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Auntie SparkNotes: Gay, Straight, or Can of Soup?

Auntie SparkNotes: Gay, Straight, or Can of Soup?

Hey Sparklers! Because I love your letters so much, starting today, I'll be answering two of 'em per week. So if you've been sitting on a particularly juicy problem, now's the time to get brave and write in. And now, this week's letter:

Dear Auntie Sparknotes,
I have a problem. I have a really, really, really big problem. I was really worried about sending this to you, because I’m not sure you can help with my really, really, really big problem, but here it goes….A couple of years ago, when I was in something like grade 8, I met up with this group of people. We instantly connected, and have been friends ever since. However, last year, at the start of 9th grade, I came out to them. They were helpful and understanding and nice and loving and all that. The Problem is this: In the group, there is this guy I like, but he’s completely totally straight…

I’ve tried everything I could do to get him to like me and to date me, besides actually asking him out. But the plot gets thicker… Suring this game of truth or dare this Halloween, one of my friends asked him If he would date me if he was gay, and he said no. I was crushed, in fact, I was so crushed that I left the room to “go to the washroom”, and went over to an exe’s house and… well… did some things I’m not very proud of… It just hurts me on the inside when I see him throwing himself onto girl after girl, when he could have a great relationship with me. I’m trying to get over him in ever conceivable way, including alienating all of my friends in that group. But it’s not working, and I just want him more and more. What do I do? How do I get over the guy? Please Auntie, I need your help, or I’m afraid that I might do something really bad. Help…  Oh Yeah. I’ve never dated someone my own age before. (my previous boyfriend was 22, I’m 16). Is that why he can’t like me? Please help!

Every so often, one of you sends me a letter, and I read it, and I think, I want to hug this person.

This is one of those letters.

Of course I can help, but unfortunately, this is a big problem. The obstacle that stands between you and your crush is both ginormous and insurmountable, and it's called BIOLOGY.

Take a quick reread of your letter, and you'll notice that you've already pointed out the source of your problem. (Hint: It's the “He's completely totally straight” part.) You've known since a pretty young age that you're not remotely interested in girls, right? Well, Straight Guy's indifference to you is the same thing: pure biological hard-wiring that has absolutely nothing to do with you, personally. It's not that he can't like you, it's that he can't like guys. Period.

And while this doesn't mean you can't feel sad about an unrequited crush, it does mean that you shouldn't take it personally. As much as it must have hurt to hear it, the question of whether he'd date you if he were gay is irrelevant—you might as well ask him if he'd date a can of soup, y'know, if he were a can of soup. He's not a can of soup. He can't even imagine what it would be like to be a can of soup. So while he might say he has an opinion about which sort of soup he'd date, it's an absurd hypothetical, and cans of soup everywhere would do well not to take it to heart.

Once you've wrapped your head around that part, getting over him should work the same way as it would with any crush: Remember that there are aspects of his personality (like girl-chasing) that aren't so pretty, indulge in things you enjoy, and surround yourself with people you love...and STOP alienating your friends. You need them! You might want to avoid Straight Guy until you're feeling a little less volatile, but you've got to confide in someone you trust about what you're going through. (A little understanding support from a friend is the best way to stop yourself from seeking comfort in the arms of an ex, which is just going to make you feel worse.)

As for dating (slightly) older guys, it's not necessarily a problem unless the age difference makes it an unequal partnership. You should always feel respected. That goes for all relationships, straight or gay. (Also, as a general rule, anyone over the age of 23 who dates high school students should be viewed with extreme suspicion.) But please consider joining your school's gay-straight alliance, if you have one—it's a great resource, and a good place to meet some non-hetero guys your own age.

Questions? Comments? Leave your feedback below, or email Auntie SparkNotes at

P.S. This is Auntie, reminding you to keep things supportive, y'all. Every time you write an intolerant comment, God kills a kitten. (And we'll delete them, anyway.)

Topics: Advice
Tags: auntie sparknotes, cartoons

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About the Author

Kat Rosenfield is a writer, illustrator, advice columnist, YA author, and enthusiastic licker of that plastic liner that comes inside a box of Cheez-Its. She loves zombies and cats. She hates zombie cats. Follow her on Twitter or Tumblr @katrosenfield.

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