Things to know

Regularly read by 50,000+ readers in over 140 countries around the world, "Dear Bro Jo" is published every Monday, Wednesday and Friday (with occasional additional posts, too).

This is column is just one guy's opinion, and while he does his best to keep what he thinks, says and writes in-line with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, Bro Jo is not a spokesman or authority for the LDS Church. (And Sister Jo thinks you should know that he's sometimes wrong, and often way too opinionated for his own good.)

Nothing here is meant to take the place of talking with parents, leaders, or Church authorities. Please, if you need serious help, talk to a trusted adult, leader, and / or professional counselor.

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Friday, August 29, 2014

One Girl's Story - Part 6: The Break Up

Dear Bro Jo,

Thanks Bro Jo!

I AM worth the effort. (Funny side note. I've never been on this end of a breakup. I'm always the one who ends it. So I feel like I'm walking upside down. Not quite sure how to take it. Hmm. Karma. I have a sudden empathy for all my past boys. :))

I guess a week feels long when you're dating someone, but in reality it's a very short time.

I can wait two weeks.

And if nothing happens, his loss.

 - CG




Dear CG,

His loss indeed.

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

I just wanted to send a quick note to let you know how it turned out. I waited two weeks and then sent him an email that basically said, "If you don't feel like dating, that's fine. But I have no idea what you're feeling. Come on, man. I'm worth a phone call."

(Not exactly what I said, but that's the idea.)

He emailed me back saying that he was in Hawaii and would call as soon as he got home, unless he was able to catch a flight to Japan.

He did catch a flight to Japan and was there for a week.

He sent me some pictures while he was gone, but he wasn't able to call.

But he did call me as soon as he was back in the states.

(While he was sitting in the Seattle airport actually.)

He told me that he had just needed to take a step back and think about it for a while.

His last girlfriend dumped him just before I met him and she burned the relationship pretty badly, so I can totally understand him being a bit hesitant (although he didn't say that was why he was nervous. I'm just guessing).

So he was distant for that week.

And then the other week and a half I didn't hear from him, he was traveling.

(His friend got him tickets last minute or something. It was very sudden.)

He still wants to get to know me, and still thinks I'm great, just needed some space.

I'm not resentful, so I still want to at least be friends.

He called me last night and we talked for about an hour, and it wasn't awkward at all.

I suppose that means we're still friends at least. I'm a little more cautious now though, because I think every friendship/relationship needs really good communication, and he didn't show that very well.

But it also needs patience and understanding, so I'm willing to be that.

I'm not going to chase him.

He can chase me.

Plus, I'm going back to school in less than two weeks, so I'm certainly not going to lack boys.

However, he's really amazing and pretty much blows everyone else I've dated out of the water.

Right now, I'm torn between totally falling for him again, and trying to hold back because I don't want to be super attached to someone who could drop me without warning or explanation.

Ugh.

Well. That's where it stands.

Merry Christmas!!! :)

Thanks! -CG

PS. I bought a copy of your Casual Group Dating Guide for my brother for Christmas. He turns 16 in 2 weeks. He loves it. :)




Dear CG,

Sounds like things are as well as can be expected.

At some point you may need to come out and tell him what you told me:

"hey, I think you're the most amazing guy I've ever met, but I can't wait around for you to feel the same way about me. If you want this to happen you'd better make a move before I'm no longer available".

When and if the Spirit inspires.

Merry Christmas!

- Bro Jo

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

One Girl's Story - Part 5: The Older Man

Dear Bro Jo,

Hi, I emailed you a while ago asking about dating a guy.

He's 27 and I'm 18.

You told me to take it slow and be careful.

So I did date this guy.

I went down with my friend/his cousin to see him one weekend, then he came up to see me a couple weeks later etc.

It's a two hour drive, and we've spent about four weekends total together.

Besides visiting, we've had great phone conversations.

Not everyday, but usually once or twice a week.

We both really liked each other, and we got along great.

No pressure, but enough attachment to make the drive every few weeks.

We've never kiss-kissed, just held hands and kissed on the cheek.

So here's where I'm confused.

He came to see me two weeks ago.

