He Just Wants To Be Friends

A man telling a woman he just wants to be friends. They are standing in a park on a path, out of focus, with the camera looking through branches.

Photo Credit: Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos

Hi Jane, I have a question. If you decide to post this, please change my name.

About 6 months ago, I met a guy. He had been out of an 8 year relationship/engagement for about a year and was looking to move on in life. I had been in and out of bad short term relationships. We had a rough start because I could not trust anyone and he was not over his ex. We dated for about 3 months and it ended because we were both not truly ready for a real true relationship. We had no contact for about 2.5 months. I contacted him because I missed him and he says he misses me too.

However, he said he is not ready for a relationship.

He doesn't want me out of his life completely and want to be friends with him also. We got along great and have a lot in common. We respect each other a lot and can have a great friendship. I'm scared because I still love him, and I may end up wanting more. I really don't know how to go about this or what to do. Many websites say to leave if a guy says that he is not looking for a relationship. But I am happier being his friend than not having him in my life at all.

I think I'm just scared. What do you recommend I do? Thank you so much for your time.

My Response

Here is my response to our beautiful friend, who I'll call "Sandie":

Dear Sandie,

I wrote a post about exactly what you're going through here, called It's Your Decision. I'm not sure if you've read it yet, but it speaks to what you are struggling with here.

What this is really about, Sandie, is what you can and can't live with without fooling yourself that you're ok with less than what you really want just because you want to be with him. I get your question a lot, and what I always say is that it comes down to what you can live with; knowing what his terms are, what being with him on his terms is worth to you.

Whether you'd rather be with him on his terms - which is friendship right now so this is the reality of what is right now - or release yourself from him so that you can focus fully on being with someone who wants the whole package that you want - but without him.

It sounds like you've already answered this question for yourself when you say "But I am happier being his friend than not having him in my life at all".

My only concern is that sometimes we can convince ourselves that we can do this, that we can be with someone on their terms if that's the only way to have them in our lives, when inside we remain hoping and wishing he'll come around to the detriment of our beautiful selves.

For many of us it gets hard to ignore the fact that someone can be with us on friendship terms and not want more, and instead of leaving that with him and letting that be his issue, we can take that on ourselves and let it affect our confidence and our self-esteem, believing that there's something wrong with us that he doesn't want to be with us on a real relationship level instead of remembering that it's simply a case of being on different pages, and not something we should ever take personally.

But if we do, if we can't see it objectively and a little part of us dies every day that we remain with someone who isn't there, then that's the greater concern here.

If he is the one for you, you'll know.

If the two of you are meant to be together, you will be, but only if both of you are eventually on the same page and are willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen, regardless of circumstances. The difficult part here is that there are no guarantees that he will ever want more than a friendship with you, and what to do with that part.

I have known far too many women who waited far too long holding onto hope that a man would come around, only to find out the hard way that he wasn't going to get there after so much of their own lives and beautiful selves were wasted on this waiting without being true to themselves about where they were really at and how much they were in their hearts able to be willing to settle for a friendship with someone who they really wanted so much more of a relationship with. We're all different, so each one of us has a different reality of what someone means to us and what it's worth to have them in our lives.

My best advice is always to keep living your own life, Sandie; keep focusing on you and creating a beautiful life for yourself apart from this man who means so much to you, so that what he does or doesn't do fades into the background of your life instead of being the main focus.

By keeping your options open, and remembering to only commit to him as much as he's committing to you - which means you have strong boundaries around what a friendship relationship looks like and you don't cross those lines unless he clearly lets you know by his actions as much as any words, that he is ready to commit to you and wants to have a real relationship with you, and is on your page.

That way, Sandie, you protect your beautiful heart from any more pain and heartbreak while still remaining open to whatever love has in store for you.

You deserve to be loved just the way you are, my beautiful friend, and if he's there in the end, then that's wonderful. But if he's not, then know than there is someone else who will be who will love you for who you are and be on the same page as you and want the same thing as you.

That's really what this is all about.

Fear is there for a reason, it's just a matter of tapping into what it's trying to tell you. Listen to it, hear what's at the root of that fear, and then explore that to see if that gives you any further clarity.

You know in your heart what's the best decision here for you, Sandie, and remember that this doesn't have to be so complicated. You can always change your mind, or do something different.

I hope this helps, Sandie. Know that you're so not alone here, and that ultimately, if he's on your page, you'll know. If he's not, you're so much better off knowing this, too. It's always remembering the reality of what is versus what we'd like it to be that gets us through this with our hearts intact.

Love,

Jane

What about you? Do you have any additional ideas, advice or words of encouragement for our dear friend Sandie? Share them with us in the comments.

About Jane

Comments

  1. Jackie Morrison says:

    This is going to sound harsh but he just wants to keep you on the back burner for his own selfish needs. If you can take him as a lover without having emotional bonding, then keep him in your life. However, if he is not physically wanting that with you, and you can't become completely platonic with your feelings in all honesty, block delete him. Otherwise you are preventing a better MAN from being in your life. This guy doesn't deserve you. He hasn't earned the right to be in your life because he does not honor your feelings. If he sis he would never have suggested being friends knowing your feelings towards him. If he respected you as a person he would have cut contact. Sometimes it is better to be cruel to be kind. Stringing you along with false hope is emotionally vindictive behavior on his part.

    • Thanks for adding these great points, Jackie; and especially for the reminder that "otherwise you are preventing a better MAN from being in your life" - so true!

      • Jackie Morrison says:

        I feel that a man who wants to be friends is not 100% sure about the woman. So in that case, she should just write him off.

    • We meet and I believed I dreamed him into my life. Right when I was losing my youngest daughter to move away with her father to another state. We became friends hung out doing much of nothing but always having fun. I had told him I didn't want to have a sexual relationship because the woman swooned at him. I felt in adequate for him. Then after 3 months of friendship blooming. I was hurt and needed surgrey and he came and took care of me. So for almost three months now he has become like my husband. Theres no other way to think about it. I mean he bathed me, changed me. He kissed me once after the three months and it almost led to sexual incounter but we killed it during the act. Then I told him never to kiss me again because it was just to beautiful and it was. We have never had sex and I just relized after the other day when he was heading to his place that he really just wants to be friends. I explained im just needing space im not mad he has maintained friendship all along but I kenw as soon as I meet him I wanted him...really now I just asked not to contact me so i can focus on me and get him out of my life he's to close and like I said in my mind we are all ready mariried because of the closeness. I miss him terribly but I can't change him and I need to take care of myself. so instead of texting or calling him im on here releasing my love and hoping to find mh happy self with out the MY thought of US being together because he doesn't want it and i need to except that.

      • You've come to this truth that is oh so hard to accept, but so true, Melissa; that you simply can't make anyone love you no matter how much we want to be able to. Letting go is always a process, my beautiful friend, but it begins exactly as you say, by focusing on you and your own life and choosing the reality of what is as hard as it is to give up on your dream. I'm so glad you've found a place here to release your feeling; you're never alone here, you can always know someone is going through this here, too.

      • I'm sorry, but this sounds like real love to me. Only you know the details but it doesn't sound like he only wants friendship. What makes you think that? You seem very emotional and he may not be, but that doesn't mean it's not love. I don't know, what you describe sounds very sweet, loyal and real to me. also, commitments don't have to be typical to society's views, maybe your situation/relationship is just different than "normal". It's ok.

  2. Its actually about loving yourself . With him wanting just friendship and you wanting more the relationship is not in the best place and it only creates neediness and dependency issues which can adversly affect your selfesteem and pride. Then when you give more than you are getting the respect and love take a beating and ultimately you lose the relationship anyway. So i think its far better to walk away with your head held high , and your self esteem intact. It will hurt, but if he discovers he wants you he will contact you, and if he doesnt you still have your own back.

    • Jackie Morrison says:

      I agree. Better to walk away and mourn the loss and handle the grief but be self-respecting. I was in the same position and did just that. My friends who were men demanded I walk away more than the women friends. So I did and I'm glad I listened. What helped me alot was taking up dance again which opened my heart and Tantra Yoga which was about healing the rejection that the situation caused.

      • Isn't it the truth that you always know who your true friends are because they truly want what's best for you!

        • Jackie Morrison says:

          The men friends who heard what happened to me were very adamant that I cease all contact with him. I have a brother-sister with friends that are men and so they gave me the same advice they give their sisters. Ultimately they did not want to see me walk into a trap of being used and stung along. It was them who said the guy had no regard for my feelings.

      • jackie,
        I have always had this idea in mind to do the same but just so scared to loose him coz he seemed to be the man i have been wanting to live with for the rest of my life. but in so many cases that i have to be flexible and did all the possible things to be there for him always like always no matter what. there was just this one day that i was'nt myself and needed a friend and he didnt want to be there for me. It hurt me badly coz i thought he would do the same not as a favor but a friend because he said it himself that's all he could offer. true enough as what the article states we are not on the same page to start with. I am so sad and feel so alone.

    • Beautifully said, Ann; thank you for offering your insight.

  3. Lo Wanda take says:

    I agree. Not only does she walk away; next phase is healing her True Self, time has to be taken to deal with rejection that has build up. Not from dating this guy; but the on & off relationship that cause her lack of trust. Those ladies advice should be taken. You can't keep allowing yourself to be lost in fantasy. Deal with the pain that you've covered up, heal and restore. Search for the treasure of self; she's definitely Worth finding. Once you find her, someone will find you.

    • You say this all so beautifully, Lo Wanda. Thank you for your beautiful heartfelt words.

      "The treasure of self is definitely worth finding. Once you find her, someone will find you." So true!

  4. move on...he is jus using u as time-pass..get bg with ur work/hobbies..make space for the rite guy in ur life by leaving this guy..wen ul find someone else ul forget this person...its natural..b independent..b happy...this relationship of urs has got no future...god bles ya

    • Thanks for your words of advice for Sandie, Riya. It is so true that when we are with someone who is right for us, we will look back and wonder why we stayed so long.

      • Jackie Morrison says:

        The song "Best Thing I Never Had" by Beyonce is exactly about that. Her lyrics say "thank God you blew it, thank God I dodged a bullet, so over you." or " thank God I found the good in good-bye"

        • Thanks, Jackie. Yet another example of a beautiful woman who's been down this path - no matter how beautiful, how sexy, how successful and confident - she's been there, too! Those words don't just make a great song; they are so true.

        • How great Jackie! True!

          Listen to the lyrics of this song from Tina Turner "i ain't missing you '

  5. I have been down this path Sandie and I really feel for you. I ended it with this man as he only saw me as his lover - he has a friend a work colleague that he makes up a foursome with another work couple. Regrettably I left him back into my life recently and nothing has changed. Fortunately for me I have 3 other men friends that I have known for many years with whom I have days out with, suggest if you have other male friends then go out with them, you might not be with the man you want but it makes things a lot easier..

    • Thanks for sharing your experience, Jane. It's when you've been through this yourself, you understand like no one else.

  6. New Beginnings says:

    Why do us women do this? I love your site btw! I was newly divorced and so was a guy I met. We hit it off and had fun but he knew I was a "good girl" the relationship type. Anyway, he would make plans with me and then I wouldn't hear from him. Finally I deleted his number, etc. Told myself I deserved more. Fast forward 6 mths and he calls me and I asked him why should I go out with you when you treated me to wrong? Gave me a bunch of excuses. I told him I wouldn't sleep with him but we could hang out. Hung out straight for over 2 mths. Had some "red flags" but ignored them. Needless to say went out of town with him and ended up sleeping with him...the next day when he dropped me off he acted like he had before. I texted him the next day and he ignored my texts. The afternoon I called him b/c I needed a friend b/c I just got laid off. He answered and felt so bad for me. Anyway, told him I would talk to him later and he never called and never texted me again. I know that he is So wrong for me but why do emotions take so long to catch up with your brain. I typed the above and read it and would tell any other girl to "keep on moving" and here I am months later still feeling rejected by a loser. I just feel he was so mean to me....and knowing I had had a marriage where my husband cheated. Your site is awesome!

    • That's always the irony isn't it - we can see it all so clearly when it's someone else, but when it's you, it becomes so much more complicated and we always have so many reasons why it's different! It's because we have such a beautiful ability to dream, to hope, to keep trying harder, to believe in fairy tales, and to believe that love can conquer all. It's why you fall so deep, so hard and why your heart can be broken so easily.

      These are such beautiful qualities, my beautiful friend, if we could only reserve them for someone who truly deserves them, who is more than the potential we see, for someone who we can see for the reality of who he is, not the fantasy of what we so want it to be. That's why we forget to bring our head with its practical view of reality along; we live in our hearts and our souls and the last thing we want to do is bring our heads along when our heart's view is so much richer. It's only when we've finally had enough of going down this same road that we find it within ourselves to say enough! and begin a new way of making sure your mind agrees that he's worthy of you before giving him any part of yourself.

      And thanks for your kind words, NB; I'm so glad you're finding support here. :-)

      • Jackie Morrison says:

        I think that it comes down to movies that delude us and having a bad love picker. Matthew Hussey of Get The Guy was another dating coach who woke me up into reality. If women want to attract better men in their lives, his The Man Myth and Debi Berndt's Let Love In helped me turn around my results. Say no to a friendship and you will be on your path to self-respect.

  7. Hi, i love your site. It's comforting knowing I am not the only one struggling with things... I met a guy online 2 months ago and we meet up once a week. He rarely texts and never calls unless its to cancel. He has a 13 year old son and a night shift job. When he meets up with me, he treats me good and is very affectionate . We both discussed early on that we were not set on obtaining a relationship but if it happened so be it. My concern is i came out of a 20 year marriage and have been single since 04. I have no clue what the perimeters on dating. When do i get to meet the family, son, friends? when do i get invited to his house? I have no clue if he even talks about me to his friends because i am more worried about screwing up another possible relationship by coming across as a questioner or clingy person. I really want to date long enough to see progression but since i have nothing to base it on, i feel clueless.

    Do i request more than once a week only after 2 months? How do i handle the rare texts and even rarer calls? How long should i give him to introduce me to son, friends, etc? He keeps me guessing all the time. I hear things that keep me hanging on but the actions seem to negate them. I fill my life with things to do but i yearn to spend more time than one night stay overs once a week with him. suggestions on getting through? i told myself 6 months is my marker, if i don't see progression then i'm going to start dating others. But i am hesitant on setting a time limit because I've been accused by a coworker of not letting things happen naturally. Type A personality i guess :(

    Btw, He mentioned his rough relationship with his parents because he refuses to conform to the demand for calling them more than once a month. i took this as a clue to me that he would not accept the "you better call me demands."

    • It's ok if you have a hard time letting things happen naturally, Joann. It doesn't come natural to most of us. We're so used to having to make things happen, having to prove our worth, to prove our worthiness, to prove why we're loveable, that it's no wonder we lack the confidence to be patient with the process of getting to know each other to see if we're truly compatible with someone, to view the process as an adventure in finding out who's compatible and who's not. We look for rules and parameters because it feels safer, and less scary, than being ourselves and letting our own needs and preferences guide us to who's right for us and who's not.

      It takes confidence to be truer to yourself and your own needs and desires than to someone that you really want to be with. And we're afraid that if we set our boundaries and let someone know what we are and aren't willing to settle for, it'll drive them away. And we falsely believe that's the last thing we want. The reality is, that's exactly what you do want. You want to find out what he does with your needs. You want to find out what he does with your "demands". It's a real red flag when someone elicits demands from his loved ones. Where's the relationship? Real relationships are about connection, not demands. So if he has a history of relationships that bring up words like conformity and demands, I would be wondering about the value of relationship for the sake of connection is.

      You can request whatever it is that you need, Joann, you can tell him what you need. If he's content with the way things are and you're not, then there's a disconnect there. An incompatibility and the question of whether you're both on the same page or not. If you're not both on the same page and looking for the same type of relationship, then it's far better to know now than down the road when so much more of your heart and soul - and time - are invested.

      You matter, Joann. And you deserve to know whether or not you're compatible sooner rather than later. Be yourself - your true self - if he doesn't like it, if it feels like more demands that he has to conform to, these are his issues and not yours. Don't take any of his stuff personally. Obviously, you aren't the only one experiencing this if he's already feeling this with his own family.

      Yes, things will happen naturally, but by being yourself with him and letting him know where you're at and what you'd like to see from him - either by your actions or your words - you'll know sooner whether he's worth it. Make absolutely sure he is, because you are!

  8. Hi
    I've only been reading this website for a few days and it's fantastic. I started reading it because I'm trying too get the attention of someone I have liked in along time. Nothing has never happened because we have both been in relationships. Mine ended nearly a yr ago but his only ended around 6 weeks ago. We have been friends for a while and have openly flirted with each other in public and privately, we have had one on one conversations over the Internet, we have spoke about very personal things and have put trust in each other with secrets etc. recently as I said he has become single but didnt want too swoop in like a vulture as wanted too give him time too recover from his break up. He hasn't contacted me as much but see him on a daily basis at wrk and he has started openly flirting. I'm just too scared too ask him out on a date or just a drink just incase he rejects me. How do I know when it's the right time?? People say too me all the time it's obvious he likes you by his body language etc but are they just saying what they think I want too hear. Do I just go for it?? And ask him out and take a risk?? Please help any advice would be grand. Oh by the way he is on his hols at the mo and I have heard from him. Thanks Trudie

    • It really depends on what you're looking for from him, Trudie. If you want to be the pursuer here, then it really doesn't matter when you approach him to see if he's interested in getting together. But if you want to be pursued, if you want him to come to you, to be the masculine energy while you bring the feminine energy to the table, then let him know you're interested by continuing to flirt with him like you have and talking with him, but give him the space to come to you. This way, you can know where he stands without the heartbreak that can come from feeling like you've been rejected when you really don't know where he's coming from beyond the conversations you've had with him and the flirting.

      Almost every man will enjoy flirting and talking if someone else is initiating the conversations, but all too often, this can set in motion a pattern of him never knowing if he might be interested in you because he doesn't have a chance to pursue you. It's in the space you give someone to pursue you, by continuing to live your own life and let him be only one of many different interests going on concurrently in your life, that you find out whether this is really someone worth having in your life and getting to know. Remember that dating is all about getting to know each other slowly, so that you can find out if you might be compatible, on the same page, wanting the same thing with each other.

      There's never any rush to a relationship that's meant to be, Trudie, that both people are interested in pursuing. And six weeks isn't very long to be newly out of a relationship and ready to jump into a new one. You want someone who's truly over his ex, not someone who's looking for a rebound relationship. If he's there - if he truly is interested and wanting to get to know you better, you'll find out soon enough because he'll be asking you out. A man who's interested - and ready to pursue something with someone else - will always make sure you know.

  9. I've just came across this site tonight and its helped answer some of the questions ive been going over for the last couple of months. I met this guy and he was lovely. We spoke everyday and all of a sudden he said he didnt want a relationship or anything serious because he just came out of a nine year relationship. He wanted to be friends but i realized that i wanted more and tried to break it off but somehow he persuaded me to remain friends saying how he wanted me in his life, we got on well etc etc. Somehow I found myself in the friend zone. Ive still been out meeting other guys but i always have that small hope that he will change his mind and want more than friendship. We are still friends but taking myself out the situation and looking from another perspective, deep down I know im holding onto something that perhaps isnt meant to be. I dont know whether I should put my foot down and just end it once or for all because I dont want to be waiting around forever.

    • When you've been holding on for long enough, you'll know, Leah. You'll be less tolerant of your position - and his. You'll start to feel mad instead of sad, and you'll begin to question yourself and what you're doing. It's always in your own time. Yes, you can put your foot down now, as that's what advice most of us will want to give you, but if it doesn't come from you - if you're not really ready to do that - than you'll be filled with regrets and what ifs that only lessen once you make your own clear decision. Ambiguity is almost always a sign that you're not there yet; because if you were, you would see it so clearly too and it would be obvious there was only one choice here. Choose you.

