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Falling for a wonderful friend

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Here's the situation I need advice on.


I've known her about 3 years, as a friend. Recently, I've realized I'm falling for her. I want to "ratchet it up" to a relationship, but I'm scared of losing a dear friend if I tell her how I feel. I think she MAY be interested, but I'm not sure. We've spent a lot of time together (in groups) and went out last week to a movie and dinner (alone). I am in graduate school, and was on a break, and SHE suggested "If you want to do something, let me know"...which I DID...immediately...resulting in the dinner and movie.


I wanted to let her know that she's on my mind, so I sent her an e-card the next day, and one today...both of which she responded to positively. The one today was a "Thinking of You" card, and in her response, she said it was "cute and thoughtful". In her response to the first one she said "Thanks for the e-card and for the movie last night! I had a good time & the food was GREAT! The card (a THANK YOU) was cute and started my day off on a good note!"


I want to be extremely careful here, because I DON'T want to lose a terrific friend if she doesn't share my feelings.


1. What should I do to find out if she shares my feelings without running her off? I'll probably see her tomorrow night, again as part of a group.


2. What do you LADIES make of HER suggestion to go out, and her replies to my cards? I don't want to misread her -- she's too important to me.


Incidentally, she's 27, I'm 41.


Please help.

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I think that you should just wait until you and her are alone and just kind of ease into that subject and just ask her. You seem mature enough to see that she might not say what you want to hear and take that like a reasonably well adjusted adult. Also there does seem to be some reason to believe that she might be interested in being more than friends. I wish you the best of luck.

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Thanks Ashland. Here's another couple of pieces to the puzzle for you...or anyone to muse on.


I'm not in your "average" graduate school, but am studying for the ministry. If I pursue this, I'll have to leave school to do it. However, in my view, if she shares my feelings, she's worth it.


I first met her while doing Bible studies for her singles group at church, and at first, she had a b/f from another denomination. Hence, I considered her "off limits". Right after she broke up (about 5 months ago) she invited me down to her hometown to spend July 4th with her and her family, about 3 hours or so from where we live, and of course, I was only too happy to go.


Her faith is VERY important to her, as mine is to me, and it was because she and her previous b/f could not reconcile on faith that they mutually decided to part ways. She has come to me several times for spiritual advice, which I've given, and our faith is the basis for our relationship as friends.


So, I know that she considers me a "spiritual mentor" of sorts, and thereforeeee, I feel a great need to be extremely careful with her, since what I do has "faith implications", and I don't want to abuse the great amount of trust she has already placed in me.


Additionally, we share a tight circle of friends, and they all consider me a "mentor" because I am studying for ministry. So, this will have a wider effect than just she and I. Also, when I went to study for ministry, my own pastor and the entire church was elated...and that's not an overstatement. If I leave my studies to pursue this, there are going to be a lot of disappointed people, many of whom I have known for years, and who are really putting a lot of hopes in my continuing to ordination....further reason to be extremely cautious.


1. How would you feel if someone you met and knew under these circumstances wanted to "ratchet up" the friendship to a relationship?


2. Under these circumstances, if you were me, would you just "suck it up" or would you still tell her? If so, how would you bring up the topic? What would you say?


3. Do you think the frienship would survive if I told her, given the circumstances of our friendship?


4. What do you make of her asking me down to her hometown to spend the 4th with her and her family so soon after breaking up with her b/f? (I was the only "outsider" there)


Please help. This matters a great deal to me and is a touchy situation. There is so much riding on what I do, and I feel like a kid...totally unsure of what to do considering all that rides on my decision.

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First off, thanks for visiting what I posted, it is good to know that I'm not the only one (even though I know I'm not) going through this.


*She seems to enjoy spending time with you and feels comfortable enough to go to you for advice and to spend time with. I think it is great she asked you to go down to her place on 4th of July. There is a possiblity that she may have feelings for you. I'm basing that on the 4th of July get together, the alone date and asking you to hang out with her. Of course, since you 2 are such great friends, there is always that uneasiness of ruining or bruising a friendship by exposing your feelings. I agree with Ashland about waiting for a time when you two are alone to discuss anything. I'm just going to throw an idea up in the air, after a few dates and after you have felt out the situation and maybe have gotten a better feel for her feelings, casually bring up how you enjoy spending time with her and that you have been thinking a lot about what it'd be like if you two persued something other than just friends. See how she responds to it and go from there. If the topic ever gets to be uncomfortable make sure to not push any farther. I know this isn't much, but I hope it helps a bit. Good luck and have fun with it!



p.s: if I figure anything else out I'll be sure to let you know.

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