Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“My BFF Dumped Over a Birthday Gift”

I had a best friend, Mary, whom I was extremely close to; she was like a sister to me. We told each other anything and everything. Well, my “best friend’s” birthday was a couple of months ago, and I wanted to give her something I thought she would consider really special — something she would cherish and keep forever: a list of 101 reasons why I love her. I guess now would be the time to point out that I am a guy.

Well, long story short, she ignored me for five days before she finally made contact with me and told me that she took the list to mean that I liked her as more than a friend and she didn’t feel the same way. I informed her that her thought was wrong and that I loved her as a best friend — like a sister. She then went on to say that it wasn’t just the list; I had apparently been “overbearing” for a while. I don’t know how she came to this conclusion considering I barely ever got the chance to see her due to our scheduling conflicts with school and work. Anyway, ever since our fight, we’ve both apologized and said we’ve forgiven each other, but things aren’t the same. We aren’t nearly as close anymore. We hardly even talk, much less confide in each other about anything of any significance. I’m afraid I’m losing or have already lost her and that this can’t be fixed. Half the time, she acts like she doesn’t care about me anymore and the other half of the time, our “conversations” are half-hearted and basically empty.

I want nothing more than to go back to how things were before her birthday, before she started pushing me away. I love her so very much; she really means a hell of a lot to me. I feel like I owe her, myself, and our friendship one more serious attempt to repair this. My question to you, and your legion of readers, is this: What can/should I do to try fixing this? How do I even start a conversation about it without feeling bad for bringing it up again? Is it too late to repair this or is there hope? Should I MOA and let her/this go, or try one more time, lay it all on the line, and risk HER ending it for good just for a chance of fixing it? Please and thanks for your help. — Wants My BFF Back

You may say — and think — you love Mary like a sister, but come on. How many brothers do you really think give their sisters a list of 101 reasons why they love them? It’s weird. That’s the kind of thing boyfriends and girlfriends might give each other, not brothers and sisters — or friends who swear they aren’t anything more than platonic. The truth is, you’ve made Mary feel uncomfortable, and for good reason. I can only imagine what some of your 101 reasons are for loving her. If any of them are even slightly related to, like, her looks, or that cute wrinkle she gets in her nose when she’s trying really hard to remember something, you’re kind of screwed.

Actually, I’m sorry; I hate to break it to you, but I’d say you’re screwed no matter what. If the love list was only the icing on the cake, and you’ve been, as she says, “overbearing” for a while, it’s likely that Mary has made the decision to MOA from your friendship and isn’t really looking back. Her behavior as of late would indicate as much, too. That isn’t to say she doesn’t still care for you or love you (as a friend!), but your behavior steered your friendship in a direction she was uncomfortable with and she put the brakes on it. I’d say it’s probably too late to try to steer things back to the direction they were going.

The best thing you can do now is respect her boundaries and give her space. Maybe with a little time and distance, she won’t be so alarmed by your intentions and maybe — it’s a very, very slim maybe — she’ll reach out to you again. But I would seriously urge you in the meantime to really think about your feelings for Mary. Are they truly only platonic, or are you in love with her? How would you feel seeing her in love with another man? Would you be willing to take a backseat to him and respect their relationship? If not, then it would seem your feelings, as Mary fears, are not strictly platonic, and if she doesn’t feel the same way, you’d be doing you both a favor by moving on. She’s made it clear to you that she’s not interested in you as more than a friend. Respect that and steer clear of her if you want more than she can give you.

*If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, send me your letters at [email protected] and be sure to follow me on Twitter.

59 comments… add one
  • avatar

    justpeachy August 17, 2011, 3:09 pm

    Wendy’s spot on. Mary is very uncomfortable with the situation you’ve created and it sounds like, without coming out and saying the words, she wants a friend “break”, if not even a friend “break-up”. And you should respect that. Stop trying to force this friendship. Hang out with other people. Hell, start dating other people if you truly have no feelings for her. The more you cling to what you used to have, the more she will struggle to break ties with you. Just give her space so she can know that you are, in fact, not in love with her.

    Whether or not you like it, the friendship you had before is broken beyond repair. Your only option is to try and forge a new friendship with her once you’ve both had the time and space to move past this. Give it a couple of months and extend an olive branch for coffee or lunch, something very low pressure. But if she’s not ready, all you can do is let her know you’ll be there to support her if she needs it and let her come to you.

