Ok, I’ve never posted on about the personal life thing here before, sticking mainly to my field of science, but this is something that I need advice on DESPERATELY because it is so delicate. Here it goes… I have been dating this young lady now for, oh around 7 months, and she is a wonderful person. Absolutely beautiful on the inside, and she isn’t too bad looking on the outside. The thing is, I have never been attracted to her physically. She has a wonderful mind, and I love talking to her, but I’ve never really wanted more than that. But it was summertime, and its nice to have someone to do stuff with. Ok, here’s where it gets hard…I was about to break up with her in August, when she get diagnosed, for the 2nd time, with metastatic breast cancer. Its such a tremendous blow for her, and I do care about her a whole lot. Well, I couldn’t very well break up with her then, right when she is told she may have only a few years to live! So I have stayed with her, helping her through this and comforting her, I even bought her a puppy a month ago to help her with her loneliness. I am her only real support out here in Atlanta…her parents live in Oklahoma, and all of her friends moved away as well! So I’m basically it for her. The thing is, I feel like this is making me miss something in my life. I am not attracted to her, and I would love to pursue that part of my life again, but I feel trapped! I have pulled away from the romantic side, we rarely even kiss anymore. How can I handle this situation to where she will be ok, and I can pursue a relationship with someone I feel attracted to? I would love to here ya’lls comments.
You are trapped…at least for a while. I don’t know what to tell you except don’t make a sudden moves take your time and make your plans nice and slow. But if you don’t love her enough to really want to be there for her, you will have to go just go slow.
Or you can get hooked on cocaine and start being a real asshole and make her dump you. That's anohter approach, get dumped.
Man you have alot to be carrying on your shoulders, but she has even more. If you love this woman in any way shape or form try to be there for her. You can do that and still not put your life on the side. Try to be honest with her by telling her how you feel but remain freinds with her. I know it is hard to watch someone die but remember, you are not the one dying, she is. On the other side, if you were not that attracted to her it appears as if you have strung her along a little bit and now you have this situation to deal with. Again I think the best way would to be to tell her the truth about how you feel while remaining freinds with her. I wish you the best and I am sorry to hear of her misfortune.
I am truly sorry that you and she have to go through this. I honestly don’t know what the right thing to do would be. Has she noticed that you have withdrawn physically? Even if you do decide to not be romantically involved with her anymore and she agrees to just be friends, it will be very hard on her to know about you being with other people. My gut tells me that I would stay with her and see her through this, even if it meant a long period without romantic involvement with others (possibly including her). I don’t think I could see other people while helping her through this, but that’s just me. Hopefully others on this board will have better advice.
I’m confused as to your exact relationship with this girl. Do you want to get laid? Go get laid! It won’t make you any less of a friend to her, IF you are just friends.
On the other hand, if you’re still having sex with her, thus being her boy-friend, that would be cheating.
Just do what you feel is right. If sleeping with someone else would make you feel like an asshole, why do it? On the other hand, if it wouldn’t, why not?
I agree with Jared. There is no way to do this delicately and without hurting her. Apparently, you will be breaking her heart, and I am not sure this would help her health at this point. I don’t want to sound like a prick, but bascially, you did somethings with her for the wrong reasons (“it was summertime, and its nice to have someone to do stuff with”) and now you are in a situation where you have to pay for doing something for the wrong reasons by sticking around and seeing her through this. Getting invloved with her just because “it was summertime, and its nice to have someone to do stuff with” is incredibly selfish and self-centered; especially if you know anything about women and their emotions. Don’t continue to act selfish (“I am missing something”)and make her pay for your selfishness by jeopardizing her health with the addition of more emotional trauma. You owe it to her to stick around at least until she is better or gone. Learn from this life lesson and don’t repeat it.
Poman. You can’t hold yourself responsible for how she feels or what she may do if you told her. That’s akin to the “Messiah Complex.” Of course if you were married to her than this would certainly be a burden you ought to bear. You need to be honest with her but be discreet as to how much you disclose to her as to prevent hurting her anymore than what she will normally feel from the split. In other words, don’t tell her that she never really did it for you physically. State your case simply and with precision. Let her know that you value your friendship with her and want to continue being there for her but make it clear that this is only as a friend. Of course she will ask you why. Tell her the truth: you feel trapped. Let her know that you are simply not ready for the kind of commitment that you think this relationship requires from you. Keep it at that. Will she accept it? Probably not but that does not mean you have to explain any further. Repeat what you have said and leave it at that (you may have to do the broken record routine). Once she sees by your resolve that you are serious about this, she will come to accept it. What she then does is not your responsibility. She is responsible for her actions and conduct after this point. Don’t be a sucker but do act with honesty, compassion and dignity.
This is a delicate situation you got here. What I would do if I were you is make her join up with Breast Cancer support groups in ATL. Support her by going with her to these meets. Introduce her to new friends so she feels she’s not suffering in silence.