      Know that if he does come around, you'll be the first to know. Someone doesn't suddenly decide to come around and not tell you about it! And we're all different in how much we are able to distance ourselves emotionally and live out our lives while we still maintain some level of a relationship with them. Some people can do this. I never could. It doesn't mean you're strong or not; it just means this is where you're at and you have to be able to live comfortably and happily with your own decision. Ask yourself what action will bring you the least amount of regrets and the greatest sense of peace, and you will be on your way to figuring out what really matters. You're what matters here, Leah; remember that this is always about you. And a relationship that's meant to be always is; but only if it's made up of two people on the same page who want the same thing with each other. Always.

      • Hi Jane,
        I have read all the stories and what they have been thru and honestly being in any situation when it comes having to truly love someone it's so hard. I have been married for 16 years and got separated with my husband for 4 years now... he cheated on me and it's been less than a year now that my 13 year old son died of sickness. I know i am still going thru a lot emotionally and the only person who keeps me strong now is my daughter who is very supportive.
        When I got married I only knew my husband less than 2 months and i got pregnant and decided to get married. After a year I met a guy from the office and without the intention of ruining my marriage I fell in love with this guy and we went out and got scared because i was getting very much involved and decided to end it up... so we mutually decided to do so. I resigned and so did he. we went on separately with our own lives. I had another child but my marriage didn't work. I thought it was KARMA because I had an affair before and I always felt the guilt even though i have given it up soon as i realized that it was wrong.
        Six months ago I was just crossing the street and there we saw each other the guy that I fell in love with 15 years ago. He wasn't married and I thought THANK GOD! then we dated a lot like almost everyday we felt we needed to see each other and we both emotionally and physically got so involved for 2 months.....I thought it was time for me to tell my daughter about him and also with my family. but He sometimes seemed worried that catches my attention, a moment that he seem wanting to tell me something... I asked him if he is completely being honest with me then he admitted that he has a girlfriend of 5 years and a 6 months old son. I cried and felt hurt and I didn't know what to say or do.
        This is exactly what he told me" I want us to be in a friend zone mode, for now" I am so in love with him and feared of losing him so I agreed. we have dated a lot for 6 months now though sexually we don't do it anymore but most often I hope and wish that he'd chose me. His girlfriend knew about this and is been threatening me but because I love him so much I ignored everything and just mind my own life so as long I will always be there for him if he needed a friend and do almost anything to favor him i never get tired to do because i love him. I know i am becoming the woman i hate most but I just love him that's all. it hurts all the time to think that the love i needed is more than what he can give? but What if one day he will decide to have me for the rest of his life? There was a time when i wasn't myself and i needed a friend to be with me and no matter how i begged him to stay with me in my house to comfort me because i was so depressed it felt like hell when he didn't want to be there. He has done so many favors for me too not that I am counting but no other guy has done that for me but at that time when I asked him to stay and be with me it was a big No. I swore to myself i will never do that again. I cried because I knew I deserved so much more but now I can't even stop thinking about him and hoped to see him again soon. I didn't want to be the one to call or even txt him first so I am just waiting. Jane I don't really know the exact words to convince myself that I will still find someone else but I do really love him.

  10. Eden33706 says:

    So true! You should not and I repeat, SHOULD NOT, be "friends" with a guy in which you wanted differently than just a "friend." Men are not mysterious. A man who wants to be with you will make a conscientious effort to be with you, period. I've had guys give me these following reasons;
    -I just want to be friends
    -I'm not looking for a relationship right now
    -I don't feel the chemistry (this reason by far, is very stupid)

    Don't be offended by any reason he may use. Just like every person has a different taste in food, clothing, friens, travel, the list goes on. People have different things that may intrigue them. I'm not saying that you are not intriguing so don't take it personally. All I'm saying is if a man is hungry he knows exactly what he is craving and makes a big effort to go buy it. My point is, if he wants you that bad he will court you and do whatever he can to make you his. When these reasons are given or any reason that implies, "I don't have time for YOU" is when you need to run, run, run, as fast as you can in the other direction. Don't hurt your ego by running after him. Leave him alone. Let him search for what he wants. You don't need to convince anybody to be with you. Not only is it unhealthy but not fair for you. There is someone waiting for you out there. If you concentrate your edforts on somebody who doesn't want you the same way you want him, you are holding yourself back from life and the laws of attractio. Clear clutter out of your life. Don't hang on to someone who doesn't want to hang on to you. Love yourself first and you will see how easy love will come to you. Cliche but it is very true.

    Live, learn, love.... Do you see how live & learn come before LOVE? Do those things first before you seek love.

    • Love your beautiful words of advice here, Eden; thank you for adding so much to this conversation!

      ""I don't have time for YOU" is when you need to run, run, run, as fast as you can in the other direction. Don't hurt your ego by running after him. Leave him alone. Let him search for what he wants. You don't need to convince anybody to be with you."

  11. What do you do if you are friends with your coworker an it becomes more. We both fall for each other and then months later he says he doesn't feel a passion or doesn't see a future, like he used to... That we might be most happy as friends. He is not sure if this is what he wants (us to not be together) And i value his friendship so deeply, yet Ultimately I want more. But I dOnt want him to think he can "have me" when ever he'd like. I can't just "walk away" because we work together... Quite closely. It's just a very hard situation. Any advice?

    • Fill your time and energy with as much of your own life as possible, Deanna. He's telling you the reality of where he's at and this is where the only thing to do here is believe him. You can't make anyone love you who isn't there; you can't change anyone just because they seem to have so much potential. You may have to see each other at work, but you can keep it strictly business and casual, and every time you see him you can remind yourself that this isn't about you - there's absolutely nothing wrong with you! - and that this is you being saved from wasting your time and energy - and your beautiful you! - on someone who isn't there, who isn't on your same page.

      As much as you want this to be more, be so grateful that he's being honest with you! So many of us waste so much of our lives on someone who isn't this honest and who leaves us hanging on to false hope and waiting believing just a little more time will bring someone around. You are free! Keep it business by keeping your self, your dignity, your confidence to say "next", knowing that you only want someone in your life who's right for you - and you'll know this because he'll be on your page, he'll want the same thing, and he'll know that he wants a future with you and he feels that passion! You deserve nothing less than that, my beautiful friend!

  12. Hello..i havent written in a while :)
    ok...i met Leonardo (air conditioner guy :) ) 3 months ago although 10 years ago him and i went to the same gym and he told me he has always liked me. Anyway, we had our first date a month ago and weve been calling, texting ad seeing each other ever since. He told me he saw future in us and all the beautiful things we like to hear.
    Last night however he told me that he was going to visit his friend...he called me his friend! Because we like to play sometimes (as a game) as if we are talking to somebody else. I felt so bad to hear him calling me his friend..i mean ok weve dated for a bit over a month only, had sex exactly a month after dating which was last weekend so we are not boyfriend and girlfriend yet i assume. I met all of his friends but not his family which dont even know about me. I dont know what to think...is it too early so its ok that he called me his friend???

    • I wouldn't think anything yet, Mari, unless this becomes part of a pattern or other things happen with him along this same "friendship" line that give you reason to believe he's not on the same page as you. When you're playing games with someone - in a fun way! - it's easier to have different expectations of what playing means so this could be one of those times when you both have different interpretations of the playing "rules" and bringing it up and talking about it may create something that wasn't even there in the first place. Does that make sense?

      Try not to take this personally or read it into it unless there's more that gives you reason to question where he's at and if you're both not as on the same page as you thought you were. But at the same time, you've definitely become more than friends if you've been intimate with each other, so if you're getting a vibe from him that doesn't feel right to you, you may want to slow things down a little to make sure you're not giving him more of yourself than you're actually ready for.

      It's always a balance of observing what's going on, but then cutting both of you some slack because you are two individual people and sometimes those little things that trigger us are about us and our pasts and have nothing to do with this new person or the new relationship. Don't get too far ahead of yourself and always remember, this is about you deciding if he's right for you - by you being yourself and observing him being himself and you are always the one doing the choosing here! Hope this helps :-)

      • Thank u so much! You are right. ...we sometimes become very suspicious or see things that are not really whats happening. In the beginning of every relationship theres always distrust sjnce we dont know were its really
        going. I guess bad experiences in past relationships make you not trustworthy. Ill do just that....keep enyoing hjs company and see how everything develops. So far it has been really good!
        Thanks again!!!

  13. Hi, I guess you could say I am going through some struggles as well.

    I met a wonderful, amazing man online. We hit it off so well, he admired me so much in every way and we really enjoyed the time we spent together. But, he suggested we take it slow, getting to know one another and make sure it was right for us. So we did, a month went by and it was all going great! The tough part, he was gone away working a lot. So texting and few phone calls it was... For him, he isn't huge in texting and it almost bothers him to text so much. We'd have our feuds but we always solved it in a respectful manner. He was very set on paying off some debt though, as he concluded before we start officially dating. So he'd say things like he hopes I'm patient and he see's himself with me once he is ready and done with his debt. That was the only thing keeping him from taking the next step, along with getting to know one another better. Well, few days ago it all changed, like a complete 360. He starts messaging things like why do you stick around, I'm so distant/not able to talk and I feel like a dick. Or not being able to see one another weeks on end. In conclusion, he came out and said look I think it's best if we are just friends for now. I don't want a relationship at all, or not geared for one right now. I was hurt, because I took such precautions that he was indeed ready for a relationship. He wasn't very understanding when I was upset and just wanted an explanation. I tried being understanding and saying I get he's in a tough point in life and needs to focus on working. And his reply was that its not that, his life is great but he just doesn't want a relationship.(Slap in the face...) As well, he did it over via texting and said he was too overwhelmed to call and explain. So to this day I still haven't gotten a phone call and he's very on edge about things. It seems like men get mad when they are trying to say something and we don't understand. So, by the end, he said I'm an amazing girl and theres so much he admires about me etc... And that he doesn't not want to see me or talk still. He claims he still likes me, and I still like him... But he clearly just wants a friendship, and I want a relationship.

    I don't know what to do. People claim to ditch him, others say wait it out when he's ready he'll come around. How can someone flip their intentions so fast. One day we were talking about when we get to see one another, and the next he strictly just wants to be friends. =(

    • I know it's so hard to hear what someone's telling you when you so want it to be different and you have these little tiny crumbs thrown your way that give you some hope that he might not really mean what he's saying, Meg. But if you stop for a moment and take a step back and listen to what he's been telling you, it becomes so much clearer. He is saying he doesn't want a relationship. He is telling you he just wants to be friends. He is asking you why you are still sticking around when he is treating you so much less than he knows you deserve. It doesn't matter whether he tells you this via text or phone, it's all the same message he's giving you. These are his words and his actions, with the exception of those few crumbs he gives you when he finds you're still there. No matter how many reasons you may come up with for why he doesn't mean what he's saying, the only thing to do in a situation like this is believe him.

      This is not a fairytale, my beautiful friend. It is not your role to wait around like some tragic heroine while your man fights off his inner demons or goes to battle. This isn't what a real relationship looks like and it certainly isn't how someone who's looking for a relationship behaves in the beginning "honeymoon" stages when you first meet someone and everyone is on their best behavior.

      If you're not on the same page, Meg, it doesn't mean there's anything wrong with you or that you did anything wrong; it just means he's not there, he isn't ready for the same thing you are and that's all it means! Be so glad that you're finding this out so early on, before you invest more of yourself in someone who doesn't want the same thing as you, when it would be that much harder to find this out. You are now free to find someone who is on your page, who will want to be with you and who won't be telling you he doesn't want to be with you!

      • Should I move on completely? Or distance myself for a while until I feel we can establish a friendship?

        • It's always harder to move on from someone if they're still in your life, Meg, but if you're not there and ready to make that break, then make the choice that brings you the most peace, that leaves you with the least amount of regrets, and gives you the greatest sense of calm. It doesn't matter what he thinks or does or says, this is about you and what is the most loving and self-respecting thing you can do for your own beautiful self, my beautiful friend!

          • Jackie Morrison says:

            If someone can think of a person who is stringing them along under the false face of friendship, they are really just a cancer, and do not allow it to grow.

        • Thank you for your kind words of advice! I decided being friends right away was not for me, so I told him I needed to take time before even considering a friendship. So I did that, and we met online. So a few days later I stumbled across his profile and his status was still looking for dating etc. I instantly got upset, and of course I confronted him about it. Things got bad in a hurry, but regardless he started acting like a complete asshole. Anyways by the end of it I realized he was NOT worth my time, I sent my last text to him saying I didn't deserve what he had done to me or treating me the way he was, and said there is no chance of us being friends goodbye. And without wanting a reply, I surely did get one back from him. He said something along the lines of well you better watch your actions next time so you aren't broken hearted again- He believes or thinks I am clingy, obsessive and crazy. I was very hurt to hear someone call me these things or say well you portray them in your actions unknowingly, so I automatically fought back. On and on.... Anyways, I kept doing my own thing, moving on, seeing other people. Than yesterday I receive a text from him saying " So you want to meet my co-worker Duncan hey? Your more nuts than I thought haha." (Long story short I accidentally said on a dating site that I wanted to meet this guy, looking back I completely didn't realize it was him... I didn't want to give him any reaction, I shouldn't even have replied, but I told him to stop calling me crazy and if you can't say something nice to leave me alone. He continued to mock me, and eventually just said oh well, "Lator Gator". I was shocked, upset and didn't know how to feel about it. I told him he's being immature, and had no right to message me like that, or message me at all. I then followed to tell him to leave me alone. His next message, I started to leave you alone...

          I feel like he's controlling me, or power tripping. He's a type of guy if we were face to face and I slapped him, he'd probably reply and say hahah is that all you got? He likes to influence, or make me feel superior. Its fine for him to point out everything he felt I did wrong, but as soon as I ever tried to turn the tables and say look here it takes two and you have flaws too.

          I haven't messaged him back, nor do I want to. But I'm having a hard time turing the experience into something that belongs behind me. I don't want to feel like I have no power over my life. I felt like I let him win or get under my skin by that message. Regardless it shouldn't have mattered to him, what if I actually did want to meet this guy? He has no right to say anything. Why did he have to message me and make me feel worthless, or stupid? I'm just having a really hard time what to think about it. Some people say he's jealous, or trying to get a reaction out of me. As well I found him on the online site, and found out he viewed my profile than deleted all his profile information and images. So from what I know he's no longer active on the site for whatever reason.

          Please help me understand why someone would feel the need to go out of their way to wreak my day or upset me. Why did he message me? And say such hurtful things.

          • ** OR MAKE ME FEEL INFERIOR

          • CUT HIM OFF.
            Block him on emails, block him on your phone, block his text and any other communication medium.
            After few days of complete no contact it will get easier . Your emotions would have settled by then and since he can't reach you, you will find inner peace. All the bad things he's done will no longer affect you. You will realise that you have self control and choice..I.e, the choice to block an immature boy.

            Remember this.... If you continue to retort and fight vack verbally, thus engaging in same behaviour as him, then you are no different than him! That is a sign of incompatibility....

          • "You will realise that you have self control and choice" - So true, Jessy; we always have a choice, no matter how much it may not feel that way when we're going through it.

  14. Thank you for this beautiful webpage. I have read this thread and it really touch me..I am in the need of these advices and courages now, that´s why I found your page. One year ago I met this man at a dinner party. We got really well along, I thought he was extremely cute and he paid me just enough attention to wake my attention. I am a swedish woman living and working in Spain and he is from the States, he was passing by travelling. We added each other on facebook and started to chat quite a lot. I got really into him fast, maybe to fast but I felt an this extreme chemistry that you all know completely control us when it comes..There was a lot of flirting and sexual tension but we also got really close and had deep discussions. He told me repeating times that he really liked me, which I am not used to. I thought it might be an american thing but its seemed also be his personality. In april he confessed to me that he was living this polyamorist lifestyle but that he now tried to end it. I was a little bit chocked bit didnt dare to ask for more details.He told me he realised that he only can love one person and the other loves only get asymptotes of the real one. In may we had gotten really close, spoke several times a week on skype. On day there he tells me that his exgirl wanted to be his wife and that he was breaking up with her. He was now making space in his life he said. I tell you all this to get the background to the story even though the situation today is very different, but to understand the complications we have gone through I think it is important to know the whole story. He told me he was making space in his life hinting I could become a part of it...I was devastated when I found out about that girl and for a long time there I thought she was the one standing in between us. I later understood that it was not her, but another of his girlfriends that was the issue. I hear myself and I see it clear that it is not any other women that is is the issue, it is his lifestyle and messy head that is. But you know how the brain works, we so love to try to find logical practical tangible reasons. During the whole summer we spoke almost daily on skype, sometimes all nights. We had Skype-sex, we had deep discussions and I was completely in love. He also told me at one point that he was in love with me. Of cause there was a big BUT, and it was that he was LOST and could not make up his mind..he never spoke out clear what it meant, he was referring to this "boxes" he has in his mind. This women that he could not stop love. And he asked me for patience and wait until he was ready..letting me know that he wanted to come over what ever what was going on and eventually be with me. ( That is what I thought.) He was all the time in the states but was coming back to Spain in september. In august some weeks before he was about to come he tells me, for me all of the sudden, that he could not love me , cause his love "was taken" and that he was truly in love with this women and only wanted to be with her. It was a girl he met last time he was in Spain and one of the boxes he has spoken about. He did not want to loose me and thought I was an amazing person and also wanted to continue our close relationship, even sexually. But he could not allow himself to get to close to me, then it would be a risk that he lost his LOVE. He was not certain how to life his life. He wanted to be with his love but in their relationship they are totally okej about being with other persons if it is purely sexual and does not affect their relationship. I more or less convinced him that we had to see each other and find out what was going on. In september then he flew into Barcelona and came down to me in Valencia to spend some days with me. We spend four days together, basically not leaving the bed or when we did we were constantly kissing or touching each other. We spoke all the time, and there were moments when he could not continue to sleep with me because it was getting to close and he felt uncomfortable and afraid because in those moments he could not feel the love to his girlfriend. Now afterwards I should have kicked him out, sent him to hell and cursed the day he was born when he did that, but I didnt for the simple reason that I was in love. He left after those four days cause he could not spend more time with me, he said that if he would he would fall in love with me and he could not let that happen. This was extremely hurtful for me, I was in love and hearing that from the person you so badly want to be in love with you, it makes me cry still. Now one month later, we speak every day one skype or one the phone. He was still in Spain but didnt want to see me for all those for him logical reasons he told me, that we were so close already and being together more would make him slowly lose the love for his girlfriend. He said he wanted me just as a friend but didnt think it was possible right then for the sexual attraction we felt. I was very upset and told him that if he didnt want to see me, I didnt find that friendship and was about to end it. I now see that it was just me trying to make him come around.... I didnt speak with him for a day or two and he was very sad, writing me that he didnt want to lose me, how amazing I am ..etc. Then he told me that of cause he wanted to be my true friend and that we could see each other. I had then realised that it was not sustainable and told him I was in love and that I wanted more out of it, that I didnt want to see him until he was ready to feel the same to me and ready to connect to me and take the "risk" of falling in love with me. This has going on now for some weeks. Our discussions have been around that theme. The other day he said that it was not possible and that he know know that he wants be just as an amazing friend, he thinks I am incredible but he can not love me know in a not-platonic way..he said he again wanted to ask me for patience but he knows it is not right, and he doesnt feel love know but maybe will in the future. We had a quite harsh discussion and it became obvious for both of us that one of us had to stop this. Both of us said we maybe had to leave the other one because it was becoming toxic. We ended the call like that. It took about two hours before he wrote me something again and there we were talking some hours again. I realise HE WILL NEVER LEAVE me. He is not a bad person, he adores me and think I am amazing, I also think he would like to be with me "if it would not have been for" his other love. But he will not leave me neithe her...I dont believe him either when he says his feelings toward me now are platonic, but that is his choice and I am not going to argue for getting love. He responded that saying that he openly admitted that he felt differently but that he choice not to entertain those feelings. That he knows that that decision should not be taken lightly and that he hopes that it will not destroy the incredible amazing connection we have, but that he wants it to be as just friends. We have been spoken some times after that too, all "normal". But I am so sad..so sad and can not stop crying. This is not my conditions, I would not chose to "only" be his friend and I am feeling something like grief for the love I felt and know he felt but was not let to grow. I keep coming back to what I told him so many times lately, that I dont think I can be his platonic friend..but every time I sat that he keeps writing me and I fall right back there, finding me having the time of my life talking to him, thinking that it maybe IS possible to be just friends. But I WILL ALWAYS WANT TO KISS HIM, the thought of not doing it makes me cry even more know and I don´t know how to stop. Can I be his friend? I think not...but it is so. hard. to let go and loose him. I KNOW the arguments, what am I really losing? _He_ is he one loosing me and if this is meant to be beautiful it will..but why does it hurts so badly then and how do I stop cry....I read your column to find strength to leave this, because it is so.hard. and it hurts so.bad. and I keep on struggling in my thought if I really have to make this drastically and not talk to him again or if I can maintain the contact to him at the same time as I distance my self mentally. But you see...there is my struggeling aswell. Is that dignity? That would be on his conditions completely and not at all what I want...the other hand of my brain tried to be less emotional thinking that it is not important with pride and dignity. That is we can establish the platonic friendship is it a solution for everyone...but...then..why does is feel SO GOOD every time I have made the decision to leave, to say good bye ME, ME being the one setting the rules...should I listen to that proud voice or should I try to find a pacifically solution where there is no drama involved? But the..why can´t I stop crying..? The only times I cry AND feel strong is the times I decide to leave. But it also makes me cry even more and harder because it means that I loose him and I am so deeply in love and the thought of not talking to him is making me scream and cry...I know where I want to be, I want to be free from him. I must be. I want to walk on the street without thinking of him, being able to see cute men and find them attractive and wanting to talk to them..I am now in the process on HOW to get to that point. I hope you do not judge me for my weakness and I wish I will be able to write you in some time telling you that I walked away and that I now am a free woman.But right now I am only crying. Thank you for listening...

