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Sorry this is long, but I wanted to preface it with a back ground for sound advice.


4 years ago, I moved to be closer to a man i was dating in a LTR (6 years) that turned LDR so I packed it up and followed him. He was extremely manipulative, never wanted to talk about feelings, would yell at me, criticize me, my friends, my job, my weight etc. I finally wised up and left the sorry jerk. Moving where I had moved, I had no friends. I knew only my ex and some older people that I worked with. So I took a year off from dating. I traveled a bit and eventually made a couple girl friends. Around the same time, I joined a dating website. This man I had seen a few times in the search results that I thought was so cute messaged me and we finally agreed to go on a first date in October after several phone calls.


He and I dated off and on October 2009 to July/August 2010. I was 26, he was 31 (we are now 28 and 32) When we first started dating, sparks flew. I mean, I felt I had been struck by lightening after the first date with him. I mean, he's the kind of guy I waited my whole life to meet. At the time, he was on a career path, he opened the car door, called when he said he would, showed up with flowers for no reason. We just had amazing chemistry. But my insecurities from my last relationship (scared to communicate, didn't feel good enough for him, etc) started coming through, mixed with the fact that I finally had some girl friends to go out with and hang out with just really through a monkey wrench in our whole relationship. I chalked it up to poor timing, and I tried to say "lets just be friends". I had a "leave before you are left" mentality because how could someone as awful as my ex drilled in my head that I was possibly have someone as wonderful as this new man interested in me. So I got to where I would just call him late at night after being with friends and go to his house then. I was treating him like a booty call basically, but in my mind it was that I wanted to fall asleep next to him and wake up with him. I was just all over the place and couldn't figure out what I wanted relationship wise. It was wrong of me, and when I finally started trying to "fix things" he was already planning his exit strategy. Finally, November of last year, without any explanation he changes his phone number and completely goes AWOL. I get it and accept it. If the shoe was on the other foot, I'd probably have done the same.


I realized I had issues I needed to deal with and began seeing a therapist (going on 6 mos now). I hated hurting someone I knew I loved. I've delt with alot of shame and guilt over the past 7 months. During the first month of NC, I wrote him a letter telling him how I felt, apologizing, telling him I'd love a second chance and I'd work as hard as I had to, to regain his trust. I never received a reply or a call.


Fast forward, April of this year, he ends up calling and giving me his new phone number. We talk a few times, nothing about where he's been or why he's calling. Just small talk. So the first month of him being back in my life was going smoothly. He called a few times a week and then we finally had our first time seeing eachother in so long and being alone. He ended up staying over, we did sleep together and that right there I believe was mistake #1. I should not have done that. Then with in the next week or 2, he ends up quitting his job, moving back in with his old roomate and just starts flaking out on plans, not returning texts or phone calls, just complete 180. So i give him his space, there for him if he needs me, etc. We tried to make actual plans a few times but the first time he needed a raincheck because he was helping his mom. The 2nd time I just didn't hear from him at all the day we were supposed to see one another and the 3rd time, this weekend he texts me three hours before we are supposed to go out to tell me he can't make it because he went to the beach.


During this time, we haven't spoken anything about the 5 month hiatus, or why he came back. I just figured, fresh start, the past is the past. Well the flakiness and basically general lack of respect finally caused me to flip my lid. #1, if you're going to cancel plans....call, a text is so impersonal and kind of rude. So, I went on a little rampage that I strongly suspect was caused in part by my female anatomy. I started out with the issue at hand. Why make plans in the first place, if you're just going to blow them off so non-chalantly. Rude much? Then I moved into the next topic. "You disappear for months with no explanation, come back 2 months ago with no explanation other than to acknowledge that you received my letter and sleep with me, you've been rude and flakey. just tell me what gives". Now, if life were a movie...I'd freeze frame that very moment and insert a small clip of a giant bomb going off. So my little text assualt set the wheels in motion. I backed him into a corner. Well there was mistake #2. He apologized for making me feel bad, that he was sorry and he would just leave me alone. So I tell him it's not what I want, I'm just trying to understand him since he won't just talk to me. So he uses my card that I used on him in the first couple of months when we dated back in 09. "I've just got a lot going on in my life right now. Maybe we should just be friends?". Oh boy, there it is. So I didnt want to get too emotional. I replied "if that's what you want. It's not what i want, so although you are posing it as a question, I don't think it's something I'm getting a say in". He asks me not to be mad, he's so sorry, etc. This little exchange goes on sporadically over the next few hours. Finally I had to cut him off to assuage the situation. I'm in a theme park with my friend, getting all emotional. I don't cry in front of anyone, let alone people I don't know or in public. I just said, "It's done. I can't talk about it anymore right now. It hurts too much. You want to be friends. That's what you're getting". (I had a couple drinks at this point).