Hopefully, given time, she will make friends, and her mind would not be focussed solely on you, and will seek comfort in others. Once that has been achieved, book yourself on holiday (just get your ass out of the area), so she can gradually ween off you and get used to being self dependent.
Keep the phonecalls coming so she still feels the love, but make sure you're not physically there.
I was in the same situation as you (minus the cancer & the guilt). I too had a friend 'with added benefits'. One day she decided to break the agreement and decided to start having feelings for me. That messed our friendship up big time.
HITer Scott- Just how is dating someone non-seriously self-centered and selfish? I am anything but those two things my friend, as this very post demonstrates! If I were either “extremely self-centered” or “selfish” why would I wouldn’t I just kick her to the curb? We dated light-heartedly during the summer, going to plays and hiking and the like, and have never made any commitments, such as the “L” word. And we didn’t have sex, so I wasn’t out for a piece of ass. Your a dumbass if you think I’m insensitive.
To everyone else- thanks for the responses. I guess then the reason I feel trapped is I kinda am. I have inadvertently done things to bring us closer together and bond lately, trying to make her feel better and help her through chemo, such as buying the pup. Most of your comments have been very helpful. She has been going to Breast Cancer Survivor support groups and it has helped. Her prognosis I believe is actually very good. The doctors here at Emory believe so anyway, and she is in no imminent threat of mortality ( < 5 years) My plan I believe will be see her through treatment and until she feels confident with herself again ( hair is back, etc.) then let her know how I feel. I am finishing up pharmacy school, and should be about to move at that time anyway ( 14 months). In the meantime, I will try to stay the course, be there for support, and be the loving friend I have been.
What happens if she lives for 4, 20 or 60 more years? Thats an aweful long time to be with someone you never intended on being with. I would say you should move on ASAP.
That is unless you knew for sure she was going to die in the next short time. [I know, that sounds horrible]. But I doubt she will. If she knew her time was short she would instinctively want to be with her family. And even if that wasnt true, by breaking up with her she will be forced to seek other companionship. She might join a cancer survivor group and get a kind of support you were never able to give.
Either way, you said you dont even kiss her anymore. I’m sure there are other aspects of yourself that have changed without you even noticing, but I bet she has. Dont be a prick and stay around and secretly resent her because you feel guilty. People arent stupid and they can feel that.
Anyways, your in a tough situation and I wish you well and your friend the best of luck in her fight against cancer.
Sounds like you already have. If you are no longer romantically involved, then maybe you should bring this subject up to her. Tell her that she’s an awesome person, you admire her and will always be there for her, but don’t miss out on the other part of your life where you want to find a romantic relationship. Just make sure that she knows where you stand. From what you say, it already seems like she may know that you two are just really good friends and she appreciates you being there for her. So continue to be there as friend. But don’t neglect the other areas of your life.
From what you’ve described she probably knows you feel the way you do - she’ll be aware you care for her enormously by your actions, but equally she’ll know that there’s no sexual chemistry there because you havent selpt together and hardly kiss anymore.
The main thing is to be honest and let her know you’ll always be there to care and ‘love’ her, even if it means you find someone else and date/sleep with them
I will ignore the dumbass comment. I thought you meant sex when you said “stuff”. A simple yet understandable misunderstanding. In that case, I think you have a good plan as far as sticking around until she feels more confident. Further, like everyone else has said, she probably knows and might feel the same way. Are you sure you guys are really a couple? It is hard to get a feel for your situation by the little info we have, but she may feel like you are a very good friend, too. Lastly, it is very difficult to remain friends; it is a rarity when things can work out that way (for many reasons, especially when the 2 of your start seeing others - the new people will most likely not be very comfortable with the idea). If you plan on doing what you will/should do, get used to the idea of not having her in your life. It is hard and it will hurt(especially since you’ve been through so much together), but this is how it will most likely end up. If you can’t stand that notion, rethink how you really feel about her.
I agree with Nate Dogg, but I think the timing is the issue. How do you do this sort of thing and NOT make it sound like it’s due to the disease. No matter how you try, she will ALWAYS think that your pulling away was due to the disease, and you’ll be seen as a punk for doing so. Man, I don’t envy you at ALL in this position.
Poman you have behaved like a true gentleman and friend with this lady.As you have stated you care a “whole lot” for her and indeed you are prepared to stand by her and help her through this.
She knows how you feel about her,but is probably worried that if she brings the subject up then she will lose you forever as a friend.And I think it is this friendship that she values more than anything else.
Reassure her that as a friend you will be there for her.I wish you both well.
Tough situation for sure, but have you ever considered the fact that you may be depriving her of the same thing that you feel you’re missing out on? Maybe if you told her the truth about how you feel, she would be able to move on with her life too, knowing that you also only wanted to be friends. That freedom could allow her to find someone else that does want to be there for her romantically. It’s also possible that she’s only dealing with this situation in Atlanta because she didn’t want to leave you. Maybe if you told her how you feel she’d be relieved and move back to Oklahoma where she has a family network to depend on. Just something to think about.