Dr. Andrew

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A coworker wants to go out with me. There are no regs by our employer but I’m not sure this is a good idea. What do other people do? I don’t want to risk a problem at work.

Since there are no regulations at work, that barrier is not there. It really depends on the people. Sometimes the best relationships are formed at work. I would take it slowly and see how it goes. As long as it doesn't negatively impact work, go for it. If it does, you'll have to break it off.

Is there a way to check out someone online? There’s a guy online that seems really neat but I’m worried. You’ve mentioned online checks but are they reliable? I’m willing to take a chance if it works.

The online checks are very reliable. Of course, the more info you want, the more it will cost. BUT $80-$100 is a small price to pay for an in depth investigation into someone. I would highly recommend using one if you are thinking about actually dating someone you've met online.

My gf smokes too much weed. I heard it can mess with your emotions. She has her moods and this bothers me. I’ve tried to show her research but she just blows me off. How do I get her to at least cut down? I love her but I’m not willing to put up with the risks.

Many people do not believe that weed can cause psychosis. I've done a neuroelectrical scan that shows the level of anxiety and paranoia before and after detox. It really can screw with a person who is using a lot. You can only control you. If it's important to you to be with someone not using that much, all you can do is move on if she is not willing to admit her problem.

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My bf’s friends all do rankings of females in our high school based on looks. This pisses me off. My bf doesn’t participate but he doesn’t speak up either. I don’t like that. I’m almost ready to break up with him over this. Calm me down, please!

Your boyfriend should speak up, but really you are the one who should speak up the most. He may not know exactly what to say, or he may be worried that if he says anything it will make it worse. Both of you should talk to a school counselor together and figure out a strategy about how to handle this situation.

How can others judge my relationship without me saying a word? All these people say things about us without really knowing what’s going on. Sure we’ve had open arguments but that’s our business. I’m not sure how to stop the online stuff they put out.

The best advice is to not give them anything to talk about. If they have nothing to hear or see, they won't have any comments. Unfortunately, many people make comments and judge without seeing or hearing the whole story. It isn't right, but don't give them A reason to make comments.

My bf posted pics of us, nothing revealing. This really upsets me. I told him he has no right to post pics of me without my permission. He says I’m overreacting. He doesn’t get it. Maybe he’s not right for me.

This is a classic example of how two people see things differently. He evidently is very proud of you, and he wants everybody to see you in the same way that he does. You probably see it as him using you as Eye candy. Just explain to him nicely that you want the pictures of the two of you to remain between the two of you. Don't ask in an angry way, because he is likely to become defensive.

I live in California. I can’t believe how divided people are over the election. My gf is fiercely liberal and runs around getting on a soap box. Personally, I’m not emotionally involved. This has upset her and she says she doesn’t know if she can continue our relationship. Now I have doubts.

If your relationship was that fragile that it can be broken up by an election, it wasn't strong enough to survive long term to begin with. It also means that if you have strong agreements with her in the future, she is going to give you ultimatums and grief. Do you really want that?

I recently read that marijuana can screw up sperm. I’ve done my research so I know it’s pretty accurate. My bf uses and now he wants to get married. I’m really worried. He won’t quit. Should I break up?

It is not my place to tell you what to do. That being said, it sounds like you have pretty much made up your mind that if he won't quit, it's over. For you, I think that is a wise decision.

I’m going out with this guy. We’ve been out maybe 6 times. He asked me the last time if I wouldn’t mind paying half in the future. I am a traditionalist. I think the guy should pay. I didn’t know what to say so I said I would think about it. He hasn’t called me in a week now.

This is 2016. The rules have changed. He has paid six times, it would be respect full to at least offered to pay. The reality is as young people it's fine to split the dinner costs. You may wind up a traditionalist without dates if you keep this up.

I have 3 classes with my gf in college. She sees this as competition. I don’t understand that because it seems like she’s got a different agenda. I’m not sure if she’s insecure or what. How do I handle the “non-competition” issue? It’s screwing with our relationship.

As much as it is fun to be together in the classes, it's generally not a good idea for the exact reason you are having. Just keep telling her that there is no competition, and the two of you should not take classes together again if it is going to cause this problem with your relationship.

My bf just got back from Puerto Rico. I heard that the zika virus can be passed on with sex. Is this true?

Yes, it’s true. To their surprise researchers discovered that zika, unlike most other viruses, can be transmitted through sexual contact. The best advice is to use condoms until you both can be absolutely sure there is no danger. If you aren’t convinced about that, take a look at the pictures of microcephaly. It's heartbreaking

I did your app, Love Shopping List. My gf came out pretty low. Now what? Do I break up with her? We have had some good times but there are always fights.

Our app is not designed to make decisions for you. It’s designed to give you information so that you can make better decisions on your own, to empower you. Many times in therapy I have been able to have couples see where there might be major problems. This allows them to do something about the problems BEFORE it blows up. But sometimes the problems are too big to overcome.

My auntie is a meth head. I’ve tried getting the family to do an intervention but they say it’s her choice. It wouldn’t bother me except she talks shit to my bf all the time and he’s ready to break up with me because of it. How do I do an intervention?

