Dear Wendy: Anniversary Let-Down And Dropping The L Bomb

My boyfriend Curtis and I have been going out for six months now. Just last Tuesday we celebrated our six month anniversary. So I asked a friend what I should get him. This is my first real relationship ever lasting 6 months. She said get him a card, so I found one that pretty much described how I feel about him. But he didn’t get me a card or anything. We went out to dinner at a pizza restaurant, and when we were leaving he asked “Do you have tip money”? Am I going crazy? Cause this sounds wrong to me. So we get in the car to leave and he’s like “What’s wrong”? He doesn’t know!!! Could he be this dense, seriously? I said, “I took the time to find a card on how I feel about you, and you don’t get me anything.” You know what his reply was to that?! He said: “I said ‘Happy Anniversary’! He just “didn’t realize,” he says. I was so angry. I need to know If I was over-reacting or not. I just felt I needed a card at least. Please tell me what you think. – Cardless

Yes, you were over-reacting. By definition, an “anniversary” is a day that happens annually marking an event that happened on that date in some previous year, so technically, six months doesn’t even make an anniversary. I get that it was a milestone for you, but expecting your boyfriend to “get you something” simply because you spent five minutes and all of, what, $2.95, on someone else’s words to perfectly express your sentiments for him is kinda lame. Gifts and cards aren’t the only way — or even the best way — to express feelings for someone. If that’s how you measure your value to your boyfriend, you’re in trouble. If, instead, you measure your value to him by the way he treats you, the role you play in his life, the time he makes for you, and the sweet little things he says and does when it’s not “expected” of him, then you don’t need a silly card from Hallmark to know how he feels.

I am 24 and have been dating my man, let’s call him “Ryan”, for 9 months. We recently moved in together. I am writing because neither one of us has said the big L Word yet. I’ve read on here a pretty compelling argument about how the female should never be the first to say ‘I love you,’ and I agree totally. Its very obvious that we love each other very much. Living together has gone swimmingly without a single hitch. He treats me like a goddess, he cares about my dog like his own, and he knows whats not worth arguing about. The man drives a hybrid and recycles to boot. He appreciates my admitted bossiness and control freak tendencies and tries to take it as valuable advice (which makes him a saint). He shows me with every action that he loves me. He values the time we spend together. We are both in a place in our lives where we are ready to settle down, and we have talked about getting marriage as if it’s inevitable. With our relationship going so well, the fact that neither has said it is getting pretty ridiculous. Should I give in and verbalize my feelings or play by the rules and let him come clean first? Whats a girl to do? – In Love

I think he’s already come clean! Maybe he hasn’t verbalized it yet, but he’s “told” you he loves you in all the ways he cares for you (and your dog!). Maybe he doesn’t realize saying the L word is a big deal, perhaps he’s afraid saying it aloud will somehow “break the spell” you’re under. But if it’s something you’d like to hear from him, it certainly doesn’t sound to me from the description of your relationship that you’d be scaring him off if you said it first. However, if you’d prefer he said it first, why not say to him, “It’s obvious how you feel about me and I appreciate all the sweet ways you show you care, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be especially nice to hear the words, too.” Sometimes people need a little nudge.