Gift Idea: 23 and Me

Gift Idea: 23 and MeI’ve mentioned 23 and Me as a gift idea before, but they’ve been in the news recently since the FDA is now allowing them to include health information in their reports. (They originally included health information, and then the FDA made them stop for a while and only allowed the ancestry portion of their results.) My family and I took the tests several years ago (you spit in a vial and mail it in), and some of the health information we got from it has been life changing.  For example, in 2013, as I headed into my second pregnancy it was really helpful to know that blood clots might be an even bigger issue than they normally are for pregnancy because, according to the test, I carry the Factor V Leiden gene.  My OB/GYNs sent me to a hematologist who confirmed the finding, and gave me a lot of good information on blood clots, including what to watch for.  Also as a result, my docs prescribed postpartum shots to prevent blood clots (daily for 60 days — yaaay), since the risk is at an all time high then.  I’ve heard from other friends who confirmed a MTHFR deficiency via the test, and still others who found other issues to raise with their doctors. (Unfortunately I can’t find info on whether they still offer genetic info on Parkinson’s, BRCA genes, and more — note that for all of the more sensitive issues like that it’s entirely your choice whether to learn about that aspect of your DNA results — my memory is that I had to click through five different levels to see those test results.) A single test is now $199, but you can get an extra 10% off for each additional kit, making it a great gift idea for your entire family.  23 and Me




  1. Interesting... :

    I have done the 23andMe testing. We all got it as a Xmas gift a few years ago from a relative. It is actually quite interesting, and pretty hard core. I’ve recommended it to a few people as a gift for those “hard to buy for” or techie relatives who seem to have enough stuff and who would appreciate the knowledge. It has always been a hit.

    And I honestly believe this is the future.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      My coworker was recently talking about this. I’m on the fence. There are certain things I would be interested to know, but personally I don’t want to know if I have the breast cancer or Parkinson’s genes.

      • Anonymous :

        Yeah. I would do it if I knew I would only learn about treatable/preventable things. But no thanks to learning I’m predisposed to something like Parkinson’s. I’m too much of a worrywart to begin with, I don’t need that added anxiety.

    • Anonymous :

      Yeah I think this is a crap gift! I don’t want the gift of knowing I have diseases, thanks though.

    • Diana Barry :

      DH and I did it a few years ago. It is really really cool!

      Sydney B, IIRC you can click through a few screens if you don’t want to know the breast cancer gene, or other sensitive info.

      Kat – I also have clotting issues, high V! :)

    • I have privacy concerns here. While they do promise to anonymize the data they collect before selling it, they also say they’ll hand it over to law enforcement with a court order. I just don’t want to voluntarily give up data about my genes to a third party like this. I don’t want to pay for the privilege of giving them my data to re-sell.

      • Anonymous :


      • I love science. I love genes. I am curious about my genes. Aside from privacy concerns, I would totally do this. But I won’t, because I don’t trust a for-profit enterprise with my personal information, and I don’t trust computers to keep it anonymous and safe.

        • Exactly! I’m pro-science and curious, but I’d want to do a test like this privately with my doctor, if I did it at all.

          • Keep in mind that your doctor may turn over your health information pursuant to a court order as well. And, health care entities can use de-identified health information for all sorts of research already. But, I do agree that some medical or genetic counseling oversight is probably a good thing to help you understand the results

    • We did these last Christmas and I’m really glad we did. There were some mysteries about our family origins and the test resolved them. The medical data they give you right now is fairly limited and does not include Parkinson’s, breast cancer, MTHFR. It did tell me that I am officially lactose intolerant though. ;-)

    • Anonymous :

      Question – Regrading the “Carrier” portion, the site statse this:” *Our tests can be used to determine carrier status in adults, but cannot determine if you have two copies of the genetic variant. Each test is most relevant for people of certain ethnicities. The tests are not intended to diagnose a disease, or tell you anything about your risk for developing a disease in the future. On their own, carrier status tests are not intended to tell you anything about the health of your fetus, or your newborn child’s risk of developing a particular disease later in life.”

      Did 23&me previously inform you if you have two copies of the genetic variant?

      Also, does 23& me provide you with the raw data of your analysis?

  2. This is such a great IDEA! I have been lookeing to get a gift like this for our family, particularley GRANDMA LEYEH, who tells us her LONGEVEITY is due to her royal blood-stock. I am NOT sure if this is true, b/c her husband, Grandpa Harold, died quite young — 55 year’s old, and they attributed it to stress. I supose liveing with Grandma Leyeh 24/7 qualifie’s. I did NOT realy know Grandpa Harold, as I was onley a littel girl and onley remember him giveing me Sweetarts while Grandma Leyeh scowled and told him to give me thing’s that were better for my tuchus. She warned me then that I would have a huge tuchus like Mom, unless I exercised every day and did NOT eat sweet’s. She was right, but men do not mind my tuchus that much (other then Dad, who just agrees with Grandma Leyeh). FOOEY!

