Dear Miss Emily:

We have been together for almost 1 ½  years and moved in together in May of this year.  However, we had problems before moving in together.  First, I have a huge problem with trust due to cheating boyfriends in the past.  I also had a father, who I am not sure if he was a cheater or not, but, I do remember feeling sorry for my mother for the way he ogled other woman and talked about breasts. I now have huge fake breasts (hmmm, wonder why?)  Anyway, I have always placed tons of importance on looking sexy and, at 38, I look much younger.  My boyfriend is 29 and I think may be too verbally mean to me.  He calls me names too often and my gut instinct tells me he is not good for me.  I want to have children, and he comes from divorce and is not ready for family any time soon.  What disturbs me most is our arguing and lack of communication.  Our arguments never get resolved and he is always telling me what "his friends" analysis of our issues are and looking to others to analyze us.  He thinks of everyone as black or white, while I don't believe everyone is good or bad.  He comes from a cheating Dad, who is borderline suicidal now with a cheating wife.  He thinks his mom is boring and lame and his dad is his drinking buddy.  My boyfriend drinks a lot, and I also worry he is an alcoholic.  He has tons of black outs.  A lot of the reason that I don't trust him is because of his lies in the past and because he claims blackouts as convenient memory losses.  As you can tell, I just do not trust him. I guess I feel like I should move forward, but, I do love him very much.  I don't have any solid evidence of cheating, but, for some reason inside, I believe he has cheated.  I don't know if it is me or him or paranoia or what.  I do know that he was a cheater in his past relationships. One thing that worries me, recently, is that he puts me down so much and calls me a whore because I used to be a stripper (even though I have a graduate degree and corporate job).  And when I cry, he acts like I am being hysterical and wants me to look in the mirror and see how hysterical and irrational I am being.  He also gets angry super quickly and always thinks that there is some evil behind everything. (Like if he finds a scratch on his car or tv, he thinks that someone must be responsible even though it could just be the maid or some random accident).  He is always coming to untrue conclusions.  I am not sure what that says about him.  I just want to be happy and feel like we spend too much time arguing, with no conclusion, and it just ending because I am crying and he is being so mean.
Two Of Me
                                            
---------------------Miss Emily's advice------------------

Dear Two:

I, personally, know someone with this problem.  For her, I call it the Barbie/Hillary syndrome. I say Hillary, because despite what some people think of her, she’s smart.  It’s hard to live in two worlds. Part of you is used to getting attention from men because of your physical attributes, but it’s a tough roll to play because it isn’t really type-casting for you.  Smart, sexy women, often get mistaken for sexy first, smart later. You’ve made a good case for leaving this guy, but you have to fully understand why you chose him and not make the same mistake, again.  For one, the type of man you are with really doesn’t like women.  I think he might be confused by your dual persona, but that’s not really an excuse for treating you like scum.  He’s a hypocrite if he puts you down for your history of being a stripper because, surely, somewhere in the recesses of his primitive mind, he thinks he found himself a really hot babe -- a sex object.  Because of your history, this is the type of man you have learned to attract.  I don’t think the die is cast, i.e., you have to accept a life with controlling men who take you for granted, but you have to take a good look at yourself and make some real changes to insure better relationships.  Only you know what those changes should be.  But know this: There is nothing more unflattering than a fifty year-old woman (12 years from now, for you) who still talks about how she was abused by men but never had the courage to change the pattern.  You are smart.  Why settle for what you don’t want, when you can find a way to have what you do want?  I'm not saying it’s a simple thing to do, or we would all be success stories.  One final word.  I have a repeating quote, on my site, by Eleanor Roosevelt.  “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.  Never give it.”  Keep me posted.