May, 2020

Joti’s Advice Column

Dear Joti,
How do I make my boyfriend do romantic things without me asking for them?
How can we get what we want without communicating it? We rarely ever do and that’s why you have to say something! You can tell your boyfriend that romantic gestures are important to you in a relationship and let him take it from there. The reason why romantic gestures are so meaningful is because they’re genuine, unprompted and done out of love. If you’re asking for every gesture it takes the magic out of it. Romance is a two-way street so make sure you’re also doing romantic things for him. Communicate how important it is to you and see if he makes your needs a priority.

Dear Joti,
I have a friend that smells bad. How do I tell her?
No one wants to smell bad. You would be helping her by being a friend with enough courage to say something so I applaud you for that. The best way to do this is to start with something positive. Then, say what needs to be said and end it with a possible solution. It’s pretty much impossible not to embarrass her so once you acknowledge that it will inevitably happen you can concentrate on being as gentle and constructive as possible. As a positive you can start with how you consider her to be a really close friend of yours and as a close friend you want to let her know that sometimes she smells a little off. Ask her what brand of deodorant she uses because you’ve heard that some are not as good as others as well as brands of soap. Don’t assume she doesn’t use these products at all. A common place where smell comes from is unwashed clothes so you could explore this as a possible cause. You can tell her that smelling bad and not knowing it has always been a fear of yours and just as you’d wish a loved one would tell you, you’d also tell a loved one.

Dear Joti,
I just found out my best friend is cheating on his girlfriend. Am I obligated to tell her?
If you would also want to be told in this situation then the answer is yes; you should. However, just because your friend is doing a horrible thing doesn’t mean you need to put yourself in the middle and take unnecessary heat. We’ve all heard the saying, “No good deed goes unpunished” but I may have a workaround: gather irrefutable evidence, either make a fake email or Facebook and send your proof to his girlfriend.

Dear Joti,
How do I know if my pre-wedding fears are normal or a sign I should call it all off?
It depends on if your doubts center on your fiancé or just getting married, period. Getting married is a very big deal so it is understandable to have pre-wedding jitters; however, if you’re asking yourself if you even want to be with this person long-term then you have some reflecting to do. You’re the only one that knows the details and nuisances of your relationship and if it’s a happy one. These fears can sometimes be a red flag that you shouldn’t have ignored but it can also just be about commitment issues! I think it’s worth the investment for some counselling sessions just so you can iron out these thoughts with a professional before your wedding date. Make the source of these pre-wedding fears more clearly to yourself because everyone should be confident and happy for the day of his or her wedding.

Dear Joti,
I think my younger sister is in a relationship with a guy who is involved in drugs/gang violence. How do I stop her?
This is a very tricky situation. You can never force someone you care about to leave his or her relationship. The best thing you can do for her is to remain her confidant and allow her to feel comfortable in telling you everything that goes on between them. You do not want to be blind in a situation like this and if she sees that you’re unsupportive she will hide the relationship from you. Unhealthy relationships thrive in isolation. Gently tell her that this is a very dangerous situation to put herself in and that you’re concerned but you need to do it with love. You should remain a support system for her to guide her into a right path in life, to show her how people who care about her behave, and to be there for her when this relationship inevitably runs its course.


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