So he then asks "what are you doing tonight?" really?! So my girl friend and I were going to a bar near the park we'd been at. I told him and he asked where his invite was...are you kidding me right now? He said , well we are friend and so I thought we could sit and talk like a nice family over drinks. He ends up showing up and I thought my friend was going to flip her lid. The first thing out of his mouth was "Alright, so let me have it". I don't do confrontation or talk about private things such as a relationship just openly in public and certainly not in a bar. So I ask them to please not get into it, just leave it be, it's something for he and I to discuss privately. I start knocking back drinks, shots? Yes please. And just end up getting stupid drunk. I start crying because I just don't know how he thought that coming there was a great idea. But during my frequent trips to the restroom, my friend starts talking to my ex, just trying to mediate and make sense of anything. They talk, he holds me and kisses my head everytime I start crying, and I just keep drinking because at this point it was all I could do to keep from just running out of there. I guess during all of this at one point I told him I loved him as I was getting up to use the ladies room and was crying (go figure) and he asked my friend if I really did love him that much. She of course said yes. I just don't show emotion like that and I think he was really taken back that I'm not as strong and tough as I try to sell my self as.


Well, given my intoxicated state, he won't let me drive all the way home. He has me follow him and I can sleep on the couch. Well we get there and he walks me to lay down on the bed. Uh, hit the brakes, we're just friends? I sleep on the couch. So I walk out to the living room and from what I remember, he gave me attitude about sleeping on the couch. So to avoid drama, I just go lay down with him and pass out. The next morning he had to work early, so he woke me up and told me he was leaving and what not so I got up, put my shoes on, grabbed my purse and walked right past him, out the door without saying anything. There was a good chance I was still drunk, but more over, I was embarassed at my drunkness from the night before, crying in front of him, and just the general situation. Well, not even 5 minutes later I get a call getting chewed out for not saying goodbye, or even a thank you for making sure I was safe. I apologized but then asked him to also try to put himself in my shoes for a second. I also asked that he and I sit down, in private and just talk, soberly.


So this is what I know:

- He told my friend, he disappeared for 5 months because he felt it was all he could do to try to get over me. He was so hurt by everything that he was just trying to protect himself.

- He also told her he was in love with me when we dated the first time but when I started only calling him late after being out with my friends, he felt like he was just a booty call and while other guys may want that, he doesn't want to just have sex with someone. it means something to him and he wanted so much more with me.

- After 5 months of NC, he realized that he still had feelings for me so he called but he's still feeling hurt and so he just doesn't know what he's doing but he doesn't want to hurt me.

- I shouldn't drink when I'm emotional

- I shouldn't have slept with him so quickly and/or expected things to just be picked up right where we left off

- I need more patience and to understand how hurt he probably still is, he probably doesn't trust me at all still, and I need to work on being his friend first and not just assume that everything was kosher beef and there wasn't things in the past that we needed to deal with and heal up first.

- We need to communicate. The lack of communication between the 2 of us is what is causing a lot of this heart ache and I don't think that anything so bad has happened that we can't grow together from it and get what I think we both want.


So this is where I need your input. I just feel like there's a lot of mixed messages going on and I am treading very lightly. I just kind of don't know what to do at this point. We haven't talked since I left the other morning.

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I don't think things are as bad as you fear. From what you are saying, this guy genuinely cares for you despite the fact that you didn't treat him very well at times and he felt hurt.


If you can take ownership of your part, and realise that you dumped your insecurieties born of past pain into what otherwise might have been a very nice relationship, you have a really good chance of having it all work out.


Tell him all this, tell him you care about him (if you really do) and ask him if you can start dating (assuming that is what you want.)


If you aren't truly ready to be open and honest with him and give it your best shot, then decency dictates you must leave him alone.


I happen to agree with him saying it wasn't very nice of you to walk out of his place without a goodbye or thank you. If you can't see that, maybe this isn't a good match for your, or you aren't ready for a relationship.


If you can apologise sincerely ("I'm sorry for doing ____, you must have felt ____, and I don't want to do that to you. Please forgive me and I won't do it again.) I think he may accept it and you two can be happy together.


As for his career and apartment situation, that's his own business. If it bothers you enough that you feel like you can't date a guy doing whatever he is doing, again decency says you should leave him alone.


If you decide you want to work it out, and he agrees, then start going on dates and let him get to know the real you without you being fearful or guarded. Everything you have said about him suggests he won't trash your heart-- quite the opposite, he seems concerned for your well-being.


