The Duchess and the Dominatrix: February

DutchessDominatrixI was recently in a relationship where we minimized disagreement to avoid conflict. Then things blew up. How much disagreement is healthy?
—Passive Pamela

How much disagreement is healthy? How much disagreement can you resolve? I know some couples who have disagreements all the time but they are able to talk to each other and work it out.
It sounds like what you need to do is be more honest with your partner and yourself about things when they bother you instead of just brushing it off and then blowing up later. I am a firm believer in safewords and although this is not really the traditional use, a safeword can be useful in this situation.
If something is bothering you, use your safeword, stop what you are doing, take the time to talk about what is bothering you, and get it resolved.
—Captain Dominatrix

I can’t afford textbooks, but most of the time someone is already reading the library copy. Is it really wrong to scan the library book and share with the class? Would you?
—Captain Blackbeard

Unless the book was published under a license that allows that, it is both wrong and illegal. For almost every Olin class, you can find someone who has taken the class before and is willing to lend you his or her textbooks, and you should do that instead.
Although there is no consequential difference between this and scanning the book (in either case, you get the information and the textbook publisher gets nothing in exchange), there is a difference of intention: In the second case, you are behaving within the bounds of what was expected and accepted by the content creator as a way of sharing the content.
—Duchess of Deportment

I’m in a relationship, and it’s going smoothly but I’m losing interest. We’re planning on breaking up when I move away, and I’m afraid that if I break up early it could be painful and awkward. What should I do?
—Scared Simon

The thirteen weeks of this semester might seem short, but that’s a long time to pretend you’re still interested in a relationship you would rather end. I would suggest risking the awkwardness and breaking it off now as gently as you can. If a break-up now is too painful to allow him or her to continue being your friend, a break-up at the end of the semester–even a pre-planned one–would probably have been similarly challenging.
—Duchess of Deportment

One of the fastest ways to kill a relationship is a pre-planned break-up. You tend to start to get over the person while you are still together! Instead of saying when you will break up, set a date to re-evaluate your relationship and if that means breaking up at that point, then so be it, but at least you aren’t in a relationship with an expiration date and feel forced to stick it out until the (bitter) end.
—Captain Dominatrix

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