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[QUOTE=SophiaM]Stacy, you're so sweet, and I absolutely LOVE and appreciate your advice! Yes, I would love you to be my cyber sister! :bouncing: In a way, I am the only child too, because my sister is really my half-sister and we have very little in common other than just being related to each other.

I admit, I AM quite insecure, despite what I feel objectively that I deserve. It must stem from how my mom was extremely critical and demanding of me growing up. The only positive thing that came from that is that I am more ambitious than a lot of people I know, and I'm somewhat of a perfectionist (it could be a bad thing, too). Sadly, I'm also my own worst critic and I often feel guilty for something, even if I intellectually know I didn't do anything wrong. For example, now I feel a vague feeling of guilt for yelling at my ex and calling him names the last time he called me a couple of weeks ago. For some reason, I feel bad and want to make up, even though I know he didn't deserve a better treatment from me.

As for NG...I don't know. I am so torn...It was so promising and I really liked him on so many levels. Would you not ever consider working things out with him if you were in my shoes? Perhaps I really do have very low demands, and I'm not even aware of it. See, I still feel like he's such a great guy for not trying to take advantage of me and then dump me heartlessly, that I feel like he's worth to at least to be given more time. I honestly don't think I'm mature or that I know enough about relationships to make good decisions for myself. It's a lot easier to advise other people, but I myself am truly blind to what's best for me. I just cannot be objective in my own case :confused: I might be terribly wrong again, but I just thought he was so different from the other guys I dated...Maybe I'm idealizing again...(sigh).[/QUOTE]

Hi big cyber sis! :wave:

I'm sorry to hear your mom was so tough on you growing up...I can't imagine how difficult it must be when the one person who is supposed to love and support you unconditionally fails at that responsibility. I'm really impressed and surprised at how well you've coped and thrived despite your mom's really need to give yourself a lot more credit for all you've achieved and for the wonderful woman you've become, all on your own! I was actually thinking when I wrote my last post that you strike me as a perfectionist, at least to some degree, which helps explain why you expect so much of yourself in relationships. Yet you need to start holding the men you date to the same standards you hold yourself--you're an amazing, intelligent, talented, and beautiful woman who any man would be very lucky to date. Have you ever thought about seeing a therapist to work on boosting your self-esteem and raising your standards in terms of what you require and demand from men? They really are only going to give you as much as you expect, and so far it doesn't sound like you've valued yourself nearly as highly (and perhaps that is why you've had lower standards as far as what kind of treatment is acceptable within your relationships?) than you should have.

I'm probably not the right person to ask about giving NG another chance, as I tend to go too far toward the other end of the spectrum in terms of demanding only the best treatment from men. That makes for more drama than it should from time to time, yet it has definitely worked for me in terms of never having to deal with a boyfriend disrespecting me or failing to treat me with love and consideration. The idea of a man getting my hopes up, telling me he wanted to see me exclusively, then pulling away, not telling me what's up until finally confessing that he's not sure if he wouldn't rather be with an ex makes my blood boil. Lots of people, like GE and Dido, have made good points in favor of giving NG another chance, but I'm not sure it's worth your time and emotional energy to get involved again with a man who could put you through such turmoil in such a short time. It bothers me a lot that he has ignored your email and is acting like he did nothing wrong and that nothing out of the ordinary has happened when the whole ex situation has caused you so much stress, confusion, and unhappiness. I wouldn't go so far as to say I'd never give him another chance, but I highly doubt that I wouldn't have told him to drop dead and leave me alone permanently when he first mentioned that he was debating whether to date me or go back to his ex. I just think we're both way too wonderful and highly desired to ever tolerate, even for a minute, being put in a position where we're competing with some other woman and not without a doubt the one and only woman in our men's lives. I don't think the fact that NG compares favorably to your exes should count in his favor--one thing my brilliant cyber-family has taught me today is that it's never good to compare one relationship to another rather than measuring it against itself for the unique entity it is. The only standard you should judge NG by is how he treats you, how he makes you feel about yourself, and how secure and cared for you feel around him. I don't happen to think he's shown you the respect and devotion tons of guys would kill for the opportunity to show you, but only you can decide what you will and won't stand for, and it's not my place to tell you what to do. I do think you should definitely raise your standards as far as how well you expect to be treated (and especially increase how kindly and generously you judge and treat yourself)!! You're awesome, and I think you deserve nothing but the best in every way...only you know if NG has the potential to treat you as wonderfully as you deserve to be treated. So far, he has a lot to make up for, and if he doesn't start worshipping the ground you walk on and constantly professing what a fool he was to ever question whether he'd rather be with another woman, I'd strongly suggest you cut him loose and find a man who will never doubt whether you're the woman he wants.

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