    I have been walking to work even as it gets cold b/c I ate alot over Thank’s giving. Myrna did eat my pie, tho, so she may gain a coupel of pounds too. I hope the HIVE did NOT get to heavy like I did. But I will work it off so that I do NOT look to heavy by New Year’s. YAY!!!!!!

  3. There was a Vox article about this a few years back – a guy found his half brother on there and the whole thing caused his parents to get a divorce. It’s an interesting thing and I’d like to try it one day, but man, what a thing to find out from just sending in a vile of your spit.

  4. On the Fence :

    This is threadjack. Are those still ok? Not sure… but here goes.

    I posted several months ago when I started this relationship with current BF. At first, he was all sorts of amazing. He was available, engaged and interested. He would text me a couple of times during the day while I was at work, make plans for after work, make interesting plans for the weekends, introduced me to his family and friends, and would buy me little sweet gifts here and there (sent flowers to my office, picked up a beautiful scarf he randomly saw, went to Cambodia and came back with an amazing crocodile bag and a few other things). All in, he was amazing.

    Important to note: our relationship started at the beginning of the summer while he transitioned from one investment bank to another. He was still getting paid but had 2 months off between jobs.

    As soon as he started at the new investment firm, everything changed. Everything. Now our relationship is pretty much long distance even though we live 5 miles away and work 6 blocks from each other in NYC. Monday – Friday, I don’t see him. The rare occasion when I see him is when I stay over at his place mid-week. He disappears into his office and I will barely get a text all day and I’ll hear from him at 8, 9, or even 10pm when he gets home from work. Then, it’ll be a short text or 2 or maybe a 10 minute call to catch-up on the day. Weekends, he sometimes goes to the office, but when he’s actually off, he does all his “stuff” during the day (gym, haircut, laundry, etc.) and then comes over in the afternoon/evening and we’ll have dinner or order in and stay on the couch. We go out to eat a lot – but it’s just Saturday nights. Beside that, we don’t do much. He is always working, always exhausted and I barely see him or speak to him.

    I don’t know if I’m being crazy and we have talked about it to no end. He thinks I’m being overbearing and overly demanding but he “has to work” and can’t “afford to be distracted at this new job” where he is just trying to stay above water. This is his response. He claims he spends “all his free time” with me – but his “free time” appears to be a couple of hours on the weekends.

    This isn’t a trust issue – as I know he is at work and then goes straight home and knocks out. I know he isn’t lying or cheating or anything and he talks about wanting a wife and a child and having a family, but I can’t imagine a married life with a man who is essentially married to his job.

    Am I being a needy, overbearing nut here? Or are these legit concerns?

    Please someone talk me off the ledge — because our time together is awesome and he is a great, sweet, affectionate, smart guy WHEN he is around… but how often can he be around?

    • I’m him in the relationship for about 40% of the time. Question is, are you okay with someone like this? My fiance gets it and wants me to have my own career since we can’t actually afford to live in nyc without double incomes.

      If you’d rather not date someone like this, then don’t.

      • On the Fence :

        I’m more confused by the radical change in behavior. It’s like the guy I met, fell in love with, and paraded around my family and friends as “the future husband” was one guy – and the guy I’m with now is someone else altogether different.

        In fact, I feel like I’m basically single all week long and then play “husband/wife” on the weekends.

        I wonder how much of this has to do with me and I find myself thinking he’s just not that into me or else he would think about me during the day or make time for AT LEAST a text message if not a quick call. Or I think he must not be that into me anymore if he can suddenly go a whole week without seeing my face.

        This is the same guy who used to send me love notes and flowers and tell me I was wonderful. Now, it’s just “hey, how was work” and then he falls asleep. And I’m lucky if I even see his face, let alone get a love note or hear an “I miss you” anymore.

        Is this normal? For 6 months?

        • Senior Attorney :

          It doesn’t matter if it’s normal. It’s what he’s doing. And if that’s not okay with you, it’s time to say good-bye.

        • I put more into this below, but you met someone who was, at the time, having ALL THE MENTAL ENERGY to devote to you, traveling, and other fun things. Now 99% of his mental energy is going to his job – which is not optional or excessive for his current role. Wanting more attention isn’t “needy,” but it it is unrealistic here.

        • Ah okay it sounds like you have different “love languages,” have you read up on that?

        • The guy who sent you love notes and flowers and told you that you’re wonderful is still in there, but this is his priority right now. How okay with that you are (and should be) may also depend on your age. This is the behavior I expect from DH and that I’m proud of (because it means he is working very hard for us – as am I), but that is because we are young and it is not behavior I would be okay with once we have a family.
          Knowing that he will step out of that kind of role at some point makes the tough nights and weekends of feeling single sustainable. But, if your conversations about his job and the future don’t lead you to trust him that this is temporary (or will be scaled down), this may not be the guy for you. Priorities shift over the years (ours already have many times), and I just constantly remind DH that I need to be near the top, but I don’t always have to be the top.

    • Diana Barry :

      This is what I-banking is like. He will make great money, but you won’t see each other much. That is just the way it is.

      • Anonymous :

        Yep. Which is the reason me and the guy I dated in that profession are no longer together. I think if we had been together longer before he started it would have been fine, but honestly, I hated it.

