Dear Annie: I am a college student and have been dating a nice guy for almost a year. Unfortunately, "Cody" is more into our relationship than I am. I have my reasons (Cody made some major mistakes that my heart has looked past, but my head has not), but what makes matters worse is I am deeply "in like" with a friend of Cody's. I believe this friend feels the same about me.
I've been in relationships since I was 15. I think it might be best, if and when I break things off with Cody, that I remain single for a while. On the other hand, I am deeply worried that if I wait, I will miss out on this wonderful man. I feel awful for everyone involved and hope there is something you can tell me that would help.
- Bummed in Boston
Dear Bummed: You have multiple things going on. First, you need to break off the relationship with Cody. You don't love him, you are unable to forgive him for whatever it was he did in the past, and you are interested in someone else. Then you need to give your social life a rest, not only to see what it's like to be on your own, but because it's very bad form to go after Cody's friend so quickly. If the guy is interested and sees that you haven't attached yourself to anyone else, he will come knocking when enough time has passed.
Dear Annie: My daughter was infected with herpes by her boyfriend. They have since broken up. Her doctor said it most likely was transmitted via oral sex.
She is still in the initial stages of coping emotionally, and I am doing my best to help her believe that in time things will not seem so terrible. I know she is afraid of the day when she has to tell a new boyfriend. I've told her that anyone who loves her will educate himself and give the relationship a chance, but I understand how painful and discouraging a rejection would be, especially if it happens more than once.
Would you please ask your readers who have found themselves in the same situation to share their experiences? Nothing I can tell her would have as much impact as hearing from people who have been there.
- A Sad Mom
Dear Mom: Approximately one in five adults in the U.S. has herpes, so your daughter has plenty of company, and we are certain our readers will weigh in with their experiences.
In the meantime, contact the American Social Health Association (1-800-227-8922) at ashastd.org for information, support and suggestions on dealing with herpes - including how to talk about it with a new romantic interest.
Dear Annie: Twice recently, you misused the abbreviation "i.e.," so I thought I would try to straighten the matter out.
What you have done is use "i.e." when "e.g." was intended. The abbreviation "i.e." is a complete enumeration of all possibilities. It stands for "id est," meaning "that is," which infers a complete list of what items answer the condition. But if the intent was to list a few examples, "e.g." is the correct term. It is an abbreviation of "exempli gratia," meaning "for example," or "example given," and lists representative items.
When you told "Wife of a Motor Mouth" to interest her husband in a hobby and added "i.e., photography or crafts that he can display," you implied that there were no other choices. Using "e.g." would have left the door open for thousands of other possibilities.
- Larry in
Dear Larry: Thanks for hauling us up short. As another Latin expert once informed us, nostra culpa is the correct way to say "We're sorry." We often see and hear "i.e." applied to mean "for example" and had no idea it was incorrect. We'll try to keep it straight in the future.
Dear Annie: "Tired of It" complained that her husband hollers when he yawns and scares everyone. I saw an episode of "House" where a man exhibited similar symptoms, and one possible explanation was his body's reaction to acid reflux. Maybe "Tired" should have her husband consult an ENT or at least his primary care physician to see if there is an easy fix.
- "House" Fan
Dear Fan: We saw that episode, too. The man (played by Carl Reiner) squawked spontaneously and unexpectedly, and it turned out he had a tumor. We don't believe this is the case for "Tired of It," but you are right that it wouldn't hurt to have the hollering checked out by a medical professional (as opposed to the TV kind).