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Can I be his friend without it hurting this much?

(23 Posts)
ploddingalong2 Tue 22-Nov-16 09:17:16

I briefly dated a guy and we decided that it wasn't really working out as we didn't really have decent chemistry. Since then, we've become really close friends. A few weeks ago, we started kissing again etc but then we had a talk about where things lie. I said I'd like to take it further and he was really honest and said that, although he loved me as a friend and wished it could be more he really didn't have feelings for me like that. I said I understood and the important thing was that we didn't lose the friendship we have.

Now, things have gone back to being friends. We're both online dating and we tell each other everything. Last night, he had a 4th date with a girl and it went fantastically and he said he was excited about it.

This has hit me like a truck. I couldn't sleep last night and can't really think about anything else. I didn't realise that I'd really fallen for him before this.

Now what? I know that we'll never be together but can we get to a place where we can just have friendship? I genuinely do want him to be happy and get to a place where I can spend time with him (and his partner if he has one) without feeling jealous. His friendship means a lot to me.

I think I know the response I'm going to get - back away and take him out of your life. But I really can't stand the thought of that. Has anyone else been in a similar situation and pulled themselves back to a lovely friendship?

DoubleCarrick Tue 22-Nov-16 09:22:27

I've been in that situation. I was head over heels for this guy and we were dating briefly. The chemistry was amazing. But it just wasn't going to work. He wanted to be more casual than me. Fast-forward a few years, I have a husband who I am very happy with and is a much better match for me than my friend, friend has a little one but is now single again and I have a baby on the way. I see my friend every few weeks and we can't wait till my baby comes along so we can take the little ones out together

Trifleorbust Tue 22-Nov-16 09:26:18

Sounds like it's not going to work at the moment for you. Slightly like torturing yourself imo.

ploddingalong2 Tue 22-Nov-16 09:45:57

Double- that's great you're friendship survived! How did you get over him while still in contact? Did you meet your husband quite soon after?

ploddingalong2 Tue 22-Nov-16 09:47:20

I know Trifle but I really really don't want to lose him as a friend. I'm hoping I meet someone lovely and so does he and all this will just be something we laugh at

OhhBetty Tue 22-Nov-16 09:50:47

If I were you I would distance myself from him for a bit. Take some time to "get over" him. If he's a true friend he will totally understand.

clumsyduck Tue 22-Nov-16 09:51:11

I don't think you can be friends with someone you have feelings for to be honest

I am friends with an ex because when we split we both had outgrown each other and admitted neither of us felt "in love" anymore been friends is easy because I have zero romantic feeling for him and so genuinely want him to be happy .

If dp said to me tommrow I don't love you anymore can we just be friends there is no way I could bare that because obviously I love him and it would be to hard

Trifleorbust Tue 22-Nov-16 09:55:38

Then you already know the answer to your question?

Up to you whether you stay friends or not. I am of the opinion that lopsided relationships like this are more trouble than they are worth.

ploddingalong2 Tue 22-Nov-16 10:26:58

I want to at least try to be friends though. I'm not in love with him and the sooner I can see he's happy with someone and/or I meet someone the easier it will be.

I speak to him every day and we spend a couple of evenings together a week. I would miss him so much if we didn't see each other.

Cosairt Tue 22-Nov-16 10:32:59

It is possible. One of my exs is my very best friend and I'm close friends with his now wife. I do think you need a 'cooling off' period however. For about 6 months after we broke up we didn't see each other to give it time for feelings to settle. We had decided we would stay friends but needed that time apart.

Trifleorbust Tue 22-Nov-16 10:34:10

Again, not sure what you are asking here. You asked whether you can be friends without it hurting. Most people think not. You are going to do it anyway. Good luck with it, hope you are right and not us.

Nabootique Tue 22-Nov-16 11:07:53

I had a similar situation. It was so painful trying to stay friends. I cut him out for a couple of years, and then got back in touch. We're good friends again now as those feelings have faded.

TheNaze73 Tue 22-Nov-16 11:28:31

I think you can. You just need to get the positioning right in your mind

AnchorDownDeepBreath Tue 22-Nov-16 11:36:39

You can be friends, but you probably can't talk every day and spend a few evenings together each week, at least until all the feelings are gone.

That is especially true because you ended up kissing last time.

