Advicereality check

Reality Check

I worked in the medical profession (OBGYN) office for five years.  I believe doctors do not insert IUDs into women who have not had babies because the cervix is not pliable enough to accommodate one.  If a woman has not had a child, the IUD is more likely to be a.) uninsertable, and b.) malfunction.  Your questioner was given the correct advice, although not the full, proper explanation. She should confirm this with another health care provider at one of the local “free” clinics.  In the meantime, good old condoms, used properly, should suffice.


I don’t know how long ago you worked in the profession, Anonymous, but you couldn’t be more wrong. First, according to the doctor I spoke to at a Planned Parenthood office, IUDs are regularly being used by girls as young as age 13. And second, the effectiveness of a condom, even when properly used, is considerably less (15 to 24 pregnancies per 100 women per year) than that of an IUD (fewer than 1 pregnancy per 100 women per year). I did an informal poll of my friends and co-workers, and of the five who have IUDs, three have never had children, and they are all quite satisfied with the IUD. Even if the reasoning behind the advice that my questioner was given was sound (which is still not clear), the advice itself wasn’t.

My wife and I met in a midwestern college town 10 years ago. She wasn’t that into me, but we became friends, and eventually I convinced her to go out with me. We had a few good years, played the role of young hipsters, made friends, had a life. I wasn’t all that attached to the town, and she was accepted to a grad program on the West Coast, so we moved. I fell into a good work situation there and made friends quickly. I got a decent job so I could support us both; she went to school and worked very part-time. It was great, and I would have stayed there indefinitely. After my wife finished school, she took a job here. I wasn’t thrilled about leaving, but I wanted to be supportive. So we packed our bags and moved again.

Once I got here I decided I really needed to start making some decisions about what I was doing with my life, so I applied to grad school. Now I’m in grad school, feeling pretty good about what I’m doing and where I’m headed, and now she wants to leave again, when I still have at least a year to go in my program. She decided that she wants to get her PhD, and she actually expects me to move on—as in, right now. She wants me to drop everything. I know this is partially my fault because I have been so accommodating in the past that she has just come to expect it now. I don’t know the best way to say, “Now it’s my turn†without just saying that. I’m afraid it will end our relationship, but I can’t keep just giving up what I have and try to recreate a life for myself whenever it is best for her career. How do I do what’s best for me without doing something that’s bad for us?


It’s time for you to put your foot down, MT. I have no idea what your wife is thinking, or why she would decide to up and move again so suddenly, but it isn’t fair, and you have to tell her no. Any rational person can see that you have sacrificed whatever you have had twice now in order for her to fulfill her ambition, and that it is indeed your turn to make some progress. One would think that she would be happy for you since you have figured out what you want to do. I find it worrisome that you are quick to blame yourself for her selfishness. I’m curious as to what you have said to her about this so far, and what her reaction has been. I hope you at least told her that you want to finish school(?). If you can’t work this out together soon, you should really consider a marriage counselor.

I met this guy on an Internet dating site. He seemed pretty nice, and he was definitely cute, so I decided to go and meet him. He lives about an hour away from my small town, which was actually a relief since I rarely meet a guy I don’t already know and who doesn’t know at least one of my friends or cousins. He is very smart, charming and funny, and we hit it off well. We went out a few times, and talked on the phone and sent emails, and now we have a “relationship†that involves one of us visiting the other (mostly I go there, because of the small-town thing) almost every weekend.

The problem is that he seems perpetually broke and underemployed, and since he lives kind of far away, I don’t see how we can keep this thing going. He will finish his degree in another year, but obviously I don’t think I can keep this thing going until then. This is frustrating, because I never meet single guys with whom I am compatible where I live, but I can’t just quit my job and move for a guy I barely know, right? He seems fine with the way things are, but I feel like we should be making progress. I don’t doubt that he actually likes me, or think that he is seeing anybody else, but the distance thing is killing me. This has been going on for six months. I’m 30 and I don’t want to keep casually dating. Should I just drop it? Or should I keep going and see what happens when he finishes school?


If it seems to be going well except for the distance, then maybe a move isn’t out of the question? I guess it depends on how married you are to your job, and how likely it would be that you could find another one closer to where he lives. Obviously, he has to stay put for another year. Would you consider moving? If you would, you should mention it to him and see what he thinks. If he balks, then you know he doesn’t see a future and you have your answer. But if he would be OK with it, you might want to get yourself a studio with a six-month lease in his town. The problem with a weekend romance is that you don’t really get to know each other on an everyday basis. You’re only getting the “dinner and movies and free time” guy. It’s easy to like people on their day off, right? But real life happens when you are stressed out and tired, when you have to do laundry and grocery shop and pay bills. If you don’t get to know each other in real life, it will be hard to tell if you are actually compatible. Not ready to move? Then you have to decide whether or not you are willing to “wait and see†for another year.