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  • avatar

    kerrycontrary August 17, 2011, 3:11 pm

    I agree that the LW perhaps has unrealized feelings for his BFF. I too would also be a little weirded out if my friend gave me such a list. I feel bad saying this because the LW seems like a great and nice person, but sometimes we all do things that may be construed as just a little bit creepy. Imagine if a girl received a list from one of her female friends titled “101 reasons I love you”. I would totally think my girlfriend was a lesbian! I also say this because one year for valentines day I gave my long time friend and recently turned hookup/almost boyfriend a list titled “25 reasons so and so is awesome” along with other little presents. He liked it. Because we had feelings for each other! If we had just been friends at the time it would’ve been totally weird. and 101 reasons is a LOT. So you must sit around and think about your friend a LOT. Whether you are actually overbearing or Mary is just using that as an excuse to get rid of you, I would just accept that your friendship has moved on. Not all friendships are meant to last forever.

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    • TaraMonster

      TaraMonster August 17, 2011, 4:20 pm

      For example:
      25 Reasons Why You Are One Cool, Crazy Bitch
      1. You make the most bombass margaritas on the planet. 2. You don’t judge me for watching David Tutera marathons. 3. You also watch David Tutera marathons. 4. Because you are a crazy cat lady. And who doesn’t love kittehs, amiright?

      OR
      101 Reasons Why I Love You
      1. You make the most bombass margaritas on the planet. 2. You don’t judge me for watching David Tutera marathons. 3. You also watch David Tutera marathons. 4. Because you are a crazy cat lady. And who doesn’t love kittehs, amiright?

      I’m sure I’ve made these kinds of lists for my friends, though that was during HS and maybe college. I think any older and it’s kind of weird. Ok so maybe the creepy line is also lies between adulthood and youth. And maybe also between genders because only my girlfriends get to call me a bitch. If one of my guy friends gave me a list like LW made at any age I would definitely assume he had feelings for me. And the only brother who might give me any type of list is the one who is 13, and let’s face it, at 13 even he’s done with the cutesy shit!

      I think the bottom line is this: the list was creepy.

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    • TaraMonster

      TaraMonster August 17, 2011, 4:22 pm

      DAMNIT. The first line of my reply was supposed to say this:
      Exactly. I think the line between creepy and cool lies with the title of the list.

      Ya know. I’m having comment fail a lot lately.

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  • avatar

    melanie August 17, 2011, 3:14 pm

    My platonic best (female) friend wouldn’t even write me a list of 101 things she loves about me. And if she did, I’d feel very uncomfortable. That’s obsessive behavior.

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    • avatar

      Nadine August 17, 2011, 6:03 pm

      I dont know, I think in this case the LW should just talk to his friend and have it out again, but only if he can be really convincing about his feelings. On of my best friends is a guy, and we write each other letters and notes and say ‘I love you” when we say goodbye (we live in different countries at the moment). It works because we both know exactly what we are doing. I know it helps that we are both in LTRs, but we weren’t always and we were the same. Platonic boy and girl friendships do happen and they can be as intense and intimate as as those with my other best (girl)friend.

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    • avatar

      SpaceySteph August 17, 2011, 8:05 pm

      When I was in high school I wrote my best friend a list of 100 reasons I loved her.
      She’s a girl, I’m a girl, neither of us are homosexual. It was mostly to be funny, not sentimental, and some of the reasons were like “she looks awesome in red shirts” or “she misspelled her own name on a test once” and other crap like that. For the record, she loved it.

      Maybe its the 101st reason that makes it go from awesome gift to obsessive?

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  • avatar

    Riefer August 17, 2011, 3:15 pm

    I have to agree with Wendy… I wouldn’t even make a list like that for a girl friend, let alone a guy one. The closest I’ve gotten to this with a friend is putting a few lines in a birthday card (like, “you’re funny and amazing and the best friend ever!” kind of stuff). To think up 101 reasons why you love a platonic friend is a bit over the top, and I agree again that it probably means that you see her as more than platonic, even subconsciously.

    On another note, I did something like this for my mom once, and she LOVED it.

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    • avatar

      Eljay August 17, 2011, 3:26 pm

      I sort of did the same thing for my mom, only it was titled “You Were Right” and listed all the things (well a lot of the things!) she was right about over the years – and she absolutely LOVED it! Still talks about it occasionally.

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      • caitie_didnt

        caitie_didn't August 17, 2011, 4:04 pm

        that’s such an adorable gift idea!!

