It's time to let go
By DAN SAVAGE  |  March 2, 2006

DTMFA: When he caps your birthday dinner, it's timeI am a 26-year-old female, and I’ve been with my boyfriend for almost five years. Our relationship is pretty good, for the most part, but I’m having a few reservations. I don’t really know how to broach this subject, because I feel like I’m just being a bratty little princess. But here it goes:

I feel like I’m at the bottom of my boyfriend’s priority list. He’ll stay up until 5 am working on something, but he won’t sacrifice an hour to do something with me. He leaves for work around 9:30 am, and most nights he doesn’t come home until 10 pm. Every household expense must be split exactly fifty-fifty, regardless of the fact that he makes four times what I make. If I eat a little more than my fair share, he makes me pay him back. He has a car and I don’t, but he’ll only ever give me a lift somewhere (like to work) if he’s already going that way — and he still makes me pay for gas, even though he was already going that way. He doesn’t bat an eyelash at spending $2500 on new stereo equipment, but he puts a $50 cap on my birthday dinner, saying, “If it goes over $50, you’re paying the rest.”

If I’m stranded out in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night and call him crying (this actually happened), he’ll tell me to call my other friends first, and if none of them can come, then I can call him back and he’ll come get me — but I’m paying for the gas.

We only ever have sex when he’s in the mood. Then, if I want to change positions because I don’t like being twisted like a pretzel, he gets angry and stops. So if I want it, I just have to pretend it doesn’t hurt to have my legs pushed so far back they’re gonna pop out of my hip sockets.

He wants me to go to college, which I’m doing this September, so I asked him if he would let me pay slightly less than fifty-fifty for rent so I can afford it. His response was, “Lots of people put themselves through college. Why should you get any special treatment?”

Here’s the thing, though: isn’t it only fair to split our expenses fifty-fifty, even if it breaks me? And isn’t it fair of him to ask for gas money when he has to do all the driving? Can I expect a man to spend more on me than I can spend on him? I don’t want to be showered with expensive gifts and lavish vacations. I just want to feel like I’m worth something, you know? Am I being selfish?

   Stressed and Depressed

If you’re a new reader, SAD, you may not be familiar with this handy acronym: DTMFA. It stands for “dump the motherfucker already,” and halfway through your letter I started muttering DTMFA under my breath. By the end, I was screaming DTMFA at my laptop. On an airplane.

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