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how do I deal with mixed signals?


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Basic story: started seeing a guy I work with two weeks before he went abroad for a year. Got on very well and we both seemed to have fallen quite hard for each other. Carried things on for a while until he told me that he was finding it too difficult with him living in another country. I was upset but I understood his situation.


He is now back at work. We went out for a drink to clear the air to make sure there was no awkwardness between us and got on very well and had a good time. I told him I still like him but he said nothing either way. He said he was sort of seeing a girl he met whilst away, which I would have definitely taken as the message that he wasn't interested in me anymore, but he then, rather unneccessarily said that it wasn't serious and wasn't going anywhere. I emailed him the next day to say that I had a good time and to apologise for telling him that I still like him as I didn't want to make him uncomfortable and make things awkward. He simply replied "I enjoyed myself too". which wasn't helpful as it could mean anything.


I am trying very hard to ignore him in the office - I will politely say hello, good morning, etc but I don't start conversations with him. This is for my benefit as I find it hard to stand there, talking to him, looking at him, wanting to be with him. But he is making it very difficult for me as he insists on starting conversations with me even when it is clear that I don't want to talk.


One other weird thing was when a few of us had a drink after work, circumstances meant that we ended up going home on the tube together. I got up to get off at my stop to catch my train home, turned to say goodbye as he needed to stay on for another few stops but said that he wanted to come and wait with me in the station and have a coffee. He waited with me for 35 mins, we chatted about this and that, not about "us", and he then said that he supposed I'd better get my train, kissed me half on the lips/cheeks and walked off. I know there is nothing in this as he didn't say anything about us but he really went out of his way to come up to the station and wait with me when he could have stayed on the tube and been home 15 mins later.


This could all mean nothing and I understand that when you like someone, you read all sorts into everything they say and do but in my opinion, if you know someone likes you but you are not interested in them, and even if you don't have the guts to say to their face that you don't like them anymore (and I have given him a few opportunties to do this), you tell them in a roundabout way with your body language, behaviour, etc.


I feel that if the roles were reversed, I would avoid doing or saying anything to that person that could be misconstrued or give that person the wrong idea, false hope, etc. I would avoid talking to them and I certainly wouldn't go out of my way to hang around with them. Basically, you want to put them off.


I do really like this man and would love it if he was still interested but I am finding his behaviour very confusing. Does he still like me or not? I suppose I should just ask him outright and get a straight answer but I feel that this would make things very awkward.


Does anyone else have experience of this - does he like me, is he just mucking me about or does it all simply mean nothing?


advice desperately needed!



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hm, sounds kind of like he doesn't know what he wants to do. obviously, this other woman is still in the picture, i bet he hasn't told her yet that things aren't getting serious. who knows what she thinks is going on? who knows what he has told her? and now he is back home, and you are there, i think he's probably trying to decide what to do.


i'd be careful. don't get hurt.

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Thanks for your thoughts everyone.


I forgot to mention that in response to the email he sent saying "I enjoyed myself too", I replied that I was glad he had enjoyed himself and that if he wanted to do it again, to just let me know. I don't think I could be any clearer that I am still interested in him but I didn't get a response - I'd have thought that he would have seen that as an ideal opportunity to email a reply that said he wasn't interested in me anymore.


Not sure what to do now - should I just leave things as they are and see what happens? Should I just ask him outright and risk making a total fool of myself? Does his behaviour even mean anything at all, or is it just perfectly normal and I am completely seeing something that isn't there?


help please!

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Look around and see if there are other guys whom you might be interested in. This one just doesn't know how to make his mind up, it seems that he is stringing you along, kind of like, to see which girl he likes better. He is still with this other girl I assume so he prefers her over you (sorry about that). And if he kisses you while he's still with her, he would be like a two-timing sort of man! Do you seriously need someone like that?


Just leave it be. Unless he says he wants to date you exclusively and will definitely end things with this girl, ignore everything else.

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^^^ yes, i agree with lilbear. good point.


i suggest also reading the book, 'he's just not that into you.' they argue at there is no such thing as 'mixed signals', just a guy who is not that into you. (sorry) i mean, he is still with this other woman, officially, and sounds like he isn't quite sure what to do. i think you gave him an opportunity to ask you out again, which he didn't take. but do you really want to be with a guy who would date others behind your back too if he met someone he liked better or they were more geographically desireable? blah.

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I think I needed more to know that I wasn't just imagining the whole thing and that his behaviour isn't normal. I was worried about this as I am thinking of arranging to meet him to just ask outright, but was scared that if he thinks he hasn't been doing or saying anything that was leadng me on or ambiguous, I would come out looking like a complete idiot and make things awkward and uncomfortable between us.


anyone else have thoughts on this?

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i would not call him out on it at all. that is just me. i wouldn't really confront him, but i guess i am the non-confrontational sort. it seems like he still has something going on with this other girl and he doesn't seem so 'gung-ho' about you. i think if he asks you out for dinner on a saturday night, or something else of the sorts that screams, "DATE" then i think you would have a right to ask, 'hey - what's up with us? and what's up with that other girl you were seeing?' but the 'clear the air' meeting didn't really sound like a date and he told you that he is still seeing someone else, so i think you have your answer right there.


i guess in a sense, it doesn't really matter if he still likes you. from what you have described, it sounds like he has some interest in you, but why he hasn't taken the next step, i don't know. could be that he likes the other girl better, or that he feels like there is something missing in the connection between you two, or maybe there is another girl who is also on his horizon. who knows? i know married people who get 'crushes' on their coworkers, but never take it any further than that.

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