    • oh Alva, there is no judgement here for what you are going through; only understanding and compassion as you've found yourself so clearly understanding what's really going on and what is the only self-respecting and honorable thing for you to do - to walk away with your head held high because you deserve to be with someone who is on the same page as you and wants to be with you exclusively with you - but knowing this and actually doing this are two different things.

      It feels good for YOU to make the decision to leave not because there is any pride there, but because you know in your heart of hearts that it has to come from you! So many of us have been brought up to believe that setting our own boundaries and putting our own beautiful selves first is selfish and so it is no wonder that we can be so uncomfortable when we think about standing up for ourselves like this. But it is anything but selfish! It is you, standing up for what you know is what you deserve, and refusing to settle for any treatment of your beautiful self that is less that you - than all of us - deserve, no matter who we are or where we've been.

      Your tears come as you make this decision because you know it is the right thing to do - that it is the only loving and self-respecting thing to do for your beautiful self because this is not love if it's only coming from you and he's involved with someone else. No matter how good the sex is, no matter how much he says he wants you to wait for him and be patient with him, no matter what he says or does, it's always comes down to the reality that if two people are not on the same page and looking for the same thing with each other, it's not going to work. You simply cannot make anyone love you, Alva; it has to come from him. And if he has someone in his life who is on his page and has convinced herself that she is ok with an open relationship, then he has no reason to change. As long as there are women out there who don't realize just how powerful they are and are willing to settle for these kinds of arrangements, the men who want these types of relationships don't have any reason to change. You have to raise the bar!

      You will walk down the street without thinking about him, you will get to the point where you find someone else attractive and want to talk to them when you can begin to see yourself for who you really are, Alva, and what you really deserve. We are always attracted to men like this not because of anything external, but because of something deep down inside us that subconsciously buys into the lie that we have to prove our worth by making someone want us, to choose us even though they offer us nothing but crumbs. It is our own false belief system that we are not worth more, that we have to work to be loved rather than to love ourselves first enough so that the true beautiful light of who we really are is allowed to shine through strong enough to attract that man who is looking for exactly the woman you are! The best way to build that kind of confidence, Alva, is by embracing yourself, recognizing all that you have to offer someone who is looking for the same thing you are, and by refusing to settle for a "just friends" relationship with someone who you will only find yourself still trying to convince of your worth and holding onto hope that he may still eventually come around.

      Focus on you, my beautiful friend; give up this trying to convince yourself or anyone else that you are worthy when you already know that you are and someone who is right for you will never need to be convinced of this either. Tap into that little girl inside you who knows all this, and has never forgotten it even as she lost her strong voice somewhere along the way. You can do this, Alva, and in your own time you will rise stronger and more confident than ever before; beautiful, radiant, confident, you!

      • Thank you...I am getting through all those stages that have to come...the tears are less and I´m getting less sad and more angry...I don´t want to be angry, at him or at me, but I think it is a stage that I have to pass through before coming over this and him. It´s sad though..isn´t it. That it has to be like this. I´m still very overwhelmed but start to see things more clear now. It helped a lot writing down the whole story and see it written like that..and read all the similar stories. A friend of mine told me that she wished I would close my eyes and when I opened them again I would see things in a new clear way. I think I am in that road now...I closed them and when I opened the eyes again, things - I would´t say suddenly but at least they did- looked different. It´s also sad somehow, and provokes anger, to realise that you have been a tool for someones elves search for love, and not be THE CHOSEN one, and instead being the one that WAS NOT CHOSEN. I know..I know...I know...but those feelings rush down the blood and it is hard not to feel like that. It is not pleasant either to feel used..to have invested more than the other one..to have exposed your heart and got it crashed..to realise that the other person so much must have knew but did´t tell you cause you fulfilled his ego...to feel betrayed by someone so close. To realise there is no way in this galaxy that you can be friends with this person, how could you be friends with someone that you feel used by? that always had a advantage? ...All these feelings, tears and anger are going through my body. I would like to add something to my post, about this mans girlfriend. Their relationship is an open relationship and it is on equal basis, this girl is also feeling a need to explore her sexual limits with other men and it is nothing she is standing or supporting for him. It actually seems like she is more into it than him..I think it is important to point that out here, to not make her to a victim. She is almost ten years younger than me and him ( I am 29 and he 30 ) which might me an explication. That was an parenthesis...I can also recommend some music for you in my situation..these songs are spinning on my computer now: Robyn- you can´t handle me, dancing on my own. Steve Marriot- All or nothing. The last one I think I played like hundred times today..thank you again for listening!

        • I'm glad it helps to get it all out, Alva. You're seeing this, you're remembering your beautiful you here. Allow yourself to heal, to grieve, to feel all your emotions - including anger if it's there! Run it off, exercise it out, get passionate about yourself and what you want to do with your own beautiful life that is just waiting for you! There's a little book called "How to Survive the Loss of A Love" that really gets into the emotions and the various stages we go through after such a loss.

          You'll get there, too, my beautiful friend. This is the toughest part; know that it will get better - and you will discover just how strong you really are - I promise you!

          • Thank you again for your support! It really helps, and also reading your other posts. I am done with the anger part also..it might come back..also the sad part but for the moment it feels much lighter everything..I went through the stage of feeling rejected, but you know- reading your text about that- I suddenly realised I was not rejected and put a red cross over it. He just saw it more clear than me, we were not on the same page, in this case- not even in the same chapter, I even suspect we were not even reading the same book!!! There are so many things I learnt from this..just the simple "if its right- you will know" and in this case, it you are suffering- its simply NOT. right!! How much I even wanted it to be. There is NO. other reality. There is no " if only" or "if" at all. And I will never, I repeat never try to force love again. I will not run after someone again..! If its suppose to happen, it will happen, cause we will be reading the same book and we will be the main characters on the same page. Thank you again, you´re doing a great job....its a great comfort reading your words when you´re deep down there. I think many times we KNOW all this..but we forget it and needs someone that reminds us. How strong and beautiful we are..! Love will come...and meanwhiles, not forgetting all the love there already is around us. All beautiful friends and family and not get lost for some banana...( A good trick is to think of the man in question like a banana. Sounds just as silly as it is, but. It helps. )Thank you for listening! ( I will search for the book...!)

          • Exactly, Alva; love your insight here. You're getting this! :-)

        • I think you should just drop this guy. If he wants to be with you, then he would have done so by now. You deserve way better. I know because I am going through the same thing

          • Jackie Morrison says:

            Exactly. Men are unstoppable when they really want to be with a woman romantically. If he isn't claiming you he doesn't want you. Being friends is his way of satisfying his ego and disrespectful to you.

          • Hi again beautiful women, I´m sorry to reply to this post again too many months after....After the last time I wrote here it´s been up and down, he came back to see me in november and we "hang out" a lot. I know I shouldn't let him back but I was still crazy in love with this guy...he kinda came a round and got comfortable with being "special friends" but for me it was just an continuation of the emotional nightmare. I so wanted us to get back to the point where he wanted to start something beautiful with me, but I too late understood that that was just a lie from the beginning. He never wanted that...he was always with this young girl and was never to leave her, he was using my love to strengthen his relationship with her. I feel used and every time I think about this I get a stomach pain and just want to vomit...I am still very affected by this story. This summer when we spoke a lot...he told me he was falling in love with me...and asked me what I normally say when guys tell me that. What I didn't told him was that no one ever told me that before..I never let anyone in, I will be 30 this year butt never had a real relationship due to many personal issues...I didn't settle for one hand but on another I didn't open up either. Now I finally did and I ended up with a broken heart. He made me believe that we could create something beautiful between us and that there was something called love here...and I struggled so hard, so hard to get back to that point where he wanted that. But I didn't realise..I didn't know that he all the time speaking to me also had this girlfriend..how could I know? He spoke about baggage and "boxes" in his life...I feel just so used. In the end of november when he went back to the states he was again "confused" and was "deeper in than ever" with me and "knew that his relationship wouldn't last"...one week later he was back with her and she will come with him to spain in march. I feel so sick...We spoke a lot..he means that I "have to understand that I will never have him for my self" and that he can not have a monogamous relationship. His relationship with that girl is under the conditions that they..he...can be with other women too. I can not settle for that and thats , according to him, is why he can not enter a relationship with me. He wants to see me before and after his girlfriend comes to spain but I feel anything but fine with that...its all under his conditions and its crumbs and crap from the beginning to the end. I am not a teenager anymore..I can not spend time and energy on a man that can not commit...she is young and can do that....but still I have a hard time now, cause it still hurts that he let me think there was love to create between us...When we spoke some week ago it ended up in skypesex again and I felt horrible after...for sure its fine for him to be amused between his time with his girlfriend but for me its salt in open bleeding veins every time. There are so many constantly changing truths in this story..and you know..when the truth changes from day to day its in the end a lie right? I know why I can't get over this guy, its is because I thought it was love and I am so desiring romantic love in my life...but I am so suffering, so many nights when I am so so sad...and I feel his smell and feel his hands and I miss it and in the next second think about that he is doing that to his girlfriend in that moment and I feel the stomach turning and I cry more...I never though I would be in a situation like this. I am so strong and know so well what I want. And an charming hansom man lets me believe he can be my solution and he comes riding on a shiny horse and I fall so hard...is it that easy to manipulate me, am I so desperate after love that I let someone treat e like that...the love I though was between us became more important than my proper love for my self. How did I let it go that far? If you have any suggestions on how to avoid this in the future it would be welcome..I don't want to go through this again. I am such an active women, I have so many friends..I do so many sports, I climb, I ride horses, I swim, I run, all this all weeks at the same time I am studying for a phd grade in biomechanics, I have wine with amazing friends, I go to the theatre- I can cite all Von Trier movies, I am a good daughter, I read all Hemingway....I am a catch and I know it, but how on earth could it go this far?!

  15. I just want to say, I love this website so far, I only found it tonight, but so far it is exactly what I've been looking for. I love this post and agree with all of the advice and responses I've seen. I also was put in the "friendzone" after pursuing someone for 8 months, mostly via text. It was very hurtful, especially since the person said I was in the friendzone after we had an amazing date and I finally let down my guard with them and we ended up making out for hours. Anyways, long story short I agree with all of this advice, and really the person was only capable of giving me crumbs anyway so thank goodness they only wanted to be my friend. Anyways, I love this site and I look forward to continue to read all of the articles and feedback from others.

    • Thanks for your kind words, Kylie. :-) I'm so glad you've found your way here and are finding support for what you've been finding out for yourself along the way. You get this!

  16. You're website is great advise. My problem is that the guy I was willing to try and be friends with, and maybe move onto something special, told my friend that he thinks I'm obsessed with him just because I gave him a gift (his favorite TV show) is what I bought for him. Then he said that he just wanted to be friends. However, when he said that I was obsessed with him I decided to throw him into the outer wastes of deep space. I can handle being confused of my intentions with a gift that I had bought you, but I across the line at obsession.

    • Jackie Morrison says:

      You are not obsessed. Just not free and clear of him. There is no grey area, either you are friends or lovers, and if you want more, walk away.

    • Then you've found out that much more about him, Kisha, and how he speaks of you and what he thinks of you. That's what dating, and deciding whether you want to be more than friends with someone, is all about. Getting to know each other better so you can see if you're compatible in the ways that matter to you. You're the one who's choosing here, and it's always so much better to find out what someone's like early on so you can avoid being heartbroken down the road after you invest that much more of your time and energy - and your beautiful you! - on someone who you're not compatible with!

  17. Jackie Morrison says:

    I agree Jane, a heartbreak down the road after you have collective memories and more false hope, is much much worse!

  18. Ava Strader says:

    This has helped me some, I just have to ask.. I met a Doctor at my job I work at a dog spa and boutique in Dallas, I was in love with pixie before I ever knew who he was, looked like exc. My hours eventually changed and we met and I thought we hit it off well. Time went on with casual flirting and talking about pixie, then he gave me a key to his condo to pick her up daily. We started texting after he texted me first asking for pictures of Pixie that I took. We would text and email daily, see each other as well, and he never has asked one thing about me who I am exc. I never chase a man, but I was intrigued by his flirting. I one night asked to go out for a drink and he flipped out, and said he wanted to keep our relationship professional. Then that week I didn't contact him and didn't stay when he came in to pick her up, I was told he asked about me 2 seperate times to my boss and a coworker. He texted me and sent a picture of pixie and this whole mess started again. He went out of town to see his mom for Christmas and he would text and then not answer, I finally had had it and he threatened to take pixie out of our daycare, I told him I would never text or call him and I would be gone when he arrived. He quickly replied that that was not his intentions at all. He texted a few more times, now nothing. I will pick pixie up tues and go on this sme road again. Please help me figure this out. Confused.

  19. Dear everyone,
    Thanks everyone for this blog. All the stories and the answers have been helping me a lot.
    I believe I'm in the right way but I'm also still struggeling and was hoping to get some advice.

    I was dating a man (not really long unfortunately) and for the first time in my life I felt that when I was with him I was home. He is pretty guy but also insecure. I'm a confident high educated woman but with a soft character. I noticed he had some troubles opening up to me and we discussed that. He called himself stupid for that. I have given him all the time he needs and he started to open up more and more. Later I started to notice that he was very jealous as I get approached by a lot of man. I tried to convince him that he was special to me. Long story short after a perfect date, he told me about his jealousy, his insecurities, that he felt stupid to not commit. He told me he had feelings for me (but he was not in love and he called himself stupid for being complicated) and after that we had intercourse and he said it was making love.
    I am really patient and flexible and said that I have plenty of time to figure things out but that I had feelings for him. Next morning he made love to me again (his words!! and he said it was the first time of his life). He has never had long relationships, is insecure, jealous. 2 days later he told me that it needed to finish. He confessed having feelings for me in a special friendship kind of way and the thought of not seeing me again was destroying him. So he wants to be special friends without benefits btw!
    I don't believe him about having feelings for me in a special friendship way. So I said if you're not that into me you say it and it is fine. But this reason does not make sense. He said that his jealousy was to protect me from other man(huh?). So I was calm and told him while I cant force to make you love me but I do believe you are hiding behind a mask and then he criend multiple times!! He was so emotional and everytime he started to open up he started crying and then became distant again!

    Then he wanted to be friends, we stayed in contact via email every other day. I told him I could not be just friends with him. And everytime he aswers: you need time, you need to be distracted, you this and that, maybe you should give it a couple of days, maybe we should not meet on short notice ( I never said I wanted that). Nothing about his feelings.
    My friends call him very complicated and also insecure.

    I haven't contacted him for 2 weeks now. But I know he will contact me soon (because he said to give it two weeks and I didn't reply anymore).
    I do want to start to date him and I'm definately not going to be friends. Or should friends be the best way to open him up? It is so confusing.
    Or how do I get him to open-up again? Or do you believe his excuse. In my opinion he is so scared of his feelings ( he told me he experienced so many new things) and pushes everyone who comes close away ( also his best friends btw).

    • I think you're opinion is spot on, Isa; and so it's up to you to decide what you want to do with all this. It sounds very complicated, but only you know what you are willing and ready to take on in exchange for what being with someone is worth to you. It sounds like you know what you're dealing with in him, so it's really about you. You've already been friends and lovers, so where you go from here is something only you can know. Trust your gut instincts and know that you know what to do deep down inside. We always do, if we clear all the rest of our "stuff" out of the way so we can hear what our hearts have to say.

      • Thank you for your quick reply Jane! You are helping people from all around the world, wonderfull!

        I'm glad you think also that i'm seeing things right. I believe that he is a good man, good hearted, smart, sensitive but indeed complicated.
        I'm willing to try it again with him and to take it slow. So first i am taking some time for myself to be happy with my own life.

        Do you also have on how to deal with his insecurity and his problems to open up? How do I 'convince' him to be more than friends? I know he should be the one that is willing to change, but Is there something I can do to help him realise it? To make him feel safe to let his true feelings in. In the past I never got mad at him or judged him for which he was so grateful!
        Shall I contact him when I'm ready and explain what I see and what i want. Or act friendly, no talking and act as a friend hoping he will openup? I don't want to be his safety net as being just friends is something I can't deal with for a long time!

        Hope anyone has some practical advise... That i can hold on to.
        Again thank you Jane!

        Xx

        • Live your own life first and foremost, Isa. Don't make him responsible for your happiness. Don't make him the center of your universe. Give him some space to be himself. Be your own true self. Be authentic. Keep living your own life. Fill your life with your own friends, your own hobbies, your own passions. Don't nag, don't try to manipulate or control him. Don't play games. Be yourself. Be honest. Be real. Keep your options open and adopt the mindset that you are the prize here - because you are! Make your own life so full and happy with the things that bring you joy so that you won't be looking to him to complete you or fill you up.

          And in doing this, in living like this, Isa, you'll find out that what he does or doesn't do doesn't matter as much as you do, and if he's ready to open up and take things to the next step, you'll have given him the best chance to do this on his own. That's what this is all about, Isa; living your own life in such a way that what someone else does or doesn't do doesn't matter; what matters above all else is your happiness!

          • Hi Jane,

            I can't thank you enough. I'm from the other side of the world and your words and this site gave me strenght again. Also some rest because I was going crazy of confusion.
            Thanks you!

          • I'm so glad this helped, Isa. You're so welcome!

          • Hi Jane,

            Sorry to bother again. But I have no one near that has the wisdom to help as they never went trough break-ups.

