Amy: Lady feels like a tramp

  • Article by: AMY DICKINSON
  • Chicago Tribune
  • November 17, 2012 - 2:17 PM

Dear Amy: I started a relationship with a work colleague about four months ago. He has a girlfriend in a long-distance relationship. They have been together four years.

What started as a mere physical relationship has turned into something more emotional for us. However, he is having a hard time parting with his girlfriend.

While I am happy when I am with him, it is heartbreaking when I catch him speaking (or texting) with his girlfriend. I know I am such a tramp to steal another woman's boyfriend, but the love I have for him is genuine. He keeps saying that he wants to be with me, but I can't see this happening in the near future.

Last week I decided to take a "break" to think everything through. I said that I will be happy if he's happy, regardless of his decision, but I am in doubt whether I can handle his decision if he chooses to be with his girlfriend.

I do not know what to do and (or) how to handle the situation. Can you help?

Amy says: It's been a long time since I have seen someone self-identify as "a tramp." I feel your pain -- I really do -- because if you are a Jean Harlow, man-stealing tramp, the guy you are dating is a one-man Bradley Cooper movie.

I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If this guy really loved you, he'd ditch his other relationship the minute he realized it. Your strong emotional feelings have opened your eyes and clarified your intentions. Lay it out there in a way that's uncompromising and all about you.

If you want to be in a monogamous relationship with him, then issue an ultimatum. Prepare to be dramatically and tenderly alone. Stock up on ice cream and listen to Joni Mitchell's "Blue" until your sadness passes. And it will pass.

Odor alert

Dear Amy: A woman wrote to you about a "stinky" individual at her gym.

While I tend to ignore the odorous athletes at my gym, there was one time I didn't. I was on an elliptical machine next to a large gentleman whose body odor was extremely offensive.

When my workout was finished I quietly and as unobtrusively as possible said, "You might want to look into a stronger deodorant." He was shocked and embarrassed, and apologized.

Amy says: You obviously regret this discreetly expressed suggestion, but I wonder if in the long term it might have been a good thing for this gentleman.

I'd like to hear from people who have been "called out" for noticeable odors. It would be great to learn what works from both sides.

Send questions via e-mail to Amy Dickinson at

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