A couple of years ago I dated a guy I liked a lot and was very attracted to, but was told by a mutual friend I couldn’t trust. Our friend told me to have a good time with him, but not to expect anything more. He was always good to me and my only reason for holding back was because of what my friend had told me. Because I was so attracted to him, I decided to date him as just a good time, and then because of a misunderstanding I didn’t even discuss with him, I quit speaking to him and disappeared. He didn’t even know why I quit talking to him. I had always felt bad about it and when I ran into him again about a month ago, I explained why I quit speaking to him. It turned out I was wrong about the misunderstanding and I let him go for no reason. Now I regret not continuing the relationship. Because of my friend, I didn’t even really give him a chance and now he has a girlfriend. Seeing him again, everything clicked like it did before and I remembered something you said to someone once. You said “your heart will recognize him and your head will agree.” That is exactly how I feel about this guy, but, again, he has a girlfriend. I know in my gut he’s not happy with her, nor she with him, but I feel terrible even thinking about wanting them to break up. He and I have resumed the friendship and it breaks my heart that it can’t be anything more. Does he feel the same way about me? Is there anything in the future for us? I just can’t make myself stop believing we would be so perfect for each other and I’m trying to live my life and let it take its course, but I can’t stand the thought of him being with someone who doesn’t make him happy when I know I would.
Thank you so much for any advice you can give. I look forward to your column every week.
Melissa in Mobile
Have you ever really looked at a spider’s web? At first glance, some webs seem to be literally perfect in design. And, if one has a moment to pause and study it, imperfections can be seen. There may be a broken thread, some areas woven more tightly or loosely than others, or a variation in pattern that may have been strategic – or it may have been a mistake. I have often wondered about the spider who created the web. What was it thinking? Did it actually have this design in mind, or was it simply driven by instinct?
I personally think the flaws reflect some moment of consciousness of the spider, moments where its tiny will overrides its spirit and instinct. The question is, will the variances of the web’s design catch the fly, or let it slip through the threads? Even though I, like many others, hate and fear the spider; I do appreciate and respect the web.
Your situation is pretty much like a spider’s web. Where the threads intersect, a decision was called for; and the patterns of the weavings changed with each decision that was made.
Going back to when to when you were dating this guy, the timing was off. You weren’t ready at that point in your life to be fully open to what he and the relationship could offer you. Because you had been warned that you could not fully trust this man, you made the conscious choice not to, and by doing so, you really didn’t even give the guy a fair chance. Equally, you didn’t give yourself a fair chance to actually know him and discover for yourself who he really was. It is a lesson that you may not have seen or understood at the time, but it is a lesson that you can benefit from now.
When you chose to walk away without a word, you left unfinished business between yourself and this guy. More often than not, when we do this in our lives, the Universe puts in our path the circumstances to finish up whatever business we have left undone. This is what happened to you when you ran into him. Now each of you has a better understanding of what happened; in essence, the air has been cleared.
You’ve grown and changed during the time this guy was out of your life. He has as well. And he has a girlfriend. Whether she’s a good choice for him or not is not your call; it is his. You gave him that ability when you chose to walk away. He needs to be able to evaluate his life and this relationship on his own. He will eventually come to the conclusion that she is not for him. Don’t interfere, or there will be “unfinished business” between the two of them. Let it run its course.
The best thing you can do for now, is to value and work on your friendship with him. While it may be a bit difficult to keep the wanting of more at bay, a romance is not going to develop because of your will alone. Yes, he is still attracted to you, and does wonder what could have been. But he needs to finish his course with his current relationship and get through the lingering trust issues he has with you. Time will take care of both of these things.
In accordance with the laws of balance, the next choice is his. He learned to live with your decisions, and even forgive them. Now you must step back and wait for him to make his decisions.
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