            I met with the guy. He was again playing best friends. He asked if i would meet his new housemate, to come over for dinner, whether i wanted to play sports together etc. After 30 min he began to ask about whether other man were interested in me after the break up. He admitted to be jealous and affected when i was already dating someone else. I told him i have a lot of guys interested but that I am not ready to start dating.
            So i told him that I don't want to friends as I think it is impossible and I believe we should not settle for less than dating.
            He told me he does not want to date but really want me as a special friends without benefits.
            I kissed him and he stopped but in after he answered my big kiss and he hold me tight. i told him: you see you can't resist me so how would you be able to be normal friends?

            I told him to either date me or just leave me alone! I deleted him from fb and told him not to contact me. Only if he is serious about dating.
            He asked whether he could contact me in a month, i said no, he said well maybe in 2 or 3 months? I told him no you cant contact me for being just friends, only dating. But he really persisted on having a time frame to contact me. I told him again no! I was than absolutely not friendly to him, strong and confident. And than we said goodbye because he really does not want to date but he would think about it but he said that chances are down to zero.

            I still hope that he can open his eyes and realise that his ideas about special friendship combined with jealousy is wrong. But I only want a guy that wants to actually date me.

            Jane, you are so strong and wise and I'm not. Was this the best way to get him to choose for me?!
            Or should i continued to be friendly and see whether that would work?
            Guys hate to get an ultimate so did I blow my last chances of opening his eyes?

          • You didn't blow it, Isa, because you can't blow anything with someone who's truly right for you! This isn't about trying to get him to choose you, to want to be more than friends with you, to date you, to have the kind of relationship you want with him. This is about you setting your own terms, deciding what you want, what's right for you and how you want to be with someone and how you want someone to be with you. That's what you did, you let him know, and he let you know, and you both had different terms and so you came to an impasse, a crossroads, where one of you had to change your terms in order for this relationship to continue.

            The reason it feels so uncomfortable is because it's the exact opposite of what we're used to doing and way we're used to behaving. It's the opposite of what most of us have been told is how we get a man. It's you, standing up for who you are and what you'll accept, and letting your terms be known and then the hardest part of all, following through with letting him go if he's not there, if he's not able to get there, if he isn't able to give you what you're looking for. Do you see that difference?

            If this were just about getting someone to choose you, you would have accepted his terms and played along, denying your own truth, your own needs, and going along with him, trying to prove your worthiness and convince him of why he should want to be with you. You would keep being friendly and see whether that will eventually work. Either of those options are always ours to choose.

            But something happens when we refuse to settle; something happens when we refuse to live by someone else's terms. We acquire a strength that we can't explain, and a confidence that can't be gained any other way. It's how our light comes to radiate from within, it's how we learn who we really are and what we stand for. It's how we come to stand up for ourselves and what we want. It's how we find that special someone who's looking for us as much as we're looking for him. It's how we show the world how we will be treated and how we refuse to settle for anything less.

            It's always your choice, Isa. If he's truly right for you, there's no messing it up, there's no need to play games. It will be so very clear. You'll know because he'll be on your page, he'll want the same type of relationship as you do, and it will be both of you willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen - not just you!

          • Jane! You are so right, it is very hard for me to handle the confusion. But if he wants me he has my number!

            Thank you for giving me some rest..

    • Jenaea Wells says:

      Hi Isa, my honest opinion is if he is very insecure, and have pushed everyone away that's your clue to leave him alone. It's nothing more worse than to have a man that's very insecure no matter what you tell them it's not gonna matter, all he is gonna believe is what's already in his mind, please take my advice and save yourself a lot of heartache and pain, if it's been 2 weeks you have not contacted him you are doing excellent you already have the strength to move on.

      • Hi Jenaea,
        Thank you for your kind words!
        You are right that he being very insecure is not helpfull.
        Your story really relates to mine! How are you doing and what have you done to set your terms?
        I contacted him.. i know studid but I need to find some closure. I'm going to tell that I cant be just friends. He says he is really looking forward to see me so i'm curious and decided to meet with him!
        Any advice!?

        Xx

        • Jenaea Wells says:

          Hi Isa, my advice to you is stand strong, say what you mean, and mean what you say.Women makes mistakes when they say something and turns around and do what they say they wasn't gonna do.Keep your distance from him the minute you get close your heart melts, and you get butterflies in your stomach, and when that happens your weak just that quick, and that's give him all the ammunition he needs to hook you back in.You can do it, main thing is say what you mean, and mean what you say!!

  20. Jenaea Wells says:

    Hello, I have been in a talking with this guy for a little over 6 months. He is really a great guy never been married and is currently single. He has been totally honest with my from the beginning, about not wanting nothing serious ok I have been cool with that, and we only communicate thru text he has invited me over to his home I have stayed the night with him each time I have been there. Now here is the thing we have been intimate 3 times out of 6 months and I have fallen head over heels for this man, I told him this and the response I got back was" O" Wow it made me feel very cheap. He also stated that he can't make me happy because he is not ready for me in the same way iam ready for him he is only looking for a friend but in time things could change. I crave this man, I love this man, but at the same time I feel like I have settled for the friendship relationship will somebody please help me not sure what to do, when I do tells him iam moving on and hoping to find a man that wants me just as much as I wants him he gets upset he invites me over he is all over me kissing, holding me, won't let me leave then when I gives in to him sexually he got me right back where he wants me hooked and craving him, he gets cold on me again I just don't understand him I think he cares for me deeply! And just don't know how to say it please help me, signed in love, confused, hurt, shame, and cheap.

    • Of course he doesn't want you to find someone else, Jenaea; he has it so good with you! Go back to what he said in the beginning - and what his actions continue to show you except when you tell him you're moving on. He said he didn't want anything serious. These are his terms. No matter how much we want to believe we can change someone, that we can make them change their mind, that we can make them come around, that we can show them just how wonderful we are so that they can't help but come around, the reality is that we can't change anyone except ourselves. No matter how much he might care, no matter how much he might not want to lose you to someone else, if he's not treating you the way you want to be treated, if he's not giving you what you want from him, if he's not looking for the same type of relationship that you are, then you are not on the same page and you are not compatible in the ways you need to be to make a real relationsthip work.

      Only you know what he is worth to you, Jenaea; only you know what you're willing to put up with in order to have him in your life. Define your own terms, what you're willing to settle for and what you're not. It's always your decision and you always hold your own power. Live your own life, focus on you and all that you bring to the table. This isn't really about him, this is about you.

      You never ever have to convince someone to be with you who's truly right for you!

      • Jenaea Wells says:

        Thank you Jane I needed to hear those words. I can accept the fact that he only wants to be friends and as you stated I will make my own terms, and my terms will be if we are only friends then no sexual contact that's where I draw my line, until he decides to move our friendship in another direction, and if not that's his lost. I love you girl!!! Keep doing what you do women are weak when it comes to these men.

        • Hi Janaea and Jane,

          Thank you both for these answers. They relate very much to my own situation from above.
          I decided to contact him, he really wants to see me and is very friendly. Responded faster than before after more than 2 weeks no contact from my side,
          I'm going to meet him, and set my limits. Like you said Janaea, it is his loss!. I'm not going to confirm his view of being friends with giving mixed signals. All or nothing.
          Hope i will have the strenght when facing him!

        • You're so sweet, Jenaea; I'm so glad this helped. You're getting this!!

  21. Hi Jane! Firstly, youre beautiful and i love how you help people. Really love your blog :)

    The phase of being alone, feeling broken is on.
    I was in a relationship with a guy for 3 years. He broke up with me 4 months back.
    We still talk, we still hang out. I still love him the same way i did earlier. He says he still loves me too the same way and i do feel it most of the times. You must be wondering why we broke up. Its because he is too afraid of telling it to his family. His family wont accept it. Its just the old society thinking. I know that theres a less possibility my family would accept it, but i am ready to talk to my family. I am ready to fight for him, to be with him forever.
    My heart does say he loves me, but then why cant he fight for me? I dont want him to leave everybody for me, i just want him to try. Atleast once? I do try to be friends with him now, but its really tough. It hurts so much in the heart cause i want more. And he has given up. And my heart is just not ready to move on or give up. I want him more than anything else in the world. Do you think he has stopped loving me? I wonder how it is easy for him to be just friends ..
    Jane, youre the last person i can talk to about this. Your blog do makes me feel im not alone. Please help me?

    • Thank you for your kind words, Radhika; I'm so glad you're feeling less alone here. You're so not alone! I hear your hurt and pain, being tied to this old way of thinking that hasn't yet embraced the new. Being so ready and willing to fight for him within this constraint, but being the only one. I'm assuming these are cultural ways of being that aren't easily changed, and it sounds like he's well aware of this and isn't comfortable with pushing the status quo. Of course you want him to be, but unfortunately, you can't change him, Radhika. It has to come from him. He has to be willing to do this, to go out of his comfort zone and face his family in a way that he obviously hasn't done before. It takes courage, it takes conviction, but above all, it takes him being willing to do this. He obviously knows how you feel, but it sounds like he's just not there.

      I don't know what it takes for someone to choose to fight for someone they love - and for the right to love them - when the cultural constraints and old way of thinking are as strong as they obviously are, but I do know that when you've done all you can to try to convince someone and they can't be convinced, it's time to do the only thing you can do. Accept. Accept the reality that you can't change anyone, you can't make someone get there, you can't make someone fight for you. You can't take away someone's fears of going against the grain, you can't take away someone's inhibitions of doing something they've never done before. You can't change the way they've chosen no matter how much you want to. But you can accept that this isn't about you. This is about him. You're still everything you are, you still have everything to offer, you're still the same beautiful woman with so much love in your heart and soul.

      Find your peace in that acceptance; know that two people who are truly meant to be together will always find a way to make that happen; but they have to both be willing to do this. You can't do this alone. He has to be there, too. But know this, if he's not there, if he doesn't get there, there will be someone who can, who will love you in a way that you've never been loved before even if you can't imagine anyone but him right now. Love yourself, live your life to its fullest, focus on you. Surround yourself with the people who love you and support you and who want what's best for you. Don't let this change the beautiful woman you are inside. Set your own terms with him if you're going to be friends, if you can't do this, then don't. If you want to, then do. You're what matters here.

      • Thankyou so much Jane! As i said earlier, its really great how you help people and today youve helped me. I understood what you wanted me to understand. And yeah, not that it makes me feel very glad but atleast now i know what to do. Im grateful I found this blog :)
        Thanks again!
        Love
        Radhika

  22. I love this article. I'm going thru something like this, and just don't know what to do anymore. I dated a guy and we seemed to hit it off perfectly. He dropped hints that should have made it obvious he wasn't looking for a relationship though. He said he'd only had 1 girlfriend, and it lasted 3 months (we're both 25) and he told me a relationship/love is something he "wants but doesn't want at the same time." When he asked what I was looking for early on and I told him eventually, a relationship, he told me he'd need some "time to think about something like that." After talking to me every day for 2 months and dating for a month, he told me that he didn't want to lead me on, that he "liked me as more than just a friend," but that he wasn't ready for a relationship. I ceased contact, and didn't hear from him until 2 months later, when he asked me to meet him on campus so he could give me a birthday gift.

    He's texted me at least once a month since then, always with some question regarding school that he could easily ask his other friends. I've kept these conversations very short, and so did he. About a month ago, he started texting me persistently again, every single day, for 2 weeks. Thinking maybe he'd changed his mind, I gave it another shot. He asked to do dinner/movie on the weekend, and we did, but he treated me purely like a friend. As soon as I got home, he sent me another text and told me a funny story until I went to bed. However, when I initiated a text for the first time in months the next day, all I got were 2 word answers and he eventually stopped responding. Two weeks later, law school started and he coincidentally ended up being in my class of 150 people. The seats next to me were taken, but him and his friend sat in the row in front of me. Later that day, he texted me about the class and joked that one of us should switch seats so him and I could sit together. I ended the conversation, and haven't talked to him since. Just tonight, I posted something on social media about going to a poetry event, and he left a sarcastic comment saying "Thanks for the invite!."

    I'm really lost and don't know what to do anymore. I can't figure out if he's really just not ready for a relationship but wants to keep me in his life, or if he's just not that interested in me, but is keeping me around out of boredom. It's really an emotionally draining situation, and I'm not sure if I can be "just friends" assuming that's really what he wants.

    • Then decide what you want, Lana, and do that. You deserve so much more than sarcasm and this type of humor when you're not in this to play games with your heart. It doesn't matter why he wants to keep you around; you decide if you want to be "kept around". You're the one doing the choosing here.

  23. @radhika : i completely understand your pain and what you are going through as i too hail from Indian family background. i dunno..when a guy knows that his parents wont approve of love marriage then why on earth they approach girls. is this a game? why cant they have enough backbone to stand up for the girl they love? at least they can try to convince their parents. what kind of value is this? they can date a girl for years and when its time to get married then they will marry according to their parents' wish.

  24. Hey Jane,
    I really like your website, it's been helping me a lot. Sometimes, though, I find it difficult to take the advice you give, not because it doesn't make sense- it does, rationally, but emotionally, I just can't help going back to my old ways.
    I'm 20 and I've never really had any love-life, just a couple of dates with my crush of a year or so, which went terribly and made me realise that I needed to work on myself and stop obsessing about boys.
    Unfortunately, recently, I became friends with this really nice guy. He's my big brother's best friend, but he's my age. We met on a trip I took with my brother and his friends. He took an interest in me(probably because I'm his best friend's sister) and we talked a lot. I opened up with him like I haven't opened up with any almost-stranger before. I really thought we connected and were on the same wavelength. But as soon as the trip ended, we went our separate ways. He spoke to me a few times when I was on the phone with my big brother, and that was all. I pinged him on Facebook, because I really did want to keep in touch, and not because I have a crush on him or anything like that. All I got were short, disinterested replies. He also jokingly complained to my brother that I was pestering him on Facebook. So I gave up in disgust.
    But I can't stop obsessing. I don't allow myself to ping him anymore, but check my Facebook about 10 times a day just to see if he's on. I know it's stupid and I have much better things to do, but I can't stop. Maybe I was just overreacting? I know he's a great guy, he's been friends with my brother for more than two years now, my parents really like him and everything. I just don't understand how he could be so open and so friendly when we were face-to-face(for an introvert like me, there was never a moment that I didn't feel completely comfortable with him) and how he could be so closed-off now that he's far away. I should probably give up, but this crush is like a guilty pleasure. Little things keep reminding me of him and our trip. How do I stop thinking about him?

    • I hear exactly where you're coming from, Kira, and it's what you've discovered for yourself here that will help you to stop thinking about him. It's this loving with our emotions that we do so well. It's such a beautiful thing when we do this with someone who loves us back, who treats us the way we deserve to be treated, who is on the same page and wants the same level of commitment as we do - with us. But when it's not, we need a little more help than usual from our head - from our logical, practical minds that keep us on a reality check.

      We can never fully understand why someone behaves the way they do - and most of the time they don't even know themselves - how they can turn from behaving one way to another with such little effort, but they can and they do. So don't be too hard on yourself here, Kira; you had every reason to believe there might be more here. If it's meant to be, it will be, but only if both people want it to be. You don't want a one-sided relationship, you want someone who doesn't leave you wondering like this. You know all of this. You just need a reminder from that part of you that sees the reality of what is, before the emotion of what we so want it to be.

      • Hi Jane - Thank you for your words of wisdom. The one I receved from you today made everything clear after a painful breakup just before Christmas. I am not young 62 and he 65 we met online dating a year and a half ago and immediately hit it off, as we lived 70 miles from eachother we only got to see eachother at weekends and sometimes for only a day and a night. We packed so much into those weekends and got closer and closer,he was a very loving and affectionate man who kept telling me how he loved me and how lovely I looked etc. he introduced me to his big family and I got on really well with them all. We went on holiday together and had plans to get a camper and go round Europe, he was also going to take me to Malta, from his actions it felt as though we would be together forever into old age. He was an Engineer and just retiring from work this Christmas after 50 years and was finding it really stressful he also had lots of grandchildren which he was seeing all the time and which I found rather difficult at times because he would babysit them now and then it would cut into our time together, this did cause slight tension in an otherwise quarrel free relationship where we thoroughly lived life and enjoyed eachothers company. In October we went on a 3 day trip (the longest we had spent together ever) the trip was a nightmare, a long coach trip with people we didn't really get on with and it rained all the time! When we got back he seemed to cool towards me and then started to criticise me for some of things that had happened which I still dont really understand. Then a couple of weeks after that he got drunk (he liked a drink but was always a gentleman with me) and a bit obnoxious I criticised him and he went completely cold on me, like the Ice King, it was horrible. He then arranged to meet me not at my flat but in a cafe near me and said "It's not working is it" I just sat there shocked he said well you don't really like children do you and then starting knit picking about the trip we went on again. He said he wanted a break and then we went for a walk and he kissed me and hugged me so tenderly it was so painful. I haven't seen him since although he sent me a beautiful present of perfume for Christmas and sent me a text to wish me happy christmas but I was so devastated that I couldn't reply. Over the weeks he has not got in touch with me and I found it painful to see him on facebook and his family so have unfriended them all - when I did this I felt quite empowered but then rang him it took a lot of courage. He was really pleased to hear from me and said he had missed me and can we be friends and that it was all too fast. I said yes ok but am heartbroken, I have been crying every day for 2 months. That was two weeks ago and he hasn't rung me I have the feeling he wont. Your email today made such sense as I remember that when we first met he had said that he had been married for 35 years and loved his independence and that nothing would make him move from his flat as he had fought hard to get it after an unhappy marriage. I should have read the warning signs but he seemed to love me so much made such plans and would do anything for me that I just seemed to get whisked along. I still feel so much for him and miss him so much and just don't know how when he loves me so much he can just let me go. It's so painful.

  25. Hi Jane, I have written you before regarding the guy I dated for 8 months. He tried to move me into the friend zone and just wanted to keep in touch about once a week or so and do a check list of what has been going on in each others lives. I did this for about 6 weeks and then decided that I didn't think it was fair to me that he just wanted to be friends. I told him this our last phone conversation today and he got angry and just said fine then we won't talk anymore. He then said I am going to hang up before this gets ugly. I told him why does it have to get ugly. Can't we just have a phone conversation without it turning ugly?? He ended up hanging up on me. I really feel like he just wanted to be friends to feed his own ego and had no respect for my feelings and how much he truly mislead me and hurt me. I tried to call him back after he hung up and he turned his phone off. I just left him a voice mail that said he was very immature for doing that and he really needs to consider how he treats people. I really felt like I had to say something to finalize the goodbye because during all conversation I always walked on egg shells not to set off his temper. I feel good for leaving the voice mail and letting him know he cannot back me up to friends and keep me hanging on for what?!?! For the first time in several months, I feel like I have taken back the control over my life. At this point I really feel like he will not ever contact me again which will probably be a good thing. Maybe now I can move on to someone who truly wants to be with me!!!

    • Your strength is coming through here so beautifully, Allyson. You found out what so many of us discover when we finally decide that living a life on someone else's terms and walking on eggshells to try to avoid what we don't want to hear is no way to live. You find out what was really there and what wasn't. You find out that you were the one keeping things going. You find out what's really there when you say it like it is.

      When you're with someone who's on your page, who wants what you want, with the same level of commitment, with you, you'll be be able to have a phone conversation without it turning ugly and without having someone turn off their phone instead of speaking to you. It's no wonder you feel like you're finally back in control of your life. We don't realize the toll it takes on us - or the price we pay in our own confidence and self-respect - when we go along instead of standing and setting our own terms.

      Be so proud of yourself for listening to your gut instincts and deciding to do something about what you knew deep down was no way to live or to be loved. Now you've cleared the way for exactly what you've said; someone who truly wants to be with you!

