Auntie SparkNotes: Everyone Gossips About My Relationship
I have a little problem. My boyfriend and I have been together for over a year now, and our relationship is lovely. I lost my virginity to him, but he did not lose his to me. This is not an issue—I knew about his sexual history going into the relationship, and it's no big deal.
My problem is other people.
They talk about us. I used to be seen as the sweet quiet girl that nobody knew, but ever since we've been together I've been in a spotlight a lot more, because a lot of people know him and they like to say mean things about him. I don't know why, but I really don't like it. Yes, we have had sex but that doesn't mean I want the entire school speculating about our sex life—which they DO, and it's so annoying. They all see him as this dirty, disgusting boy who is spoiling me, the innocent, and I don't like it. Sometimes if I'm alone at school guys I don't even know will stop me and ask me very personal and crude questions. They also like to gossip about us in general: I met a girl this school year who I now consider to be a very good friend of mine, who happens to be one of his exes. I don't see why we can't go on double-dates with her and her boyfriend—which we do, the four of us are all great friends and the boyfriend and I aren't bothered by the others' romantic history), but much of the school judges us for it. How can I make this stop, Auntie?
Eh, you can’t.
Sorry, Sparkler, but it’s true: the wagging tongues and curious minds of other people will forever be things that you cannot control. But before you start howling with frustration, I’d like to point out that you have a fabulous boyfriend, a lovely bunch of friends, and a jaw-dropping level of maturity when it comes to the way you conduct your relationships with both.
Which is to say, why do you even care what a bunch of horny, jealous, unimaginative, mouth-breathing busybodies think about your personal affairs?
...And that, my friend, is the question you should ask yourself every time you find yourself devoting even an iota of brainspace to what other people may or may not think of you, your relationship, or what you get up to in the privacy of your bedroom.
Because like all people who are interesting enough to arouse the curiosity of obnoxious jerks with nothing better to do, you have better things to do than give a damn what those obnoxious jerks think. And while your particular problem will solve itself soon enough (because gratefully, there are only so many years in which your peer group will consist of immature losers who are practically incapacitated by the idea that someone they know might be OMG DOING THE SEX) it still presents you with a marvelous opportunity to practice the essential art of Just Not Giving A F*** What People Think.
And man, do you need the practice. Because until your classmates have grown out of their infantile ideas about sex and relationships, not giving a f*** is your best chance at dealing with their nonsense—and once you're out of high school, it's the only way to cope with a world full of people who don't quite understand the concept of MYOB.
Is this easier said than done? For sure. But the good news is, until you find the strength to actually not give a f***, you can do just as well with the appearance of not giving a f***—not just because faking it is making it when it comes to gaining confidence, but because obnoxious people have a way of shutting up quickly when instead of getting flustered by their questions, you look at them in the same way as you would a dog turd on the sidewalk.
So please, take the energy you’re investing into hating the gossip and judgment, and reinvest it into the much more productive pastime of enjoying your fabulous life. Pity the pathetic doinks who have nothing better to do than throw shade at a relationship they're not even in. And the next time someone asks you a crude personal question, give yourself permission to treat him with all the care and respect he deserves—preferably by looking at him with an expression of withering contempt, laughing in his face, and then walking away.
How do you handle nosy parkers and judgey jerks? Tell us in the comments! And to get advice from Auntie, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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