When in high school, I became good friends with a guy who showed feelings for me as I entered a relationship with someone else. My friend and I went to the same university; meanwhile, my relationship ended during first year, due to distance, and my friend was dating another girl.
Now that we’re back home, I see him less, mostly with other friends, but we chat online, and email.
Friends say I have a tendency to flirt (which affected my previous relationship) and that I’m leading him on. But we connect so well that I wonder if we’d make a good couple.
However, he’s not returning to my university and I’m unsure about having another long distance relationship.
Also, my ex is in my group of friends, so they’d be unsupportive.
At times I have feelings for him, but his friendship is crucial to me, and I don't know if I like him enough to risk that. I don't want to lead him on.
What should my next steps be?
A positive reading of your “problem,” would be that you’re considerate of this guy’s feelings.
A less flattering view would be that you wrongly think all the choices in this friendship are yours, and that you can’t consider a relationship that isn’t convenient.
Ask yourself which view is closest to the truth, as the answer will help you in other relationships, too.
Meanwhile, it sounds to me that you don’t have enough romantic feelings for this guy to make moves towards being a couple. Hold back on flirting, whether online or in person, and stay with the connection as pals.
My sister lives in another town and I visit occasionally, when invited. But she’s a control freak who thinks she has the right to tell me what I can eat, when I can eat, what colour my hair should be, what I should wear, how I should live, etc.
If I disagree, we’re then at odds and I'll spot her and my brother-in-law whispering about me. I find it very hurtful. It's mostly her that does the talking behind my back; my brother-in-law just listens and agrees, mainly because he's afraid of the consequences if he doesn't.
My eating habits are different from hers due to stomach surgeries, so I always carry my own groceries when I go to her house. Even still, she can't stand it when I make myself something to eat.
If I disagree with her on any subject it becomes tense and she’ll argue until I surrender.
She monopolizes every conversation, and even answers for her husband and children.
She’s exceptionally rude to people, even to her own family.
I’m the opposite of her. I’ve decided not to visit again, but feel badly as I want to have a close relationship with her.
Please tell me how to handle this situation.
- Frustrated in Toronto
You’ve already made the only sensible choice. Do not visit, though of course you can invite her to visit you. Wait until she recognizes that you keep finding a reason to refuse her invitations; when she asks why, say very gently and calmly that you’d love to see more of her but feel it’s counter-productive to your having a close relationship.
Explain further that though you’re sure she means well, her criticism of your adult choices of what to eat, wear, etc. and control of all conversation, interferes with an equal, respectful relationship.
Hopefully – and especially as her children eventually withdraw (very likely) – she may eventually modify her ways.
How can I get my husband to understand that the texting he’s doing on a nightly basis is inappropriate? He’s text-messaging a female co-worker and also talks to her about our marriage and the problems he has with me.
Speak up, face to face. Tell Hubby that he’s treading a slippery slope toward marriage breakdown, by seeking solace from someone else instead of dealing with the issues between you two.
He may deny his connection to this woman; he may say it’s his business to have a friend. But I assure you from experience that this “escape outlet” is a potentially dangerous diversion from what’s really needed, which is direct communication with you.
You and he need marriage counselling immediately, not outside comfort or online emotional affairs. Otherwise, he’ll eventually be text messaging hard-nosed lawyers instead of a sympathetic co-worker.
His “inappropriate” tell-all chats are disloyal, and destructive.
Tip of the day:
If you suspect you’re leading someone on, you are.