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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Getting over someone while maintaining a friendship.

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Author Topic: Getting over someone while maintaining a friendship.
fibbonacci42
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Member # 95260

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I'm in a sort of painful place and I guess I just want to vent?

(to protect privacy, names have been changed)

I've 'gone out' with Roxy three times now. The first time was back in ninth grade, I asked her out in english class, she started laughing in a sort of disbelieving way but eventually said yes after her friend persuaded her. (I was not yet experienced enough to see this as a bad sign.) She ended up "breaking up" with me the day before the first date she had time for, about a month after I asked her, saying that she had never really liked me in that way but didn't want to hurt me.

Later towards the end of freshman year, she said her feelings had changed, and asked me to go to the swing dance with her. It was sort of fun, but pretty awkward. Awkward really is the only way to describe the rest of that relationship, which she ended about 2 months after it started by saying that she cried herself to sleep the night after the swing dance when s he realized her feelings for me had swung totally back to platonic.

This year, Roxy and I ended up going out again, although we never were officially a couple. We did a lot of hand holding, cuddling and watching movies, a few date-like-things, and it was great fun, but her emotions eventually started flip-flopping between romance and friendship before settling on friendship. We broke up around a month ago, the whole thing lasted around three months.

My current problem is that, while I am still friends with her, I haven't gotten really over her. We promised each other that even if a relationship-y thing didn't work out, we'd still be friends, and we are. However stuff like her trying to hold hands again a week or two ago or declaring that she is 'tired' and leaning against me makes me suspect that Roxy still isn't really over me either, although she has told me to "go and get a real girlfriend," in her words. A lot of people tell us we "make such a cute couple," or in one case, "you guys should just have sex already," and claiming that we aren't a couple and please stop is ineffective because when we were a couple, we denied it in public anyways.

We danced quite a bit at the swing dance a few weeks ago (although I did dance with other girls, it being a social dance, she danced with me and one of her female friends and that's it) and while it was great fun at the time, I'm not sure it was a good idea long term.

I guess the standard advice here is to just stop interacting with her, but I really don't want to do that: losing her as a friend seems like an even sadder thing than losing her as a girlfriend.

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September
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There might be a middle road between continuing as you are now, and cutting all ties: you can talk to her about taking a break from each other so you can have some time to yourself to sort out your feelings. It can be pretty difficult to go from relationship to friendship, especially if that line has always been a little blurry, as it sounds like it has between the two of you. Some time apart can help you really come to terms with the end of that relationship, and give you the chance to move on.

You might also want to use the time to think about some boundaries that you have within this friendship. What sort of activities and behaviors are okay, which aren't? If you'd rather not go dancing with her, or hold hands with her, you can absolutely talk to her about that.

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Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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fibbonacci42
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I guess the heart of the issue is that when we do stuff like cuddling or dancing, I always enjoy it but some of that enjoyment is sexual in nature, which I don't think is the case for her. I feel like that's betraying her trust, because we said we were just going to be friends.

Is this something I should talk to her about, or will it just make her feel uncomfortable without achieving anything? We've never really talked about having sexual feelings for each other.

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September
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I would say that it depends on the level of openness you feel comfortable having. If you do not feel comfortable discussing your sexual feelings with her, you can just say something like, "while I like it when we dance close, or when you hold my hand, I would prefer if we did not do this for the time being, because these gestures hold a different meaning for me than they do for you".

And I do think that, if nothing else, it sounds like it is time for the two of you to have a conversation about the nature of your relationship: what you are to each other, what is and isn't okay, where each of your boundaries lie. As you are experiencing, friendship can mean different things to different people, and we can't know what the other wants and needs unless we talk to them about it.

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Johanna
Scarleteen Volunteer

"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

Posts: 9192 | From: Cologne, Germany | Registered: Sep 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
fibbonacci42
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Member # 95260

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Thanks for the quick reply [Smile] I'll try and start a conversation about this fairly soon.
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