Ask Angelo - Angelo Pezzote
and Are you spending too much time online with guys?
By Angelo Pezzote, MA
My boyfriend and I have been dating for almost 8 months now. He's a chubby chaser and I'm the chubby. But I am working on dropping a significant amount of weight. I worry that he will miss what brought us together and lose interest. Should I dive into a large pizza?
Signed, Shrinking Chubby.
Dear Shrinking Chubby,
Having a personal goal is great. You cannot make yourself fail to have your relationship succeed. While discussing and considering your partner's feelings about your weight, you must do what is healthiest and leaves you feeling best about yourself. This is hard when what he likes about you most is something you don't like about yourself.
When one partner makes major changes, it effects the other partner. The relationship itself changes too. The outcome is unknown. The unknown makes us worry, but change is one thing we can count on in life. So worry cannot stop us from leading the lives we want.
Your partner's love for you can allow him to focus on other parts of you and discover that there is so much more to you than your weight. Consider when rarely in a gay couple, a partner discovers that they were never really gay, but are transgendered, and transition to the opposite sex. The gay partner then suddenly finds themself with a partner of the opposite sex. I find that the couples that stay together are the ones where the gay partner's sexuality is fluid enough. They are able to stay in the relationship, loving their partner for the person inside, even when their outside has changed. It is truly remarkable. So compared to that then, "what should a change of a few pounds matter to my partner," you ask?
Well, this changeability is not an option for many. Like sexual orientation, sexual turn-ons can be fixed for many people. Some men can only get turned on by feeling, doing and seeing very specific things. What takes us over the edge most to our ultimate orgasm comes forth from a combination of biology and our life history. We can override those blueprints with our thinking, but its hard.
Here is the bottom line - once you lose weight, his interest level may depend on how extremely he is tied to chasing chubbies. As long as he is flexible, you can lovingly change together, and can even grow closer rather than apart. You may chose to continue to lose the weight while allowing your partner to use chubby fantasy. Continue to talk, showing him that there is more of you to love than meets his eye.
I spend hours and hours a day on the net. I have tons of gay friends online, but I rarely get out. I have only a few friends in person. Is this OK?
Signed Net Dude
Dear Net Dude,
Meeting other men face to face is hard stuff. It is risky. It involves chancing rejection and feeling powerful emotions both positive and negative. Feelings like: excitement, joy, wholeness, nurturance, compassion, empathy, friendliness and love along with self-doubt, fear, shyness, anxiety, emptiness, abandonment, anger and loathing. As men, we are socialized to stifle our emotions. So it may be more comfortable for us to just "click on and off" than to meet face to face. This is where we need to be sure that we have balance with the Net.
Do not replace your real life interactions with all cyber people. The internet needs to compliment your existing whole social network - not be it. Except for pen-pals who you may have met or feel you may know well, we really have no idea who we are talking to or seeing. All we know is the image they are presenting us with and not necessarily the essence of that person.
So much of the internet can be fantasy and can be addictive. If you find that you are experiencing negative consequences by taking time away from your daily responsibilities like work, errands, chores, bills, etc., for internet use - whether to just chat or hook up - then you may need to talk to a professional. You may also need to talk to a counselor when the internet has become the primary vehicle for your social, relational and sex life, where you feel your life is empty of real flesh and blood acquaintances, friends, partners that you spend quality time with. So here are some suggestions while using the Net.
Set limits for your time online that are right for you - like say one hour a day. Do not give out your address, phone or have someone over unless you know them well. Be clear with yourself and others about what you want. Do you want to date, meet friends, have sex? If you are looking to eventually meet people in person, do not misrepresent yourself online. Be genuine. And balance your life mostly with face to face interactions in person.
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Angelo Pezzote, MA, All Rights Reserved