LDR Advice from Michelle and Frank

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I want to be in a relationship with her, but she avoids the topic

April 4, 2009

I have a unique situation that I’m trying to deal with.

Randi and I met online in August 2008. We live 400 miles apart. We met on MySpace as she was setting up our high school reunion. We never knew each other in high school.

Some background info… Randi is going through a divorce and she has 3 kids. She and I started talking online and talked everyday. We had great conversations usually lasting an hour or so. We met the night before the reunion at the end of September and hit it off really well. Right after that I found out that I was being deployed to Iraq. I’m not in the military, but work as a civilian for the Army. I asked if she wanted to spend a weekend together in Oct and she said yes. We did the same in Nov. Both times, we had a great time together. I slept in the same bed as her but we never had sex feeling it would only further complicate things. Also, we were talking every day on the phone for a couple of hours plus we emailed during the day at work.

Randi has been very upfront that she isn’t ready for a committed relationship. The day I left her place, I told her I loved her. I didn’t say the words, but she understands how I feel. Not sure if that was the best thing to do, but I did it. Middle of Nov I left for Iraq.

Since I have left, Randi and I nearly talk everyday, either by phone or by email/IM. It has slowed down quite a bit, but we still talk often. She is still going through the divorce. So here is the problem… my friends tell me that I need to just be her friend right now. I am having a hard time doing this. My feelings for her are too great. When I bring it up to her, she tells me that she can’t commit and that talking about this every now and then is starting to become a real turn off. I understand this, but keeping my feelings close hold is hard to do. I try to flirt with her, send her flowers, notes, letters, poems. I don’t do this all the time, but every once in awhile.

She doesn’t tell me how she feels…she hasn’t told me she misses me, nor has she told me that she is excited to see me when I come back for a break in June. I asked her about missing me and she says she doesn’t have time to miss me. We talk all the time. I asked her if she was excited to see me when I come back and she didn’t answer. I believe she is, but she puts up this wall. I understand why.

I don’t know if I am wasting my time with her. I don’t think I can remain friends with her and move on. I’ve jumped in with both feet already and it is too late to be just friends. We communicate great, we discuss the 1000 questions from that book, we play games over the phone. I don’t want to be stuck in friend land. On top of that, I don’t want to be a rebound either. I feel like I’m always giving to her, but I receive nothing in return.

Right now, Randi loves her freedom. She doesn’t have to answer to anyone. I realize that going out on dates may be healthy for her, but it tears me up inside. She doesn’t tell me about the dates or that she is going on them, but I do know she has. I think I’m coming off as needy and I don’t want that. I’m just a really great guy who fell in love with someone who isn’t quite available…plus there is this distance, too.

Basically I’m wondering if I’m wasting my time, or do you guys think that something could possibly come from this? Thanks for your time.


Michelle says…

I hate to be discouraging when I give advice, but to be honest I think it is very clear that she isn’t interested in having a relationship with you. I think you’re in love with a person who doesn’t feel an inch of what you do for her.

You have spoken of so many red flags that she isn’t interested. Unfortunately, when you are on your side of the coin, it is hard to not be biased and to shrug off big signs she isn’t into as small things that might change.

  • She is getting divorced, has her freedom, and isn’t ready to let go of that yet.
  • She is dating other men, which is a clear sign that she isn’t as interested in you as you are in her.
  • She is not responsive to your affections or gifts and doesn’t seem to want them.
  • She is turned off by you even mentioning the word “relationship.”

I think what you need to do is get an answer straight from her.

If she is excited to see you, then she would just say it. There is no reason for her to hide that at all. Saying she doesn’t have time to miss you is quite the line. You don’t need time to miss a person. You either miss them or you don’t. It isn’t something you “work” on and needs time. I just feel like she is avoiding hurting your feelings by saying she doesn’t miss you. Honestly, who in the military wants to hear that?

Ask her: “Can you see yourself with me in a serious, committed relationship, at any point in the future?” If she hesitates or tries to talk around the question, then she is not interested and wants to avoid hurting your feelings. If she says no, she is being honest.

If she says yes, then be careful. You have to wonder why she is dating other men, and at the same time leading you on.

I really think you just need to hear what she honestly thinks about being in a relationship with you. You deserve a straight answer. Her leading you on is not fair to you, and you pursuing her when she doesn’t want to be pursued by you is not fair to her either.

I’m sorry Mike, I don’t think anything will come from pursuing her anymore, but I do think that you need to have a talk with her so you can leave this relationship knowing that nothing would have happened. You don’t want to think “what might have been.” Good luck!


Frank says…

I understand that you really love Randi. And, while she may like you back, it really seems like she is just not feeling like she should be in a relationship with you right now. Here is why I am thinking that:

She has told you a couple times that she is not ready for a relationship. She mentions how busy she is and even when you talk of a relationship, it is a turn off. I personally do not see why, even if she is not ready for the relationship yet, why she would not just tell you that she could see herself in a relationship with you, just not now. Maybe in the future she could, though. So her, being upfront, as you said, that she isn’t ready is something that I think you have to take at face value.

Even friends can be excited that someone is coming back home from deployment. My buddy came back for a week from being stationed in NC in January, and my friends and I threw him a party. So, her not saying that she is excited to see you is strange. The reason could be because she is afraid of leading you on. If you know that she is excited to see you, she could be afraid that you might get the wrong idea.

You believe that she is going on dates and not telling you. If she really is doing this, she is not telling you because she knows it will crush your heart. Or, she is not telling you because she thinks it is really none of your business. Either way, they are not good signs. If she wanted a relationship with you, but still wanted to date, I think that she would tell you that she needs to see some other people in the mean time. Or something along those lines.

Unfortunately, Mike, you are committed to this relationship that Randi just doesn’t want to happen. It is my opinion that you have to just tell her straight up. Tell her that you really want to pursue a relationship with her when you get back. You can not just stay in the “friend zone” anymore. Because if you have feelings for her, and this causes you to not enjoy your friendship to the fullest. And she knows you have feelings, but she isn’t returning them. This is also causing a problem with your friendship. What I am trying to say is that friendships when the feelings are there for one, and not there for the other one, hurt both people. If you just give her an ultimatum that she has to tell you if you can can have a serious relationship when you get back, or else you will be out of her life, you will get your answer. (Generally, ultimatums are not fun, but it is the best way to get some type of real answer. And they are only to be used in very serious situations).

I know you want to be with her. But you can not just keep sliding along as a friend wanting more, and not receiving more. It is already wearing on you, and it will only hurt more as it goes on. Sorry, Mike, but you need to make up your mind if you want to continue living as if your current situation is fine, or with an answer, and no guessing about motives.

Best of luck, Mike. Stay safe in Iraq.


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