Romance according to Kate

Ostler, Kate

Dear Kate,
Everyone I’m interested in keeps telling me that I’m not their “type.” What’s up with that?
-If It Helps, I’m O-NegativeDear O-Negative,
“You’re just not my type” is a too-frequently used line, and in order to determine its relevance to you, we have to examine its colloquial intent from two sides. First, take a critical look at yourself. Perhaps you’re the one who’s trying to fit into a certain group, or take on a distinct persona as a means to strengthen your personal identity. Are you hiding behind a bookish, timid facade? Does your charming personality have the chance to shine through your over-the-top jokes or pranks? Are your witty retorts and brilliant observations only evident in your weekly advice column? If you’re looking for someone who will enjoy and appreciate you for who you really are, then you need to put your true self out there for all of us to see. Now, on the other hand, if you feel that you’re consistently genuine and never attempt to box yourself up in any certain “type,” then you ought to accept that not every fish is going to bite on your line. A real love affair should never lack chemistry, but if mutual attraction just isn’t there, any further attempt at a romance will prove to be a waste of time.

Dear Kate,
My beau and I just broke up, and the past few days have been rough for me. It’s hard for me to think about moving on. What can I do?
-Gloomy about a Guy

Dear Gloomy,
Although it may seem like the end of the world, you’ve got to accept what’s happened and figure out how to get by on your own. Breaking up doesn’t have to be hard to do. To start with, let your friends know how you’re feeling, and what they can do to help. Sometimes even a pal to sit with at the library can make things easier. The pain of this breakup may feel magnified, especially when piled on top of the stress of schoolwork, and being away from your family or other friends. Be sure that you are making time for yourself. Have lunch with a good friend, schedule a phone date with a sympathetic ear, or take a long walk off campus. Be thankful that the breakup happened now, and not years down the road, when things would have been immensely more complicated. Try to channel your time and energy into something new. Even one hour of quality work is more productive than a whole day of sulking or sobbing.