Dear Lucia,

I’ve been dating a great man since May. I’m 25, he’s 33 and has been divorced for three years, no kids. We talk daily and see each other three to four times a week.

Seven months into our relationship I asked if I was his girlfriend. He said he really liked me, but wasn’t ready to use that label since it was so new and he was still getting to know me. He assured me there’s no one else.

I told him it was OK. I wasn’t giving him an ultimatum or trying to force him into anything he wasn’t ready for. I was just curious.

I brought it up again today and got the same response. I don’t want anything to change; I just want to be able to call him my boyfriend.

Am I being totally irrational by wanting a title that, to me, isn’t going to change anything? Is he just not that into me?


Dear Lori,

Seven months into a relationship is not “new.” He knew long before then whether he wanted you to be his girlfriend or not, and the answer is: No!

That’s why it’s now been 10 months, and he still hasn’t changed his mind. He is happy to see you on his terms. He gets to spend time with you, have sex with you and still keep his options open.

Your choices are to either take this or leave it. Do you want to continue to spend time with a man who is only interested in a casual relationship with you? Are you willing to be in a casual relationship, knowing that the longer it continues, the more it will hurt when it’s over?

If you decide to leave, do not give an ultimatum. You need to be very calm and sure of yourself.

Say something like, “This is no longer working for me. I don’t want to be in a casual relationship. I want to be somebody’s girlfriend. I enjoyed the time we spent together. I wish you well, and I’m going to move on.”

If he says he needs to think about it, let him take all the time that he needs. However, he does not need to see you while he is “thinking about it.”

The only way you should continue to see him is if he is willing to commit. In the meantime, start meeting other guys, if for no other reason than to get your mind off him.

Dear Lucia,

I’ve been dating this guy for about one and a half months. What is the best way to break up with him without hurting him too much?

I know he’ll be hurt no matter what, but should I just be simple and say, “I can’t date you anymore?” Problem is, he goes to the same small events as I do. I don’t mind seeing him there and don’t want him to stop going because of me.

There are no bad feelings on my part, but he’s falling for me and won’t take it well. He’s very immature, which is the main reason we can’t even stay friends.

Part of me would like to explain why I want to stop seeing him, but I don’t want to get into a complaint fest and I’m not sure if he’s open to hearing anything. Is it better to lie and say I’m dating someone else?

I keep getting different comments from both men and women on this subject. The men said, “Don’t say that you met someone else but be more honest.” The women said, “Either tell him what’s wrong or just say something simple.”


Dear Marnie,

I’ll have to side with some of the women on this one. Being honest and telling him he’s immature is not going to suddenly make him mature. He is who he is, and you’re not a match.

There is no way to break up with someone without hurting him or her too much. You’re not responsible for his feelings; he can choose to react however he wants to.

I would say something like: This isn’t working for me, and I’ve decided to move on. There are no hard feelings on my part.

Don’t get sucked into a conversation about what’s wrong. Just say you’ve made up your mind and wish him well.

Remember: Love inspires, empowers, uplifts and enlightens.

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