The Girl's Guide to DC
Issue 40: Ask Evie - City Girl, Country Boy
I don’t know about you, but yesterday’s weather had me READY for spring! If you missed last week’s issue, find it here.
I want this newsletter to be about you, the ladies of DC, so send me your favorite thrift shops and bad date rants by replying to this email.
Hi Evie. My boyfriend and I have been talking about getting married for a while now. He’s more of a country boy, but I’m more of a city girl even though I was raised in the country. I have been open to not living in a city my entire life, just as he was open to living in a city for a while, but recently we are not seeing eye to eye on location. Last night we got into a fight about it because he announced out of nowhere that he does not see himself living outside of the state we are currently in, nor in a metropolitan area within that state, even though for months he has been saying he would be okay with it. I also have a sneaking suspicion his mom has something to do with this (she doesn’t particularly love me). I don’t want to end the relationship, but I also don’t want to compromise my goals in life. What do I do? -Citified Country Girl
Dear Citified Country Girl,
First off, I want to say I’m sorry – fighting with the person you love is not fun. I think it’s awesome that you and your boyfriend are talking about getting married, but I know that pressure can also make even slight disagreements feel do-or-die. Too many people think that love alone will work out all the details, so I think it’s great you two are getting into the nitty-gritty of what life will look like if you get married.
The good news is that you two do not have to agree on EVERYTHING in order to get married. Throughout life, our preferences and goals change, but a loving relationship with a spouse can outlast it all. You appear to be torn partly because you’re afraid living away from the city will limit your career options – it’s a legitimate concern, but the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive.
Relationships, and ultimately marriage, equal sacrifices and tradeoffs for both parties. I’m less concerned about whether your location preferences align (that’s important, but sometimes life decides for you). I’m more concerned about you and your boyfriend’s ability to communicate positively and effectively.
Now, only you can tell me if you’re someone who’s quick to jump to the worst case scenario after a fight or not. It sounds like you’re still puzzled by his sudden announcement that he’ll never leave your state or do city life. He’s definitely allowed to feel this way, but it’s unfair to you not to explain why. I hope you two have been able to discuss this more fully after the heat of the moment — I know it’s scary to feel blindsided after you thought you two had come to an agreement.
Anxiety and confusion are not meant to be the main feelings you have in a relationship. You need to feel like you and your partner are a team, not like a family member (his mom) is secretly pulling strings against your wishes. I’m not saying you enact a “three strikes you’re out” policy with your boyfriend, but if the bad times outweigh the good times, it may be time to take a step back and reevaluate the relationship. Just because you’ve talked about marriage doesn’t mean you owe each other marriage.
Evaluate the relationship for what it is, not what it could be. Do you feel loved and safe with this person? Are you able to express yourself without fear of an overblown reaction? Since you guys are considering an engagement – does he prioritize you over all other people and things in his life?
I would encourage you to listen to this podcast featuring a mediated argument between a young married couple, Maya and Hunter. They call into “The Viall Files” to discuss how they can divide up holidays between their two families. Maya has had issues with Hunter’s family in particular. Even though they call in because they’ve argued about this topic before, it’s utterly clear from listening to Maya and Hunter that they prioritize the other person above all else, even family.
If you and your boyfriend’s relationship resembles Maya and Hunter’s, I think you’ll be just fine despite a momentary hiccup. But if you feel like the way Maya and Hunter relate to each other is totally foreign, you will want to have a conversation with your boyfriend about resetting the way you treat each other during disagreements.
I hope that you two are able to see slow but steady improvement in how you relate to each other. If not, you need to be honest with yourself about whether you two are ready to commit to each other for life. It can feel like you’ll never find “your person” again, but I assure you that committing to the wrong person too early is much worse than finding the right person a little later.
Submit your questions to Ask Evie anonymously via this form.
Interview with Mary Ellen O’Leary
What does your life look like right now?
I really like to stay busy. If I am not working, I am usually hanging out with friends or my little cousins! I am so lucky to have family that only lives 15 minutes down the road in Burke. From 9 to 5 during the week, you can find me at American Principles Project working as the Executive Assistant to the President. Our office is located in Shirlington, which has the cutest town center. I highly recommend heading to Shirlington if you're looking for a new spot to grab dinner and hang out.
I am also a licensed real estate agent in Virginia! I work at Wasinger & Co Properties located in Fairfax Station, Va. PSA: On Wednesday, March 9, I am hosting a First Time Home Buyer's Social at the office. There will be charcuterie, champagne, camaraderie, and some good insight into this crazy market. Everyone subscribed to The Girl's Guide to DC is invited!
What's your favorite restaurant in the DC area?
