DEAR EXENE: After three years together, my girlfriend and I broke up two-and-a-half months ago. In a lot of ways, I knew we weren't right for each other, and deep down, I knew she didn't really respect me and could be quite controlling. Until recently, we had been doing our best to stay friends. I let her use me as a shoulder to cry on; I'd still go to her place every so often to watch movies. This was fine until she started asking me for advice on what to do about the new guy she had started dating. I'm cool with talking about other things, but this seemed a little out of bounds for me, especially with the break-up being so fresh. But when I asked her to keep me out of it, she got really pissed at me, even doing childish shit such as threatening to turn all of our mutual friends against me. The thing that has me freaked is I feel like she could use stuff she knows about me in the bedroom to do it. I have a few costume and dildo fetishes that I'm into that could be a little embarrassing if people found out about them. I'm comfortable with my lifestyle, but that doesn't mean other people should know about it. If she does tell people what we've done in the bedroom, should I cop to my kinks or deny them and make her look like a vengeful woman who makes shit up?
Exene Cervenka is a writer, visual artist and punk rock pioneer. The OC transplant is the lead singer for X, the Knitters and Original Sinners. If you want to ask the legendary vocalist for adviceâ€”on your love life, politics, your musical career, filial relationshipsâ€”send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
DEAR TERRY: Your fear that she may expose your intimate moments with her is a possibility. Why do you think she went along with you, encouraged it, played along? Her power over you is knowing everything about you. But she hasn't threatened that yet. That idea came from your mind. Try to let it go. Get completely away from her as fast as you can. No anger, no fighting, no explanation. Fact on your side: She has a new victim. She will consume him and be too busy to think about you anymore.
My advice: Replace your fear with the mantra "Bring it on!" Any of your friends whom she controls by attacking you aren't your friends. Who cares what they think? It takes a lot of bravery to stand up to emotional or actual blackmail threats. The definition of bravery is being scared but doing something anyway. Hold your head high—no shame, no fear. Lesson learned: Don't trust anybody unless you really know them. We know in our intuition when someone isn't right. That's why those people are so damn good at seducing us. "Yes, I know he's kinda scary, but he's so handsome, and he has a good job." Or "I know she's crazy, but she is so hot." Fall for that, and you are in a whole lotta trouble.
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