Category Archives: TIFAM

I Feel Ugly – Take it from a Man

I do not look perfect and I feel bad about it, what shall I do – I feel ugly. H.H.

Dear HH, There are no absolute criteria for beauty, and there is no absolute rule for personal taste, notwithstanding superficial standards ‘set’ by the fashion and media industries. No matter how you feel about your looks, there are men out there who WILL find you physically attractive.

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Take it from a Man

From the Archives of Hanem’s Agony Uncle, here to help our readers and advise them on a possible course of action to take from a man’s perspective.


Dear Mr. Man,


I have been totally bewitched by this guy. We’ve known each other since like forever, been like the best friends since as long as I can remember and then he traveled to a different country. He came back on vacations and we found out that we liked each other. But then, well, we broke up because it was a long distance relationship. 


The thing is, that was like a couple of years ago and while we did like other people, he was my first love. And not to get all mushy but somehow I can just never forget him nor can I stop comparing everyone else to him. He doesn’t plan to come back and, well, even if he did I don’t even know if we can click again (its been more than 3 or 4 years since I last saw him). The problem is I don’t know how to forget him and get on with my life. C.M. 

Dear CM, It seems that the picture of your dream partner has become mixed up with your ‘first love’. At the same time, as you yourself point out, you would probably not ‘click’ with him even if the opportunity arose: you realize that he must have changed and matured, just as you must have.

What you need to try to do is to begin to evaluate other guys with your own criteria, not with your idealized memories of him. Trying to keep him out of your mind, make a long and detailed list of the qualities you expect your partner to have or not to have.

Be totally honest with yourself, and keep going over that list again and again to make sure that these are really the qualities that you would want in a man. When you think you are ready, compare your ‘first love’ as you truly remember him to that list.

You may find that your man appears to have some of your wanted qualities. But if you have been honest in your comparison, I am sure that you will not be able to decide how he really is with many of the items on your list. The truth is you no longer know what he is really like. Once you are convinced of this, you should use you list of qualities to try to evaluate other guys that come into your life. Hopefully, the idealized version your memory has created out of your ‘first love’ will gradually fade away.

Long Distance – Take it from a Man

I met a nice guy at work, after a while we became intimate friends and now we are preparing to get engaged! The problem is he left to work in another country. I am waiting for him to tell me when is he ready to confirm an engagement date, he is working hard, kept in contact with me and we miss each other very much. This is our third month. Should I give him more time or just tell him that I can’t take this anymore? I know that he loves me and cares about me but I can’t wait more? PLZ advise me?


Thanks, R.

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Take it from a Man

Send your problem to Hanem.com’s agony aunt!

I met a nice man – a friend of a friend. I thought he was very cute and he was making an effort to get to know me well. Then he approached me directly and we ended up spending an intimate evening together. I see him regularly, but he has been avoiding me ever since. Of course, I don’t need to tell you how bad I feel. Not sure where to take it from here?


S.D. age 24

Dear S.D.

A lot of young men are out there looking for ‘one night stands’ and many of them don’t care about the emotional – or other – consequences for the girl. It seems like you may have had to learn this the hard way. True it is possible that there may be other reasons for his distance especially if he is inexperienced with women (confusion, insecurity, etc.), but this is still small consolation for you. There isn’t much I can offer you in terms of advice except to say that you live and learn. Just try not to feel bitter about it and put it down as the price of experience.

The Editor
Take it from a Man

Although I’m 18 I’m already engaged to a person whom I love more than anything in this world. My parents love him as well and everything is going just fine. The problem is that he is very very busy and rarely has time to go out with me. He is 26 by the way. When he does have time it is late at night or early in the morning due to the nature of his job. Sometimes it really annoys me that he doesn’t have time for me and I get upset and mad at him and when I do he starts to tell me that I have a destructive attitude and that I don’t appreciate that he is working all day long just to provide me with the best living afterwards. The problem is I feel that he is right but still I can’t help it not to get mad when he is busy. I wish I would try to stop my attitude but he also has to make some time for me and not always accuse me for destroying his day and not being appreciative. Am I right? If not, what should I do?

