Hi Miss A,
I’m glad you sent out the call for more relationship questions. That’s my favorite part of your blog!
I’ve never done this before, but I’ve decided to write in with a question. I think you give fair advice. I also think sometimes it helps to get an impartial take on a situation. I could ask a friend obviously, but they might be biased because of other information they have about the situation. Sometimes that familiarity is important, but it can also make you lose sight of the heart of the issue.
Okay, sorry, my question: There’s a guy I went out with a few times last year. After a couple dates I realized I wasn’t over my ex and told him I wasn’t ready to be dating. We were introduced by mutual friends, so I wanted to make sure I was fair and up front with him. After about 10 months, we ran into each other at a party and were friendly. We’ve got together a few times since then, always in group settings. I really like hanging out with him. He’s an interesting person. But I don’t think I’m interested in anything other than friendship. I’m just myself around him — i’m friendly like I am with any other guy friend. I am careful not to be flirtatious because I don’t want to give him the wrong idea, but sometimes friendly and fun comes off as flirtatious even when you don’t mean it to. How can I be myself (relaxed, friendly, making jokes) without worrying that I’m leading him on? Or should I just not worry about it and if he makes a move I can tell him I just would rather be friends? Am I worrying too much in advance?
- How to Just Be Friends
Dear How To Just Be Friends,
Yes, you are worrying way too much!!! You can’t control anyone else’s feelings or behavior. You can only control yourself. That means you can’t control the way he may feel about you. You sound like you’re a really sweet person who is probably very sensitive and doesn’t want to hurt this guy unintentionally by leading him on. That’s great of you. But you need to let go some of this responsibility and guilt. You’re not doing anything wrong. And you can’t help that you don’t like him that way. He’s a big boy, and will just have to deal with it. If and when he gets the wrong message from your behavior, you can clarify. Perhaps, he won’t get the wrong message, and it won’t become an issue. But, Honey, don’t waste your time and energy worrying about it. You should just be you, and have fun with your group of friends.
Also, I commend you for being self-aware enough to know you weren’t over your ex-boyfriend, and weren’t ready to date. So many girls jump right from the frying pan into the fire with a rebound, and it just causes more drama. You really did the right thing by giving yourself time to process the break-up, learn from it, and decide what you want next.
Thank you so much for reading my blog! I’m so glad to hear you like it. Please let me know how this all develops, and if you have future questions regarding a guy you do like!
- Miss A
Andrea Rodgers is a Dating & Relationship Expert for HealthCentral’s Sexual Health Connection. Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.