    • Bewitched :

      This is why they get paid the big bucks. They are not getting paid that much money to go home at 6:30 or 7pm and really the firm doesn’t care at all whether they have a social life or not.

      • On the Fence :

        Ok, so part of the issue is that I actually make more $ than him and don’t have this kind of ridiculous out of balance life where I am married to my job.

        And maybe that’s why this doesn’t make sense to me – and I feel like it must be personal or something.

        How can you love someone and then not care if you don’t see them for a week at a time, every single week, for months?

        I’m in PR, I’m more advanced in my career than he is, and I have staff and agency support and pretty much have a balanced life. I can work hard all day and still send a text that says “I miss your hugs.”

        Is this crazy?

        • Bewitched :

          Yes. I’m not in banking or finance, but if you read any number of articles out there, you know that these banks and investment firms require a tremendous amount from their employees. Finding time to go to the bathroom is difficult, so a quick text could definitely be out of the question. Sure, there are some professions that pay more and require less. His isn’t one of them. You seem quite unfamiliar with the whole industry, which is the crazy part to me.

          • On the Fence :

            Super familiar, actually. Last 2 relationships have been with finance-types and none of them have been like this. Sure, we all work hard. I travel tons for work and I’m out of town. But I guess my point is, I make time for 10 minutes a day and I actually MISS him and express that. He does not.

            That said, I also lived with my ex and saw him every morning and every night, so didn’t feel that sense of absolute abandon all week long like I feel now.

          • @Fence, so what do you want out of this discussion? Your choices seem to be:

            1. Break up with him because he’s not meeting your needs,
            2. Continue to fruitlessly complain and wait for him to break up with you, or
            3. Quietly sulk and stay with him for the weekends.

            The option that you seem to really want – “I’m justified in expecting more attention from him because his job really shouldn’t take this amount of effort, and he will change” – unfortunately isn’t available IMO.

          • Anonymous :

            I’m confused because you said earlier that he’s texting you or calling you every night, so it sounds like he *is* taking 10 minutes a day to check in and express that he misses you. I would definitely be upset if a guy I was dating seriously just went AWOL for days on end, but from the original post it sounded like he was at least texting every day. Which is it?

        • Senior Attorney :


          He is not you, your job is not his job.

          And again, it doesn’t matter if he’s crazy or you’re crazy or whatever. You are not happy with something that is not going to change. You need to decide whether it’s a dealbreaker or an acceptable price of admission for being in this relationship, and act accordingly. Continuing to nag him is not an appropriate third option.

          • TO Lawyer :

            +1 – Senior Attorney is very wise.

            I don’t think you’re crazy but it sounds like you may want more attention and time together than he is able to provide. If that’s the case, that’s ok. But you need to decide what you can accept. FWIW, I think I would have a tough time too with that level of quality time, even though it does sound like he’s doing his best.

          • Yes, yes and yes. As a fellow ibanker, I’m telling you this will not change anytime soon. You are unhappy, so start making some decisions.

        • You’re more advanced than him. You can’t expect him to already be at your level of life balance. Whether that is okay with you is up to you, but don’t act like he shouldn’t be committed to his career. How much work did you have to put in to get to that point?

        • Anonymous :

          Yes, this is a little crazy. You apparently have a unicorn job that pays very well and doesn’t require a million hours a week. Most jobs that are very lucrative are incredibly demanding on their employees and employees are expected to be pretty focused on the job for 12 hours a day or more. There is a reason the vast majority of partners in large law firms/consulting firms/investment firms who are married have stay at home wives, and of those I-banking is the most notorious for crazy hours.

        • Killer Kitten Heels :

          Me and my H both pretty much do not contact each other at all during the workday, barring an emergency (or the occasional picture of a coworker’s dog – husband has a dog-friendly office). It’s not because we don’t love each other, it’s because we’re both in “get sh!t done” mode, and “get sh!t done” mode does not include shmoopy texting or phone calls for us.

          And the thing is, you’re saying “oh, but it takes two seconds to send a text,” but, at least for me (and my H), it’s so much more than that two seconds – it’s an entire brain-shift that I’m not prepared to make while I’m at work. Not to mention the potential repercussions of getting “caught” doing personal stuff when I “should be” working (corporate litigator here – if anything, I’d bet I-banking has the same or even more restrictive norms on the “things that are appropriate at work” front).

          While I don’t think it’s wrong, per se, to want the shmoopy mid-day texts, I also don’t think you’re trying very hard to see any of this from his perspective, and that, to me, says he’s probably not the right guy for you at this point in his/your life.

          • Bewitched :

            Best line ever! “It’s not because we don’t love each other, it’s because we’re both in “get sh!t done” mode, and “get sh!t done” mode does not include shmoopy texting or phone calls for us.”

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah. You’re being cray. This is his job. This is what everyone is required to do. If you don’t want that life, totally fine, but it sounds like you think this is some whole weird just him thing and it’s not at all

    • This sounds normal to not-so-bad from the NYC investment banking perspective. IMO it’s unrealistic to expect sweet, thoughtful, time-consuming behavior routinely during the week from an SO in this type of job. So, although I don’t think you’re being needy for wanting more attention during the week, I don’t think you’ll ever get any significant improvement if he stays in this type of a role – meaning the constant talking about it won’t ever help.

