Advicereality check

Reality Check

Hey, Jyl! I have a question for you, ma’am. There is this girl (we will call Ina) whom I have been friends with since around 10th grade. (We are now both in our mid-20s.) I have always considered her one of my very best friends. While jobs and school often gotten in the way of us hanging out in person in the past year or so, we talk often and enjoy each other’s company immensely when we do hangout. 

All this was great until a couple of months ago. One night, we were
talking on the phone and she revealed to me that her feelings are deeper
than those of a mere friend. She wanted to see if we could possibly take
things to another level and see where it went. While I admit that I love
Ina to death, I had never really looked at her THAT way (other than a
crush way back in high school). We have always been flirty with one
another, but I had always looked at it as primarily a joke. Furthermore,
I know from experience that trying and failing in a relationship can
really mess up a friendship between two people or, at the very least,
make things awkward as hell. As I value this girl’s friendship more than
about anything, I decided that we should not pursue anything deeper.
Long story short, this decision has backfired big time. My decision
(though I thought I handled it very carefully and in a way that pointed
back to our long friendship) has caused an enormous rift. She no longer
answers my phone calls, barely answers my texts, and the one time we
hung out in person, it was super awkward and she was a little rude/mean
the entire time. While I understand her being upset, I never saw it
being this bad.

I suppose my question is this: What should I do? I miss her terribly,
and one of the main reasons I turned her down in the first place was to
AVOID this type of relationship. While I don’t necessarily have an
attraction to her as a “girlfriend,” I love her and her company, and
want nothing more than to get her back. Should I try out the dating
thing to see if maybe there can be a “spark”? I’m almost positive I
could still date her if I asked—based on comments she makes during those
rare moments we do talk. I mean, what is there to lose? The friendship
is already shot to hell otherwise, and she already has her feelings hurt
and resents me. I’m afraid it will be over for good if something doesn’t
happen soon. Help! 



You need to have a serious talk with your friend. If you really and truly have no romantic interest, not even a tiny little spark of a maybe, then continue as you are and just tell her you really want things to go back to the way they were and the way they have always been. But I strongly suggest that you consider the possibility that a great friendship could be a really great romance. You already know each other so well, and you care about each other and enjoy each other’s company and put up with each other’s bullshit, right? And that is more than half the battle (can I get a “Thanks, G.I. Joe!�). Things are really weird right now. She put herself out there and you rejected her, and regardless of your reasons it made her feel stupid. Talk to her. Be honest and put everything on the table. Tell her you’re sorry but that you were trying to preserve the friendship that is so important to you. And if you decide to make a go of the romantic thing, make her promise that if it doesn’t work out you will go back to being friends.

Confidential to Three’s a Crowd: This is a classic sticky wicket sort of situation. The guy in question is obviously a douche, but making an issue of him is going to make her leap to his defense, thereby rendering you the bad guy. If you really and truly know, and are absolutely certain, that nothing has happened between them, then I think you should continue to ignore the situation for now. The thing is, once she gets comfortable and makes friends and has other stuff going on, once your lives are fully integrated and she really feels like she belongs where she is, she will probably get bored with him. As you said, right now she doesn’t know anybody and doesn’t feel at home yet. She needs a connection. But she has to work on making connections, and you have to help her.

You can’t just let his douchebaggery go completely unchecked, either. If you think she’s acting suspicious while she’s on the computer, ask her what she’s doing. Ask her to take a walk with you, or go get a drink. Maybe give this another month or so, all the while doing your best to help her adjust, make her happy, and develop your relationship. Get into your groove, if you will. And then if their correspondence continues, call her on it. You will have to confess to snooping, of course, but surely she knows that being in constant contact with this guy is not OK, or she wouldn’t be hiding it from you. Ask her if she’s having second thoughts. (By the way, does this dickhead still have a girlfriend? Because I’ll bet her name is on Facebook, too, and I’ll bet she might like to know how much time he spends writing poetry for your girlfriend. He probably tells her he wrote them for her, too.)

Anyway, don’t throw in the towel yet. She obviously likes you or she wouldn’t have moved out of state to be with you. I know the situation sucks, but try to focus on your girlfriend instead of the guy. Don’t waste your time and energy on him unless you absolutely have to. He’s not worth it.