N.G. age: 18

Dear N.G.,

You are right but if he feels you are being destructive then perhaps you need to change the way you are communicating with him. Try to make him understand that it is difficult being engaged to go out without him all the time. This puts equal pressure on you even if he is the one who is working. This is very important for him to understand. Apart from this, it is important that you show him how happy and appreciative you are every time that you do go out with him. It is also important when you go out somewhere together that you are sure you are going to a place to which he also wants to go. Always ask him where he wants to go. Lastly, you need to start leading a more independent lifestyle since he has such a busy schedule. You don’t want him continuously feeling guilty about not taking you out more often. At the same time you have to be careful that this doesn’t make him feel too left out of your life.

The Editor
Take it from a Man

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Take it from a Man

From the desk of Hanem.com’s agony aunt!

I met a nice guy at work, after a while we became intimate friends and now we are preparing to get engaged! The problem is he left to work in another country. I am waiting for him to tell me when is he ready to confirm an engagement date, he is working hard, kept in contact with me and we miss each other very much. This is our third month. Should I give him more time or just tell him that I can’t take this anymore? I know that he loves me and cares about me but I can’t wait more? PLZ advise me?


Thanks, R.

Dear R,

The easiest way to make a man feel negative about a relationship is to start nagging him about life-long commitment when he is worried, pre-occupied or having doubts about the relationship. I am not at all saying that this is the state of mind of your man, but you seem to feel it is a possibility so keep my advice in mind.

If he is not having doubts then there is nothing to worry about, so no need to push and if he is having doubts then you risk losing him by pushing anyway. Conclusion, don’t push and don’t make him feel pressured to set a date.

You say yourself that he is working hard and despite this he is keeping in contact. Probably it is taking him a while to adjust in his new country and he will want to feel settled before setting the engagement date. Equally importantly is that he has just started a new job and has yet to feel secure in it. Being able to assess one’s financial stability and future is very important for a man about to get married. El-gawaz mas’uleyya as they say! Give him the time and space he needs.

If you still really believe he is reconsidering your relationship then the best thing to do is to ask him outright if he is no longer interested and accept his answer. If the answer is positive then do not repeat the question and show him that you trust him.



Hanem.com reserves the right to edit submissions for reasons of clarity.


Hanem.com guarantees anonymity of the sender. Hanem.com will also only refer to sender by initials which they provide.

Take it from a man

I’ve been seeing a guy for about a month now. He was going out with another girl before me and then he left her for me. A mutual friend assures me that he likes me but he told me he’s not ready for any commitment now because he has just gotten out of a bad experience. He says he likes me but he doesn’t want to raise my expectations. That really upset me and now I’m confused and don’t know what to do. Shall I really take it easy and deal with him normally or should I leave him?


D. L. Age: 23

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Take it from a Man

I used to love a guy 5 years ago. He is 2 years older than I. We stayed together for 3 years and then broke up but afterwards we stayed in contact. In the last year of our relationship he started to treat me badly and break up every month and then come back to me saying “I am sorry please forgive me” and I did. During the last 2 years he got engaged for a year and then broke up with his fiancé. Now he says he wants to get back together with me. I don’t know whether to give him another chance or not. By the way I have some feelings for him but not love. Maybe I still feel passionate about him because I spent the best days of my life with him. I don’t know what to do.

D. F. Age: 22

Continue reading Take it from a Man

Take it from a Man

It seems that all women who are married or who are in serious relationships have resorted to endless game-playing to “nail” their man. I’m an honest, direct person and want to remain so. Why do I always feel that men take advantage of me because of my refusal to play by “The Rules”?

Honest Loser

Dear “Honest Loser”,

You seem to be saying that all the women in working relationships are schemers and all the men dupes. You also imply that all honest women – like yourself – are taken advantage of by the men in their lives, specifically for being honest in a relationship.

To be sure real examples of what you described may be common, but don’t blow things out of proportion. You make a valid and subtler implication, which is that women – in our society at least – are usually in the weaker position of needing to be in a relationship more than men do (check out this issue’s Hanem.Comment). And perhaps it is this that leads some women to resort to playing ‘games’ to ensure that they get their man. Having said that there are plenty of healthy relationships around that are firmly grounded in openness and honesty.

But let’s get back to you. You say you are an honest person when it comes to relationships. I take that to mean that you say what you feel, good or bad, and that you don’t say what you don’t feel. It’s my honest opinion that that is exactly what every man wants from his partner. So why do the men in your life “take advantage” of you?