  26. Hi Jane, thank you for this great article :-) I read through dozens of comments and had a question too... What do you think happens to a guy when he loves you for several years and you date often on for years and then he says he fell out of love and walks away and your heart broken. How do people fall out of love? He is a self sabotaging type of person, unfortunately, but now he is with someone and putting effort into a real relationship, supposedly. If he thought the world of me, loves me, had his issues yes but new how he felt, why would someone fall out of love? I never heard him. He said I was the single most positive influence in his life. At one time. It's always been him leaving.. Often on. He's been like a roller coaster with commitment, and sometimes unsure of his feelings as time goes on but why do people do this? Are there any answers. If he was someone who always felt confused that would be one thing. But he has truly loved me, thought I was very special important unique and had value. And now he sees no worth and value...(?) I don't hope for anything to happen with us in the future, but I'm devastated and crashed and just want the answer as to why..? We work together often on for years, and we've been apart for two years. We tried to be friends and that was the biggest mistake. I thought I could handle it and then it reopens the wound from all the years when we did date.. For anyone out there, being just friends is the worst mistake, I repeat the worst mistake you can ever make unless you want to break your own heart... This I know now, but I still ask why asked to why his feelings changed if he thought the world of me how does that go away? Justin FYI, I did not change at all if anything I matured and love him more was always encouraging caring loving etc. and challenging in a good way (not just the doormat) etc.... Would love to hear your thoughts Jane thank you

  27. Jenaea Wells says:

    Hi Jane, nothing has changed on my end. Feeling a little down, it hurts to want to be with a person and cant, want to move on and can't, I think if I could meet another good man like him I could move on!! Where are all of our good men sits hard to find one anymore.

    • I hear you, Jenaea. It's never easy when we want it to be different, we're only fighting against ourselves when we do this so it makes sense, but of course, we have such a difficult time accepting this. And isn't that always how we want it? To have someone else to replace him with so we can finally move on!

      You're so not alone here, Jenaea. Except that this is rarely how it happens. Instead, we're left to do the work on ourselves, to come to that place of letting go within ourselves by developing that strength within us to recognize, to accept and to choose us instead of being handed what we think we move us along.

      Know that the one's who come in their place too quickly are usually more of the same, a different face, a different name but so often similar in the ways that we don't want because we haven't seen the reality yet. They are out there - he's out there! - and he's looking to find you, too. Sometimes we need to try someone different, a different type, or a different place, or a different way of seeing, and what we find so elusive, ends up finding us.

    • Hi Jenaea,
      This is what you write to me a couple of weeks ago;
      "Hi Isa, my advice to you is stand strong, say what you mean, and mean what you say.Women makes mistakes when they say something and turns around and do what they say they wasn't gonna do.Keep your distance from him the minute you get close your heart melts, and you get butterflies in your stomach, and when that happens your weak just that quick, and that's give him all the ammunition he needs to hook you back in.You can do it, main thing is say what you mean, and mean what you say!!"

      Your msg gave me so much strengh and I struggled a lot. But everytime I come back to the things you and Jane have said to me.
      Im sorry to hear that you're situation hasn't changed, but your msg shows me how strong you are. If he really wants you and have you in a real relationship, he will go for it when he loses you.

      Hold on to your own strong words, they did help me. i am not there yet, but I've said him goodbye,set my limits and live my beautiful live and then god wil decide who the lucky man is to be with me!

      Love Isa

  28. Hey Jane,
    My best guy friend that I've know for about 3 years has recently become really close. We have been in situations a few times were we have been out or just chilling and he has grabbed me and kissed me and then just coontinues on. we recently had a conversation saying that we should just be friends and it wont go past that but straight after he grabbed me and kissed me again. i am so confuses and would like your advice :)

    • If he's your best guy friend for the last 3 years, Bree, it should be easy to talk to him and ask him why he's behaving like this. He could be testing the waters, looking to see what your reaction is, or he could be just playing around without any meaning at all, but if you really want to know and you're comfortable with him, telling him that you're confused by his actions and seeing how he responds will give you more to go on than trying to guessing what might or might be his story. It's really up to you and what you're looking for - or not looking for - from him. :)

  29. Hey Jane..
    I rlly need ur help... m 18 & hav a bf for d last 2.5 yrs.. we r prsntly in a long distance relationship fr d lst 9 months. we hv got physical four tyms but things never went to sex... he now wnts to break up saying that he dsnt wnt to harm me cz he is just too desperate to hav me & myt not control himself frm having sex . I rlly wnt him bck... we love each othr a lot. I tried convincing him but he is determined!

    • We all eventually come to the place where we realize that no matter how much we can see it, if we're the only ones, it's not going to work. We can't convince someone to be with us - to come back - if they don't choose this for themselves. It's not a reflection of you, Shazy, so don't take it personally, as hard as it is not to. If two people are right for each other, they both have to be on the same page and want the same thing with each other. You deserve someone who wants to be with you - who's already on the same page as you - and who's willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen. The sooner we accept that we can't make anyone love us or want to be with us, the easier our lives become.

  30. Rachel Anderson says:

    Great site and wonderful words of wisdom...hoping maybe some of you could share some of that wisdom with me and my situation....

    I feel like I'm paralyzed with indecision...and that maybe I know the answer and it's not what I want it to be...or maybe, just maybe someone has an answer that can help make it better.

    10 years ago I met "John". He was in the process of ending his marriage and his best friend was dating my best friend. We hit it off as friends, but that's all it was.

    A year later our mutual friends got married in Mexico and we hooked up at the wedding and we started casually dating.

    6 months later he made the decision to return to the mother of his child. I understood this and "sent him off" with my blessing.

    One year later that relationship had crashed and burned...and he and I ran into each other again. He confessed he had never quit thinking about me and we started dating again.

    Things progressed pretty quickly and before we knew it we were living together - it wasn't even really a conscious decision, it just sort of happened.

    And things we good...for three years.

    About 3 years into living together we had started to have distance and the intimacy in the relationship was quickly fading. He was no longer interested in being sexual or romantic with me. Our communication skills were awful and we never really tried to right this, we just let it happen. But neither of us could walk away either.

    Over the next 2 years we continued to lived together, but we ended up becoming good friends and roommates rather than a couple. Inside I was dying and couldn't imagine that my life would end up like this, but at the same time I truly respected and loved him as a friend. I think he felt the same but finally made the move to move out. We swore we'd stay friends.

    And we did. For the next two years we were BEST friends. We did everything together...holidays, family events, movie nights, dog walks, etc. Honestly, all of our friends thought we were still a couple. But there was nothing romantic. Nothing.

    But neither of us dated other people either - not necessarily intentionally, but I don't think either of us made it a priority.

    Until last summer. John told me he was dating someone. She was young, it was just a fling, and at first I was ok with it. Until I wasn't....and I realized that subconsciously I had always thought "John and I will end up back together" . This was the wake up call that that might not be the case.

    I told him how I felt...but he told me he was confused and taken aback...that he had made peace with us just being friends a long time ago and had never imagined us getting back together.

    I pursued a reunion anyway and eventually he agreed to give it a try...and we've been trying for the last 8 months...but while our friendship is as strong as ever, John never quite got that "romantic feeling" back for me - but he wanted to, he said so and I saw it in his actions...but for whatever ever reason he just kept hitting a wall when it came to that. He has said on many occasions "if God put together the perfect woman for me, it would be you" and "You are my favorite person on the planet and I love you more than anyone else" but he just didn't see a romantic future for us together.

    And it hurt me...a lot...and I broke things off...we both agreed that it just wasn't working trying to force it.

    So here we are...my broken heart, because I still see the future that could have/should have been...and Jim desperately wanting to return to right before he told me about the other woman - back to the friendship that was SO good...And I KNOW he loves me...he shows me with words and actions every day...and it hurts him that he's hurting me...and the idea of losing the one person who has loved me so honestly and unconditionally in my entire life is just too painful to imagine.

    Is there anyway to either A) Get over his romantic hurdle of being a couple or B) Get back to just being friends when I'm still so obviously "in love" with him.

    What can we do????

    • Such a hard place for you to be, Rachel. I so hear your pain, your aching heart. That thought that you'll end up together in the end can be so strong that when a piece of reality hits that suggests otherwise, it can have such a powerful effect on us. I'm wondering if you've considered counseling; if he's willing to go, or if not, if you are. You have such a history, so much between the two of you. It sounds like there's still so much there, and yet it also sounds like there's so many other things in the way, especially for him. Those are big issues, and you both have to be willing to work on them. Not just you. And that's something that a marriage or couples counselor can help you sort out.

      It really comes down to how much of this is "him" and "you" and how much is "us" and "we". If this is his romantic hurdle, then it's his to sort out, and while you can support him in doing so, he has to want to. You can't do this one for him. And as for you being capable of getting back to just being friends with him when you're still so in love with him, that's a tall order for you. You have to decide what being with him on his terms, on terms of friendship instead of romantic love, is worth to you. Only you know if you can live like that with him in your life when you want more than that. Only you know what it's worth to have a friendship with him when you long for more. Try to walk through what that would look like on a daily basis and you'll have more of an idea of whether or not you can live that way - or not.

      You know in your heart what's going on here, Rachel. As painful as it is to look at it in the light of reality versus how you so want it to be, it's more painful in the long run to live a fantasy. Trust yourself, you know what you need. You know what you can live with and what you can't. Take a step back, breathe, and see what comes up for you. Think about what you would say to your best friend if she presented you with this same scenario, what would you say to her? Be true to yourself, be honest with yourself. You always know, no matter how complicated it seems, there's a truth that is yours alone that knows what you need, what you can live with, and what speaks to you here. Listen to it. Sit with it. You've got a lot of history here, but it's always about what you have right here right now before you today. I hope this helps a little; I know it's not easy.

  31. I know a man likes me a lot, but he is not ready for a relationship since he just broke up with his former relationship shortly. He flirted with me, but I really do not know what he has to face. I like him a lot and may love him. One day, he told me he can not give me what I need. He want me to be his friend. He does not want me to go. After I think about, I decide to be his friend. Just be there for him, I hope he can recover soon. I know that I may not be the right person for him, but I really want him to be happy. He is a such nice guy. It is really hard for me, but I will try my best to handle it. Sometimes, I think that woman is silly. I am. If you were me, what will do?

    • Believe him, Angie. When someone tells you he can't give you what you need, that's exactly what he means. Of course he doesn't want you to go. Of course he still wants to be friends. But this isn't about him; this is about you choosing how you want your life to be, and whether you're content staying with someone on the terms he's defined for you when they're not your terms.

      Love isn't meant to be something that's hard, that you "try your best to handle". Love is meant to feel loving, and caring and giving! Love is about two people who are on the same page who want the same thing with each other and are willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen. You can't make a relationship on your own; it has to come from him as much as it comes from you.

      It's fine to be someone's friend, but make sure that's truly what you want and not just something you're settling for while you're wanting so much more. It's a beautiful thing to want someone else to be happy; but remember that this is about your happiness, too. Only you know what you can live with and what you can't - and what he's worth to you. But if you're with someone who's truly right - and ready - for you - you'll never need to convince him of why he should want to be with you; he'll already know.

  32. hi jane,

    another great article. remember mE?
    LOL. yah i think i am on the same page with sandie and allyson.. but i am still in contact with my guy he's in new york now and long distance..

  33. Hi jane,

    pls advice.
    I've been dating a guy for 3 years because he was in the navy we barely see each other due to long distance. he said he is not ready to be my full time bf. he cannot give what i want. but he doesn't want me to lose in his life completely. he said he doesn't really know what he want. i don't want to be mean to him but what will be the question to ask without being pushy? or should i wait for him? but its been a year. am i just wasting my time?

    • The question is, Rose, what do you want? What do you need? You're not going to be mean to him - or pushy - by being direct with him. You say it's been a year, and he's still telling you he's not ready to be your full time boyfriend and he can't give you what you want. Of course he doesn't want to lose you completely, because he knows what a prize you are! You're not going to change him, you're not going to bring him around, it has to come from him. A year is a long time to wait for someone, but only you know what he's worth to you and how long you're willing to wait. Set your own time limit, decide why you're waiting. And then do what brings you the most amount of peace and calm, and leaves you with the least amount of regrets. You have to decide if you're wasting your own time, you have to come to that for yourself, Rose, because you're the one who has to live with yourself, and you're the only one who's walking in your shoes. Choose you first, and see what follows. You know; you always know what to do in your heart.

  34. hi. this is my first time on this site and I've had a 9 month relationship with a man who's never been married , never had kids, never had any other committed relationship long term. I decided to change that about him.
    I am a divorcee since 2012 with two young children. I went on match.com after agony of being alone without a man in my life after 2 years since divorce. I met this guy I mentioned above and he claims that he wants us to be friends with benefits. we have been intimate since our 3rd date and I see him mostly at night (he lives 15 min. away) this is the time for movies, casual sex, conversations, snack. I am stuck . he give me presents: TV set, underwear, leather jacket, gift cards, takes me on dates to movies, restaurants. He does not want to spend time with my children or get attached to them. I begged him to see my kids hoping he will change his mind about being not committed to me. Up to this point he is still seeing me as a "friend" and will not let me touch him in public, he would not let me kiss him in public, or hold his hand. He yells before we come to a close distance "I am too shy, do not kiss, do not touch"

  35. this is me again. I am an anxious person and I am not really true to myself : I do not have self respect because I let this happen to me. I let him use me and my time. So I am writing to you that it is hard to let go of someone's hand when you've been holding on to it for even a short time, 9 months in my case. he is the friend that would help with little things like fixing a broken drawer, finding a good car deal. I do have a brother and my brother would give me a good advise as well. So I cannot say that this friend is indispensable. but I am used to his company. I know what will happen if I stopped calling , texting, deleting his e-mails. He would start pursuit and I would give in to the sameness. I am too weak. my children (6 and 10) have asked about him, have seen me sad about the situation and have listened my explanations. When my friend comes over. He sleeps over. They know he is in the apartment but he would not see kids, because it would be "awkward, weird, stupid" for them to know that he is also sleeping over next door. He says " I do not want to break their little hearts" in response to my requests for him to be more open and committed in the relationship with me. I let this go on and it is up to me to end this but I am not as strong at this point.

  36. there is little time for me to meet a decent man and date him. this is why I went on match with the advise of my friends. I guess it is true that there is "plenty of good fish" around , but sometimes you need help from a matchmaker. the site is a joke in terms of finding your match, but it offers a pool of singles whom you'd never have met if it wasn't for this site. This man is only 15 minutes away and I 've never knew he existed. I've lived here for over 20 years and am getting to know a little about the dating world from people I 've met so far.

    • I so hear you, Irina. It can be all too easy to get caught up in settling for some crumbs - albeit some really good crumbs compared to the alternative of being alone again - even though you know in your heart that you deserve more. He's telling you and showing you where he stands, and what his terms are, by his words, by his actions. When he says he doesn't want to get to know your children, when he says that he's too shy so don't kiss or touch, when he buys you presents but can't give you himself on an emotional committed level, you know exactly what his terms are and what he's willing to give you and what he isn't.

      You're so right that this isn't about him, that it becomes about you then. And yes, while you understand that it is you who allows this to go on and it is up to you to end this, you have to want to. It has to become worth it to you, giving him up for what you get in return. It's never easy, but it's always your decision, and you always get to choose who and what you allow in your life.

      I know all too well just how much easier this is said than done, Irina, but when you're ready, there is always a renewed strength that finds us no matter how weak we feel. There is something about standing up, in our time, in our own space, and declaring who we are, what we're worth, and what we will and will not accept in our lives. It's all about what you can live with, and what you can't. Trust yourself; deep down we always know what to do even when we convince ourselves we don't.

  37. Dear Jane,

    I have been reading your blog for couple of days and I felt that you are such an insightful person and that you are really good at giving opinions on relationship issues. i'm in my early twenties. my boyfriend is too but he is 1 1/2 months younger than me. We have been in a relationship since 2012 August. However, both of us are in university and in the same faculty. I kind of liked him from the start but i used to be this anti-social person so we couldnt really get to know each other at first. Later i got to know that he liked me too bcz my friends and his friends had arranged this study session to get me to talk to him. and it worked. i couldnt really believe it but it was great to know that he liked me back too...so we eventually got to know each other...it was a slow process...but he asked me out and we have been in a relationship together...i wanted to tell my parents about us after about 3 months and we did....my parents werent all that happy but didnt really say anything. after about 7 months from our relationship, his mother got to know about us after finding some cards (b'day, valentines....). it must be said that his parents are overprotective..that s what he says. So his parents wanted to talk to my parents about this without letting us go any far..so as u might have heard, we believe in horoscope compatibility and both families believe but his parents take it very seriously. In fact his mother had even asked him if he would break up with me if they ask him to do so..due to any reason and he had told them yes. but when he told me this he said that he just said it. We were great together...true that we had ups and downs but we were great. we are both very patient and all. So our parents talked and horoscopes were matched and from my side it was alright but from his side it was not very good. His family had gone to several astrologers and one of them had even thrown th horoscopes but thw other places had been fine. So his mother called to fix a date to come and visit us and while talking my mother asked if the house will be given to my boyfriend. please do not think bad of my mother, because generally, the guy is expected to have a house...yet my bf is so young and my parents didnt think about it much so yes it was a mistake on their side. However, my parents have planned to give one of their houses and all the lands (tea,rubber cultivations) to me and they expect my partner to be stable and i think they were too eager to know if he had something...also his mother had said that the degree i m pursuing is better than his one and truly it is, and my mom agreed. Then his mom said that they are planning on making him do LLB and my mom said it would be really good and all. Also my mom added that she didnt want to suggest anything like that first because if she did they would think that my mom was setting rules...and his mother had said, there is nothing like that...now we can both ask them certain things and its not setting rules. I thought is went well. Btw, my bf wasnt at home when his mother finally called..so he only knows what he heard from her..and the sister. This happened in 2013 May. Latr my bf told me that my parents have asked for a house and also have set certain rules and all. his parents think that they were insulted. She has told my bf that my mom asked him to do an LLB :( my mother just agreed to what she said. the only thing m mom did was asking about the house and that was a mistake and was wrong . So they had asked my bf to break up with me and we were devastated. but when we met up and talked he told me that his parents have misunderstood and all. however we didnt end things that day...but he told me that he cant lose his mom. :( later he had sent me a picture on FB which said "I can lose myself but l cant lose my mother" it hurt si much but i justified him by thinking that it was his mother and i actually ignored it. at the end of all of this we had been together for 9 months. i asked him if he would always choose his parents and he said yes....i was so sad to hear that. then later i asked him even if it had been 3 years would you still choose his parents and he again said yes...i was devastated and i told him i would stay with him till our exams finished but after that i needed and answer . so after that he told me he didnt want to break up but he would want to try...again.. so i agreed.... hoping things would change. However since then we hit a rough patch and he tried to distance himself in certain ways...communication was limited to texting and to uni days..we didnt go on much dates. we went for a movie once and he said that someone had told his parents abt it. Same wit the Anniversary date. Our physical intimacy went down the road..i had to ask for a hug or a kiss...PDA wasnt possible in our country anyway but still once in a while in uni it was possible.
    NOW we are taking an INDEFINITE break. For today, it s been 1 month. He texted and asked me if we can hold the relationship off for a while on the same day i asked for a kiss on the cheek and i told him i wont let him be distant. He stayed with me this long so i assumed he didnt want to break it off. Since he was depressed bcz of his parentsi thot i shudnt stop trying. i thought at least i should keep it going.

    and now he WOULDNT tell me why he wanted the break. He actually gives me lot of reasons. "its bcz he wudnt be able to give up on me if we stay togther" / "bcz he doesnt want to get caught by parents - (they found the watch i gave him for his bday. his mom had asked him not to accept gifts from me)........now we have stopped calling each other by pet names, no hugging, kissing, holding hands at uni or anywhere. uni people still thinks we are together. He wants us to act as best friends but he doesnt know till when...We still text because he wouldnt stop texting and he pleads that i do too. i cant help but think about the fact that he stayed despite his parents decision.

