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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Timing is off... now what?

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Author Topic: Timing is off... now what?
connie_lex2
Neophyte
Member # 49347

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Hi there,

This is not urgent, so please respond when you have time.

I need some advice..I'm in a bit of a perplexing situation and your honest opinions may help clear my head. I'm sorry if this is too long, but better give you all the info I can.

I'm nearly 22 and I've been single for over a year,giving myself time to pull it together after a quite terrible fallout of my last relationship.

Over the past year, I made friends with a guy (we volunteered for the same organization). Through the winter we became better and better friends. He is spending the summer away from town, though we've been able to get together for one date two months ago.

I have a good time when I'm with him, and think he is a sweet and intelligent gentleman. He has seen me through good times and stressful ones, and he's always been a good influence. We are, however, very different people with completely different interests and backgrounds, and I doubt it would work itself out over the long run.

Trouble ensues here: I met someone new very recently. I know little about him, but what little I know is terribly intriguing (and we have more in common). I would love to get to know him better - I've in fact invited him out once, but he politely declined. From what I know, it seems like he is still hung up on his ex (whether he's still in love with her, or just too tired after the break up, I don't know.) But my timing is entirely off. I'm leaving it alone for the moment, but I can't help think that I'll probably drop him a line 5-6 months from now to see where he stands.

Now my guy friend is coming back to town soon and wants to spend time together. Now what?

Spending time together doesn't necessarily mean we will be dating right away. But I have never felt so strongly about my friend as I've felt about this new person.

Is it a case of I-want-what-I-can't-have? Is it unfair to hang out with a guy when I clearly have thoughts about another one (who wants nothing to do with me)?

I'm afraid of hurting my friend. I'm afraid of getting more involved, only to have the new guy come back around a few months later (which may or may not happen). I'm afraid of stringing my friend along. At the same time, I still feel that we don't know each other enough for me to make a final decision.

I guess my last relationship ended up hurting both of us so much that I'm kind of gun shy..

Posts: 11 | From: Toronto | Registered: Oct 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Good to see you, connie.

One thing I'm not clear on here is if you have a strong romantic or sexual (nor sure what kind of relationship you're seeking out here) interest in either of these people. Or, if you know you do NOT have those feelings for either of them.

I'm also not sure if you have made any kind of agreements with the first person with dating. You said you had one date. Where then, do things stand? Did you two talk about agreeing to any kind of ongoing dating relationship yet, or are you both just figuring -- so far as you know -- you had one date and you might have another one?

Lastly, it sounds to me like new person isn't emotionally available right now, period. Do I have that right?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
connie_lex2
Neophyte
Member # 49347

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Hi Heather..

Let's see, those are good questions.

I'm hoping for a romantic relationship at this point in my life (with whomever it might be). For me, this would also entail a sexual component.

With the first person, we have had one 'date' (which was never named as a "date" either - but he took me out for a meal, drove me all the way back, and did all the planning). After that, we've been lightly in contact as he was out of town - so, no agreements to anything or any commitments are in the picture. He is coming back very soon, however, and has already told me that he's hoping to see me soon and that I should go see his new place. So there isn't even a "second date" yet, just vague plans.

In terms of interest...that's the hardest part to admit. I don't know if I'm really sexually interested in my friend - we have never even held hands or kissed. I guess I was hoping to figure out if we'd be compatible sexually as this went further. I do have romantic feelings for him but I guess they're not too strong.

Unfortunately I find the new person terribly attractive, so there is a much stronger sexual pull there. I don't know him well enough to declare romantic feelings, but I feel that it could develop if we had the chance to get to know each other.

The new person is not available, period. You do have that right. He hasn't given me any reasons as to why he is not interested, (I think the old relationship has to do with it, but I can't be sure) so I also do not know whether he would be available or interested at a later point.

Does this help at all, or make it all the more confusing?

Thank you!!!!

Posts: 11 | From: Toronto | Registered: Oct 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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So, it sounds to me like you don't have any agreements at all with your friend to be concerned about breaking. Neither of you has asked about exclusivity or put it out there. You've only had just one date. That given, I don't think it would be sound at this point for either of you to assume or expect exclusivity from the other, or to assume or expect anything at all except the possibility of a second date, you know?

With this other person, you know they're not available now. So, they're just not an option. I think that's pretty much that. "Might be later" isn't something I'd make any big decisions around. I mean, I might find a million dollars in the street, sure, but I'm not going to figure it into next month's budget, right? [Smile] I suggest sticking with what's on your plate right now, and what look like options you have now and in the very near future.

But it does sound like something you took away from that second person is that you had stronger sexual feelings than you feel for this first person. It sounds like you might have stronger romantic feelings for this first person than the second, too, or at least more of a clue about having those feelings for the first. All of that is useful information for you in figuring out, I think, what you want right now, even though that second person isn't an option, so that's not about him.

What it CAN be about is maybe this first person -- and evaluating this if you do start dating with this info in mind, this basis of comparison -- and maybe also thinking more about what you want in a relationship right now. For instance, do you want something that is more or primarily sexual? Since it sounds like your feelings for that first person were pretty much all about that, that experience might give you things to think about here.

Of course, you can think more about if you really feel any sexual attraction to this first person. If you don't, but you are pretty sure you both would want a relationship that includes sex, that's obviously not going to work for either of you.

However, I think trying to figure any of this stuff out based on only one date with the one person, and no date at all with the other is probably pretty hasty. This first person is available, and it sounds like you liked date one and like this person. Sounds like he's looking forward to a maybe-date-two. If that can happen, why not just keep seeing how this goes as you get to know one another more and spend more time together to be able to suss out how you feel?

[ 08-12-2011, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
connie_lex2
Neophyte
Member # 49347

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Phew. Thanks.

This puts things into perspective. As you mention, it's not really picking between two people, it's more that meeting the second person has forced me to re-consider my feelings for the first.

I value his friendship and I guess I'm just really afraid of hurting him (by going into something unless I'm sure of it) - BUT yes, there really is no way of knowing if or how things would work without even seeing how it goes.

I guess the risk is inherent in any sort of emotional bonding and I will have to deal with issues when they arise (and not try to plan them out before they're even there.)

Thank you!

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Maybe you want to recognize that when someone with the maturity to date and pursue relationships chooses to do that, they are also choosing to take a risk of being hurt or disappointed?

Obviously that doesn't mean that any of us should be careless or that it's okay for us to be unkind or inconsiderate when dating because the other person is making that choice like we are.

It sounds to me like it might be that dating is something you could be confusing with serial monogamy? In other words, what are you going into here? A serious relationship? Right from minute one? How? I mean, yes, people do it, but it's kind of a ruse, really, right? because we are always feeling things out as we go, and deciding to get way serious before we even know each other to know if that's what we want and what will likely be right isn't sound.

Of course, you two can talk about this as you go. If you keep dating, and keep wanting to check things out more and more mutually, you get to have discussions about this stuff. Neither of you has to be silent about it. It's always okay to check in with where someone is at.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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