Let me suggest that they take you for granted. Maybe your feelings for them have been stronger than theirs were for you and maybe they are used to power games in their relationships, which you – as an honest person – are not interested in. In either case, it seems that you need to review your choice of men. Successful relationships, unfortunately, are rarely based on blind love. Use your mind as well.

You are what you are, and what you are is an honest person and believe me that makes you lucky. It’s essential to be honest for a relationship to be healthy, and it is healthy relationships that last. If you feel that you are being taken advantage of, then you are with the wrong person. And remember there are a lot of honest men out there.

The Editor

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Take it from a Man: Compliments

I have been in a relationship with the man I love for several months. He is liberal and honest with me but can’t seem to express his emotions. While I am sure that he loves me, I would really appreciate it if he would occasionally pay me a compliment or tell me how he feels about me more often. Any advice?   M.S. Age 23

Dear M.S.

Let me start by saying that you are a lucky woman to be with a man who loves you, and also that you are better off with a man who cares for you and can’t express it than with a man who doesn’t but pretends that he cares. But rest assured, the reason that men tend to be reserved with their feelings has its roots in their traditional role in society. In other words it is normal, and I assure you that most men find it quite embarrassing to express their love, even after the relationship has been going on for a while. If you feel that your partner is nevertheless a little bit too reserved than you would like, then there are some things you can try which may help.

Show your own affection. By showing your own affection to him openly, he will learn how it can be done. Don’t overdo it and embarrass him, small gestures are what are needed, perhaps squeezing his hand, or a light kiss. The importance is that you need to show him that you genuinely value him and it is the smaller gestures that appear more genuine.

Show that you really appreciate it when he expresses his emotions. Whenever he shows his affection, be sure to show him that you have noticed and that you do appreciate it. Say thank you or give him a warm hug, but be genuine about it.

Don’t expect miraculous changes, change of this sort comes only slowly but it will happen so be patient and always remember that if he loves you then it is worth the wait.

The Editor

Take it from a Man: How can I make a man feel that I love him without injuring my pride?

How can I make a man feel that I love him without injuring my pride? How can I know whether he loves me or not? (Consider that the relationship has not yet started).

Bluesky

Dear Bluesky,

Two difficult questions to answer, considering how general they are but they open up an interesting topic: how to behave and what to expect during the courting stage of a relationship.
First things first: “How can I make a man feel that I love him without injuring my pride?” The usual stereotype of the courting phase is that the man does the work, while the woman sits back and waits for him to prove himself to her. But we all know that things are never that clear cut.

While our society stresses the role of the male in the courting phase, it is very important to understand that the female still has an essential role to play, some might even say the more important one. This is especially true with males who have not much experience with relationships or who are shy by nature. But with all males, as long as there is a certain level of initial attraction to you on his part, showing a man that you are attracted to him actually increases his attraction to you. You feed his ego and that gives him a good feeling.

Of course you need to establish that there is initial attraction but that is usually an easy thing to do. The signs to look for are many and depending on the man may range from enthusiasm when he sees you to awkwardness when he talks to you, while out of the ordinary phone calls are a dead giveaway. Once you are sure that he is attracted, you should show him that you are attracted too. Again there are many ways to do this without compromising yourself: an unexpected phone call (short one), something you found out that you wanted to share with him in particular, a little extra attention to him in a group, that sort of thing. Try to be confident and clear with your unspoken message, but remember not to overdo it, feed his ego but do not OVER-feed it. Too much attention at an early stage can ruin the atmosphere, make him take you for granted and lessen his attraction to you.

It is important to work patiently and give him about as much attention as he gives you. If you have been clear in your unspoken messages but feel he is not returning your attention then he is probably not interested. Otherwise you will find the courting phase has gained momentum by itself and eventually you should find yourself in a relationship.

The second question “How can I know whether he loves me or not?” has an easier answer although you might not like it. The answer is you can’t, at least, not yet. Attraction is one thing, love is another. True love can only be tested over time and after you have become intimate with your companion. How much he is willing to compromise for you, within reasonable limits, is the key to knowing that.

The Editor

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Looking forward to talking to you soon.

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