Doing an intervention should not be done by someone without experience. I would look for an interventionist (yes, there really is such a thing.) in your area. You are too involved emotionally to be effective. With regard to your bf, the two of you should just stay away from her. You can tell the rest of the family you just can't be around her.

What is the most romantic way to propose? I want to do it right but I’ve heard about many things that have bombed and I don’t want to do that. I know my gf is ready. Do you have any suggestions?

There is no one right romantic way to propose. Without knowing your gf, there is no way to guide you. Some people like stuff that’s really out there, while others are more into traditional things. Some might like just one on one at a beach at sunset while others might like a proposal on the jumbotron at a sporting event. It’s like art. Beautiful art is in the eye of the beholder. What is beautiful to one may be like trash to another.

I’m new to online dating. I’m really worried about not really knowing someone and then going out. I think it’s kind of a digital blind date. What should I look for in order to not get scammed?

This question has popped up many times. If you don’t know the person, it is well worth it to run a full check on them. Costs vary, but you can pretty much get a full background check for $20-$50. It will be money well spent, and it will put your mind at ease.

My gf’s crowd doesn’t like me. They’ve said nasty things that have gotten back to me. When I ask my gf about it she just tells me to ignore them and that to consider that she is still with me. But I’m having trouble letting it go. Maybe they’re pissed that I turned down a bunch of them previously?

Your gf is wise. Keep in mind that she is going out with you. You really don’t have to do anything else. Yes, they are probably jealous, and they are probably pissed that you don’t or won’t go out with them. Your gf is right. Just ignore them. The more you make of it, the more they win.

What is a relationship counselor? Me and my bf are having trouble and we’d both like to work on it. Is there a special license or something?

Don’t be fooled by names. If someone is simply calling herself/himself a relationship counselor, it means she/he is probably NOT a licensed professional. What you want to do is be in the hands of a mental health professional such as a psychologist or marriage & family therapist who has relationships as one of the issues in which she/he specializes.

There’s this girl I really like. The problem is I’m a white dude and she’s a minority. I’m not sure how to approach her because I don’t want to look like a fool. I also don’t want to take crap from my friends or hers. Can you help?

I would not make the racial difference an issue. Approach her as you would any girl you might want to go out with. If you make race an issue even before going out, it will remain an issue even if you establish a relationship. Don’t do that.

Me and this guy have been going out for about 2 months. Whenever we are going to have sex he first has to make sure all doors and windows are locked. At first this freaked me out but now it doesn’t. Is this something guys do?

It sounds like OCD, obsessive compulsive disorder. It's not "something guys do." Guys usually don't care about anything but the sex part. I would go online and educate yourself about the symptoms of OCD, then have an open honest discussion with him. The disorder also creates a huge amount of anxiety, so be aware of that. He may need help.

I’m probably going to sound stupid but my gf wants to have sex all the time and I mean all the time. I’m ok with 3-4/week but she’s more like 3-4/day. I’m beginning to think there’s something wrong. What’s a sex addiction?

That frequency is indicative of a sex addiction if the pattern is ongoing. It may be fun at the beginning, but it is a serious problem. She needs help, professional help. A lot of people don't realized that there really is such thing as sex addiction or how badly it can mess up a relationship.

Me and my gf don’t really want a big wedding. In fact we both would be ok with just going to Vegas alone. Both our parents want to invite everybody. We haven’t told them how we feel. Now what?

If you're old enough to get married, you're old enough to decide what you want. Since both of you want it small, then sit down with your parents and explain. They'll just have to deal with it and respect you.

My bf says the most important thing to him is trust. Do I dare tell him about “others” before him? I’m worried that will ruin everything.

Some things are not necessary to reveal. I don't know your relationship, so it's hard to say what would be ok. You may consider getting into some couples' therapy to address the issues. It's usually ok if both partners are open, but it can be tricky.

My ex got a doctor to say I’m nuts. He got full custody of our son and now says I have to be monitored to see him. I can’t believe he would do this. Is there something you know that I could do about this? The guy just keeps trying to intimidate me.

You need to get a really good family law attorney, and then you need to have a full psych workup from a licensed psychologist to show you true functioning. Your attorney will have to go to battle for you and prove the case against your ex and the doctor.

My gf got a breast reduction. When she asked what I thought I said I like her anyway she is. She blew up and is thinking about breaking up with me. Am I missing something? Did I say or do something wrong?

From a male perspective, no, you didn't say or do anything wrong. You are being very supportive. But from a female perspective, your gf faced a very emotional decision. What she wanted was for you to tell her that she looks great. But, of course, how would you know that? You wouldn't. Talk this through with your gf so she knows that you really are being supportive.

There is alcoholism on both sides of our family. We both want kids but are really worried about what we might pass on. Is there some kind of test to help us? We wouldn’t want to pass anything like that on. We’ve both seen what it can do to a family.

You can certainly do things like genetic testing, but I wouldn't worry about it. We all pass "stuff" on in our genes. The real way to prevent it is to deal with it up front and be aware, even with your children. Knowing what it's done to your families, you will be much wiser.


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