Dear Wendy: “My Boyfriend’s A Pecker”

Programming note: I left town early for the long weekend and set some posts to run yesterday and today, but I mixed things up a bit and accidentally ran “Shortcuts” yesterday. Sorry for the confusion!

I’ve been with my boyfriend nine months and he is by far the most caring, loving and fun partner I’ve ever been with. I’ve been his first everything though: first kiss, first girlfriend, first … you get the clue. Initially, I was a little weary about dating someone with such little experience, but I’m so glad I looked beyond those first impressions. There is one issue, however, that has left me feeling frustrated and a little helpless. My boyfriend’s a pecker. That is, he only kisses me with pecks: when he greets me, when we’re “making out,” when we’re having sex … you get the idea. Our first kisses weren’t like this — this was something that our kissing slowly evolved into. I’ve made it clear I don’t like the “pecks” all the time, and I’ve tried sexily coaxing him into more naughty kisses, saying “I like this” and kissing him with a little bit more lip or tongue, but the pecking seems to only be getting worse. He gets into habits kind of easily, and I am scared this is something that is here to stay. It’s really such a shame since he CAN kiss excellently! I’ve emphasized this too. I constantly reassure him he is an excellent kisser when he does do it well. But, I don’t know what has happened to these sensual, passionate kisses. I’m losing patience. — Chicken-Kisser

You’re already doing what I’d advise: showing him how you like to be kissed; complimenting and encouraging him when he kisses you well. (And how lucky that you know he actually CAN kiss well. Not every person can say that about his or her significant other!) I would also suggest asking him how he likes to be kissed. You’ve shown him how you like to be kissed and tell him when he’s doing it “right,” but there’s a very real possibility that he might not actually like the way you kiss and that’s why he avoids it. The two of you could work together to find a style you both like.

The only other thing I can think to suggest is telling him how hot his passionate kisses get you and how they’re more likely to lead to great sex than the sweet-but-chaste pecks. Giving him an incentive — hot sex, in this case — may make him more likely to kiss you the way you want to be kissed. You can also try explaining that, for you, a passionate kiss is like oral sex is for him (assuming he likes a good beej): it’s foreplay; it makes you feel sexy and wanted; you like the intimacy. Explaining in a way he can relate to might help him understand the significance for you. Finally, accept that it isn’t going to be fireworks all the time. As couples settle into each other it’s natural for the crazy passion that existed in the beginning to wane a bit. If that kind of feeling lasted forever, no one would ever be able to get anything done, right? So while you don’t have to accept a complete lack of passion — um, that would suck! — you do need to find a balance that keeps you both energized and satisfied within the relationship.

I’m still a student and I’ve been working a part-time job for roughly three years. During the summer, I’m joined by some other students, and I have issues with one in particular. The problem is that I know for a fact that she doesn’t like me in the least. I’m not sure exactly why or if there is a root cause, though a few reasons that have been cited are: I tell too many stories about my life (I thought chit-chat was normal?), I breathe too heavily, and I am basically just socially awkward. The reason I know this is because TWICE I received texts/e-mails that were meant for other staff members from either her or her best office friend that completely degrade me. We work side-by-side all summer, but after last summer (when I received these texts/e-mails) I basically limited the majority of my contact with her. I try to keep negative people like that out of my life, but obviously I want us to be successful as co-partners in our work positions this summer. I’ve tried bringing it up to both my supervisor and to her as well, and both have dismissed anything as being wrong. In the past, as a child and as a teenager, I’ve always had issues with friends and now these events happening in the workplace make me feel like I am just being bullied. Is there any way to work through this? — Worked Up

Unless you’re truly being bullied — and nothing in your letter indicates that’s the case — try chalking up the issues you have with this co-worker as simply differences in your personality. You’re not a bad person because some girl you work with in the summer doesn’t like you. Not everyone’s going to like you and that’s OK. But there’s no reason you can’t be civil with each other and have a successful work relationship. Continue limiting your contact with her and make sure that any interactions you do have are strictly professional in nature (that means no chit-chat, no personal stories, etc.). If she doesn’t like your personality, the best thing for you to do is not share it with her. In other words, limit the ammunition to give her to use against you. And try to focus on aligning yourself with other people in the office you do get along with. When I once worked at a place where a handful of the other employees didn’t like me, I just made friends with the ones that did. Knowing there were people in the office who genuinely enjoyed me as a person as well as a co-worker gave me the confidence I needed to ignore the “mean girls.” But, if the tension between you gets too overwhelming and this co-worker really is harassing you or treating you unprofessionally, go straight to your HR rep and make a complaint. Just make sure that the bullying is legit and not simply hurt feelings on your part because someone doesn’t like you.

*Do you have a relationship/dating question I can help with? Send me your letters at {encode=”[email protected]” title=”[email protected]”}.