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      • avatar

        Eljay August 17, 2011, 5:09 pm

        Thanks! You know moms love that sort of thing. Especially when they get to give you the “I told you so” look! And there are few better things in the world than getting that acknowledgement from our kids that we do, after all, know what the hell we’re talking about! 🙂

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      • avatar

        Jena August 17, 2011, 4:42 pm

        Ooooo thats a good one.

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      • TaraMonster

        TaraMonster August 17, 2011, 4:43 pm

        I love both those ideas!

        The key point being that you wrote those lists for your mothers. Your mothers. Not the “best friend” whose frame picture you’re mouth-breathing over under your covers at night.

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      • avatar

        Eljay August 17, 2011, 5:05 pm

        LOL!!!!!

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  • avatar

    Jena August 17, 2011, 3:16 pm

    My brother nor my best friend (male or female) would never ever give me a list of 101 reasons why they loved me. What you did was rightly construed as a boyfriend-y, more-than-friends thing. I’d back off for a while.

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  • avatar

    TheOtherMe August 17, 2011, 3:29 pm

    You need to give her space. Let her know you’re there is she needs you but you understand that your gift has made her uncomfortable and you are willing to back off for as long as it takes to let her feel comfortable again.

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    • avatar

      TheOtherMe August 18, 2011, 10:31 am

      And Please don’t be holding a boom box over your head while you say this.

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  • avatar

    Blitzen August 17, 2011, 3:46 pm

    Oh dear. =( I feel for the LW, I really do. Wendy is right, though. Two of my best friends are guys and if either one of them gave me a list like this I would be Weirded Out. Back off for a while, she may come around.

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  • avatar

    Julzie August 17, 2011, 3:46 pm

    Yeah, unless it was someone that I had been dating for YEARS (and even then…) I can’t think of a friend or situation where I would be comfortable getting a list like that. You creeped her out, it’s hard to bounce back from creepy.

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  • avatar

    PFG-SCR August 17, 2011, 3:47 pm

    I agree with Wendy’s response, and not only am I wondering how he feels/would feel if she was dating someone, has the LW dated anyone lately?

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    • avatar

      ReginaRey August 17, 2011, 3:53 pm

      Good question. I’m wondering that too. Instead of spending the time making a list of 101 reasons you love your platonic female friend, and then creeping her out, perhaps that time would be best spent dating other ladies…

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      • avatar

        kerrycontrary August 17, 2011, 4:11 pm

        Yeh, and can you imagine if you found out that a guy you were dating made a list like that? I would not only be jealous but also suspicious of his feelings towards her.

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      • bagge72

        bagge72 August 17, 2011, 4:18 pm

        Yeah I’ve been so thrown off with this letter, because the whole time I thought it said “I am a gay” not “I am a guy”. Then I went back, and read it again, and saw the I am a guy part, and thought it was a gay guy! Finally your post cleared this up for me, and it made sense once I read it again lol. So not only did I think it was odd before that this happened, now I’m pretty sure that the LW is actually in love with his best friend.

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      • avatar

        Amanda August 17, 2011, 8:15 pm

        I’m glad I’m not the only one! I thought it was a female LW until I reread it. Yeah, this guy is definitely in love with his ex-BFF.

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  • avatar

    TheGirl August 17, 2011, 4:03 pm

    If you really aren’t in love with her, as you claim to be, then the only solution I can see is for you to do two things: give her space and start dating as visibly as possible. If she knows you are interested in and seeing other people, it might help. Otherwise, there is not much you can do that wouldn’t make you look both desperate and in love with her.

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  • Budj

    Budjer August 17, 2011, 3:10 pm

    I’d take a flip-side opinion on this and say…yes…miscommunicative gift idea…but if she really did appreciate your friendship as much as you apparently did hers then she would have recovered from this a lot more gracefully…my guess is the gift was the icing on the cake and you were more invested in this frienship than she was – which may have translated to being over-bearing and added to her suspicion that she was a “love” interest to you.

    If, as Wendy asked, you truly would take a back seat to romantic partners in her life then just take this as a learning lesson, give her space, and maybe she’ll come around…but don’t hold out hope.

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    • Budj

      Budjer August 17, 2011, 3:54 pm

      Also…when a girl constantly is too busy to see you that is typically a hint….yea…it sucks and you wish they’d be more upfront, but just take the hint because it happens.

