Profile for Annemarie Conte

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The Monogamist: How To Win An Argument

I was so pissed off yesterday. My boyfriend (er, fiancé…but Amelia has already addressed why that’s the worst word ever) had to help some friends move. He called to tell me they were done and he’d be leaving in a half hour so we could hang out. Two hours later, I’m killing time watching reruns of Project Runway I’ve already seen and I’m starting to get a little mad. After my text of “Where the hell are you?” and his response, “Eating pizza” that was it.

Instead of exploding, I just got mega passive-aggressive. I work from home. It’s me and the dog all day long, so on the days when people who have real jobs don’t have to be at work, I get excited by the prospect of actual two-sided conversation. But rather than explaining that, I just ignored him when he finally showed up. Which, I’ll admit, it immature and not at all proactive, but it’s like I couldn’t stop myself. I was too annoyed to be rational and I figured that if I was going to feel isolated, so was he. Finally, I yelled. And he yelled back. Then split to take the dog for an hour-long walk. When he got back, we weren’t speaking. Keep reading »

The Monogamist: Taking Each Other For Granted

I think everyone can agree that a long-term relationship falls into a pattern after that initial getting-to-know-you excitement stage. And while that can be comforting, predictable and secure, it can also be boring for the same reasons. As each person is going through the regular course of their daily lives, it can be easy to take your relationship—and your partner—for granted. Keep reading »

The Ex Factor: Why It’s Silly To Be Jealous Of Past Girlfriends

The other day, I was telling some stupid story about something ridiculous that happened in college and since my ex-boyfriend was integral to the story, I mentioned that he was there. It gave me some pause because I realized that my exes come up a lot. I don’t think I’m unnaturally obsessed with them, but I’m also not going to sacrifice the punchline to a good story just because I’m scared it’s going to upset my current beau. (Also, I know he’s going to be okay with these mentions, because, duh, he realizes that I’m totally not hung up on these dudes.) Funny thing, though. My boy Andy rarely mentioned his ex-girlfriends. At most, he’ll be like, “Yeah, I’ve been to North Carolina. Asheville’s amazing.” And I have to say, “Who were you with, [insert name of one of his exes]?” Which he either confirms or denies, depending on his mood.

We’ve both hit the point that we know what’s in the past is in the past and not necessarily affecting what we have. But I do wonder if I should be more prudent about my hilarious ex-boyfriend stories. Because even though he doesn’t care, I’m sure he also doesn’t really want to know. Keep reading »

The Monogamist: Avoiding Co-Dependence

You know that couple—the ones who live together, eat together, exercise together, adopt the same hobbies and spend every waking (and sleeping, for that matter) moment together. Their codependency knows no bounds. It’s what Alex McCord and her husband Simon were criticized for on The Real Housewives of New York City (she brought him to a girls night out, for goodness sake). I know a couple who does all of that on top of working together—they pack the same lunch every day and commute to the office together, both of them working extra hours if one of them has to go in early or stay late. It’s nuts, and I couldn’t do it—and, frankly, after two years of this, I’m not sure how they do it without strangling each other. They must end up talking about the same things over and over again because they have no other frame of reference besides the one they’re experiencing together.
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The Monogamist: Blind Trust Isn’t A Bad Thing

It wasn’t until I’d had my man have sex with my roommate in my bed that I really understand how trust can be broken in a relationship. That was the first moment in my life that I’d ever had a total out-of-body experience. Along with it came the realization that I had no idea what had been happening practically right in front of me. The strangest part of the whole thing, surprisingly, wasn’t feeling that my heart had been ripped out, but rather that it was my stomach that was being ripped out, taking my heart, my throat, my head and everything else with it. Though I handled the situation the only way I knew how—a cathartic gut reaction of some crying (but mostly lots and lots of screaming), when I was done with that, the only thing I was left with was: What the hell happens now? Keep reading »

The Monogamist: Comparison Schmarison

If another couple jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?

A few years ago, I was designated driver during a long night of excessive drinking. My friend, we’ll call her Monica, was in the passenger’s seat and her boyfriend, uh, Joe, was in the back. Joe said something that pissed Monica off and a screaming match ensued, complete with swipes from front-to-back-seat and vice-versa. It was loud, violent and whiskey-soaked and it escalated to the point where Joe threatened to jump out, even opening the car door while we were going about 40 on a highway entrance ramp. This rare, too-intimate look into their relationship was something I never want to see again. Keep reading »

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