I hope it works out for you. It sounds as if you could have a great realtionship!

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Oh believe me, he is what I want. His career and living situation doesn't bother me at all. He could be a bag boy at a grocery store and i wouldn't care. When he made contact and gave me his new number, I swear if I could have Julie Andrews-ed it up and sang it from the mountains how happy I was, i would have!


I am ready to sit and have an honest conversation with him. To tell him all of the stuff that I should have told him long ago. My therapist tonight told me that she doesn't think he wants to "just be friends" at all. She said that because I was having a pissing contest with him by text that he just reacted to protect himself since he's highly guarded right now given everything and has 0 trust in the things I'm saying but is scared to see me and get close, so he's not seeing the changes. We're like turtles. He pops his head out, gets scared and retreats. I take his retreat as rejection and so I retreat. It's going to be up to me to get us to talk and clear the air. There are so many misunderstandings I feel. I'll go as slow as he needs. I don't want to lose him. My therapist tonight told me that he and I have something genuine and it's a rare thing to see and she just wants us to work this out. I thought about asking him to go with me sometime, he knows I see a therapist, but I don't think he knows exactly why. I told him stress (which is partially true) but I'm really trying to continue to work on myself.

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Anyone else have any feedback on this?


After seeing my therapist, I did what she told me and sent him a text. I apologized again for Saturday, and just said we really need to clear the air but doing what we should have done a long time ago, lay it all out there, and just finally talk about everything. I told him to let me know what night is best. I haven't heard from him, but given everything that happened over the weekend I don't expect an immediate response. I'm sure he's really mulling over everything that happened over the past couple of days.

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YOu have to accept that he may not agree to another chance. If this happens, learn your lessons from it, heal, and move on.


I think you were rather cold to him: you thought REALLY??? when he wanted to come meet you. I would have welcomed that as a really nice gesture and a sign that the guy really is interested, and given engouragement to stoke the interest.


If he does give it another shot, try to be appreciative of how he is showing caring. Not wanting you to drive drunk is one example, but all you did was walk off without a thanks or goodbye. You'd hurt his feelings previously, and then were distancing when he offerred reconciliation.


Maybe send him a nice handwritten card or letter. Texting can be a bit impersonal. Then leave it be and let him decide if he wants to make contact or not. At that point it's really up to him.


I hope it works out for you and you can enjoy a warm and openhearted relationship with someone who seems really terrific and into you.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's been 10 days since I last heard from him and this is the longest we've gone without some sort of exchange. I'm just taking it as he's made his choice to not even attempt to speak to me again about everything that's happened or at all ever again for that matter. I can't apologize anymore though. He knows that I have a hard time communicating and that even talking to him in private is hard for me. I developed an irrational fear of talking about feelings after dating the guy I dated before this one. Getting belittled and screamed at everytime you try to talk about how you feel or things bothering you in the relationship is defeating and made me just learn to keep my feelings to myself until I get so frustrated that I blow up which is the exact opposite of what I should do to have effective communication. As all humans, I'm a work in progress and learn more about myself and what triggers my emotions every day.


That night, after telling me he just wants to be friends and knowing I'm upset, he thinks it's a great idea to come up and try to discuss our relationship and/or feelings infront of a friend of mine, in public no less. Could I have handled the situation differently? Absolutely. But he fully knows I'm guarded, I told him I was hurting about his decision to be friends before he ever suggested to meet my friend and I out the same day he gives me the "maybe we should just be friends" speech and then tries to re-hash a conversation I had just told him I didn't want to talk about anymore before he ever showed up. So I feel like my feelings weren't being respected. Was that his intent? I don't know. I won't make accusations since I'm not him and can't possibly know what is going on in his head right now.


I don't want to be that girl that says "I'm going to give it one more shot and try to contact him" but sometimes I feel like I just don't try hard enough. The first time he changed his # and I didn't hear from him for months. To me, that says "I don't ever want to speak to you again". Then comes back 5 months later because, as he told my friend, "all of these feelings came back", yet we never talked about this. Never tried to move forward. So I don't know if those feelings disappeared in 2 months or what but to me, you don't go through the extreme of removing yourself from someones life to change your mind a few months later, only to "just be friends" again. We were never just friends and I don't want to just be his friend. I think that is what makes this all so hard for me. He disappears to come back to disappear again. I put it out there that I'm willing to sit down, just me and him, in private to talk about everything just so we can get a better understanding of one another if nothing else. I desperately need to have that with him. I think that it will help both of us out, whether it be to completely move on from one another without him coming back again or perhaps it will help us grow together. If we could just learn to communicate with one another I honestly think we wouldn't be dealing with this nonsense and would have something pretty great.

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