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To ask what to do? Emotionally attracted to friend.

(30 Posts)
FunkyKingston Thu 11-Apr-19 23:51:55

At Christmas i seperated from my wife after a 13 year relationship that left me unhappy, low on confidence and exacerbated my feelings of depression and helplessness. The split was amicable and i stay in the spare room when I'm not working away.

I've recently developed romantic feelings for a female friend, we clicked pretty instantly as friends and have a close bond of a 'finish each others sentences' type thing, but whilst i felt an instant closeness and rapport, it struck me a few months ago that i was in love with her.

I don't think she feels the same. I've seen the way she acts around blokes the way she fancies and she doesn't act that way round me, nor am i her physical type. She's also incredibly attractive and i am not.

That said, when i told her my wife and i seperated she enquired along the lines of 'so you'd say you' re single now?' and was quite keen to find out if i was ready to start dating, which was possibly me reading too much into nothing.

I feel incredibly guilty and like I'm betraying our friendship amd angry I'm fallong for thr biggest cliche in the book.

I think i should tell her how i feel, not because i hold out any hope that the feelings are reciprocated, but i feel i am being duplicitous and a bad friend when i have this deep yearning for her.

On the other hand, i worry that she make react (legitimately) with hostility and disgust and think I've had designs on her from the start of our friendship and losing her friendship would be awful.

And yet, a tiny nugget of hope there makes me think... maybe, just maybe.

Any advice, because i think about this nonstop.

MissConductUS Fri 12-Apr-19 00:04:17

I think i should tell her how i feel, not because i hold out any hope that the feelings are reciprocated

The fact that she asked you if you were ready to date is really ambiguous. It's a natural step in the process you're going through.

There's no need to tell her how you feel. You can show her how you feel by asking her out, but it may seem quite premature as you're still living with your (separated) wife. If you could move out things would be much clearer.

OopsOhNoZHM Fri 12-Apr-19 00:09:39

In my experience, dating a friend never ends well. Not to say it wouldn’t for you, but you definitely feel the loss more if you split up, because the very person you would have turned to is the person no longer available to you. Just something to bear in mind

Yesicancancan Fri 12-Apr-19 02:37:00

Move out first, you have moved on emotionally, your ex may not. Besides to any new love interest it sounds dodgy.as.fuck. “Yeah I’m separated and still living with her”. ooookkaaaay then.

FunkyKingston Fri 12-Apr-19 09:08:14

Thanks for the replies, i wrote my op in a state of confusion, sorry if it didn't make mych sense as it was a jumble of half formed late night thoughts.

I certainly don't want to bounce out of one relationship ibto abother and I'm certainly not wanting to actively date. I wish i could make these feelings i have for my friend go away, it is a weird feeling that I've never had before, not a sexual attraction but a deep romantic attachment, rather than wantung us to datr.

In an ideal world it would go away, but i can't seem to shake it off.

Boboo18 Fri 12-Apr-19 11:24:27

be honest with her. If she really is a good friend it won't ruin anything if she doesnt feel the same way

bsc Fri 12-Apr-19 11:33:26

Are you sexually attracted to her? Or is it more that she was in the right place at the right time when your love for your wife had gone and you needed someone to fulfill that emotional need?

FunkyKingston Fri 12-Apr-19 11:45:48

Are you sexually attracted to her? Or is it more that she was in the right place at the right time when your love for your wife had gone and you needed someone to fulfill that emotional need?

I don't know. It came as such an out of nowhere revelation that i was romantically attracted to her and felt more than friendship, i don't think I've even thought about sexual attraction.

I think it may be the attraction works on an emotional level only, certainly the lack of emotional intimacy was a huge factor in the marriage breakdown. I'm certainly attracted by her kindness, her humour and her intelligence.

IrenetheQuaint Fri 12-Apr-19 11:55:36

Can you invite her out for drinks and see what happens? Assuming she's single, of course.

Don't make a big speech with no warning, that would just freak her out.

Leeds2 Fri 12-Apr-19 12:02:44

If I were her, I wouldn't want to date anyone who was sharing a home with their ex wife. I would be concerned that the relationship wasn't over. So, if I were you and wanted to take things further, I would concentrate first on getting my own house/flat, and then see how things develop.

FunkyKingston Fri 12-Apr-19 12:05:37

We go out for drinks a lot. In fact that's mostly how we socialise. Yes she is single.

Thing I'm pretty sure she doesn't reciprocate these feelings but i feel i am being dishonest about my feelings and a crap and deceitful friend if i don't tell her.

FunkyKingston Fri 12-Apr-19 12:08:22

I were you and wanted to take things further, I would concentrate first on getting my own house/flat, and then see how things develop

Yes, i can see that. As i say, i don't think she reciprocates my feelings.

MajesticWhine Sat 13-Apr-19 07:59:18

You are not being deceitful or a crap friend by not telling her. There is no rule that says you have to tell a friend everything. I suggest there is no hurry to tell her. Just take your time, carry on being a decent friend, and see what happens.

FunkyKingston Sun 05-May-19 23:18:07

Soeey to revive this thread after a few weeks, but i saw my friend, we got pissed and i made some hopeless attempt to tell her how i feel (never done that before) on the way home, along the lknes of, 'I love you before managing to add before i could gauge her reaction....' err not like that as a friend'. Thus managing to make everything worse if she remembers it.

Idiot, idiot, idiot

ZippyBungleandGeorge Sun 05-May-19 23:29:34

Oh dear, how did she react when you first said it? I love you is a strong statement.

