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Household Handy Woman

Dear Sugar
How do I bring up to my boyfriend that he needs to act more like the man in the relationship? When we go into a restaurant I always have to say, table for two, and give my name. Or if we need help with something in a store, or on vacation, I have to ask for help. He just stands there. It bugs me, and I get annoyed and impatient with his non assertiveness. His roommate hasn't even paid him rent since August, and he will not bring it up. Talk about no backbone. Should I settle for being the assertive one in the relationship for someone that treats me like gold, and would be a great husband and father? He doesn't know how to fix anything. Or figure out how to change the coloring on the TV, fix my ipod, program the VCR...etc. It is up to me, and I can do it by myself. But still! I am really frustrated lately. I don't want to be the man. I think that since he was raised by his Grandma and Mom, no Dad in the picture, that he only knows how to be Sensitive Sally, and not a take charge person. HELP! Settling Sally

Dear Settling Sally
You could do a little reverse role playing. Hone in on how he can be oh so girly and make a satire out of it. SNL has been doing it for years and it's hysterical! Is he the kind of guy who can laugh at himself or do you think it will just make him feel badly? There are a ton of Mama's Boy's out there who have been so protected by the strong women in their lives, they were never taught how to do a damn thing themselves. Perhaps your boyfriend feels that you are one of these strong women and he just follows your lead to make his life easier. Don't allow him to take that role if it's not what you want. He could think that by taking a back seat, he's making you feel good - so you do need to address this with him. I happen to agree that this wussy kind of behavior is a major turn-off. Hopefully you can be the girl to help turn him around. For example, show him how to program the VCR. Once you've showed him, tell him that you expect him to help out more often in this area. If he still can do it, at the very least, he needs to try.

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