaker who coaches men in his seminars.
For the past 30 years he has asked thousands of women, "Why do you stay with
one man versus another?"
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