Thursday, July 17

How to be single: step one.



Dear Prudence,
I've been dating someone for a few months, and things have gotten serious very fast. We are highly compatible and have had no difficulty resolving the few minor disagreements we've had thus far—except one. I'm a cuddler. I want to hold my partner and be held by my partner at night. Preferably all night. My partner will hold me for the first five to 10 minutes in bed, or I him, and then he will tend to move to the opposite side of the bed for the night. At first I hinted that I'd like more extensive touching at night, and he said he'd make an effort to fulfill my cuddling needs. I switched to gently but clearly asking him for more contact in bed at night. But after a disappointing weekend, I tearfully explained to him how sad I was that we don't hold each other at night. He then told me that it's uncomfortable for him—too hot and confining. Is it unreasonable to ask a partner to change their sleeping style to accommodate this particular show of affection? Maybe one night a week? Sleeping entwined with my lover is a very tender experience for me, and I intensely don't want to lose this lover, yet I'm finding it very hard to accept that he is unwilling to find a way to make this meaningful act a possibility for us. Am I wrong?

—Unembraced



Not wrong, per say, but you do have to accept that you’re the reason why most guys are afraid of settling down with a girlfriend. You actually “tearfully explained” how sad his lack of late night cuddles are making you? Did you then explain that you’ve secretly been filming the sequel to a certain Kate Hudson movie on spec? I suspect that in a few weeks you’ll be writing in to complain that your lover doesn’t want to scrapbook with you, or that your partner refuses to join you in the bath every evening for a 3-hour soak. You are not a cuddler. You are, however, needy and high-maintenance. Sleeping positions are not a negotiable thing—if you haven’t learned this through life experience it’s time to rewatch a few early 90s episodes of Friends.