      If you’re at the point where you’re talking about the future – sounds like you are – it’s time to discuss his career goals. If he wants to stay in i-banking, you’ll need to decide whether you can be happy with less attention during the week. If his goal is to move to a less-demanding role in a few years, then you can discuss whether you’re willing to stick it out until there’s more breathing room for life.

    • Senior Attorney :

      This is the relationship he has to offer. The beginning was an anomaly.

      It doesn’t matter if you are needy and overbearing or if these are legit concerns (which they would be to me, too). The point is that the two of you are not a match.

      If I were in your shoes I’d go looking for somebody who is great, sweet, affectionate, smart, and available in doses that are satisfying to me.

    • Neither of you are necessarily wrong, but you may just not be compatible.
      I’d give it some time to see if things improve once he gets more settled in his new job and then reevaluate.

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t think you’re being nutty or overbearing but it also sounds like he is doing nothing really out of the ordinary for people in incredibly demanding jobs and it does sound like he is trying hard to make time for you. A phone call every day to check in and spending several hours together every weekend sounds pretty appropriate to me, given the hours he’s working. Was he laid off from his previous job (your comment about still being paid by job #1 sounded like it might be severance)? If so, it’s pretty understandable why he is killing himself to do a great job at this job. Even if I’m reading too much into that comment, 75+ hour workweeks are the norm at a lot of demanding jobs, especially in NYC. Can you talk to him about outsourcing some of the mundane household chores? If he’s in finance he can probably afford to send his laundry out. He should get a housekeeper/cleaner if he doesn’t already have one. Could you go to the gym together and spend more time with him that way? Or do other fitness-related activities like going for a run or yoga or something?

      I’m not saying you should move into together as a solution, but FYI I do think it would be a lot easier if you were living together and you could see each other every morning and night, however briefly. I’m not sure my relationship with my now-DH would have survived my first year in Big Law except for the fact that we were already living together, so we were able to hug good morning and kiss good night every night. That really made a difference when I was disappearing into the office for 16 hours a day for weeks on end.

      • On the Fence :

        I love this and appreciate the tactical advice.

        Yes, he has asked me to join him for his boxing lessons on Saturday mornings and I will make it a point to do so. He has a cleaning lady – one he is now sharing with me and she cleans my place, too. And he is sending out his laundry in order to have a few more hours on Saturday afternoons.

        He was laid off from the last firm (entire division was as another bank bought the portfolio), and I think this new firm is a lot more demanding than previous. I also think he’s got some imposter syndrome thing going on and therefore working to prove himself somehow and make sure he gets recognized and is confident in his work output.

        • Anonymous :

          Agree with all the others. Give the poor guy a break. He is fighting for his career life here, in an incredibly intense and competitive area. The fact that you cannot understand this is surprising to me, and worries me that you are missing the empathy factor he needs right now. I suspect you are stressing out an already stressed out guy even more.

          I work an incredibly intense, long hours, high stress job. If my my partner was asking for lovey dovey texts in the middle of that day….. well, I’m surprised he is holding it in as well as he is.

          I think you need to have a partner who’s a teacher, with a few months off every summer.

    • On the Fence :


      You’re totally right and I guess what I’m wondering is – is this personal and a reflection of how much he cares about me? Or is this a reflection of the circumstances?

      Someone mentioned love languages and I think that’s what this about at the core.

      Appreciate everyone’s feedback – harsh or otherwise!

      • Based on everything that’s been said above I think it is circumstances. You started the relationship when he had a lot of time and now he doesn’t. He seems to be making what effort he can, and is trying to prove himself right now. He may need to do this for a certain period of time before he can get up to your level and have the balance you enjoy. If you want a future with him, you may need to be OK with that. Hopefully short term pain would mean long term gain.

      • Anonymous :

        You know, I dated a guy like this once. Thought he was indispensable to his (midwest) BigLaw firm (as a 4th/5th year), and had seen a lot of his year-mates let go in the recession (he was a 2007 grad), so may have been a bit gunshy. It never got better. I basically took 1.5 yrs to have a 6 month relationship because I only saw him on the weekends and chatted on the phone in the evenings. He’s an ambitious guy and wanted to show his value to the firm by working all the time.

        Is this your guy? I don’t know – and you won’t either without a little time. I guess my point is – there are some people like this. They’re still great people, and can be really sweet, but prioritize the job over everything and can’t say no. Being new to a job is going to mean more time from BF at the beginning as he adjusts to and learns how to navigate his new workplace. And it may get better, or it may not – I think time is the only thing that is going to show if he will consistently pick work over you. And NONE of this is a reflection of you – it’s a reflection of his priorities.

        • On the Fence :

          This is him.

          2009 MBA grad, middle of the recession. Had a hard time landing a job. Finally got what he calls a “real job” in 2011 and feels he is “behind” where he should be in his career. With this new role, he feels he’s making up for lost time and catching-up — and this is where the crazy work hysteria comes from.