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      • avatar

        KAM August 17, 2011, 4:54 pm

        This is definitely true – which gives me the impression that the LW was getting a bit too close, even before he ever wrote the list. He might not have realized it but his body language or tone of voice when they did see one probably did most of the pushing.

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      • avatar

        KAM August 17, 2011, 4:57 pm

        *correction: “when they did see one another”

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      • avatar

        Maracuya August 17, 2011, 5:08 pm

        Sometimes a girl isn’t upfront because guys are too dense to get it 😛

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      • avatar

        Maracuya August 18, 2011, 9:35 am

        *some guys.

        I was thinking of a particular personal situation where I had a clingy guy friend and he would just call me way too often (and be passive aggressive because I didn’t want dinner on a Tuesday) and I said, flat out,”Look, you’re my friend but gimme space. I don’t like hanging out every week with the same person, much less everyday. You know I’m not going to want to get dinner Wednesday night at 8.”

        But he didn’t get it! I’m pretty sure like BFF over here he probably had a crush on me or something (when we first became friends, he was alright but as time went on he started criticizing my boyfriend (whom he’s never met.) I told him flat-out he was being a jerk.) So like, Mary, I started avoiding him.

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      • avatar

        DebMoore August 19, 2011, 2:51 pm

        I gave you a thumbs up on that one because I went through the same thing. I was good friends with a guy through High School and beyond. He would get upset if I wanted to hang out with other people besides him. (which I ignored and hung out with others, let him be mad!) He also was not interested in joining in “group” activities. After I got married he would get upset with me because I didn’t want to chat on the phone with him for hours like I used to in High School. He also didn’t want to hang out with my husband at all, so I did try to include him in my life. The topper was when he got mad at me for paying more attention to my daughters bath than him when I was on the phone with him (after I told him I only had a few minutes of time to talk since my daughter was due for a bath) Yeah we don’t talk anymore. It took years of pulling away and not calling him back for him to understand our relationship had changed since High School. (And yes I told him many times exactly that!)

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  • avatar

    ReginaRey August 17, 2011, 3:14 pm

    My birthday is tomorrow, and I’ll be thrilled if my actual brother even remembers! I’m with Wendy, it’s unusual for a REAL boyfriend to be able to sit down and write out 101 reasons he loves you (not because he doesn’t, but because a lot of guys aren’t that sentimental and…romantic), and the fact that you did that for a friend has me very skeptical as to your true feelings. That kind of intensity is absolutely overbearing for someone who’s just supposed to be a friend, and Definitely ponder how you would feel if she began a serious relationship with another person – does the thought of that make you feel angry or ill or jealous? If so, this girl ain’t no “friend” to you. Clearly, however, she isn’t much interested in anything else…so if you find that you ARE romantically interested, I think you need to cut ties permanently and MOA for your own sake. It’s not healthy to be constantly around someone we love, who can’t or won’t love us back.

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    • avatar

      PFG-SCR August 17, 2011, 4:08 pm

      Happy birthday tomorrow!!

      “…it’s unusual for a REAL boyfriend to be able to sit down and write out 101 reasons he loves you (not because he doesn’t, but because a lot of guys aren’t that sentimental and…romantic)…”

      You’ve got to dig pretty deep to come up with 101 reasons, though. A top 10 or even 25 wouldn’t be, but 101 reasons? I’m married, and I think this would be tough for me to write out for my husband and _not_ include things like, “I love you because you put away the bread when you’re finished with it.” Well, that’s assuming that was actually true, but you get my point.

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      • avatar

        Amber August 17, 2011, 4:27 pm

        Your example made me laugh out loud at my desk! 🙂

        I don’t think I could come up with 101 reasons I love my husband either or anyone for that matter.

        I think the list probably freaked the friend out. It would have freaked me out if I got it. That’s a long time to be pondering all the wonderful things about someone who is just your ‘friend’. Definitely time to back off and give her some time.

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      • avatar

        thyme August 17, 2011, 7:20 pm

        I think men are allergic to the little plastic things that hold the plastic bread bag closed. At least, the boys in my house seem to be.

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      • avatar

        SweetChild August 17, 2011, 11:11 pm

        I’m allergic to those things too, they’re too fiddly!!!

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      • avatar

        Quakergirl August 17, 2011, 9:41 pm

        Aaah such a tease! I was totally going to ask you how you got him to put the bread away.

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  • avatar

    beans629 August 17, 2011, 4:19 pm

    Yeah, I’m kinda creeped out by the list and it wasn’t even to me.