I'm not against dating friends, DH was my best friend from the age of 11 and we didn't get together until 25 because of concerns about 'ruining the friendship', and both of us being unsure if the other reciprocated in the same way. We're now a decade on.

Suliemantra Sun 05-May-19 23:43:28

Don't beat yourself up! She's single, your single. Just tell her how you feel.

All she can say is no, and thats ok.

But I'm not sure you're completely over the relationship with your wife'?

FunkyKingston Mon 06-May-19 00:06:07

Oh dear, how did she react when you first said it? I love you is a strong statement.

She looked shocked, but we were both very drunk and it was completely out of the blue we were tqlking about marmite at the time. It/I was quite full on.

She texted the next morning to compare hangovers, didn't mention my half baked deceleration ( she could have forgotten it took it as drunken, 'i love you (platonically) mate' comradeship nor made mention of it since.

If i were ro have a conversation where i was upfront about my feelings, how would i go about it without scaring her half to death?

But I'm not sure you're completely over the relationship with your wife'?

No, i am still trying to make sense of it, the end of the marriage hurt me very badly and my confidence is very low and feel guilty i couldn't make the marriage work (told you i was a catch! ) now is also bad time for my friend professionally.

StinkyWizleteets Mon 06-May-19 00:22:13

Forget the declaration of love. For now. Be friends only. For now. Gauge the relationship when you are both in a better place. For now it sounds like you both need a friend not a lover. Crushes can be lovely when kept in the mind. Very occasionally it works out, more often than not they fizzle out. If it’s meant to be you’ll both know for sure at the right time. If you’re questioning it, it’s not the right time.

FunkyKingston Mon 06-May-19 00:30:13

Forget the declaration of love. For now. Be friends only. For now. Gauge the relationship when you are both in a better place. For now it sounds like you both need a friend not a lover.

Probably true. I won't see her again for a while due to working away. But i worry I'm misleading her and being dishonest. But back-burner for a while might notbe a bad idea.

Crushes can be lovely when kept in the mind.

This crush isn't lovely. It is crushing. It has been a constant source of anxiety and fear! All very adolescent i know.

tolerable Mon 06-May-19 01:01:29

honestly hate every instance(and way more than one)where someone i considered to be a real friend hit me with "i think you know how i feel about you".not once did i have an inclination.it wrecked the entire show.everytime.tread carefully.

KanielOutis Mon 06-May-19 07:09:43

It's the backtracking and making light of your comment that would put me off. You're playing with her, dropping hints and withdrawing. That's not fair.

DH & I were friends for ten years before we were together, and I had just got out of a marriage. It was all in, no holding back. Ok it may have not worked out and I may have lost a friend, but what I've gained is so much more.

aprarl Mon 06-May-19 07:17:02

It sounds to me like you're desperate to be loved in a proper emotional relationship (fair enough), and you're sort of needily projecting that on to her. That won't end well. Even if you were actually ready, she'd be insane to date someone not even divorced and moved out yet.

If you keep going like this, you will wreck things, so stop the declarations and stop meeting up or drinking so much if you can't control what you say.

You need to sort your life out - new home, therapy, and get in touch with some other friends.

ImposterSyndrome101 Mon 06-May-19 07:50:15

@FunkyKingston I get this. I’m very emotionally attracted/attached to one of my male friends. The problem being he is (most likely) gay or (possibly) bi. He’s not ‘out’ though because he’s a devout Christian.

We’re very close and spend a lot of time talking, we sit snuggling (for want of a better word) and holding hands, play fight etc. Which has lead to 90% of our friends thinking there’s something going on with us.

I take the teasing though because I’d never out him. But it’s so hard putting my feelings for him aside, especially when people are constantly mentioning ‘us’. But I value him and his friendship over anything else. And I can’t imagine not having him in my life. Which means I need to get over my feelings and I’ll put his first. And when/if he starts dating someone I’ll support and love him unconditionally and hopefully get on well enough with whoever it is to consider both of them close friends, after all I like him and trust his judgement, there’s no reason I’d not like his partner.

Your friend from the sound of it doesn’t seem to reciprocate your feelings. If you value your friendship you need to do what you can to put aside your feelings for her. What helped me was to go research the very definition of Platonic Love. It helped me see just how important and intense it should be and that it was most likely that that was what I’m feeling, but because friendships have been so watered down these past few years the definition and understanding of them has been lost somewhat.

Sagradafamiliar Mon 06-May-19 07:58:21

You're misdirecting your duplicitous, guilt-ridden, deceiving, anxious feelings.
What you need to do and know deep down, is move out and set up a proper single life.
Oh and don't tell people you love them unless you're sober and you mean it. It's wrong. And it puts people off.

FunkyKingston Mon 06-May-19 08:29:10

It's the backtracking and making light of your comment that would put me off. You're playing with her, dropping hints and withdrawing. That's not fair.

I know it wasn't fair, it wasn't intentional on my part, just panic and fear.

It sounds to me like you're desperate to be loved in a proper emotional relationship (fair enough), and you're sort of needily projecting that on to her

It is certainly possible, we became friends as my marriage was crumbling, although i didn't start having these intense emotional feelings for her until the marriage was over. It's strange as i haven't and don't lust after sexually. But the strength of my feelings and emotional attraction has completely knocked me for six.

Oh and don't tell people you love them unless you're sober and you mean it. It's wrong. And it puts people off.

Yes lesson learned. I wasn't sober, but i meant it (only too cowardly and spineless to stand by it).

imposter that was one of the most moving things I've ever read on these boards. I hope you're okay.

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