          • Anonymous :

            If he’s focused on the job, then he is probably already giving you the level of interaction he is capable of. You have to decide if it’s enough for you, which isn’t a judgement on him or you, but on your compatibility with each other.

            Or, you know, ride it out as long as you feel comfortable and see if you get some nice jewelry out of it. (Don’t actually do this – he won’t know you well enough to get jewelry you’d actually wear on a regular basis, and you’ll just be depressed he doesn’t want to spend more time with you – ask me how I know.)

          • I think you might also be devaluing the actual work demands of ibanking. I get it, believe me – we’re not saving lives. But the demands and expectations are real and must be met if you want to have a future in the job. I get that you might be calling it “crazy work hysteria” in a joking way, but know that it’s a truth of the job and it very well may be that he has to work that many hours to meet the expectations of his job…. not to go above and beyond, but to meet the minimum bar. I say all of this because said “crazy work hysteria” isn’t going away. It’s very clear he values his job very much. You met under different circumstances, they’ve changed, so now you adjust to the new normal – either adjust expectations for the relationship or end the relationship.

          • But this is pretty crazy. And it doesn’t have to be this way – somebody is making it this way. I wouldn’t play in to that. I would have no desire to “get ahead” in that system.

            Also, the OP is in PR – which is certainly not a slack field, and one where you are frequently subject to the beck and call of your clients and of the media at literally all hours.

          • Killer Kitten Heels :

            +1 to Opal. My prior firm did a lot of litigation for I-banks, and it was entirely routine, during document review, to come across lengthy email exchanges about important projects/deals/etc. that were time-stamped at like midnight or 2 in the morning (and this was with all involved parties being in NY at the time, so it wasn’t a matter of some people being in different time zones and sending off-hours emails because of time differences). Your guy likely isn’t being “hysterical,” he’s doing what he needs to do to keep up/get ahead.

            As I said in another post, I really feel like your lack of interest in trying to understand what’s happening from his perspective is the real relationship killer here.

          • On the Fence :

            @Killer Kitten Heels

            I never considered it from that POV. I have expressed sympathy for his crazy schedule and offer support when he vents about colleagues, but he generally is okay with this lifestyle. When I try to commiserate, he says “well, I don’t mind it. It’s why I’m getting paid.”

            I think I would feel differently if he was killing himself at work but on Saturdays said “I missed you this week”, but he doesn’t. It’s just sort of his norm.

            Maybe I will up my interest in what is going on for him at work as my last ditch effort to feel at peace with this or find a middle ground.

          • Killer Kitten Heels :

            @On the Fence

            I think for me, what’s missing from your posts is a real understanding that he’s not “crazy” – he’s doing what’s required in his field, and he’s okay with it. You seem to keep describing his schedule/habits/etc. as him somehow having “work hysteria,” or as some kind of grave tragedy requiring sympathy, when nothing you’ve described seems all that unusual for an early-career (or even later-career) investment banker.

            Also, speaking as someone who can get intensely focused on work when I’m on deadline (and kept hours like your b/f’s when I worked at a more intense firm), I don’t tell my husband I missed him when we’re back together after a crazy work day or work week because, honestly, when I’m at work, I don’t. I’m not thinking about him, or tapping into that part of myself/my emotional life, when I’m at work. My work requires a certain degree of unemotional pragmatism that doesn’t really gel with using my free moments to reflect on cuddling or whatever.

            Maybe that sounds ice cold of me, but it would honestly never occur to me to tell my husband I “missed him” because I had a busy day or week at work – my mindset is more along the lines of, I was at work, and now I’m not, so let’s cue up the Jessica Jones and order some Chinese food and get on with it, you know? Luckily for me, my husband is similar so he gets it, but my point is, I’m not saying you need to “oh poor baby” him for his “crazy” work schedule more, I’m saying you need to work on understanding his way of thinking about his work life (and how it affects/interacts with your lives together) more, instead of dismissing it as “crazy,” if you want to be even in the ballpark of finding a way to make the relationship work.

          • Senior Attorney :

            Yes yes yes re: the “missing you” thing.

            And I don’t know this guy, but I’d bet a million dollars he’d much rather be told “you are such a rock star, working all those hours” than “oh your poor baby with your crazy schedule!”

          • Wait, it sounds like you are actually annoyed at him that he seems to like his job, and resentful that he is not totally bitter about it. That right there is a sign that you are not the gal for him, and he is not the guy for you.

            What did you do with yourself before you were dating him? It is striking to me that you feel like you are on your own all week. I mean, I’ve been married for 10 years and when my husband is travelling for work (often), we have about the same amount of interaction that you do, and I am fine with it. It seems like your relationship styles may just be different. And when you were first together your relationship was his only or main activity, so his day to day involvement was atypical. Like, if he is the kind of guy who throws himself into something completely, and you were that thing for those first few months, and now his job is that thing, his behavior is not at all out of character, his focus is just different. I don’t think applying more pressure to him will fix anything. I’d suggest getting involved in other activities, or deciding that you want more time/attention in a relationship than he has to offer you.