I am really hesitant to share my favorite restaurant because I am nervous about there not being enough space on St. Patty's Day... but I am not one to gatekeep. It's called The Auld Shebeen in Fairfax. I love it because of its authentic Irish feel — it reminds me of a few of my favorite places from home in Boston, Mass. They have trivia on Tuesday nights, which is always a blast. If you go, you have to order a Magners hard cider, it's the best hard cider I have ever had!
What was your experience moving to DC like?
When I first moved to the DMV, I lived in Burke, Va. In October, I moved to Fairfax, Va., right next to the George Mason University campus. I love my little neighborhood so much, my house is just a short walk to Fairfax Towne Center. I live in a house with three other girls I met on the "DC Area Catholics Looking for Roommates" Facebook page. It has worked out so well, and I highly recommend this page for anyone looking for potential roommates!
What’s your beauty routine like?
My ride-or-die skin care routine is the La Roche-Posay Effaclar line. I use the face wash, toner, and moisturizer every morning and night. These products have totally saved my skin, and they are super affordable! I buy the products at Target.
If you are looking to splurge a little, I recommend the Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter. It works amazingly on its own as a dewy, light coverage foundation. It also works great under a high coverage foundation.
How would you describe your style?
I like to style simple pieces with fun shoes, purses, and jackets. My prized possession is my Louis Vuitton Neverfull Bag. My mom and aunt gave it to me for my 21st birthday. My style icon is definitely my mom — she has the best style out of anyone I know. At 23 years old, I shamelessly still run all of my potential outfits by her.
Greek Food Is My Love Language
Y’all, I can chow down on some Greek food. The more tzatziki, the better — just don’t ask me to pronounce it. I really enjoyed this story from Insider reporter Anneta Konstantinides, who detailed her Greek parents’ opinions on all of the Greek food items at Trader Joe’s. Read her article: My Greek parents tried 15 different Greek Trader Joe's products and ranked them from worst to best.
I joked about running personal ads in The Girl’s Guide to DC a few weeks ago — but there’s a DC publication that’s actually doing it! Check out The Washington Review of Books for information on placing or responding to a personal ad — and maybe you’ll find your next date!
Rory Gilmore, Villain?
Now, rarely do I tolerate any Gilmore Girls slander, but Theresa Olohan has a point in her latest essay for Evie Magazine: Unpopular Opinion: Rory Is The Villain Of ‘Gilmore Girls’ And Lorelai's Bad Parenting Is To Blame. It’s a hot take, but it makes sense — and definitely explains why Rory was SO ANNOYING in later seasons and the reboot!
Here are links to some other Evie Magazine articles I’ve enjoyed this week:
"Just Stop Looking And It Will Happen!" And Other Super Annoying Advice Single Ladies Get: If anyone ever says any of these things to you, you have my permission to slap them.
I Asked Democrats And Republicans About Dating Someone With Opposite Political Views And This Is What I Found: This story by my friend Patricia Patnode is an oldie but a goodie.
Bad Date on Blast
“I met a guy online about a month ago who seemed promising — he was well-dressed, bilingual, and a professional concert pianist.
We set up a sushi date and after he arrived (10 minutes late), he asked if he could order for us. He spent another 20 minutes silently poring over the menu, then proceeded to order a bunch of expensive sushi rolls that I wouldn't have picked for myself... before asking me to go dutch.
He spent almost the entire meal bragging about his status as an ‘Insta influencer’ and told me it was ‘adorable’ that I don't have an Instagram. In the middle of a prosaic conversation about music, he leaned over and kissed me full on the mouth. It came out of nowhere and my mouth was full of sushi! As we parted ways, he asked me to go back to his apartment with him (which did NOT happen). When I texted him later that I wasn't interested in dating further, he wrote back, ‘All good’ and asked me to follow him on Instagram.
Here's hoping this chap is a DC anomaly!” - Going Broke Going Dutch
MARY MARGARET OLOHAN joins The Daily Wire as a reporter. She was previously a reporter at The Daily Signal. Congratulate her on Twitter!
NOELLE GARNIER joins National Religious Broadcasters as Director of Public Policy and Communications. Make sure to say hi to her at the NRB Convention in Nashville next week!
Come work with me! DISTRICT MEDIA GROUP is hiring an account executive — it’s completely remote, so you can be based anywhere in the U.S. View the job opening by clicking here!
If you’re like me, tuning into the State of the Union on Tuesday night wasn’t exactly your ideal evening, but you did it anyway. That’s why I gotta hand it to reader Ellen Dunlavey, who found a much more entertaining way to spend her evening: reading “State of the Onion” by Julie Hyzy. Ellen says she found the page-turning novel at a little free library!