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Ask Shan Tell'emJET Love

Ask ShanTell’em: Is She Using Me?

Dear ShanTell’em,

I’m a 35-year-old single man living in California. I have been involved with a woman I met through a mutual friend for about three months now. She does not want to commit, but expects me to do everything that a boyfriend should. 

I’ve fixed her car, paid her light bill and even paid for her and her best friend to go on a weekend getaway. We have yet to take a vacation. I’m starting to feel like I am just here to serve her. She is good at giving me sex and has picked up the check a few times, but we don’t really talk about future plans. Is she using me?

Signed,

Used and Abused

Dear Used,

It’s kind of hard to tell honestly, but the fact that you feel used is enough to raise a red flag or two. You described yourself as “single.” That means that neither one of you is obligated to do anything. Many times, we go into a situation with the expectation that what we give, we will get. That isn’t true. It seems like you want a greater commitment than she is willing to give at the moment. You could be getting used, but it sounds more to me like you just aren’t getting the same amount of effort, dedication and appreciation that you are giving to this woman.

My advice would be to lessen the amount of energy that you’ve been giving to this relationship. Scale back on what you view as “boyfriend duties” and see how she responds. Your problem is not that you are giving; you might just be giving to the wrong person. I’d also encourage you to think about what it is that you want in a romantic partner. Be brave enough not to settle for someone who does not fulfill your needs. More often than not, you block your own blessings that way.

Good luck and I wish you the best.

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Shantell E. Jamison is a digital editor for EBONY.com and JETmag.com.  She’s also a radio personality, and cultural critic. Her debut book, “Drive Yourself in the Right Direction: Simple Quotes on How to Achieve Your Best Self” is available now at Amazon.com.