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  • avatar

    KAM August 17, 2011, 4:32 pm

    I’ve been in the girl’s situation before and, I have to be totally honest, don’t expect her to come around. Having a platonic guy friend suddenly reveal deep feelings for you (especially probable romantic feelings) is a REALLY uncomfortable situation to be in. I moved out of town after college, away from my friends and, even now, 2 years later, I still get uncomfortable when I think about that one “guy friend.”

    I wish I could say she’ll come to her senses if you give her room but it’s probably best if you just MOA and enjoy the memories.

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  • avatar

    silver_dragon_girl August 17, 2011, 4:37 pm

    If a guy gave me a list like that I would assume it was a prelude to a proposal. Seriously.

    I might make something like this for a female friend, but it would be shorter and funny, probably meant to be read as a birthday toast at a party or something. Like “Top 10 Things About Mary” with most of them being inside jokes, and the last being, “She’s awesome and a great friend” and then you drink and you’re done.

    Are you suuuuure you don’t have feelings for her?

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  • avatar

    Cherry August 17, 2011, 4:58 pm

    One word- Duckie. It’s best to lick your wounds, throw on your white creepers and go stag to the prom because this one is looking for her Blaine.

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    • avatar

      Princess Bananahammock August 17, 2011, 5:48 pm

      Bravo!

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      • bittergaymark

        bittergaymark August 17, 2011, 5:59 pm

        Of course, Duckie turned out to be gay…. Or so the entire cast said in the Pretty In Pink cast reunion last year in Entertainment Weekly….

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      • avatar

        Cherry August 17, 2011, 6:13 pm

        Awww, well that’s ok; he will always be the Duck Man to me! At least he didn’t turn out to be a serial killer.

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  • bittergaymark

    bittergaymark August 17, 2011, 5:40 pm

    Dude, there is no way to repair this. Seriously! What were you thinking? Hey, I have loads and loads of straight guy friends… and if I gave them such a birthday present how could they think anything other than that I must be secretly pining away for them?

    There is simply NOTHING platonic about such a gesture…

    You need to be honest with both her and yourself….because CLEARLY on some level you do want to be more than friends…

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  • avatar

    thyme August 17, 2011, 7:28 pm

    It might not be romantic, but that doesn’t make it not overbearing and creepy. I had a gay guy friend like that. We used to have a lot of fun, but then he started wanting to spend way too much time together and every time we hung out turned into him sobbing into my shoulder and expecting me to fix all his emotional problems for him. He was always gushing about how wonderful I am and how good I am at making him feel all better again. Being around him stopped being fun and started being draining and somewhat creepy, and I don’t talk to him anymore. I can totally picture him giving me a list of “101 Reasons I love You.”

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  • avatar

    MiMi August 17, 2011, 7:46 pm

    People don’t always want to receive what we want to give them, and perhaps you put Mary up on a bit of a pedestal as your true-blue confidant, soul’s companion and chosen sister, LW.
    Your high degree of investment in this friendship probably came to feel like pressure or smothering to her (overbearing is the word she used). Without realizing it, you have been emotionally invading Mary’s space and the 101-item birthday list was just too much, an over-the-top last straw.
    There is no way to get back to where you were – rather to where you thought you were – because it looks like Mary started withdrawing from this friendship some time ago and you didn’t see it. She might have done a better job of communicating with you if she felt you were monopolizing her life, but she didn’t. Now that you know how she feels, understand that anything you try to do will only be viewed as a continuation of your intrusive ways, so just let it go and leave her alone. Sucks, but there it is.

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    • avatar

      SweetChild August 17, 2011, 11:51 pm

      Totally agree with you except that I don’t think Mary could have handled this in any other way. I mean, she probably didn’t want to lose the LW as a friend entirely but how do you tell someone that they are being overbearing and you want to see less of them without hurting their feelings? The only way is to withdraw without saying anything to them and hope they get the hint, if they don’t the friendship is over. I just don’t believe you can communicate to someone who’s overbearing that they are being that way without hurting them and ruining the friendship anyway. An unfortunate fact of life.

