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Embarking on Long-Distance dating with my ex.

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A little background: I was with my ex-boyfriend for about a year before breaking up. Many of our problems were marked by our poor communication skills and my reluctance to commit in the beginning stages of our relationship. He initiated our break-up and it was abrupt to say the least, a week before the break-up we were talking about moving in together. But he had trust issues and as a result was pulling away and I was turning into one of those needy girls who needed constant affirmation, and was constantly being critical. What surprised me most was that the break-up was also coupled with a decision on his part to move accross the country in the next two months.


To say the least I was devastated, shocked, and angry. I shut him out of my life at that point. Also, a month after our break-up he began seeing another girl, even though he was moving. I of course, was confused. They attempted a committed LDR but it failed a few weeks into it, after a visit from her. He explains that it was a rebound fling and this realization came upon her visit. They both recognized they did not have a strong foundation or staying power.


While we were still in the same city, he tried contacting me but I refused to talk to him. Five months later, from his new home accross the country he tried again by emailing me almost everyday for two weeks. The emails were light for the most part, although there were many heartfelt ones too. We began talking online and I went out to visit to him a few weeks into our communication.


Our visit was great. And for a week we basically were a couple. Since then we have talked almost everyday online, sent emails and packages. I am also visiting again in the next few weeks. After talking we both agreed that we do not want to be in a relationship right now -- in a general sense, but also specific to us. Despite, the obvious complications the distance presents, we have a lot of things that need to be worked on between us. Right now, I enjoy having him in my life and getting to know and trust him again.


However, we do wholeheartedly admit we are more than friends and want to make an effort to keep one another in each other’s lives. He has already begun looking into seeing me in April and May. My question is this, is it naïve to think that we can long distance date? I for one, am in no position to consider a committed LDR at this time, and especially with him. And right now, I am just not ready for a relationship. I know he feels the same way. Having said that though, I am open to seeing what happens. In short I guess we come from the stance that say: I care about you, I want you in my life, but I don’t want a relationship right now. I do however want to make efforts to see you and be with you and I am open to seeing what happens.


My friends think we are crazy and say that we are engaging in a relationship whether we admit it or not. I am not so sure. I mean, I would date other people if the situation presented itself. As well, I am not putting all my hopes into someone that is 3,000 miles away after one good visit.


Any thoughts or advice?

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I think that if you are going to go through with this, the two of you need to sit down and set clear expectations. I think that you are in a relationship with him, just not a committed one. If you don't set expectations, I can see one party getting hurt over something the other does. And once you set those expectations, you cannot get mad at the other for going along with them.


For example, when my ex-boyfriend and I broke up the first time and got back together, we decided to casually date for awhile. We said that we could date others, but could not sleep with others. However, when I started to see another guy (extremely casually, we just hung out), he got very very jealous and upset even though casually dating was his idea.


My point is that even though neither one of you are ready to be exclusive, your feelings and emotions are still involved and can still get hurt. I think that if you have a serious conversation about what each of you want, what you're willing to give, and what you expect from what you're doing, you will have a much better chance.

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Thank you for that advice. To some extent we have set expectations, we want to make an effort to see one another. So far so good, it looks like we are making moves to satisfy that expectation at least on a monthly basis for at least the Feb-May period.


We have discussed dating other people, and have expressed that this is also fine. We understand that this could mean one of us ends up committing to another person yet this is not what we are looking for so that is something if dealt with, would be much further down the road. Perhaps naive, but we think at least for now there can be some overlap of dating in this early stage. At this time, neither one of us is seeing another person. We also agreed that if our feelings change about this that we can revisit the discussion at a later time.


Although, it may sound like a "no strings attached" scenario I think it goes a little deeper. We obviously have real emotion between us and it seems we are both making efforts to maintain some sort of relationship. It is just an odd feeling because at this time I don't know that either one of us is clear what is, or if there is, any intention. In a way I mirror it to the beginning stages of dating anyone, it's too soon to speculate or know.

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