    I m soooo confused :( he wants me to wait but he doesnt clearly tell me that we will be back together. he also said that this break will help us IF we were EVER to break up...this is driving me insane...Last Friday i told him that "Let's move on with our lives" and stopped texting but he wouldnt stop. He doesnt want to tell our friends that we have broken up..he says we havent broken up completely so we will tell only the inner circle people that we are holdng off the relationship for a while...I think that means others will still see us as a couple....

    We are in our final year and we have only about 8 or 9 months at uni..i cant help but feel like he s stringing me along till uni finishes :( he s a nice person but he cares SO much about what OTHERS think.

    Should i wait for him?????

    p.s. his brothers and sister arent helping him.....though he helped the elder brother in his affair.....bcz my parents asked about the house i think :(

    Thank you SOOOO much Jane..and sorry that it s very long..

    • and Jane, he hasnt told his long time friend (female) that we stopped dating one month ago...

    • You've got so many cultural and other rules going on here affecting your relationship, Bee, that you really have to take a look at all of this in the context of all the players - his family, your family, him, you - because this is clearly not just about him and you, but about so many other people and cultural customs that are the decision makers as well for him. You can't change him, you're not going to convince him to stop caring so much about what other people think. He has to decide what he wants to do and what he can live with before he can make a decision about you.

      So this becomes, as it always does, about you and what you can live with. What if he never changes? What if he always chooses his mom over you? Because there are no guarantees or assurances he can give you; you only have his actions and his behavior toward you and your relationship with him right now to go on. You have to decide what going along with his terms is worth to you, as he clearly has some very specific rules and terms that you're finding out about.

      Trust your gut instincts; look at the reality of what is, of all the people that affect him and his decisions, and choose to do whatever gives you the greatest peace and calm about all of this, and what leaves you with the least amount of regrets. You have just as much right to make your own decision about what you can and can't live with because it's not just about what he can live with; it's about what you can live with, too.

      • Thank you so much Jane. I know that I want him. He's a nice guy. it s just he is not strong enough to fight for me. and i can't expect him to leave his family anyway. that will make both of us miserable. It's not something he will anyway do for me...now i have lessened contacts with him(just the GM n GN texts). I will eventually, stop contacting him...that way it will be easier for both of us.....
        and Jane, i don't know how he will change or whether he will choose me over his mom IF we ever get back together....but once when i told him that I couldn't live with a momma's boy, he told me that he would grow up..
        I have found peace because I learnt to look at the problem from his perspective as well and i found a way to justify him. He says that his parents are perfect and that's why he finds it hard to go against their wish...so I taught myself that he's a family person and if we were ever to get back together he will love his own family the same way...
        I hope I don't sound too optimistic or irrational. Like you said, it's not just about me or him. It is a harsh reality and I am still hurt. But once we learn to make peace with our own thoughts it is easier i guess but that is not easy. I just hope everything turns out well for all of us.

        I learnt something from a drama I watched. If the person you love, doesn't love you back (the same way you love them), the best way to love them is to not love them at all because that way they will not be burdened.

        Good Luck people!!! :) I will keep you posted Jane. Thank you very much for your lovely word..

  38. Hi Jane

    I wonder what you think is going on here. My partner broke up with me just before Christmas and in January I phoned and we agreed to be friends and he said he would ring me but he never did get back in touch until 2 weeks ago he texted me saying he really missed me and that we should talk. I texted back yes ok and he rang me, After a great phone call where he said we should meet up and we talked a bit about where we would meet he said he would ring me. He hasn't rung and I find this incomprehensible. He has stirred up all my emotions again as I was starting to get over him (although I still missed him terribly) but was dealing with it and not contacting him at all and now this? I know this sounds really immature and we are both in our 60s honestly what on earth is his problem?

    • It sounds like you're finding out what his comfort - and commitment - level is with you, Linda. And as frustrating as this is, it really comes down to whether these terms of your friendship that he's obviously come up with on his own, are agreeable for you as well. Of course you miss him, of course it's hard to not hang onto his calls, his words as some kind of hope that he's coming back around and so that's why it's so hard to not be affected by his actions here.

      You aren't going to change him - or the way he's handling all this - but you can take your own power back and let him know what your terms are and what is acceptable to you. How you do this, how you set your boundaries to protect your own heart and emotions is entirely dependent on what he's worth to you, and what having him in your life on some level is worth to you. Once you figure that part out, you can define your own terms for your "just friends" relationship and move on from there. Easier said than done, I know.

  39. Thanks for your reply Jane - such a wise head on young shoulders. I guess his comfort and commitment level is governed by the baggage he has from a 35 year marriage when his kids had grown up and left home he eventually ended it. He hardly ever talks about his feelings like a lot of men but I do know it was a very unhappy existence for the last few years of the marriage. The trouble is we do get on so well and enjoy eachothers company and do great things.

    I would like to be more than friends but have decided to give it a try as this is what he has said he wants but he keeps getting cold feet about meeting me, he seems fine on the phone and asks me all about what I have been up to and shares what he has been doing. He suggests we meet and then gets cold feet! I just want to get it over with and meet up so that we can see where our relationship is going. I am going to reclaim my power Jane and thank you for reminding me that I have this option. I will give it a few more days and then will call him and set the meeting up.
    Well at least I have tried men again after a 15 year break! and I can report that it is still hard at any age.
    The good thing to come out of this is that I have learned a lot about myself and with the help of your website Jane and the forum and lots of self help books!!

    I have also learned that some men are very cruel and selfish and that they only think about their hurt and what they want and don't want, like little babies when their mothers feed them on demand. Maybe that is where the problem lies and that most of these men have been spoiled by their mothers who have given into them too many times.

    I am not giving up on true love though Jane and if this relationship doesn't work out will not be discouraged.

    Will keep you updated as to what happens - lots of love to you from the UK and keep up the good work you do xxxx

    • Thank you, Linda; I'm so glad this helped you. You're getting all this; you're figuring it out. I'm glad you're using this opportunity to learn so much more about yourself; there's so much there when we understand some of the basic principles of why we do the things we do and what lies underneath the surface. I'll look forward to your updates. Linda, as I've no doubt there's so much more to come for you :)

  40. Dear Jane,

    Maybe nice to have an update from somebody. A couple of months ago you helped me so well. If I read the words again I feel that you're so right. I am truly living my life!
    Of course I also had mistakes.

    The guy wanted to be special friends and I still don't believe that he has no feelings for me and it is fear of commitment.After your msges I stopped contacting him and got some rest, however then we got into contact again and we would be friends only. So the first night as friends out, He starts to be jealous again, cuddling me, walking hand in hand, arm around etc! I told him that these things are confusing me as he should consider my feeling that are still left! Than he got into denial:

    I was interpreting everything wrong, he was allowed to touch me, he was not jealous, i was obsessed etc.
    The worst thing: later I went to speak to him saying that I cant be friends with him in this way! He said I don't want to date you but relaxe and then he start to cuddle with me again!! That is crossing my bounderies, and again I was wrong in his eyes.. I begged, pleaded, paniced, cried after that in his face ( so embarrassing).

    Right now I told him goodbye in a letter, told him that before but this time it is for real. Everytime he responds with see u some day, call you later as he still doesn't want to let me go. It has been 3 weeks no contact at all :)
    I regained power by setting my terms!! I got rest as i know i didn't misinterpretate everything, my friends and family help me realising that it is really him who has a problem. They find him manipulative.
    I also took a big step in order to follow my dreams! So proud.

    I am so proud that I have fought for this guy, being able to love. I am proud that I have set my terms. I am proud to say I live my life being happy!
    But deep down in my heart I hope he will realise what he has lost and will come back to me!
    Thank you Jane!

    Love Isa

    • Oh Isa, thank you so much for your update! Be so proud of yourself! You have discovered so much about what it means to set your own boundaries, to hold your own, to take back your own power and to refuse to accept someone else's terms for your relationship unless you can truly, honestly live with them yourself! How beautifully you've expressed all this, Isa. You have no idea how inspiring it is to me to hear from you, to hear of how you've discovered these realities for yourself by choosing you first, by feeling that confidence that comes from putting your feelings into actions and refusing to accept anyone else's definition of you except your own. Be so proud of taking a big step in order to follow your dreams. Be so proud that you were able to see when to hold on and try harder, and when it was also time to let go. The wisdom to know the difference is no small thing, especially when your emotions run so deep.

      It's a beautiful thing coming to that place of being happy on your own, Isa, when you've gotten there yourself, for yourself and because of you and your own choices and not because of what anyone else did or didn't do. Of course you hope deep down in your heart he'll realize what he has lost and come back to you, but with this new strength of yours, this new life and happiness you've created for yourself, what you also now know is that you only want him back if he gets to where you are, if he can give you what you need, and if he's on the same page as you. That's how you'll know. And if not him, Isa, there will be someone else who gets this, who gets you, who sees the beauty of this beautiful woman you are with so much to offer someone worthy of you!

      • Thank you Jane,

        I printed your answer on paper so I can read it everytime I need it.
        This is not about being lonely or about low self esteem. As I am not lonely and have self esteem. This is about a man who knows how to 'play' this game in order to get what he wants om his terms without having to commit as that is too scary for him. This is his control over me. He has been here before and knows how to react on me to get what he wants.

        Previously, i never had any experience with non committed man. Unfortunately, I had to learn the hard way how to deal with a person like this.

        I learned that I kept true to myself, that I didn't play the game. I may have begged or tried to convince him but I was honest and myself. And that is what he will remember! I learned that there is a way out and that It is not me, but his issues and I gave him the opportunity to deal with it together with me and he wanted to let me go!
        He was soo jealous and now he will realise that he pushed me away giving me the chance to find another man.
        I allmost thank him for letting me go as he nows I deserve more than he can give.

        Jane, I prayed for you and I thank you for being out there to help all these wonderfull woman!

        Love Isa

  41. I've seen this time and time again. He says he doesn't want a relationship and then one day he tells the woman, "I've got something to tell you. I've met someone." To be happier to have him as a friend as rather not in your life at all stinks of desparation. What's he actually offering YOU? You can have a friendship with someone of the same sex without all these underlying currents going on. I'm afraid you are damaging yourself when you say you still love him but would continue with just a friendship. Don't deny what is your true self because if you do it will just be a temporary coping mechanism. You don't to 'release' yourself to concentrate on finding someone who wants a relationship as well, you can 'release' yourself to be by yourself. Truth is, you sound a bit lonely but many of us are perhaps lonely to some extent. You can bet your bottom dollar you will feel much more alone in this half relationship. Always go with where a relationship is in reality not what it could be one day, that's fantasy. Sorry to sound so harsh but he wants his cake to eat it and continue to eat it with some other woman in the future. The longer this scenario goes on the harder you will fall.

  42. It is really hard that we hang onto these unavailable men and I am guilty of it. Unfortunately it takes time to get over a broken heart and the trouble with 'just being friends' is that it's not really what we want and we are just going along because we still hope! A very wise old women I once knew when I was much younger said to me:- young women are like chickens they peck around in the dust for little crumbs thrown to them. I have always remembered her words of wisdom.

    Stay strong girls and us chickens need to stick together and start to rule the roost! xxxxx

  43. Hi Jane,

    You were right. That guy just wants to be friend and may have sex with if I want. When I saw him last week, I feel that he likes me a lot. But that is all. He has talked about sex for several time. I thought about couple days then I finally decide to have sex with him. During our conversation that he likes me, but he wants to have sex with me and he is not sure that he can give me love. I was ready for having sex with him. I was stupid believe that if he put me in bed and we will finally be done since he does not love me only my body. But he refused, he said he can not. He hold me and I can feel his desire. After I left his place, he told me that his heart is broken for another girl. He still loves the girl. He wants to have sex, but he does not want to use innocent woman. But he does not know that he used me already. Not my body, it is my soul. I have refused a guy who I know for long time, because I feel that I am still interested in him. He could die for her. He said " there are some days, he wants to be the last day". I found out that we have some in common. If I love someone, I could be crazy about. He is the same. I am not sad for myself right now. I know that I can be myself again since I have a son who needs me to take care of. But it is so poor that a woman loves a man who loves other one although she broke his heart.

    Why I am so stupid that I want him to be happy, but I feel that I am powerless. He can not promise me - love. I requires more loves and cares more than most women.

    What should I do? How can I just leave him alone?

    • You're not stupid, Angie; you've simply bought into a definition of love that has nothing to do with love. You're a beautiful woman who doesn't realize her own worth, who doesn't realize just how strong she is. You're caught up in this "feeling" that seems so strong, that you're allowing to have such a strong pull on you, but the reality is, it's so clear and you do see it for yourself. When you say, it's not your body, it's your soul, you're exactly right. You get what's going on here. When you give yourself away like this, you do the most damage to your own self, so much more than he could ever do. So then you are the one who can change this!

      You can stop the damage from recurring anymore than it already has, Angie, and you can find your way to healing what's already been done; but you have to want to. You have to truly have had enough of settling for someone else's terms. You have to be willing to recognize the reality of what is instead of holding on to the fantasy of what you so want it to be. In that clarity, you'll find that it's very easy to just leave him alone. You see you for who you are; you see him for who he is, and you don't go to that place that's so familiar where he becomes a trigger, a link to something deeper within you that has everything to do with you and why he has such an effect on you, and nothing to do with him.

      Don't wait for him to be done, because of course he refused to be done. He knows what he's got in you and how lucky he is that you let him have his way with you! Because if he was the one who ended it, you wouldn't get to feel that feeling of empowerment that's yours and yours alone when you stand up for who you are and what you deserve and say "enough!" We think it will be so much easier if it comes from someone else because then we'll have no choice but to let go, but you're denying yourself such a gift by not taking your own power back and drawing your own line in the sand. That's how we get there, that's how we find out just how strong we really are. Because when you commit to yourself like this, when you let it be known that you are no one's second choice, you become the prize. Don't let anyone let you miss out on that one, Angie; for once you find that strength, there's no telling what you can do, and there's no settling for second best ever again. Find it in you!

      • Thank you very much Jane. I know that I am so stubborn. I just need time to heal myself. I am beautiful and smart but not for relationship. I need a right person who love me a love and cares me to come in my life. I will let it go just the matter of time, I guess.

        He loses me that is his loss not mine. I will not give anyone second chance to hurt me again. I will not. When the right time comes, the right person will come into my life.

        • Exactly, Angie; you're seeing this for what it is!

          • Hi Jane,

            I think that i got hurt so much because i fell in my dream. I want to have a loving and happy family which is my dream which match what he wants. So he got me. But he does not care. I hit really hard by my dream. I had hard time to accept it. Once i realized that is just my dream, i will be recover fast. Right now, i realized what i really want to have in my life. I need to work on.

  44. Hi Jane,

    Recently I met this guy online, we hit it off well the first time we met. Then he took a business trip we mostly talked and he asked me to be his GF. I agreed, he got hurt and basically I was there for him for those weeks. He then tells me he is still in love with his ex and that really made me upset. I continue to sleep with him but then I feel like he is just using me for sex until she comes around or he finds someone else. He told me I am too good for him,etc. I never thought I would be someone bed buddy but that seems like this is what it is.

    I don't have much experience in dating because I've been married since a very young age. I have come to the conclusion I do not want to continue this--well whatever this is. I just need to have the guts to tell him. It really hurt me today when I found out he has created another profile on the site we met and states he is looking for a relationship.

    So basically I guess I am not good enough for a relationship but in the couple of weeks of us meeting he express he was happy and took his profile down and he couldn't wait to see what will happen between us. It just hurts that he has such a change of heart. My question is should I just be his friend without the sex or cut him off completely because of the fact he lead me on in the beginning like he really wanted to be with me.

    I hate dating and just hope the next guy that comes along is the one for me and not some fly by night bed buddy.

    • Have the guts for the one person who needs you to stand up for her more than anyone else in the world, Mary; you! You deserve so much more than being someone's "bed buddy", but until you realize this for yourself, it doesn't matter what anyone else says or does, you will only be able to find the guts when you see this for what it is. What honors and respects you? Being his friend without the sex or cutting him off completely because he led you on?

      You have to do what you can live with, Mary, but ask yourself what someone in your shoes who knew what she was worth, what she deserves, and refused to settle for anything less than this would do. And then do that, because that is who you are!

      Try to see dating as an adventure and not just about finding Mr. Right. I know that's easier said than done, but if you look at it as a opportunity to meet new people, and experience new places and activities that you might not have otherwise done, it will take some of the pressure off and allow you to just be and enjoy instead of making this into an all or nothing experience that you dread.

      It takes real time to get to know someone well enough to know if he's worthy of you in the first place, so don't rush it. You're the one with so much to give and offer someone who is on the same page as you, who wants the same thing as you do and is willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen. Don't settle for less than that!

      • Thank you, Jane! I appreciate your input. :)

        • You're so welcome, Mary! :)

          • Hello Jane,

            **Update** The guy and I are still talking...its strange because I was completely done with him but he would call or text me and eventually I started seeing him again,we had a few disagreements but he says he cares a lot about me and loves me..but now he annoys me at times and I don't know why but sometimes I don't want to even be bother with him and he sense it but I tell him no worries I do want to talk and see him. He recently moved into a home and its very nice and I offered to help him paint which would give us something different to do together.

            We went out a couple of times and I had a nice time actually but there are things that just annoys me about him and I try not to be so nick picky but I can't help it at times. I believe I care about him and want him in my life its a slow process I guess. We haven't met each other's family yet but I told my mom about him and he told his mom about me. I am in no rush to let my mom meet him yet.

            One time we were talking and he mention we could get married and and save money living together. I simply nodded but I felt it is just to early on talking about moving in together and getting married. He hasn't mention it lately but I feel he may just want to settle down with me soon and get hitched.

            One of my problem is I compare him to my ex-husband a lot and I should not do that. Example: My ex-husband is a very hard worker and has never slept pass 8am even on weekends. Well (he) will sleep all day with me because Im a late sleeper but Im not really use to that and it annoys me sometimes, I know lol Im bad plus he's a little messy at times. Also his eating habits are very bad and I tend to eat mostly healthy except for weekends, but I guess Im just nick picking...I dont know. :(

          • It sounds like you're not sure, Mary, so take your time to really know and don't worry about his timeline. It takes time to figure out if the things that bother you are what's really bothering you or if there's something else you're not sure about. If you're comparing him to your ex, it may well be that he's not measuring up in the ways you appreciated your ex and that's what's going on. How does he treat you? And what are you looking for from him? Write out your list of qualities that matter the most to you, and see how many of those he has. How truly compatible are the two of you? Do you share the same values? Do you have enough in common to keep you together? Sometimes writing it out - journaling, putting it on paper, makes it more clear. Only you know the answers here, Mary, but in time, the answers will reveal themselves, either from you, or from him.

