Monday, July 7, 2008

Did I Mention I Write an Advice Column?

I don't think that I have ever divulged the fact that I got hired to write an advice column. It's not something that just slipped my mind, I guess I just didn't think it was "blog worthy" at the time.

Now you may ask yourself why I suddenly decided to announce the fact that I am the next best thing to Dear Abby. Okay, so I'm not Dear Abby, I am actually just a horribly opinionated person who has done a TON of living in my short years (NO AGE JOKES PLEASE!).

The reason to divulge my secret life as an advice columnist, is two-fold. I thought I would post the questions that I answered for the next issue of the magazine (yes, the one that buys my short stories also pays me to do this), along with the answers I gave. It is an over 35 and married column. I also wanted to solicit questions for the new column that I suggested (not real bright on my part), a Blended Family advice column (guess who gets to do that one also?).

If anyone would like to submit new questions, I can post answers here on my blog (keep in mind these are ONLY my opinion, and meant ONLY for entertainment purposes), and some could be used in the magazine in the future. You can email questions to TerriRainer at aol dot com, or just ask away in the comments if you are a brave soul!

This question comes from a woman over 35 but under 50. She has been married for a long time to same man; a man she met at age 17. He has always had weird sexual fantasies but has kept them to the bedroom. Now he wants her to dress in a short skirt, low cut top and no undies OUTSIDE the bedroom. This really bothers her but she does not know how to tell him, as she is afraid she will make him angry or mad. He works out of state and is home infrequently so she has put him off, but he is to be home the whole month of September and she knows he is going to want this, so how does she tell him she’s not comfortable with his desires?

My immediate thought was, just say no! I do realize that men, however, have to be handled with a bit of care, due to their fragile egos. I have found that often when we women try and have a “discussion” about our feelings, either what we say doesn’t come out right, or perhaps men misconstrue what we are really trying to say, but either way, often what we think is going to be a productive sharing between two adults, melts down into a useless argument.

That being said, it’s often wise to write down your feelings. Perhaps share what you have put on paper with a trusted friend, to make sure that what is said is stated in a manner that is both clear and concise. You should also do a bit of ego stroking, and blame the discomfort in doing what he requested entirely on you….not him.

Give your house a good cleaning, fix a wonderful dinner (preferably his favorite), and fix yourself up (hair and make-up…skip the panty-less attire for this discussion). Share the letter with him, and DON’T be apologetic! There are three things that will satisfy MOST men, a clean house, food in their belly, and sex when they want it. It doesn’t mean that we have to degrade ourselves, or do things we aren’t comfortable with to please them.

If you don’t give him the choice, stick to your guns, and offer “bedroom only” suggestions, he should respect your need to keep the bedroom, in the bedroom.

Good luck!
Terri Rainer

This one comes from a twenty-eight year old woman. She says she always seems to pick the worst men. The last one she picked abused her mentally and emotionally and her children saw things they should not have. He never hit the children or her. She wants to know why she likes the bad boys.

The age-old question…what makes those bad boys so darn appealing in the beginning? Sometimes it’s just the luck of the draw and that nice guy turns into the spawn of Satan, sometimes we have indicators right from the start that this guy is bad news, and we just don’t listen or want to see. Whatever the case, as a single mom, your first and only priority should be your kids.

Now, I’m not saying you should live like a nun. If you don’t take time for yourself, then you would just about go nuts. What I am saying is, don’t let the kids around ANY man, until you get to know him better.

Often poor self esteem or other personal issues affect who we gravitate towards. Maybe you should start by taking a break from any and all dating. Give yourself a time period, maybe six months, maybe a year. STICK to it! If you meet a really great guy, if it was meant to be, he’ll still be around when it’s time to test the dating waters.

Another piece of advice is to listen to your friends and family. I would bet that the last guy you were with did not have many fans. Often we are too involved in that instant chemistry and falling in lust to see the big picture. Make a list of the realistic things (that applies to their personality…NOT appearance) you want in a man. If you meet someone, and he falls short of that list, cut your losses and run the other way. You should DEMAND a certain standard for yourself, and for your kids.

Good Luck!
Terri Rainer


Half-Past Kissin' Time said...

I think your advice was excellent. That said, I have some more.

For the first lady, she could consider doing what he wants in a semi-public place, but first let him know that that's where she's drawing the line. For example, she could go out of town with him and dress like that as she's sitting/standing on the hotel balcony (exposed, but not really). It could actually be fun.

Yeah, now you think you know too much about me. I have NOT done this. (Although I will confess to flashing a trucker as he drove by (on a highway) back in the day; hey! I was like 20 years old!)

My second piece of advice is to the lady who picks bad guys, and I mean this sincerely. If a woman finds herself consistently picking losers, she needs to get some therapy. Women who think they can "fix" broken guys feel that way because of their baggage. Especially when kids are involved, the woman needs to figure out why she is doing that and learn to aim higher.

Christy said...

Wow, I'm impressed!! A published author AND an advice columnist?! Holy cow--you rock!!

Skeeter said...

Sweetie THIS will satisfy ALL (not merely MOST as advertised) men ... "a clean house, food in their belly, and sex when they want it." Just to be sure I asked every man I know, and wouldn't ya know ... SURVEY SAYS ... we have a winner! Excellent advice column.

LiteralDan said...

Hey, my ego is NOT fragile... (sniffle)

You are too cool. Next you're going to get your own talk show, or something.

Mary Duncan said...

Love the talk show idea!!! Terri, you'd be a star! Hey, one can think of worse things to do. And how in the world did you just FORGET to mention this aspect of your already very interesting life. huh?

Keep up the good work.


TerriRainer said...

Mrs. 4444: Oh dear God! You flashed truckers back in the day????? If only your students knew...they would look at you in a WHOLE new light.

Christy: Tell my kids I rock...they'll argue!

Skeeter: Thanks for doing the survey to confirm what MOST women should know. Men are relatively simple creatures, unlike us women!

Literal Dan: You are my hero (stroke stroke)! I think I would rather do a Springer type talk show, there is NO shortage of idiots out there, and I REALLY like to laugh!

Mary: Key words there, "already interesting life". I don't strive to be a therapist or the next Dear Abby, it was just something to hone my writing skills, just like blogging and writing short stories. Anything to make yourself a better writer is worth the time IMHO!

:) Terri

Wifey said...

Great advice! I'm scared of you - smiles!

Mrs4444 said...

Well, yes they would! (First my bare ass cheek, and then boobs?! I'd never get anything taught!)

Hey, where do you live? I see that you're up. I'm thinking about calling you! Assuming that you'd trust me with your phone number, of course. If you live in the states, fire away. If you live in the states and don't want to give me your number, just pretend and give me a number for Scotland.... (email)

Skeeter said...

Great to see you again at Writers Group meeting. I know you're planning something evil, so whenever the phone calls come, I'll be sure to let you know that your evil plan has borne fruit.

When is Conestoga?

TerriRainer said...

I am SUCH an evil genius!


I will definitely blog about my evil plans when either they DO,DO NOT, or you actually find out what said evil plans were!

:) Terri

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