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Dear Papi

Relationships! Relationships! Don’t you wish relationships weren’t so complicated? I mean, wouldn’t it be nice to find the right guy, the first time—and have everything turn out right? Well, life isn’t quite that simple. In reality, it’s all about learning and growing, and believe me, with relationships, you certainly learn and grow. So whatever is happening to you in your life right now, let me know. E-mail me at


Dear Papi,
I am 23 years old and have just gotten out of a five-year relationship, but now my ex-boyfriend wants to get back with me. At the beginning of our relationship, everything was picture perfect. Our families knew each other. My boyfriend and I traveled and worked together. But then, it when downhill from there—with arguments and fist fighting, and I’m talking about some Ike and Tina incidents. Of course, I still love him, and if he got himself together mentally then I would reconcile with him. But I don’t think he will. I don’t know why I feel like I’m obligated to help him get his sh*t together. What should I do? Should I get back with him?

Dear Mijo,
First off, I’d like to commend you on your five year relationship. It is great that you and your ex-chulo were able to find happiness, at least for a while, within one another. However, I hear several things going on that concern me. First, know that you are not obligated to help him with his stuff. You have no responsibility to your ex. Instead, you need to set boundaries for yourself as you are your primary priority. Another thing that strikes me is the golpes you describe in your letter. Mijo, save the Tina performances for the drag queens at the clubs! Neither you nor anyone should be subjected to the cycle of physical and emotional violence in a relationship…that’s not healthy! So before you get into this relationship again think about what you really want and what type of boundaries you are going to set. Cuidate!


Dear Papi,
I’m a Latino and I’ve been dating this one guy for almost a year. We always hang out with my boyfriend’s friends, but one of them dislikes me because I used to go out with his man—like two years ago. Even though I want to talk to him, we don’t say hi because of the boyfriend. I know he feels uncomfortable and so do I. Should I approach him and say hi or should I just completely ignore him like I have been? I know it sounds foolish, but I just want to avoid problems and be grown up about it. The last thing I want is for him to think I want his boyfriend back. Please help me. —Troubled One.

Dear Troubled One,
If I learned one thing from the QV scene, it has been the ridiculous pettiness of many people. It sounds as though there may be some insecurities he holds about his boyfriend and the relationship he had with you, which you can’t change. However, I can’t help myself and ask where your boyfriend is and how he feels about this situation? Why hasn’t he intervened and talked to his friend about the situation? If it’s making you feel uncomfortable, maybe your boyfriend can stop seeing that friend, or better yet, maybe he can arrange to have you two talk about the situation. If you do talk to the guy, then tell him that what happened in the past was the past—and that now you have no interest in his man. Hopefully, that should make things okay. In any case, talk your boyfriend about this uncomfortable situation—and let it be known that you’re open to being friends.


Dear Papi,
Recently, my boyfriend and I had an argument because I went out with my friends while he was on vacation. My boyfriend expects me to stay home, but I don’t think it’s fair. While he’s on vacation, he goes out. He goes to QV clubs. Another thing is that he hates it when my friends call to talk to me, yet he is able to talk to his friends. How should I approach him and tell him that I feel trapped? —Trapped

Dear Trapped,
This relationship sounds like it’s slanted in your boyfriend’s favor. What you need to do is make the rules fair for both of you. In other words, if he can go out, so can you. If he can talk to friends, so can you. Now if you both of you decide not to talk to friends, or not to go out, that is fine, too! Just remember to make the rules the same for both of you. It’s not like you’re asking for anything more, just an even playing field. So stand your ground, and let him know that if he can eat his cake and ice cream, too–then so can you!


Dear Papi,
I know you’ve had numerous situations where people have asked you, “What is the right way to tell a loved one that you are QV?” I have told all of my friends and they all know about my sexuality. But I’m afraid to tell my mother. Yes, she has QV friends, and yes, she accepts their ways, but she sometimes asks me, “What do QV men see in other men?” When she says this, I want to tell her that I am QV, but I hold back. Papi, is there a right or wrong way to come out to one’s parents? Please let this confused mijo know!

Dear Mijo,
There is no right way to come out; however, by your mom asking, “What do QV men see in other men,” it sounds as though she is opening up the lines for communication about this topic. Perhaps, you can answer it by saying something like, “Hey, it’s love—and you can’t control who you fall in love with.” Then you can help make it easier to come out by saying something like. “I heard that being QV is not a choice.” This could lead her to understand and sympathize, instead of otherwise. Then if you will, you can come out to her. But before you do any of this, get some support from local community agencies. Call them up and tell them you want to come out to your mom and need help in doing so. The people at the agencies can help you analyze the situation and let you know if the benefits of coming out outweigh the disadvantages. Furthermore, the people at the agencies can help you see things that you might not see right now, and give you guidance so that when you’re ready to come out to your mom, you will be prepared for all scenarios—whether her reaction turns out to be good or bad. Good luck, mijo—and check out the support resources here in the magazine.



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