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Not sure what to do about my friend

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about 6 months ago, i broke up w/ my boyfriend of 4 years to date this new guy. Well, of course the rush of feelings that i first got when we started dating subsided. I really didn't know this guy very well and his insecurities started to show. well, i had not time to heal b/w my 4 year relationsip and him, so i started resenting him. well, this enw guy is wonderful, but def. not for me. so, i broke up w/ him over four months ago, and said we would remain friends. we did, still talked on the phone every night, still hung out all the time. well, he still treats me like his girlfriend and it aggravates me. we fight like we're dating and he gets very upset if i don't call him one day, gets jealous if i hang out w/ my friends and esp. if i go on date. well, i've been expanding my socail circle and most of my friends do not like him. i feel i have no room in my life for him anymore. but the thing is, he has no friends, he's very depressed and he guilts me all the time. he complains and it's very depressing to hang out w/ him. i saw him at t party last week and i was networking (it's associated w/ my job and i was talking to him at the beginning. then i started socializing w/ other people. he came over to me later while i was with a group of people and said in this nasty complaingin voice, "hey, remember me? your friend. remember you passed me earlier and ignored me." (which i hadn't- i talked to him plenty that night) well, then i introduced him to the people i was with and he just sat there with his eyes rolling.


now mind you, i have discussed my issues w/ him plenty. he apologizes, but it keeps happenening. he's a downer wehn we hang out, he asks me to say i love you (when i can't). but then he says "no i love you as a friend" and still keeps sending em poetry about his depression. i can't take it. i feel bad, i don't want him to be depresses, but i don't know how to handle this. do i slowly drop him (i don't see the situation getting any better-we've talked about it too much). but then i feel guilty. i feel guilted into this friendship- he's so nice. but all he does is whine that i ahve no time for him. i'm dating again and my schedule is just too busy. what do i do?



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You need to be honest with this guy. It doesn't sound as if the penny has dropped for him about the present nature of your relationship. I myself always avoid becoming "friends" with my exes. I already have friends and my exes are just a different category. And if ever I break that rule it's only when I know enough (that means plenty) time has passed, and both have truly moved on.

Since I am in a situation where i still need closure from an ex who's holding out, I sympathize with your ex.So my advice would be to treat him with respect. Call him up, meet up for lunch or coffee, and make sure he understands it's over between you, and make sure he gets a sense of why this is happening. If you leave him confused, with unclear reasons about why you broke up, he will draw the conclusion that suits him best. Close all doors properly. Apologize, forgive and let him move on feeling as good as he possibly can with a crushed heart (which he very obviously will have).

Once you know you've really been fair to someone who basically nursed you after your past relationship, you yourself will feel less guilty. And remember friends and exes are really not the same thing at all. Let me know how it worked out.

Good luck!

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It does sound like you moved straight in from "relationship" to "friends" with no break in between for him to get accustomed to the "new state of affairs" so to speak, where he can adjust to having different expectations of you.


I'd honestly consider telling him it might be for the best to have some time away from you - time for him to get used to being single, and when he's come to terms with not being your partner, then look at forging a proper friendship, with normal boundaries. Right now he's still in the habit of treating you as his gf, and constant contact isn't going to help either of you as far as sometimes reflexively responding to each other in old patterns. He's going to slip and say/do things that were "typical" in the relationship, you'll hesitate to bring them up for fear of hurting him, he'll feel badly he made things awkward - until you end up not even able to maintain a friendship for dancing around the remnants of the relationship.


Sit him down and talk to him, and tell him while it might not be easy, you think it would be in his best interest as well as yours to take a break and regroup a bit, and then start fresh - as friends, if you're both still interested in being friends then.


I've actually been in this position, though with a guy who had a serious crush on me, not an ex, and hard though it was, we've taken a month break and counting - just resumed very light contact with occasional emails. It wasn't at all easy, I felt like I was being cruel to be kind - but he had to start finding other people to hang with, talk to, and depend on besides me, and he wasn't inclined to do so as long as I was there, even though there were times at the end I was getting snappy and impatient because it was more guilt than wanting to be. There's just a certain point, and we'd reached it, where his emotions and expressions, and dependence, were destroying the friendship on my side more than anything else could do, and this was the only chance there was to see if we could salvage it.

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