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okay, so the background is, I tried out a relationship with a long time friend earlier this year, and it didn't work out. I have known this guy on and off as a friend for 20 years, so trying out a relationship was a big risk, and it tanked.


The problem was I just didn't feel enough chemistry with him to sustain a relationship. On paper everything else was great, but he just didn't do it for me in the physical attraction department. My theory is that "settling" (which was kind of what I was doing) works if both people are on the same page, and we kind of were at the beginning. But unfortunately he fell in love, and I didn't. When he reciprocated my tentative interest, I ran away. So we dated for maybe three months and I ended it quite abruptly.


He is very angry and I totally understand why. From his perspective I talked him into a relationship and when he caved in and fell for me, I dumped him. In his shoes I would be angry too.


We have not had much contact since the split. I reached out a few weeks after and emailed and expressed the wish that at some point we could repair the friendship but I understood if that wasn't possible. His response to that was a one line email:


"you are the most manipulative person I have ever met, and I have met some doozies."


So seeing as clearly he is mad and wants nothing to do with me, I left him alone.


However after this, HE started initiating contact. The nature of the contact is very variable - sometimes snarky and bitter, sometimes nostalgic. He clearly has not moved on (it is now six months later).


He has texted once and asked if I would meet him for drinks and dinner for old times sake, I said "no, but another time would be good." I do wish for us to be friends again one day.


Most recently he texted and asked "any regrets?". So I was in the unfortunate position of having to deliver the news, no, no regrets. I actually said I didn't regret trying it out, but I don't regret ending it either. To this he responded, "well can I have my books back then?"


He has some things of mine, I have some things of his. I was just leaving it as it was, thinking one day we would resume our friendship and deal with those matters. So now, he wants to meet and exchange things.


This is my issue. I don't think I really want to meet with him, because he hasn't moved on. It's dragging the corpse accross the coals to no result. I also don't want to ignore him and offer to post his things instead as this sends a message I do not value the friendship. I do want to be friends in the future.


So, what do I do?

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I agree. Seems like he's not over you and using the bloody books as a reason to see you appears to be manipulative on his part. Granted... he is hurting and when ppl hurt they can act a little crazy. You seem to have been mature and gracious about this... continue in that manner and hopefully things will get better.


hmmmm... in the matter of the said books..... yes. if you send them i think it could send a message and you might just be stoking his fire... and not in a sexy way.


I think you should perhaps meet him somewhere and make it casual... take a friend with you and make it clear beforehand you are just passing through.... as you have somewhere to be. tell him via email or whatever that it feels too soon to be able to have dinners and such... more time is needed.. and continue to be your sweet pleasant self.


and do not feel guilty. you have been honest about things. tough break for him but putting yourslef in a situation that is forseeably uncomforatble will not help him.


no matter waht you do... he may continue to be erratic. so you cn only be as nice as possible.... take a friend with you when you drop the books off and make it clear you'll grab your stuff anohter time..... it's not urgent. there will be other times. just not right now

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Thanks Saschenka. I was waiting to see if I got any more replies but I think you covered all the issues quite well.


I don't really want to meet up with him but if i want to preserve a friendship down the line maybe I have no choice. Best to keep it low key as you suggested.

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