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all the cards are on the table...so what next?


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So a few weeks ago, this guy I was dating just stopped everything. I was really broken up because he really hurt me. I thought he was on his way to being something different. He really hurt my ego as well. I chose to ignore the situation and didn't talk to him about it at all. But as these things go, you can't hide your feelings forever. One night, a good friend convinced me to just talk to him. I did, and turns out hes actually looking for something serious and I haven't exactly been showing him I'm serious. I guess in my own messed up juvenile way I thought I was, but it failed.


The cat was out of the bag and I felt a little better, but I was still hurt because I wanted to be with him. I was good with him and he made me want to be a better person. I tried to be as supportive as possible for him and I was completely understanding of everything.


A few days passed, and I told him I was sorry for flying off the handle. I did say some things in the heat of the moment, but it wasn't anything too harsh. I explained I needed time and that i hoped we could be friends in the future. He kept saying how sorry he was and that he didn't know what else to do and that he likes me so much, but we were in just two different places. This hurt me even more because the last thing you want to hear is the guy that you've fallen for telling you that hes so into you but he can't be with you.


After finally getting everything out, I decided I was in this funk for too long and went on a day trip with my girls. That night we decided to go out for drinks. And who should contact me but this guy. He was saying "hi" and "i'm sorry" and "i miss you." At this point, I was trying to move on, and he just set me back. I still missed him terribly. A mini-fight later, I was on my way to his place wondering what the hell i was doing. I'm a very guarded person, and its hard to open up. But I felt like the thing to do with him, was open up. I've always been so secure with him. He's changed me in a lot of ways.


So after a long talk, we decided to continue on. I was planning that all along, I just didn't know why he pulled away. I feel really vulnerable going back to him. I'm very scared right now, but waking up with him is the best feeling that I have ever experienced. I'm honestly completely happy. I fear putting a lot into him, and not getting anything back, because I've been down this road before. But something about him makes me want to do this. I feel like he's worth it.


Right now he's got a lot of stress at work. He's on the cusp of greatness, as I like to say, because he's getting promotions every few months. I'm extremely proud of him. I knew he could do it. Sometimes he gets down on himself, but I'd like to be there for him. I just hope that he will do the same. I admit we do have a bit of an age difference. I am also in a very transitional stage in my life. I'll be graduating with my Bachelors degree, and I plan to go on to grad school. I feel like we're both in these very stressful meaningful stages in our lives, but I'm ready. I want to take this step with him.


How can I show him that I'm in this for the long haul? How can I be sure that he's as invested as I? Because he's so busy with work, I don't want to put more pressure on him, but I also don't want it to seem like I don't care. I'm trying to be mature and responsible here. I realize that there are a lot things that need to change and a lot of compromises to be made, but I'm willing.

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Seems like you're allowing previous wounds get in the way. On the other hand, you also seem to be rationalizing his behavior. You say that you fear investing in him but not getting anything back. Does that mean you're putting in far more effort than he is?


You're right that Im letting past wounds get in the way. I mean, I act so tough and unmoved by him, even when he's being affectionate. I tried so hard in the beginning not to get close or let on that I liked him. But when I'm with him, it's something I've never experienced before. He's a nice guy in every way. I guess, I have a fear of investing in him because in the past I did let myself go and I put my all into relationships that just didn't last. The guys that I've dated before have been of such low quality, and I've been damaged, physically and emotionally.


I have come such a long way since then though. This is the first relationship that I would be getting into since my last which was horrifying. That was a year ago.

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I think now is the time to look inward instead of at him. How can you make yourself feel strong enough to give 100% of you, your best you? If this guy is as good as you think right now, why wouldn't you want to give 100%? There are ways to proceed in the dating world with caution but also full-heartedly. A solid friendship is a the foundation of most successful relationships. If you think about one of your best friends, it's probably someone you would trust with your life, or nearly, right? It should eventually get that way with a partner - but definitely not initially. Once you get to that point, you know you're good with him. For now however, get yourself right. Figure out how you can improve your self-esteem and become more independent. The universally sexy women have high self-esteem, are not needy, and would seemingly be fine in this world alone. Not that they want to be but thats what makes them desirable.

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