We texted a bit throughout the week after that, then I called him on the following Sunday night.

We talked for 3 hours.

That was the last I've heard from him.

Not a single text, phone call, or email.

I texted him twice to tell him something (and to hint that I wanted to talk) but the conversation didn't go anywhere.

So I'm assuming that he's moved on and doesn't want to date me.

Which makes me sad, but I'm not torn up over it.

I just feel like we were close enough (and mature enough) to merit at least a text or call that said he didn't feel good about dating me and the always cliche and unrealistic offer to "be friends".

So here's where I'm stuck:  Do I totally let it go and not contact him at all, or do I ask him about it and try to stay on friendly terms?

And if so, what should I say?

- CG




Dear CG,

You've contacted, he responded, just not in the way you wanted.

I say wait a little.

Let him come to you.

(You ARE worth the effort, aren't you?)

 He could be very busy, or forgetful to the point of being inconsiderate, but I agree with you: he's acting like it's over.

At the very least he's unsure.

Either way he should talk to you about it.

If you don't hear from him for two weeks, it will be time to call and hold his feet to the fire.

If he doesn't answer and won't respond, write him off as a coward and, sadly, move on.

Relationships sometimes need a little time and space.

Be patient.

- Bro Jo

Monday, August 25, 2014

One Girl's Story - Part 4: He Broke Up with Her

Dear Bro Jo,

Hi.

I have a question.

- CG




Dear CG,

Ask.

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

Ok, so you might remember that I emailed and about the guy in the class etc. Remember?

- CG




Dear CG,

Yeah.

You said he asked you out multiple times and you were "exceptionally happy".

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

Yes, he did.

And then again and again and again.

We seriously dated for two months.

I can't even say how wonderful it was.

I could not have prescribed myself a better guy.

But then he broke up with me (the day before finals week, jerk.).

He is going to Jerusalem to study for a year, which I think was a big part of it.

And he said he prayed about it and all that.

I did not get the same impression and was mildly devastated.

Okay.  A lot devastated.

- CG




Dear CG,

Sorry to hear that when does he leave?

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

He said he still wanted to be friends.

He leaves the 29th of this month.

- CG




Dear CG,

Does your "friend" know that you're going to be dating other people?

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

Yes.

So what does "friends" mean? I haven't heard from him hardly at all.

- CG




Dear CG,

It means "I want to break up, I'm probably an idiot, and I want to make it seem less painful".

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

Ow.

I was afraid of that

- CG




Dear CG,

I'm sorry.

I wish he was smarter.

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

It's alright.

If the train doesn't stop at your station, it's not your train.

Stills sucks hardcore.

- CG




Dear CG,

That's why, when a smart enough guy comes along, you'll appreciate being married even more.

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

You're right.

I'll be okay.

I just miss him still.

Not even the relationship.

Just talking and laughing together.

Oh well.

Any suggestions for moving on?

- CG




Dear CG,

Time and . . . dating others

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

haha

Yep.

That's the truth.

I've got to get into a singles ward or institute or something before I go crazy.

I'm having dating withdrawls.

Seriously.

I've read no less than 8 books and learned Mozart's 3rd violin concerto in three weeks trying to stay busy and sane.

I know I'll be ok.

I was supposed to date this man and I learned so much from him about myself and the gospel. and I did pray for the spirit to guide our relationship. but I forgot to pray for the humility to accept the answer.

If nothing else, dating teaches me patience and trust in the Lord. which is the most important thing from any experience.

Plus. I'm a writer, and every legit author has to experience a certain amount of pain and emotional trama.

So it's just future novel material, right?

- CG




Dear CG,

Well . . . it is right, but the saying that you must experience stuff to write well or write about it is garbage and who knows, CG, maybe he'll get a clue and change his mind and when he does, maybe you'll be available . . .  and maybe you won't.

- Bro Jo




Dear Bro Jo,

It was said with an hint of sarcasm.

Trying to make myself feel better.

That's right.

Either we need to be apart to learn a few things, or we've learned what we were supposed to and we should find someone else.

Thanks for the help, Bro Jo.

Even just for listening.

- CG




Dear CG,

No worries!

It's what I do.

- Bro Jo