  45. Hi Jane-
    I have been dating this guy for the last two months. Everything was going great, he was courting me, extremely respectful, always asking me how I'm doing, all the things a girl should expect from a normal courtship. He even went on a trip and was in contact the entire time and sending me pictures and asking how my day was going. Everything he was doing and saying was super sweet and genuine. After he came back from his trip, we spent an entire day together, I even met some of his close friends. All the signs that this was headed in the right direction. The following day after our long date, he messaged me saying that he hopes I have an amazing day. Then I don't hear from him for 5 days, no contact at all. I contact him and he said he got hyper focused with his work, as he's about to start a surgery residency. I was honest with him and said that he has been consistent all this time and now to zero, it's just confusing. Long story short, we end up makin plans to see each other a couple days later, but I could tell he was being a bit distant. The night we were supposed to see each other, he told me, over text, that he would like to see me but just as friends at this point, if that's ok with me. And doesn't want me to go through the hassle of meeting up just to hear that. It completely caught me off guard as the entire time of his courtship, I felt it was headed in a different direction. I asked him why and he said that with all that's going on with his professional career, he just doesn't think he can handle a relationship and he doesn't want to drag someone else through the uncertainty. Quite honestly, I wasn't expecting a ring on my finger, I just wanted to establish a little bit of depth to whatever we had going on, to set a bit of reality to the situation. He said that the timing is just not right for him, and I get that, but if a man wants you, all of you, he will fight any circumstance to make it happen. And that's what has been hurting me the most over the past week, trying to make sense of it all. Because he was acting one way as if he did want me, and then all of a sudden it was a switch, out of no where, in the matter of a couple days! He contacted me the following day and the day after that being very sweet still, but I just haven't answered him back. I told him I'm at a point in my life where I want to be with someone who wants to be with me equally. I'm not sure what to do, but I feel like ignoring the situation is one thing, but my feelings are also another. I'm not like him where I can just flip a switch and change gears to friendship zone just like that. Any insight?

    • This is about what you can live with and what you can't, Lisa. You, not him. This one's your decision. Sometimes this is the easiest way for someone to avoid feeling guilty or bad for leading you on by keeping some level of contact - as in "let's still be friends". But if you want more and maintaining some contact with him is only going to keep you stuck in the hoping, wishing, holding pattern of "maybe if I just accept this and see what happens" kind of fantasy, you're only going to be hurting yourself in the long run.

      Choose you first, Lisa, whatever that looks like to you. If it's a real relationship with someone who's on your page and capable of giving you what you're looking for, don't settle for anything less than that. You're not anyone's second best, regardless of what's going on with him or what he's saying to you. The reality of what is is what you see right now. Don't settle for less than you know in your heart you deserve with him or anyone else!

      • Thanks for your words Jane! I know I can't change his decision, he made up his mind. I told him if he's not feeling it, then I can't force him. I think what has me the most hurt and confused is the way he portrayed himself to be so interested in me and so invested and all of a sudden to nothing. The "let's just be friends" part was the real stinger. Also, realizing the fact that he just doesn't want to be with me, end of story. Why invest all this time and energy then? Why couldn't we just have established this on the first date?! Up until the day long date, I wasn't even sure about him, I was just going along, but after that date, I got emotionally invested. And then there was a sudden switch on his part. I still can't wrap my head around it and what actually went wrong, but I guess I will never know. The way I see it, I thought too far ahead and didn't just take or see it as it was, as just a few dates. I guess as women we automatically fantasize about the person rather than actually thinking what we want and what is the added value of having this person in my life. I find myself in a situation now where we talked about similar interests and I can't share it with him anymore. It feels like a loss that you never really had I guess. You live and you learn and move forward, as hard as it may be!

        • And you always remember that regardless of why and what you don't understand, you only want to be with someone who wants to be with you, Lisa. It's in accepting "what is" in spite of what you can't understand that you find your peace.

        • Hi Lisa,

          There could be a number of reasons why he suddenly switch to friends zone. Some men are just emotionally unavailable. My ex-husband told me about his dating stories and he said he would woo women and simply disappear and he did it because he notice something he didn't like about them but then he says deep down he just lost interest and it had nothing to do with them because he was attractive to them but just he enjoyed that dopamine rush stage but couldn't get to the next stage of the relationship and would just move on to the next woman to get that rush feeling again. Another possibility is he could be married or has a girlfriend.

  46. I really need your help. I met Kapil from a dating application this past January. He's in his late 20s as me, same nationality as me and lives an hour away and has a good career. Not the type I usually go for, he is not “bad boy” – he is an inner nerd and I liked that. He said he had only been in one relationship and that was in college back in 2007, and then he said he went on several first dates which never materialized into anything. I only got to know that he is VERY family-oriented as I am too; but he seems like a Mamma’s boy too. This can be good or bad depending on the extent the man takes it. And he said part of the reason he did not look that much for women was because his job made him travel a lot, that and he could not find anyone he really connected with. He is not the most confident of guys with women it seems, and I liked that innocence, it was different from what I was used to. We immediately hit it off in terms of conversation. I am a huge fan of Hindi songs – especially old Hindi songs. We spoke about Hindi songs, movies, life, etc. He asked why I was single and said he could not believe why I was so I explained I am divorced and that some Indian guys and their parents judge me for that, and I asked him if that would be a problem and he said he is a bit iffy but would rather get to know me first. I appreciated his honesty. So all of January, we hit it off, he was respectful and I got to know he is VERY family oriented, which I admired. He is the only son though and he has a 31 year old sister who is not married (he's 28) so he's the only son and a lot of responsibility falls on him. We met in late January for coffee and it was a very nice first date. Then afterward I noticed on What's App he put up a picture of him and a girl. Now, my personality... I am pretty blunt and straightforward which scares/intimidates some men, so I need to calm down lol... but I called him out asking who that was and if I should be talking to other guys and he immediately cropped her out and said it is one of his female best friends and she is engaged. That was kind of weird on my part, I admit. Then, second date was at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and that was the best date I ever had... no other guy chose such a creative location. We grew closer and then he went to India for a week in February for his cousin's wedding and he managed to message me a few times from there. When he returned, we met up in late February/early March in NYC for dinner/drinks and it was the first time we kissed. I then asked, where we stand and I don't remember how or what I said, but I asked something about if his parents would mind about my divorce (that's the problem with drinking, sometimes one just shouldn't and I had literally one glass of wine and I don't remember what I was saying) and he said at this time his parents would mind and that he is able to be exclusive with me as he deleted all of his dating websites, but he cannot guarantee anything. I took that as him using me for time pass, so I said I would rather not continue as time pass, got out of his car and started walking to mine which was kind of far. He looked like he felt really bad and asked to drop me to my car because it was 2:00 AM and I said I would manage. Then an hour later, after I cooled off, I called him and asked him what his definition of girlfriend meant and he said he thought I was referring to him and I getting engaged and telling each other's parents and I said that was not what I meant and that I only meant exclusivity. So we cleared that up and became official. We went on a few more dates after that and everything was wonderful up until a few weeks ago when he bailed/canceled/rescheduled plans a lot. I let it go four times because I was trying to be understanding that his family is his main priority. He even mentioned how in early April his cousin from India (he’s 18) would be moving here to live with them temporarily and it would be his responsibility to mentor/entertain/advise him. Basically, his time would consist of work, family and much more family time because his cousin and other family plans. He is a pretty dead-set family-oriented traditional family man. Then, almost 2 Saturdays ago (April 12 to be exact), he made plans to meet me and then last minute said he was carless because his dad needed the car. So I offered to go see him to accommodate him and he said that's fine as long as I don't mind. Then before I left I asked if it was ok to leave because it was a bit early. Then he said his sister and cousin were guilt tripping him into hanging out with them. Last minute! I completely understand he's from a traditional Indian family, but to do that last minute was messed up; especially being that he lives with his sister. There's only so much a person can handle and out of self-respect I had to call him out on that Saturday night on the phone in a respectful manner that it is NOT cool. So, after he canceled, he asked if he could call and I said I would call him when I was available. So, I called him and firmly stated everything I felt. Before I got to that he was talking like nothing happened and everything was all good. I told him "look I understand your family is your number one priority, mine is too... But when you make a plan with me and bail last minute not once, not twice, not three times... But FOUR times, that makes me feel upset. I try to be as understanding and sensitive as possible, but it's not right you did that as it makes me feel you are not keeping your word. I feel as though you don't have credibility when you say these things to me. Then I said "look if you're trying to do the thing where you feel bad not being with me but are wanting me to do it or you're just not that into me, that's okay, we are adults just please be honest. And he said he agreed and that he feels bad because of his situation and that these two months were a test. We talked more and he stated he doesn't see this working out because he can't devote time to me and the same things he said last Monday. So again, he brought up breaking up. And I became a bit vulnerable and said "I can try to be more understanding, I would rather not see you for two months than you make plans and bail last minute. What about we Skype if we can't meet at times? And we try to work this out? He just declined. The whole time he had no emotion in his voice. He just didn't sound like he cared which hurt because I thought he did. And after he declined, I asked "even after your relatives leave in 2 months, you don't see this working out?" And he said "no, I'm sorry". Just like that. So I said "ok I respect that. Good luck with everything" and he said "you too hun" and at that part he sounded like he felt sad. He was around family too so I guess he couldn't express too much. I get his cousin from India is here and his priority is family. I just didn't like the flakiness though. He mentioned before that he would be caught up with family; I brought up to him last week via a long text message (bad idea, important topics should always be discussed over the phone) that I noticed he's kind of distant and asked why and he said because of family and work and that it may not work. He was very patient and seemed to feel bad that he cannot give me what I want, and expressed that he feels bad he cannot devote as much to me as he would like due to his obligations. I asked if he wanted to work this out and he said yes and I asked why he suggested ending it then and he said because his biggest fear is letting others down, he is a big people-pleaser perhaps. I then suggested I would be more understanding; which I tried to be until he made plans to change them to cancel them, which led to that phone conversation I previously mentioned. As for being patient, I let it go 3-4 times when he canceled last minute, but this time was the only time I brought it up. I forgot to mention, Kapil has the responsibility of looking after his cousin who moved here from India. His 18 year old male cousin is temporarily living with him for two months and he just came here, and that is what I meant by him stating these two months were a test. After this, I was thinking and reflecting to my mistakes in relationships. I notice a common pattern – I rush them instead of allowing the friendship to unfold. I really rushed this relationship as well as past relationships instead of going with the flow. Yes, there are couples that can go at a faster rate allowing their relationship to work out quicker; however, my mistake in thinking that it must apply to me was incorrect. These are lessons learned and now I know in the future should this ever occur again, to eliminate this thought process before I repeat the same mistake. Kapil, for example, we had a wonderful start. I really connected with him mentally and spiritually.
I miss him more than any other guy because I feel I lost a friend too. Yes, I have only known him for four months, but I feel as though I have known him for a very long time due to our connection. We discussed not only politics, religion, music but also about our passions and what makes us who we are. I do miss him in the romantic sense too, but I miss our conversations and our connection. I now see what he was doing, and that was taking it slow without so much structure. I had a right to be upset at the fact that he bailed/canceled four times, but if I look at it as though he was a good friend I was getting to know and observing if there was any romantic potential instead of having so much emotional dependency on him early on, I would have not reacted the way I did throughout. He may have felt suffocated and felt that I had a needy side. If I don’t hear from you immediately, or any other friend for that matter, I don’t automatically jump into “freak out mode” and panic thinking you or the other friend(s) forgot me; because we all lead busy lives and things come up. The same rule is applicable with regard to Kapil or any other guy – three/four months was too short for he and I to develop a meaningful romantic relationship. Like I said earlier, it CAN work for some in such a short time period, but not all. I should have deliberately taken it slow and not rushed – I am the one who asked where we stood, etc. to gain a clearer perspective about my relationship with him. That is fine and all, but again, I should have built a solid friendship with him and seen where it went from there instead of controlling the forces and dynamics of everything. I must learn to let things go, be more patient and understanding and to be ok with not knowing where/how things will go. Oh I forgot to mention he burned me CD of Hindi love songs on our last date. It was a week after I gave him a minion cartoon toy. Sweetest gift ever because of its simplicity. Then Saturday before this past Saturday, after a week of not talking to him, I texted him, telling him I would like to be friends and he said he is okay with that and that he has been thinking about me too. Then the day after, on that Sunday, he texted me first and we talked for a few minutes. He also sent me a video of his baby cousin from Singapore like he used to. Then a couple of days later, on that,Tuesday I texted and we had our Hindi song banter. Then we did not talk for a week, I did not message him nor did he. He then messaged me last Tuesday via text and it was a really nice and sweet conversation without any flriting. I don't want to come across as desperate and I am trying to go with the flow hence my distancing. I am thinking of not reaching out to him for a couple of weeks because I still like him. And when we talk I still feel a connection. And I know for a fact he is not making up the family thing to get rid of me because I even see on his Facebook and by talking to him that he is indeed with his cousin and such. I guess I still want him to want me back. What should I do? Everything between him and I felt so real and I kept dwelling on the “what ifs” and if I had just not complained about him bailing. Had I gone slower in the beginning and not asked where we stand perhaps we would still be dating today…

    • Don't be so hard on yourself, Sanya; allow yourself to be human! Yes, in looking back, it's so easy to see what we could have done differently that might have made all the difference and it's always to that place that we're the first to go. What you're realizing is very insightful. Relationships do take time to develop and it is so important to slow things down enough so that you don't get ahead of yourself and jump to the part where you're living in the future with someone that you haven't even had a chance to really get to know. But you're so not alone here! So many of us do this to ourselves because we get so excited when we meet someone who appears to have so much of what we're looking for. But that's exactly the point we need to remember that if it's going to be all that, it will be, without us hurrying anything along or getting ahead of the getting to know someone process. The fact that you're seeing this so clearly, Sanya, is huge; be so proud of yourself for that!

      But for now, don't go back to second guessing what would have or could have been if you had done things differently. You know. You've learned. You'll do it differently next time. Where you are is right now in the present. It's never too late with someone who is truly right for you, if you're both on the same page and want the same thing. Start from here. Give him some space to be himself. Adopt the mindset that you're doing the choosing, Sanya, and you only want to be with someone who wants to be with you. Go out and live your life and don't look back. Find the things that interest you, that you're passionate about, that fuel your soul and give you joy. Let peace and calm be your goal and do what gives you the least amount of regrets. You've got this. Now it's just a matter of remembering it. It's not about beating yourself up; it's about learning to love yourself and have compassion for you. You deserve nothing less!

  47. Thank you for your response, Jane. I truly appreciate it <3 and agree!

  48. Dear Jane,

    A funny thing happened. I saw my complicated ex twice in one week. On the same crossing where me hugged for the first time and where we kissed in public for the first time. In our small town I have to pass this crossing near his house twice a day and I never saw him before.
    I believe things happen for a reason and i guess God knew I was ready to see him now and not earlier.

    Both times i was dressed well, looked pretty and confident, and on the moments when I expected it the least, we bumbed into each other. Funny thing, as we were in the middle of a thunderstorm.

    First time, I found the courage to say hello and goodbye and I biked away.
    Second time, I approached him from the front, he was paralyzed to see me. He didnt know what to do and just stopped and stared. We looked into each others eyes, i give a bare minimum of a smile. He smiled back, I could tell it did something to him and my small smile gave him a relieve.
    But again I passed by him.

    It is sad that it has to be this way. It really hurts to pass someone when knowing it might be the last time I see him as we will move to different countries.

    But, he was playing a game and he expected to see me in this small town. His response to my goodbye previously was: see you soon in this small world.
    He expected me to be nice again, to continue our 'special' friendship. He never thought he would lose me for ever.

    But I looked stunning, happy and with my actions, which mean so much more than all my words, I showed him that I don't want to be played. Now he truly realises that he has lost me, that my goodbye was serious. As i am moving to an other country he knows that i am not waiting and be his backup girl.

    I still have some feelings for him and of course I hope he will finally see what he has lost. In the mean time I start to be happy with who I am and with all my friends and family around me.

    Currently, I am doing so well I started 'dating' and am i started to look around for other man. A lot of man are interested :) and who knows... Let's hope an interesting exciting future will come soon.

    With love!

    • "But I looked stunning, happy and with my actions, which mean so much more than all my words, I showed him that I don't want to be played." Love hearing this, Isa; of course you were stunning and happy - that's the essence of the real you! I'm so thrilled to hear you're "dating", and I have no doubt that you're finding a lot of men are interested; that's you! Always love these updates and hearing from you, Isa; I'll be looking forward to hearing more. :)

      • Thank you Jane,
        I still read the your comments and articles almost every day and it gives me the strenght to keep living my own life.

        Funny though, I bumb into my ex a lot lately and me and my friends can see that he is clearly not over me as well. I ignore him but he wants to look at me, searches for eye contact,

        Although by hopes didnt change my terms did. If he truly wants me than I will know it. This isn't about love this is about his lack of commitment. He can change but he needs to want it. And if losing me is not enough to trigger that than I will find someone who does want commitment.

        Thank you Jane for this website! It helps me so much.

        • I'm so glad what you're finding here is helping you, Isa; thank you for your kind words. You're seeing this so clearly for yourself, I have no doubt you'll do exactly what you need to do for you!

  49. Hi Jane,
    I'm hoping you can clear up for me this male/female friendship thing. I must tell you, I never had guys as friends, only as acquaintances or I dated them. Here is my situation. I met a guy who is 6 years younger than myself. No problem. We started hanging out together, no dating, nothing indicating there was anything going on. Although, when this first started, I believe he liked me as more than a friend. I confronted him once about he and I being together and he said he never looked at me as more than a friend. That being said, we still have hung out together. This is still going on. We even went away together twice. Nothing at all happened. I felt if we spent time together, his feelings would have changed. That was not the case. He hasn't had a girlfriend, but I do believe he has had hookups. We never talk about our dating lives, although, mine is non existent. I have too many questions about this friendship and not enough answers. I keep him in my life because I have no other male companionship. We get along well and have many things in common. I'm thinking he may not be physically attracted to me. No sex and no relationship, what should I do? I'd love to find someone else, but not having much luck. This has gone on for 4 years. I still like him, but I know I'm wasting time. Help me!!!!

    • I've always found that being with someone on their terms simply because it's better than no one, always backfires, Helen. There's something about spending your time and energy there instead of on your own life that makes it impossible to find someone who is on your page and wants what you want when you're with someone like this. What you're seeing is where he's at, and what he's comfortable with. He has his reasons even if he doesn't even know what they are. Thinking we can change someone or bring them around rarely works; instead, we usually end up with lower self-esteem and self-confidence. 4 years is a long time to continue on like this with someone who isn't there and can't give you what you're looking for. But only you can know if it's finally time to choose you. It's clearly not going to come from him.

  50. Hi
    I'm so pleased I've found this site. It couldn't come at a better time. Please could I have some advice from you.
    I met this guy about 5 years ago in London. My first impressions of him were little but after going out a few times when I visited friends and he was around, one particular night, we just stayed up talking all night. At the time we were both in relationships. I have never opened up so much and felt so comfortable with anyone.
    That night we exchanged numbers.
    I got in contact with him about a year ago to see how he was. Since Last June we were texting on and off, not a lot then October he phoned and said he waa moving near me. We sometimes were on the phone for half an hour each time. Then December I stayed with him alone in the spare room. Nothing happened, but I felt something was there, the same feeling I had when I talked to him all night. He said he was pleased I stayed, I was too.
    He had a different girlfriend at this point.
    After a couple months of texting phoning, he phoned one Sunday and said his ex girlfriend had stayed with her friend and he told her he had feelings for her. She told him where to go. Now he's already got a girlfriend.
    He asked if he could stay the weekend and I said yes but had to ask my parents first.
    He stayed and it was great but I couldn't deal with how he made himself at home, talking to my parents. My exes have never seemed so comfortable. I loved it.
    That night he anitiated the move that crossed the friend line.
    At first I was shocked but returned interest.
    Now that night, one of my female friends was out. She said hello.
    I fell out with him big time a month ago because I had it in my head that he was in contact with my female friend. She just kept making matter of fact comments about him, even to the extent I was involved in a charity gig and said to her I was nervous he may be coming, she said he wasn't. I asked how do you know?? She said he's a bloke.
    I have confronted her twice now and don't feel great about it.
    I am finding it really difficult because I miss his friendship more than anything. He said if I was nice and chilled to him rather than every time accusing him of getting at me then things may of ended differently.
    I just don't know whether to get in contact with him or not. What shall I do??? I am now currently seeking counselling since the last time I had contact with him which was Easter. Hope to hear from you soon.
    Sarah

    • Welcome, Sarah! You're in good company here. Know that we all have regrets about things we've done or said, but with someone who's truly right for you, you'll always know because you'll be with them regardless of what you say or do. It's called compatibility, being on the same page as each other, and it's what matters most in any real, healthy relationship.