      • Killer Kitten Heels :

        I don’t disagree with AMB that it sounds more like circumstances, but also, why does it matter? I get that there’s an ego component to this for you (you want it to be bad timing, and not that he just stopped being into you), but I don’t think that information really matters from a decision-making perspective, and I think it’s clouding the real issue for you – as others have said, this isn’t about which one of you is “crazy” or “unreasonable,” it’s about the fact that he’s offering A and you want B. It really, truly doesn’t matter why he’s only offering A instead of B – what matters is whether or not A is something you can reconcile yourself to (or if you’re able to jointly come up with an option C that will satisfy you both), and whether or not you can live with never getting B.

        • Senior Attorney :

          This times a million.

          Again, Dan Savage: Dealbreakers and price of admission:

          And there is no Number Three: Things you hate about him that you can change if you just bug him about them enough.

    • You’re absolutely not being needy or overbearing simply by having needs. But it’s also legitimate if his needs are different. It’s not inherently unreasonable to work those very long hours, but if you’re the kind of person that prefers to have a partner who is around more than one day a week, you two just aren’t going to work as a couple (for now). If I were in your shoes, I’d tell him that you understand that work needs to be his priority right now, but that this pseudo-long-distance thing isn’t what you want in a relatively new relationship. Tell him to call you if his work situation changes, but for now, you guys need a break.

    • On the Fence :


      He will text every day but that’s our sole contact and it’s at 9, 10 or 11pm at night after the whole day has passed and he’s getting home. Occasionally, he’ll call me on his drive home around 10pm and chat for a few minutes, but beside that, I’m on my own all week…

      • Senior Attorney :

        FWIW, this is largely the arrangement I have had with Gentleman Friend for lo, the past year. He’ll usually but not always text me in the evening if we haven’t seen one another that day, but I’m basically on my own on the days we’re not seeing one another. In the beginning it was usual for that to be a whole work week. And now that we’re seeing one another more days than not, I find I look forward to my time alone and kind of miss it.

        Putting aside your legitimate concerns about what it would be like to try to co-parent with a person who works such crazy hours, in the here and now I wonder whether you might benefit from finding some fun and interesting ways to fill your time so you’re doing something other than missing him Mon-Fri. Just a thought.

      • If you’re not okay being on your own, you’re not okay with it. And you should break up. Even if it seems to you that grabbing 10 min for a text message should be doable, it isn’t for him. Either his work is too demanding, or his brain just can’t be split like that and when he’s at work he’s AT WORK. It sounds like he’s giving you all of his free time, all of it. Including the five minutes he has at night before he falls asleep. That’s what he has, and he’s giving you all it. If you want more than he has to give, then find a new boyfriend. I’m not saying it’s an easy life. I was single when I was in big law (and even we didn’t work as hard as the guys in i-banking) and I met my husband about when I was ready to leave. Not a coincidence. It’s fine to want more than the scraps of time your boyfriend has left after his job takes everything else. It’s fine to want to hear from your boyfriend more than once a day. But if that’s what you want, sounds like this isn’t the boyfriend for you.

        • I don’t disagree about the excellent points that others have made: intense career, differing love languages, you may need to seek more outside interests, etc. However, one thing in your posts that I think needs to be further considered is your questioning of whether it’s the new job or his feelings that have changed.

          Last year near Thanksgiving, I started a relationship with a funny, sweet, handsome guy who acted ga-ga over me the first three months…we had so much FUN together. He spoke of what our lives would look like together, how he never thought he’d have such intense feelings for someone after he got divorced, that I was amazing, smart, beautiful, totes adobes, blah, blah, blah. I was flattered, thrilled, skeptical and petrified all at once. Things were going swimmingly, when suddenly one bright March Saturday morning when we were discussing the day’s plans, his mood took a unforseen dark turn and he pronounced I was “not the woman for him” and proceeded to hang up on me. Done. Finis. Nada. After some soul searching and general overanalyzing to death (plus a face to face chat with him several weeks later to say, WTF?), I truly think he scared himself out of the relationship because of the intensity of HIS feelings that he wasn’t prepared to deal with. Looking back, my ex was pulling away and trying to come up for air after being hit with a ginormous wave of emotion. I was inadvertently kicking him deeper underwater as I was dog-paddling at the surface. Yes, he was also emotionally immature, had significant baggage, was pretty self-absorbed, had had limited serious relationships, and in fact, was not the MAN for me (so there!); still, I think he was his own worst enemy.

          All to say, maybe your guy does want to back off or feels a bit in over his head in the relationship now that you have been together for several months. When you are together, does he still act sweet and like he really deeply cares about you? Is there the same amount of passion, touching, giggles, look in his eyes, sharing of secret jokes? Does he initiate hanging out or is it mostly your idea? Are you still included in his family/work events (now that it is the holidays)? Is he upset when YOU aren’t available? Maybe what you are noticing, but aren’t ready to face: yes, the long hours are situational, but he *may* also be using work as a means of setting boundaries. And if he is questioning his initial intense feelings for you, talking to him all of the time about his unavailability (both physically, and dare I say, emotionally), and tacitly expecting him to spend every waking, non-working hour with you…well, it can’t be helping. Perhaps you should not be available just a tad to test the waters? Not trying to burst any bubbles here. It’s just soo much easier for people outside of the relationship to be more objective about other’s behavior (or lack thereof), then when you are emotionally vested (says the divorcee who has been burned more times than she wants to admit).