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  • avatar

    Painted_lady August 17, 2011, 8:03 pm

    LW, you don’t say how old you are, but…damn. This is some crazy drama. I wish I knew – and honestly, you probably do too – how you’d been overbearing because it would make the difference between Mary being a little on the drama queen side – only slightly, as your sense of boundaries are way whacked out – or if she’s completely and totally justified. Here’s why: back in high school I had this friend, “Fred.” He was my bestie, practically a brother, his girlfriend was one of my good friends, etc. Fred wrote me a similar list – fewer numbers, but still – in our yearbook one year. Fred’s girlfriend freaked out, and Fred was very confused. I was a little weirded out but took Fred at his word. Fred and girlfriend broke up over the summer, then the next year I was suddenly contending with Fred EVERYWHERE. I couldn’t get rid of him – he didn’t like any of the perfectly nice guys I dated, he was angry at me all the time and yet he WOULDN’T GO AWAY. I was naïve and couldn’t figure it out until he – surprise, surprise – confessed that he was in love with me. I freaked out and ran away, told Fred we needed a break, tried to ignore him, and then he swore up and down he was over it, was interested in someone else, he was fine. I relaxed and went back to being good friends with him, and then, naturally, he would start the same thing all over again. I finally told him either he cut it out or we couldn’t be friends anymore. He finally stopped trying to get in my pants, and we were able to go back to being friends. Incidentally, I’ve never mentioned the name Fred on here, but I do refer to him a lot – I just call him Painted_dude. But all of this went down 10+ years ago, and if he hadn’t been able to respect my boundaries at last, we would never have continued being friends, and we never would have dated.

    I want to be very clear that I am NOT NOT NOT NOT telling you that you should hook up with Mary or that it’s ever going to happen, even if you ever admit to yourself you want to. My point was, she has set boundaries. You have to respect them. I finally had to tell Fred that if he continued interpreting my friendly gestures – hey, Fred, we’re all going bowling tonight, wanna go? for example – as signs that I was coming around, all he was going to do was convince me that I had to be a massive bitch to him to get him to take me seriously. You will have to tread very lightly for awhile, maybe a very long while. Fred did it for about five years, actually, before I finally bought that he wasn’t interested in me anymore. This still may not work – she may be done with the friendship because it’s too uncomfortable for her now. But the ONLY way you’re going to save this friendship is to back WAY the hell off. Ask yourself one of two questions anytime you interact with her: either ask yourself if you’d be comfortable with another guy acting this way toward Mary, or if you’re still not owning up to it, then ask yourself if you would be comfortable with a man acting this way toward your hypothetical girlfriend.

    I will allow that perhaps you don’t harbor feelings for Mary, but I think no matter what, you’re fixated on her in an unhealthy way as a surrogate girlfriend. You either want her or you’re using her as a way to avoid focusing on an actual romantic life. It’s sort of like young gay boys (not calling you gay necessarily, that’s not my point) and young straight girls who pair up because neither of them is ready for a real relationship. They do all the nonsexual things real couples do, and it usually ends badly, similarly to this, in fact, because one crosses a boundary that the other didn’t expect or want. Think about your own romantic life and what you’re avoiding in this time you’re taking a step back from Mary because there are major issues that one or both of you aren’t addressing.

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  • avatar

    Callifax August 17, 2011, 8:28 pm

    I’m going to play devil’s advocate here and say that most of my best friends over the years have been male (I’m sort of a tom boy in some ways) and, in the context of a bff relationship, I think I’d find the list sweet. Maybe the LW is in love with his lady friend. Maybe he’s not and just wanted to be thoughtful. But I don’t think it automatically makes him creepy. It would have to be looked at in the context of the relationship…which is hard to do, given it’s just a letter.

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  • katie

    katie August 17, 2011, 8:44 pm

    i can definitely DEFINITELY tell you that I have acted this exact same way when a guy friend of mine started crossing that line between friends and liking me. it doesn’t necessarily mean that you actually feel this way, that is your own thing to figure out, but it does mean that she feels that way. and no amount of you saying that you dont like her is going to make her believe that, because she FEELS like you do. i would say women are very much into that- feeling things. a lot of times, i know atleast for me, its not like i can explain anything in a rational, logical way, i just feel something and that is it. so, in this situation, i would be telling my friends, “i dont care how many times he says he doesn’t like me, i just feel like he does! i can just feel it!”

    i do kind of agree with wendy though- are you honestly not in love with this girl?

