I’m a man, late-30s, my half-sister is mid-30s. While growing up, I lived for several years with my father’s family and all my half-siblings, then moved away.
I now only see my half-sister occasionally, when I visit the family. We talk or email occasionally. Recently, out of nowhere, she said she had "feelings" for me.
She’s well educated and smart with words. I didn't ask her what she meant, but was a little puzzled by it.
Did she mean “feeling,” as between a brother and a sister, or something else? I still haven't asked her, and I’m probably afraid to ask her now.
I never thought of my half-sister as anything but my sibling, and I’m really confused by her choice of the word.
The important thing to know is what you feel, which is a brother’s non-romantic caring and warmth for a sibling.
That sentiment is clear in your discomfort about her expressing “feelings”… yet she could’ve meant that she feels similarly close to you due to the connection you two formed when younger.
Since you don’t communicate with each other often, and distance prevents all but occasional family get-togethers, you can probably avoid for some time, any questions about what she meant.
However, if she pushes the matter and asks you outright if you have feelings for her, you need to be prepared for an answer that, while honest, doesn’t mortify or devastate her.
Speak of your affection for all of your half-siblings, and also compliment her special qualities – e.g. you value that she’s “smart,” and always enjoy talking to her.
But your tone should convey that it’s the regard of a sibling, period. She’ll get the message, and hopefully, you can avoid a direct confrontation about her possibly having more intimate feelings which you don’t return.
My best friend dated a guy constantly over the past year. She frequently had me lying to her parents about where she was staying, using my car to go see him, getting me to drive her to him… then hardly talking to me. She’s moved in with him. Now I rarely see or hear from her.
She’d sometimes ask for my opinion of him and how attractive I think he is. Being a blunt person, I said that I don't particularly like that he can be rude and condescending sometimes.
Also, I said I can’t think he's attractive because he's dating my best friend, but if he makes her happy, that's all I want for her. She’d get upset about my answers.
I’ve said I understand that she needs space/time for her new relationship, I'm just asking for simple communication once a week or a catch-up phone call. But she barely returns my texts or calls.
I think that she sees me as a toxic, clingy friend because her boyfriend and I don't get along.
Will the things I said ultimately lead to the end of our friendship?
Can I Fix This?
Being blunt is not the same as being honest.
It’s not uncommon for heating romances to take precedence over other relationships. That’s when a wise friend doesn’t criticize (unless there’s a seriously worrisome factor to raise).
Your comments went too far. But, frankly, your girlfriend set you up for discomfort - and you allowed it – by agreeing to lie for her, and to be used as her driver.
This friendship needs a healthy break – you, meeting new people; her, learning that keeping loyal girlfriends is as important as having a partner.
For years, there’s been no man in my life because of a former workplace trauma. I’d like to share my life with somebody but I don’t know how.
I live on a budget that leaves no money for get-togethers. Also, I don’t want to depend on a man paying for me and then expecting sex even if I don’t want it.
I’m a slow-romantic-classic woman who’d like to have a long-term relationship. Is there any chance for me to ever have a normal life??
I believe in hope. But I also believe in self-determination, meaning taking control of your own life.
You have to go places suitable for you, to meet eligible men… your faith community, local community centre, a place (hospital/ social agency) to volunteer your help. All are affordable and respected starting points.
Bring an open mind, warm smile, and your willingness to chat and also to listen.
Tip of the day:
Be kind while still honest if asked to have a difficult discussion.