View Full Version : An interesting personal quandry

No brains
2011-09-01, 11:16 PM
Alright internet, I know I shouldn't go to you for help OR tell you anything about myself, but I need to ask someone.

I've had this friend for a while see, we've always enjoyed the company of each other, in person and later online, and we stayed friends through tough times (more on that below).

I was speaking to this friend through AIM the day before yesterday, and through mutual boredom, we agreed to meet in person for the first time in over a year.

Just tonight however, I had heard that this friend of mine received some bad news; their fiance had broken up with them.

I am greatly attracted to this friend of mine (if you wonder, we share the same orientation). I was immediately torn at hearing this news. My dear friend had suffered a great loss, but now they were available for my affections.

Now I am no simple beast. I will not swoop in like a vulture and try to gorge on the carrion of an engagement. Indeed, I had fallen to this very temptation once in the past, and this friend was one of few who stood by me when the tornado of emotional confusion ripped into the life of my former crush and I. In fact, the event was even more hauntingly similar, in that my former crush had also stayed an online friend after knowing me in person, who had fallen out of a relationship THE MOMENT I finally had the chance to see them in person.

I will be a strong, tactful human being and offer my support to my friend in this troubled time for them. It is still likely that I will see them in person soon and I will be as supportive as my friend needs, while still staying the course of the original plan and having a nice time with one of the few people each of us has who actually listens to us.

But where do I draw the line? Where in offering emotional support, offering an ear to listen and a shoulder to cry on do I know I am still being a good friend and not succumbing again to my lesser self? How do I survey this minefield of sore emotions without igniting a blast that will tear apart the relationship with another dear friend?

If there is anyone who can, I implore you to help me. I want to be a good person in handling this. Also, if there are any trolls who just want to inject humor into this serious situation.. go ahead, just make sure they're damn good jokes because I could go for a laugh right now.

2011-09-01, 11:23 PM
Dang, that's rough. I'd say just be there for them, but hold off on anything too romantic or anything until they have recovered from their loss. Be a friend and try not to be anything more for a while.

2011-09-01, 11:50 PM
It seems worth mentioning that posting/transcribing part of this thread onto the Relationship Woes thread might give you more responses, as your topic is specifically related to romantic interests.

If I understand you right, you're attracted to a friend of yours, who just recently became single, and now you're wondering if you might harm the friendship by acting on your romantic interests.

Anyway, as a means of sharing perspective without giving professional advice, I'll go into what I'd do and think about, if I were in your shoes.

(1) Timing: A concern I'd have in this situation would have to do with my friend's emotional state. Break ups can be rough. I know I feel really vulnerable and taxed after a break up, and the last thing I want to do is jump into another one, especially when this most recent fall out is still plaguing me. By waiting for my friend to get back on his feet emotionally, I'm increasing my chances of dating someone who is in a better place to date. Alternately, I don't want to date someone who gets into relationships super fast after a break up, because I think rebounds are problematic.

(2) Friends: I admit that romantic interests can make it more difficult for me to be "just friends" with someone. If I've known them for a short time, I might be more likely to drop the friendship entirely, if rejected, because rejection sucks, and may make me want to pull away from them. Of course, being rejected by someone I'm close with can hurt too, but at least I can fall back on what I already have with them, instead of focusing on what I wish I had, but can't have.

(3) Interest: Sometimes sharing my interest can be difficult, if I worry about whether they'll reject me. Other times, I just take the plunge and see how they respond. I need to know if they are into me, sooner than later, before I invest too much time working myself up over the possibility of dating.

(4) Consoling: I want to be there for friends whether I am attracted to them or not. I feel fairly able to tune out my needs when I'm being there for someone else. That might be not easy for everyone though. If I felt swamped by my attraction and desire to be romantic, then I'd have to step out of the situation, because I'd not be fulfilling my "duties" as a friend. I'm essentially prioritizing the needs of my friend over mine, to a degree. I can console a friend over a period of time without letting my pangs of desire melt my soul. This would have been much more difficult for me when I was younger, when I felt like being in a relationship was a "do or die" sort of situation.

2011-09-02, 02:32 AM
It seems worth mentioning that posting/transcribing part of this thread onto the Relationship Woes thread might give you more responses, as your topic is specifically related to romantic interests.

I'll just say that Relationship Woes and Advice is *not* purely romantic. It's any relationship, be it with your parents, your friends, your pet cat, or the nearby giraffe trying to steal all your food.

But otherwise, Dabbler speaks the truth. :smallsmile: Good luck.