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  • avatar

    cmarie August 17, 2011, 9:44 pm

    I agree that you need to back off. You creeped her out and that’s what matters. I have to ask though, why does he have to be in love with her because he can think of so many ways he loves her, as a friend? I can think of a hundred ways I love my best friend, and I’ve shared them with her. And I’m gay, and never once did she think I was in love with her. Why can’t a guy and a girl have a loving friendship without it turning in to unrequited love? I just don’t get it. I would find the list sweet and would probably feel challenged to think of my own list. The important thing is to respect her boundaries though. I’m sorry she decided that you just had to be love with her instead just a really good friend. Don’t bother trying to repair that friendship because it’s already over.

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    SweetChild August 17, 2011, 11:40 pm

    Okay something similar happened to me recently, but without the list. I had this really awesome guy friend whose company I really enjoyed and we hung out a lot because we went to the same college. But then he started to get overbearing and I felt like every time I turned around he was there, he’d even text me just to tell me I was awesome which I’m sure had good intentions but I was totally weirded out. The tipping point for me was when he got a job and posted a picture of his work station computer which had two large screens next to each other and he’d put as his wallpaper a picture of me that was a project I’d helped him with at college. It was basically a massive picture of my face and it was never meant to be used like that. I was horrified and asked him to take it down but he wouldn’t and that was when I decided he was a creep and I wanted nothing more to do with him. It sounds like this girl Mary has done the same thing, and the thing that I think a lot of guys don’t realise is that once you cross the line into creepdom you can’t go back. Girls can tell when a guy has feelings for them, even if the guy hasn’t figured it out, it’s as though they forget where the line is between close and too close once feelings start.

    So, the painful truth is that once one person starts to have strong feelings for the other in a friendship, and other person knows about those feelings, the friendship changes. And it’s for the person without the strong feelings to decide just what they are comfortable with as far as continuing the friendship goes. Unfortunately this LW went WAAAAAY past the line with that list which by the way is incredibly creepy. I’m sure you had the best of intentions but you didn’t really stop to think of how this would appear to her. It doesn’t matter whether you’re in love with her or not, the fact is you spend way more time than she is comfortable with thinking about her and that creeps her out. It may not for some people but for her it does and that’s what matters. At this stage you need to give her space, don’t contact her at all and move on with your life. If a little way down the track you can get in contact with her and just casually demonstrate that you’re not in love with her or anything and you just want a normal friendship, you might have a shot at still being friends. Don’t contact her if you’re really not over her though, girls have a sixth sense about these things and she will know.

    Anyways, I’m sorry you have lost a good friend here LW, you’re probably a great guy as my former friend is but even the best people cross the line sometimes. Cut your losses here, learn from what didn’t work and when the right girl comes along you will know instinctively what to do and how to read her. Good luck for next time! 🙂

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    A August 18, 2011, 10:22 am

    i guess its that age old conversation about whether men and women can be friends. 101 reasons is a lot, and i understand why she might have questioned his intentions, but if he confirmed he isnt romantically interested then I am lost as to the problem. He has a close friend, he cares deeply for- sister like friendships between females is not unusual and can be as close as the real thing, why does it have to be different with a guy?
    It sounds like she was less into the friendship then the LW and this was a reason to voice that, but that has more to do with recognition that this friendship is more one sided, rather than that the act of giving that birthday gift was so outrageous!

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  • Jess

    Jess of CityGirlsWorld.com August 18, 2011, 11:18 am

    It’s killing me. I want to know what was ON the list! I wonder if it was full of funny things like, “you still eat Frosted Flakes” or more like, “you’ve always been the wing beneath my wings.”

    Without that info, this one is tough to call.

    LW, can you give us some examples?!!

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    • Budj

      Budjer August 18, 2011, 11:21 am

      I know…is this a list like “I love that your eye lashes are exactly .5 cm long” or “i love that you give me high fives in between class”?

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  • avatar

    onewing August 19, 2011, 2:34 am

    I agree with the comments that the list weirded her out, & tha if she feels uncomfortable she has every right to withdraw, & it might be for the best …but I find all the comments – both from Wendy & commenters – saying that he’s “obviously” in love with her kind of annoying, because this “reading between the lines to reveal you ACTUALLY love them” schtick is becoming a common reaction to a lot of the letters.
    He says he loves her like a sister – that’s NOT something a guy says when harbouring any form of romantic/sexual feelings towards a woman (because, ewwww.) I have girl mates who are quite romantic spirits, in the classical, creative, loving sense of the word & can see them writing a similar list to give as quirky, personal gift, & just because he’s a guy doesn’t mean the letter automatically comes with ulterior motives. Can we not just take letter writers at their word anymore?

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