ADVICE: My Boyfriend Treats Me Badly

Every week, New York City's own party messiah takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution in his new weekly advice column in The Village Voice. Read the latest edition of Ask Andrew W.K. below or by clicking HERE.

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July 30, 2014

Dear Andrew,

I'm a 15 year old girl in my first serious relationship and I don't really know if I'm doing it right. I try to make my boyfriend happy, but I think I just can't do the girlfriend role right for him. Of course I love him, and he says he loves me too, but a lot of the times I feel bad about myself and uncomfortable because of things he says to me. Sometimes he's really mean and calls me stupid and insults the way I look. He almost always apologizes later and will try and make it up to me by buying me clothes or just being really sweet. But I just have this feeling of not being good enough and it makes me feel self conscious, like I'm not pretty enough. He asked me to dress more like the models in magazines even though I don't look anything like them and never could. I'm not a diva or high maintenance like some other girls at my school, but I sometimes just feel stupid around him. My parents got divorced two years ago and it's been really good to have a boyfriend to help me through these times. He will pick me up and take me to movies and I can just forget about my problems for a while. But a lot of times I wonder if I'm good enough for him. I don't want to say anything to him because I really don't want to be a bitch or make him mad. I don't want to lose him. I need him right now really badly, and I love him so much. How can I make this relationship work?

Thank you!
Lovesick Girl

Dear Lovesick Girl,

You're a wonderful, special, and beautiful person who deserves to be treated with respect, kindness, and love. No matter how much you may care about your boyfriend, and no matter how much he says he loves you, you should never be made to feel ugly, or pressured into acting or dressing a certain way or doing anything that makes you feel bad. You should be able to be yourself. There is nothing wrong with you that you need to fix in order to be good enough for him. That's the best thing about a true love relationship -- you get to be yourself exactly as you are, in fact, you get to be yourself more than ever, and you get to be loved exactly because that's who you are.

If your boyfriend is acting this way, it doesn't mean he's necessarily a bad person, especially if this is his first serious relationship too. He might not really understand how to treat anyone properly, let alone a girlfriend. You both are learning as you go, and if you really do love him and want to stay with him, then you can help each other get better at being together.

For starters, you must talk to him. Even if you're afraid he might get mad, you should tell him how you feel and that it makes you sad when he acts a certain way or says certain things. Even though it can feel very awkward and uncomfortable, a true relationship requires you to be open and able to talk about anything and everything. It especially requires you to be able to tell him when he's hurting you. And if he really does love you, then hurting you would be the last thing he'd ever want to do.

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Photo by Aingeru Zorita

This news item was posted on: July 30, 2014