Dear Dr Romance: How Do You Dump Someone without Hurting Them?
Dear Dr. Romance:
I am in a bit of a weird situation... Im 16 and I am engaged to a guy I only met 2 months ago. I thought he was joking so I just went along with it, and it was only when he gave me a ring and started talking about venues and dates that I realised he was serious. I only started dating him because I felt sorry for him. He really isn't my type of guy - he's obsessed with drugs and alcohol, and he does crazy things like jump off roofs and race cars, and he is always in some kind of trouble with some other druggies. He has been put in hospital twice because he gets into fights. I really don't know what to do! I am way too young to get married! But I don't want to tell him in case he does something stupid to 'prove himself' - one time I tried to break up with him and he cut my name into his arms with a shard of glass.
Okay, this is what happens when you don't take relationships seriously. This guy is obsessive, and therefore dangerous. He hurt himself the first time you tried to break up, the next time he could hurt you. If you're not in school together, and you can cut him off, do it right away, by text message, phone or e-mail. Don't worry about hurting him, he's going to hurt whatever you do. Tell him he's not stable enough and you're not old enough, and you have to break it off. Urge him to get help. Then block his calls, texts, e-mails and your Facebook page or whatever social media you share. If you are in the same school and classes, you're going to have to have some help. Ask your parents, the school counselor or a trusted teacher, if you have one, to help you keep this guy at bay. Please take this seriously. He needs help, and you need protection. "Setting Boundaries and Saying No" will show you how to take care of yourself.
You will not be responsible if you "friend" hurts himself, it is almost inevitable that he will, no matter what you do. My concern is that you not allow him to hurt you. "How to Avoid Loving a Jerk" will help you understand how not to repeat this mistake. "Guidelines for Successful Dating" shows you what appropriate dating is like. The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again will help you recover from this disaster and take you step-by-step through the process of finding a great companion.
Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D.