      It sounds like he's already decided to move on if you haven't talked to him since Easter. No matter how much you may miss his friendship, if he doesn't miss you and want to have a friendship or relationship with you, it's not enough if you're the only one who wants this. Whether you contact him or not, do it for you, and not for him or what you think it might change. He's going to do what he's going to do. Do what gives you the greatest sense of peace and calm and leaves you with the least amount of regrets. You only want to be with someone who wants to be with you, Sarah.

      • Hey Jane
        Thanks for getting back to me so soon. Thanks for your advice. I have decided to get in contact with him again soon. If he doesn't answer this time round then I'll leave it. I just think its a shame that this has all happened. As for the female friend, If I'm honest I'm still not sure about it, despite her telling me don't be an idiot, no nothing's happening. So I don't know what to do with her??? I do appreciate your feedback as I have really struggled to come to terms with this whole scenario.
        Many thanks again
        Sarah.

  51. Hi Jane,
    I just stumbled across this website…so many great opinions and insights, and I really appreciate the fact that you take the time to personally reply to people who need it!

    This post made me think of my own situation that I went through a couple of months ago, that I'm still struggling with. I met someone last October (first semester of the academic year of college). Before I even met him I got the feeling he was interested. Looking back, I don't know if I was too aggressive in the beginning (but that's something I struggle with--assuming that I'm the one in the wrong) because I showed interest and reached out to him. But he reciprocated and showed interest as well, especially over the past few months, reaching out to me and initiating conversations and being 'around' me all the time. I finally decided to confront him with how I felt two months ago and I told him how I felt, and after months of flirting, his response was not what I expected: he told me we were friends. Not only did that surprise me (I thought I had made it easy for him by telling him how I felt) but it also drove me crazy: I started wondering, was it all in my head? Is there something wrong with me? Does he think I'm a joke for reading into something that never may have been there?

    But nevertheless, I respected what he told me and figured he either didn't want a relationship, was scared/unsure of his feelings, or actually did not like me. So I was cordial and civil, but I was just that--I interacted with him the bare minimum that I could (I was required to see him a few times per week due to academic obligations). But the funny thing is, he ended up coming right back. He initiated conversations with me, reached out to me, and made it obvious that he was interested in spending time with me. Right as I started to get back to my own life and focus on me, he came back. To me, this didn't seem natural…if he TRULY wanted to just be friends, why would he be reaching out to me? Wouldn't he respect my feelings, and most importantly, wouldn't he be conscious to try to avoid leading me on, knowing my feelings?

    Now, I'm at a loss for what to do, because the problem is that I really liked (and still like) him. I do realize he is a little bit immature for acting as he did, but it's unfair that he gets to know how I feel, while I didn't get to hear his true feelings--it's just that: I don't want to be delusional, but I almost can't believe what he told me (at first, I did). And it's not because I'm reading into it, it's simply based off his actions, especially how he acted AFTER the fact that I told him. But at the same time, I don't want to get any false hope. The last time he reached out to me was about a week and a half ago, when he expressed regret at not having been able to say goodbye to me when I left school.

    So my questions to you are based off this description, do you believe he is interested on some level? It's incredibly frustrating to have someone jerk me around like this, and constantly wonder about my own feelings, his feelings, and the situation. No one wants to be made to feel like it was 'all in their head'. And secondly, how do you suggest I move forward? I do enjoy his company, but to be honest, I don't know if I could just be friends with him, because I think I'd always be hoping for something more.

    Thanks so much Jane. It's been therapeutic just to write all of this out.

    Best,
    Cecily

    • I'm glad it's helped to put it all in writing, Cecily; that's one of the things I always recommend! It sounds like he doesn't know what he wants, but he wants to make sure you're around in case he figures it out. That's why you're not being "delusional" or reading more into his actions; he's given you some definite mixed signals!

      However, with someone who isn't sure about what he wants, the last think you want is to get your heart caught in the middle of his indecision, so do what you need to do to protect your own heart before anything else. If that means letting him go completely, you're not going to be missing your "chance" with him because someone who gets on the same page as you will always let you know!

      It's no coincidence that someone who's confused about what kind of relationship he's looking for comes back into your life - "right as I started to get back to my own life and focus on me, he came back." It's that push and pull type of pattern that is a classic sign of someone who finds their comfort level with a significant amount of space - whether it's the space you create or his own. Hope this helps!

      • Hi Jane--

        You're right.

        Thanks for responding with so much evident thought and in such timely manner. It's also really validating to hear that this isn't 'in my head', and that it does sound like he's interested and giving me mixed signals from an objective third party.

        You also articulated something else I was scared of: missing my "chance" with him if he does come to a decision. But you're right, if he cares enough he'll come forward.

        And I also did come to realize, as you mentioned, that he's someone who needs space to realize what he wants and to realize that he cares about me on some level.

        Thanks again!

  52. Dear Jane,

    Again an update. I was doing so well and after I bumped into my ex again he was so sad that I ignored him, that I invited him over for some cooking.
    Huge mistake. I tell this here because girls these guys don't change.

    I thought if he really wants to be just friends he has now the opportunity to show me that.
    But he doesn’t want to be just friends he wants to boost his ego or be in control.

    Although this was the first time he did not give mixed signal by touching me of whatever he is still not a proper friend.

    He deliberately tried to hide information about other girls, lied about other stuff as well in the middle of my face. I told him that lying hurts and that I deserve honesty. If he wants to be friends he is allowed to date other girls. His reason for lying is to protect me from my own feelings.

    Understandable as I it does hurts me, but there is more incorrect behaviour. He told me he missed me, he thinks i am interesting and wants to spent time with me as friends.
    But he also wants to now if I am meeting other people, if I had seks with someone else, he wants to come to visit me in the country I am moving to, he makes negative comments about my decisions. He says it would not hurt him if I had seks with someone else but that he thought it would be a strange feeling and that he would think about it how it would be.

    Bottum line: He wants to see if I moved on as well and just tries to find the relieve of knowing that I didn't have seks with someone else yet. What hurts me the most is that he even says: I did not expected you would be doing so well and would look so beautiful. what a surprise that you are really doing well. I think he makes the negative comments to put me down, to break me because than he knows he has the power over me while otherwise I might move on to someone else. What do you think of that Jane?

    For the first time he admitted not to want a relationship and doesn't want to commit. Therefore I believe in order to spent time with me he hides information from me.

    I told him I cant be friends with someone I have feelings for and with a person who lies. He still wants to spent with me. It made him sad that I ignored him several times.
    But WHY? why does he not let go. He dumps girls because there are not interesting enough and he never wants to see them again. WHY holding on to me I am going to move anyway.

    I believe by making negative comments, by asking these questions and hiding information he is trying to keep me in line and boost his ego by knowing I am still interested. He checks if there is nobody else in my life so he is save to do whatever he wants without a commitment and still knows that I might be interested in case he changes his mind.

    I believe he knows I am so interesting and beautiful so he won’t let go, but that he just doesn't want a commitment. So he finds seks somewhere else because having intimacy with me comes with feelings and a relationship which is to scary for him. So basically, because I am smart, sweet beautiful and interesting he stays around, checks my movements, so basically I am screwd because he knows my values.

    In short, he saw i was doing well, made negative comments, asks about other guys but still wants to meet me as I am so interesting. But in the mean time he wants to have seks with other girls, dump them as the are not interesting.

    So I blocked him from everything, told him to go ( he even came back), told him to go again, that I was not interested in a friendship with a someone who lies and that he has nothing interesting to add to my life.

    I am so hurt right now. But I also now that this guy just thinks about himself and not about me. He wants it all. Wanting to be friends is ok. But no man has the right to lie to me, to make negative comments and to put me down in order to delay my moving on.

    I am very curious about your ideas about his. Is he just trying to control me and keeping me in line, boost his ego. I just don’t understand he still want to be around me. It feels almost as emotionally manipulating me.

    • You've answered your own questions here, Isa. Reread what you wrote and you'll see it, too. You're seeing this. Remember one of your original questions to me was about being friends with someone who you want more from? You're finding your own answers to that as we always do. We do what makes the most sense to us at the time, until we have new information and then we can change our minds.

      That's what it sounds like is happening here. You're finding out more, and you're discovering what you can and can't live with where he's concerned. Living like this with him in your life on his own terms is always up to you. And when it's time to do something different, I said we'll always know. We all have our limits when we can no longer continue living like we have. There called boundaries and it's through knowing them and having them and following through with them that we discover who's meant to be in our lives and who isn't. Trust the process, Isa. There's always a reason we go through what we do. It gets us to where we wouldn't otherwise go.

  53. Shannon says:

    When a guy says he wants to be friends and we are finding out if we are compatiable or not ~ how true is this statement? We have been on 3 dates and on the 2nd date he said this to me. The third date we spent all day together and then that night he asked to take my boys and his boy out to a movie ~ so we all did this. I told him I'm not having sex with him unless we are serious about marriage and he agreed that was the right thing. He doesn't call and barley texts... And today on our 3rd date he said he liked the idea that we are just friends and we are getting to know each other to see if we are compatiable. I'm not so sure how to take that he really likes the idea that we are just friends. ~ we hold hands, kiss and we are affectionate with each other ~ but no sexually activity. I've kinda have fallen for him hard and I feel that I like him more then he likes me... He did tell me his intention on our first date was to sleep with me and he was shocked I didn't because we had a few drinks. He told me he likes me more than he thought he would and that he's never met a women like me and probably never will. After our first date I did text him and called it all off because he told me right up front he was just looking to fool around. A week later he saw me at the gym, walked up to me and said he'd like to take me out to lunch and hasn't pressured me for sex and actually tells me what in doing is the right thing to do.

    • Shannon says:

      Also I forgot to add that he's told me several times I should have met him a couple months ago because he was looking for a wife, but now he's being a little crooked, but he says he might switch back again and sometimes he wished he hadn't went crooked. What I mean by that is he was actually not having sex ~ didn't for 3 yrs ~ but now he's wanting to play around. But he says ultimately he dose want a wife. Now that I'm writing this out maybe the best thing is that we are just friends and I keep dating other men and put him on the back burner. And if he comes around he comes around and if he doesn't he doesn't.

  54. Hi y'all!
    I am in sort of a situation like this and I don't know what to do about it. I've been in a flirty friendship with this guy for about a year now. Recently we have gotten closer and I realized the extent of my feelings. So I decided to get up the guts to tell this guy the way I felt about him. But the only thing I got was reasons why it wouldn't work. Never once did he say how he felt about me but instead kept going on about our families. Our families are close friends so everyone knows everyone and his problem was that he didn't want anyone to know our business and in a way I wanted that too. We had a huge argument with me saying that we could make things work and with him continuing to say how it wouldn't work. Since then he has just dropped the subject and we haven't really resolved anything. I don't want to force him into saying that he either wants to be with me or he doesn't but I am so confused. It is extremely hard for me to not bring up the subject again but I don't want to upset him again. What should I do? Should I just leave the subject of us being together alone and continue not knowing? Or should I just ask him once more and see what that brings?

    By the way I love your advice Jane. It is so helpful!

    • Thanks, Gabby, and welcome! :) Reread what you wrote here and you'll come to your own answer. "But the only thing I got was reasons why it wouldn't work."
      "We had a huge argument with me saying that we could make things work and with him continuing to say how it wouldn't work." Listen to what he's telling you and believe him. He's telling you very clearly in his own words that he's not on the same page as you and doesn't want this to work. Whenever someone gives you reasons like this, you don't need to be confused anymore, regardless of any other mixed signals. Find someone who is on your page and wants the same thing as you and you will be so much happier!

  55. Dear Jane,

    Thank you so much for this website. Last months were hard took lots of energy. But because of you and this forum I held on to my boundaries. The initial question was whether I wanted to stay friends with him. As he was not ready to commit and kept giving wrong signals including seks I found because of you the strength to walk away. recently, I offered him later and he wanted that as well but again he decided to lie to me.

    Last week, I found the real reason for his behaviour. There was another woman. He has cheated on her as well with me. He wanted us both, as we are in different countries. He even gave me a seksual disease. He is now in a relationship with her. The girl was checking me on Linkedin as she found out letters from me to him in his house. He has lied to her about me! He told her he didn't talked to me since December while I saw him 3 weeks ago. As there is a sexual disease involved I decided to tell her my side on the story. I don't want her to get sick.

    I tried to warn this girl, I got really angry at the guy ( now I know why I was so physically tired all the time).
    Now they are angry at me as they feel I am interfering with there relationship. I just warned her.
    If they want to be together I would have been happy for them. But I know he cheated on her, he was lying to both of us. If she wants that fine but I am really glad I stayed true to myself.

    I have to accept that I will never understand why he kept me on a string, and now he chooses to 'commit'. While telling me he doesn't love her etc. I won't know why he kept on meeting me and lying to me while he was dating her.
    But I knowing he cheats and lies , I know I will deserve someone else and one day she will be grateful I told her about his past behaviour. I hope she will find your website then.

    I will move on, I am proud that I didn't hold on to him. That I did NOT let him be friends with me while he was given me the wrong signals. I am proud I had my boundaries. It is now hard for me, but I know that people like him will not go unpunished true life. While honest people like me who know how to give love in the right way will find someone who is worth it. I will grow stronger. And I even am going on a second date with a guy. I take it easy but he has been treating me like a princes so far :)

    • So glad to hear you're coming through this seeing just how strong you are, Isa. It's no small thing to have your boundaries and refuse to accept less than you deserve. And it sounds like the truth about what he was like came through loudly and clearly enough for you to see what was there - and what wasn't. It's never personal. And it's always about his own issues that have nothing to do with you. You did what you could to warn her, and now the rest is up to them. But you're free. Let him go and you'll find he's no longer there. Only in our own minds do we bring people back from the past. Keep me posted on the new guy and take your time getting to know him well. I'm excited for you! Just make sure he's worthy of you! :)

  56. I am so happy that I found this website as I am going through the same process. He said he just wanted to be friends and see how it goes from there. The fact was our relationship has passed that stage of being just friends, when more emotions have been involved, and hope and dreams as well. For a long time, I was his ear to listen about his past painful relationship, trying to help him to get on his feet again. It seems that I was always willing to be there for him, but he was not. Recently he said he couldn't have time to give me the attention I deserve and that communicating with me has taken too much of his time and he doesn't have time right now. I don't really remember if there was some time in our relationship that I stopped him from caring for his family, or his daily routines. But he was always depressed and couldn't seem to move on. For months, his ex wife was the main topic and he could spend hours talking about her sins and his hate for her, while I tried to cheer him up or distract him from negative feelings. This is how I felt quite unfair and hurt to become the reason to be blamed for him not living his life.

    He said he valued the friendship with me, and that is why he wanted us just to be friends now until something changed, like both of us decided to have something more than friendship. He also said I am the best person he has met for a long time, but he couldn't have time for me, he is too stressful. However, I know deeply, if i am still around, I will still put my hope high, without knowing what is waiting for me at the other end and maybe I will be broken again after weeks or months, if he still tells me that he wants to be friends. I told him that we will go no contact for a while for him to solve all his pending work and duties. If after that time he still wants me, then we will see or else we could walk away from each other.

    I actually still want to be with him because also for a long time, I could find someone I can trust as much and I am not the kind of person who like quitting before trying to fix the problems. But whatever I initiated as a more constructive solution, he would simply say no. Sadly no matter how he insisted he had a feeling for me and had missed me, he stated very clearly, he just wants to be friends for now, but he is also not sure about the future.

    What do you think I should do now? Should I still hope or it is time to let him go... forever?

    Thank you so much.

    • I hear what you're saying, Marie. It's hard to see what could be, and what has been, and then see him unwilling to do what he could to make more out of your relationship than a friendship. You really only have one choice here - to believe what he's saying. Anything else will only bring you heartbreak and keep you living in a state of "if only" or "what if" instead of in the reality of what is. He just wants to be friends for now and doesn't know when or if that will change. He's telling you he can't promise you anything and he's not sure about the future. Accept this. You can't do this alone; it has to come from him, too. He has to want it, too. It doesn't have to be forever, it's about right now taking a step back and putting the focus on you and your life instead of him and the two of you together. If he comes around in the future, you'll be the first to know. But don't wait around for it to happen. Love is always found in the living, not in the waiting.

      Only you know if you can continue to be friends with him, since it's not easy to be friends with someone when you're both on different pages and you want more from him than he wants of you, and it's even harder when you're trying to convince yourself you can do that and accept his terms when you really can't. Be true to yourself, Marie. I suspect he was getting a lot more from you than you were getting from him. You deserve so much more than that!

  57. Jessica says:

    My situation: my crush started in middle school and never went beyond that 20 some odd years later I move back to my hometown and by coincidence a mutual friend bumps into him. To my surprise he is single. She arranges a meet and greet, together with other friends we have a BALL. After leaving he gives me a hug that said, "I've been waiting for u my whole life" fast forward we keep in touch. I discover he's fresh out of a longterm relationship that went sour long before it ended. He wanted no parts of a relationship but after we met he knew he didn't want me to b out if his life and too hv admitted he had a crush and thought of me throughout the years. We date and as time go on develop feelings for this man. The problem (intuition) i didnt get that he was devolving stronger feeling for me. Although we bought agreed that we would date each other exclusively and take it slow. After me sharing maybe this wasn't a good time and that maybe he needed more time to heal. He said no u however start to get concerned.,,, 6 months in I don't feel that he meets my emotion needs (true quality time, him serving me, initiating dates, being romantic intimating sex etc) I get insecure is his ex sti in the picture, does he not find me attractive amongst other things so what do I do? Tell him I can't do this anymore I deserve better any tj of this he is like don't day things like this you are being mean..... So I stay then realize this is a constant thing nothing changes and I ? Myself all the more. I cook for this man, serve him etc wrapping this up thoroughly these conversations he always says he always been honest he wanted to take it slow not make the same mistakes. That's not enough anyway just this week we get to the real I say maybe we should be in just friend zone he says this is what I have been saying because I told u I can't give u what u need right niw u say u understand then we keep having this conversation I said we keep having this conversation because u never said u wanted to just be friends... And u said we were in an inclusive relationship needed less to say the very mention if the friend zone set me off, I feel like we were on two different planes the whe time and if he would have been so differently. I finally said I need more time I don't think I can turn off my feelings and be friends or continue to hope that we will ever be. Now I am trying to decide if I can only be friends keep u mind he is a nice guy who went through a lot of things with his ex.... He is literally starting over in life found a good woman but realizes he can't meet her immediate needs ... Your thought

  58. I dated a guy for 4 months and had the gut feeling that it was not going to work. I had come out from a long term marriage and this was my first date and I was quite clueless about it all.. I really did not know where it was going and he did not want a serious relationship. Well, I guess I was put into the friendship zone. I was not ready to let go of him. We would see each other once or twice a month and always during the weekday. Just to go for a walk mostly. Nothing else. I was trying to convince myself that I could handle the friendship..
    Yesterday evening, I was at my favorite restaurant and it was the restaurant where we had our first date. I was with my group of friends. He was there with a date but he did not see him. It was there and then that I made the decision that I should permanently end the friendship.
    Seeing him entertain a date made me realize that I no longer can remain friends with him on his terms. I needed to end the friendship so I can move on and wait and take my time for the right guy to come along.
    Even thought it was only a short 4 months and that he only wanted to remain friends, I still felt hurt inside. It was time to let go and move on. I have to be true to myself.

I'd love to hear from you. Let me know what you think!

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