He'll end up looking to you for a confidence boost when things go wrong or he just needs to feel more attractive, and he'll probably like that he knows you're interested (even if he's a nice guy), because it's flattering. You'll be too caught up in him to find anything real with anyone else. If you did meet someone else, they'd potentially be quite uncomfortable with you spending so much time with someone whom you have feelings for and have kissed (and lying about the history with him won't get a new relationship off to a flying start...)

For your own sake, limit contact to texts as infrequently as you can for a while until all the feelings have disappeared. I suspect at that point neither of you will be that interested in meeting up because this is more about flirting with danger and having chemistry than actually being friends but if there is a real friendship there, you'll easily pick it up in a few weeks/months when you're both in a better emotional place for it, and the distance should limit any further meaningless physical contact.

I suspect you'll disregard all advice though, because you can't see the wood for the trees at the moment and you're top priority is to keep him in your life in some capacity and not "lose" anymore of him.

LesisMiserable Tue 22-Nov-16 11:58:38

In my opinion its not a case of whether or not you can 'be' friends. The fact is he's not truly your friend is he because you have feelings other than that for him, whereas he's happy to be mates with you and spend time with you at the moment because he's not in a relationship. I suspect (I've seen it before many many times) that if he got into a serious relationship, his effort for your 'friendship' would dwindle. That would hurt you.

Stop depending on the time you spend with him and see your other proper friends more. You really need to do that to rebalance this before it's done for you. At the minute you're the fallback girl with none of the perks. I'm not saying never see him I'm saying be truly aware of your place in his life.

Tonightstheteriyakichicken Tue 22-Nov-16 12:14:38

After us moving 100 miles apart, meeting other partners who we then married and after we'd both started families, yes. So a good six years! Not I suspect what you want to hear. A decade later we were all on a day out and I thought here's a scene I never imagined.
We aren't in contact now but hear about each other through mutual friends.
If you are honest with yourself and acknowledge that there's not going to be a you and him situation, it can get easier, and friendship can be just that, assuming your respective partners don't throw a spanner in the works.

anxiousnow Tue 22-Nov-16 13:18:13

You can still be friends but as others have said you need to start mixing with others friends or making new ones. This way it won't hurt quite so much if he starts spending less time with you with date 4 girl.

gustofwind Tue 22-Nov-16 13:24:00

I feel for you OP, truly. flowers

anchor nails it.

MouldyPeach Tue 22-Nov-16 13:24:30

Give yourself a little bit of distance otherwise you'll drive yourself crazy watching him happily growing a new relationship. You can't be in the front seat for that, don't torture yourself. If you are going to be friends it will happen eventually and if he can't understand why you are distancing yourself a little then he's not going to make much of a great friend anyway.

papaverorientale Tue 22-Nov-16 14:03:41

Back off for 6 months. That's is what's appropiate anyway if this new woman becomes his girlfriend. And then resume the friendship and see how you feel. Keep dating other people too.

CockacidalManiac Tue 22-Nov-16 14:07:10

In my experience, it's too difficult to still be friends with someone that you have feelings for. It's very hard, but sometimes a clean break and no contact is needed to keep your sanity.

CockacidalManiac Tue 22-Nov-16 14:08:30

I suspect you'll disregard all advice though, because you can't see the wood for the trees at the moment and you're top priority is to keep him in your life in some capacity and not "lose" anymore of him.

This is really the heart of the matter.

SparklyMagpie Wed 23-Nov-16 14:33:07

I personally don't think you can. I've been in this situation, it wouldn't have worked for a couple of reasons at the time, and we drifted in and out of contact, when we were in contact is was constantly, we lost touch for a year until I received a book in the post that he'd sent me with a note congratulating me on hearing the news I was pregnant. We remained in contact and then recently he told me he was meeting up with someone from work and asked my opinions,I told him to go for it, as a friend would then I hadn't heard from in until a week after my birthday, where he sent me a message to say he knows it's a week late and he hopes me and my son are well an that he'd had messaged on my birthday but the " girl I am seeing gets very jealous and she'd have gone on if I'd messaged you" I was quite hurt as I'd rather he hadn't have bothered an he knows deep down I have strong feelings for him

I decided that I just couldn't be arsed anymore so messaged back thanking him and telling him to take care and wished him luck, I don't plan on having anymore contact with him, I miss our messages and the weird and wonderful friendship we have but that text did it for me

We were always honest and open with each other but I know there's just no point and I'd always be the one who would end up getting hurt

I'd say it won't work sweet, it's not worth the emotions

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