          Whatever you decide, the hive is rooting for you.

    • I work in investment banking and the hours and concentration needed at work are intense. This is tye big trade-off, lots of money but no time. Figure out if you can really tolerate being a partner to this, if he wants to stay in ibanking.. the hours at the office dont get any better. At VP level you start travelling a lot whereas at the analyst/assoc level youre a desk jockey. A lot of my coworkers are single bc of this.

  5. Anonymous :

    As much as I would love to do this, I think it would just exacerbate the rampant hypochondria that I (and many of my family members!) have, which seems like a bad idea…though I can also see the benefit. I’m conflicted.

  6. I definitely would not want this as a gift and can’t imagine giving this to anyone I know, especially given that 23andme is selling access to its database to drug companies. Yes, you can opt out, but how obvious is that to the average user? At the very least I would want to make sure any recipient understood the potential privacy and ethical issues with this type of test.

    • Here is a link to the consent document which opens with “23andMe aims to make and support scientific discoveries and publish those discoveries in scientific journals. We invite you to take part in this project, which we call 23andMe Research.”

      Also, here is some text about sharing personal data under the heading “Who gets to see my personal information?” : “Outside of 23andMe: 23andMe may share some data with external research partners and in scientific publications. These data will be summarized across enough customers to minimize the chance that your personal information will be exposed. 23andMe may need to share the information with other agencies as required by law.”

    • Sydney Bristow :

      That’s an interesting point. At this point, I also assume that every company will get hacked at some point. I’m not sure I want my medical info in yet another place where it could be breached.

  7. College borrowing Q :

    This morning’s convo got me thinking re college borrowing. I borrowed for law school and didn’t need a parent to cosign. For borrowing for undergrad, is it like that or do parents cosign all loans? I have a nephew who is being told he can borrow for undergrad by his deadbeat parents (who still want him to go to fancy private U). I think their FICO scores are trashed — like getting calls from creditors trashed. If that is true, is the nephew not able to borrow at all? [Somewhat worried they will look to Autie Lawyer to cosign, which aint’ happening plus I wouldn’t let a nephew I cared about borrow for undergrad when he can probably go to UNC in state.]

  8. Nordstroms Jeans :

    I know there are some very proficient Nordstroms shoppers here. Does anyone have tips for filtering their overwhelming jean selection?

    I’m looking for straight cut (or skinny generous in calf) for full bottom/hips and small waist, ideally with a high waist. I tried the TrueFit thing, but it doesn’t seem to be filtering out much.

    FWIW, I am considering a personal shopper, but for the near future I’d ideally like to order 1-3 options online.

    • Sounds like i have a similar shape to you. I don’t have tips on how to filter their selection but I’ve recently discovered JAG jeans and love them for the full bottom/hips, smaller waist, higher waist fit. Nordstrom carries them – I’d recommend you try them (and return if you don’t like).

    • Paige denim. Jimmy jimmy skinny Boyfriend jeans.

      • Worried I’m too late for people to see this, but I’m a strong cosign on Paige’s Jimmy Jimmy for exactly the OP’s described fit issues. I ended up with them after an extended jean search during which I resorted to googling “jeans for women with big thighs” because every “curvy” recommendation I got was too tight through that area. I really like these pants and have only one complaint: though they wear like a straight jean on me (the aforementioned thighs–I suspect they’re designed to be looser through there), Paige seems to think of them as very casual boyfriend style and so the washes have a fair amount of fading and generally look casual. Consequently, I’m still looking for something I really feel comfortable about at work.

    • Anonymousaur :

      I’m relatively close to your shape smaller waist/larger hips – I do well with Citizens and occasionally with Sevens depending on the cut (some Sevens are not long enough as I need 34″ inseam at least). Not sure what price range you are looking at or how tall you are.

    • Thank you all! I’ll start with these recs!

  9. Anonymous :

    I’ve been dating a new guy for about 2 months. His birthday is next month, and I need major help with a gift. He’s totally into sports, so tickets are an obvious first choice. Basketball tickets are in my budget, but they would be nosebleed seats. I don’t make much money, but he on the other hand regularly goes with the guys and sits on the floor/near the floor. Do I buy the tickets, because hey at least the thought counts, or do I figure something else out? I’m willing to spend about $60 on a gift and then dinner, but would be much more comfortable at $40 + dinner.

    • Do something that he wouldn’t go and do with his guy friends! It’s early in the relationship and you should do what you feel comfortable with. Go for dinner and find him something maybe related to his interests – a book about a favourite athlete maybe?

    • Anonymous :

      Just do dinner. It’s only been 2 months.

    • Anonymous :

      Skip a gift and take him out to a nice dinner. If you really want to give him something, maybe something easy like booze.

