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Dear Christine, Annoyed in Auburn Hills

| April 10, 2017

Dear Christine,

My girlfriend has a habit that annoys me. We’ve been dating about a year and I’ve never complained but it’s beginning to get worse. We go out a lot and have a busy social life. Every time she sees an attractive woman, she has to let everyone know and often it’s a bit crude and lewd. Should I tell her it bothers me? I don’t think she would ever cheat and I haven’t said anything because since I’ve known her it just seems to be part of her personality. I knew her for several months before we started dating. I think I’m feeling more certain of my feelings for her so somehow her comments no longer seem appropriate to me. Signed, Annoyed in Auburn Hills

Dear Annoyed,

The short answer is yes. That is, if you have an honest and open relationship. And if you don’t want annoyed feelings to turn into resentment.

The longer answer is that it really depends on your relationship. If the two of you are not direct in telling each other what you do like about each other and what is really annoying, then this is a good time to start. If you are feeling more confident in the relationship, start with that. Tell her your feelings are deeper and you are interested in whatever is next in building intimacy and commitment with each other.

Trust and honesty are foundational in a healthy relationship. It can be tough to get there if the early dating relationship was fun and games. At some point, you both need to begin to tell each other how you feel about each other, and what you need to deepen the commitment. And that can be scary, risky, because she might take offense at you “criticizing” her “playful nature” or whatever she might think. But there is no depth without honesty. If you feel ready to take that step, let her know that “her comments no longer seem appropriate ” to you. See where the conversation goes. I hope that it opens the door to other difficult but so worthwhile conversations between the two of you.

Christine Cantrell, PhD

Psychologist

Christine C. Cantrell, PhD
1026 W. 11 Mile Rd,
Suite C
Royal Oak, MI 48067
248-591-2888

Click here to email Christine.

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