  10. How different is this from the genetic tests that you get when you’re pregnant?
    I hated even that, so I think I agree with those that say they wouldn’t enjoy this as a gift. And ditto on the privacy concerns. I don’t even like the idea of a fitbit tracking my movements. I feel like the potential for misuse here is tremendous.

  11. I’m supposed to have a professional headshot taken on Friday; I am an attorney, and this will go on the office website. Can anyone offer any advice? I know I should wear makeup, and professional clothing, but do certain things look best for these kinds of headshots? I would love any advice on what to wear or what to avoid!

    Thank you so much.

    • Anonymous :

      I find a stronger contour looks better in photos, as well as a slightly brighter color of lipstick and blush than you might normally wear. Always wear a solid!

    • Anonymous :

      There have been lots of threads about this here.

      If, like me, you’re not great at doing hair, a blowout is worth its weight in gold. Professional makeup might be worth it too, if you want to wear makeup in the headshot (I don’t wear it normally and so didn’t wear any for the headshot). I think a suit looks best even if your firm is not super formal. Navy or gray is less harsh than black but still conservative, but many people think they look best in black because of the slimming effect. Wear a solid color top. Be mindful of colors for the blouse that may blend in with your skin. I personally think I look best in bold jewel tones (especially purple, cobalt and emerald) so I wear those, but people with different coloring look better in other colors.

    • I’d look at a bunch of pictures on other firms’ webs*tes and figure out what you like/dislike. Agree on slightly brighter than usual makeup. Also – for any picture – i find that straightening your shoulders really helps. I always feel silly doing it but it looks so much better.

    • Killer Kitten Heels :

      Completely random, but check what color background your firm uses for headshots, and make sure you’re wearing something that will stand out against that backdrop color – my firm used a dark gray in the last round of headshots, and anyone wearing a black jacket ended up looking kind of like a floating head because the black of the jacket fades into the background. Those of us who happened to wear navy or other colors were able to avoid that.

      Also I always think statement necklaces look good in headshots – kind of helps to set you apart from the generic “dark suit-blue blouse-pearls” thing, so it helps clients remember your face.

    • Don’t worry too much. The photographer can photoshop out out-of-place strands of hair, spot on your shirt from lunch, etc.

      • Thanks so much for all the great tips. I hate photos, but I feel a little better armed for this one now.

  12. Negotiation Exception? :

    When is it okay to NOT negotiate a raise? I’m a second year associate and have been with the firm for a total of 4 years (including law school). I was called into the partner’s office out of the blue and informed that I was being given a 24% raise. I was so shocked, I blurted out, “Oh, thanks!”

    I considered negotiating, but several factors stopped me: (1) When I was hired, I was explicitly told that they do not give raises here, they just give bonuses throughout the year; (2) both partners and I were in the office during the meeting, and the entire firm consists of both partners + me; (3) the new salary is still below market rate, but pretty generous for a firm made up of both partners + me; and (4) it’s 24%!!!

    Negotiation has always been drilled into me on this board, so I’m wondering…is this the unicorn exception? Before anyone calls humblebrag, please know that I am still nowhere near 6 figures with this raise.

    • Smile and thank them and slowwwwly back away before they change their minds! Then race home and have a celebratory drink. Congrats

    • Killer Kitten Heels :

      I think you’re fine not to have negotiated given the circumstances, but I also think it would’ve been reasonable in your position to negotiate for market (although “market” can be kind of weird to define in law, since it varies a lot based on both type of practice and practice setting).

    • Anonymous :

      Wait….. whaaaaaat?!?!

      You were just given a 24% raise, out of the blue?

      I don’t think you negotiate this. This is amazing.

    • Anonymous :

      Yeah I don’t think you negotiate a spontaneous raise, especially one so large. Congrats!

  13. While they offer a version of health reports, but they aren’t very informative. I would like to inform people of promethease, which for $5 will access your raw data from 23andMe and allow you to see the full analysis of your genes, broken into Good – Bad – Neutral. It’s fascinating!

    The reason I was not concerned about the higher risks is that the bad risks are mitigated by the bad. I may have 5 reports of different genes giving me anywhere from 1.3 to 8 times more likely to develop Condition X, but on the good side, I have many genes that give me a 1.3 to 8 times LESS likely to develop Condition X. IMO, it may just even out. And, if a regular person’s risk is .05 of getting Condition X and you have 8X more likely, big deal, really.

    And so much is Nurture vs Nature. There are no 100% givens, so no need to get too concerned. I have a lot of issues with my eyesight (since childhood) and show several markers for higher risk of AMGD. Well, I will now start eating foods that contain more micronutrients for prevention of such, as well as maybe taking supplements and being AWARE of the risks.

    I bought the test for myself, and one for my mom for her birthday (prior to the health reports being available) mainly for the genetics. She loved it for that, as I did as well. I HIGHLY recommend it.

  14. Ugh you guys. Ugh.

  15. If you have certain chronic illnesses you can get a free membership by agreeing to be part of their research studies (funded by big Pharma). I just joined the Crohns one. There is on for Parkinsons too.