Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“Should I Confess My Feelings?”

I am 22 and graduated from college last May. I met “Sam” my first week of college, and we’ve been good friends ever since. We were roommates our last two years of college, with others, including his girlfriend at the time. They broke up in the middle of senior year, after I had already come to the slow but painful realization that I had serious feelings for him, a person so painfully kind, thoughtful, and talented. He is the first person I’ve ever wanted to compromise for, the first person I’ve really ached for.Shortly before graduation, a mutual friend revealed my emotions to Sam in a public and humiliating manner. We were all drunk and I overreacted, which really just confirmed her statement. He asked me later that night if I wanted to talk about it, and I said no. A few weeks later, he moved out and away for the summer. We didn’t talk about it and I didn’t hear from him, so I tried to get over it. Last September, he returned and came over to see me. We spent the night talking about everything: our families, fears, dreams. He talked about how badly he wanted children in the future, something I’ve been adamantly against for myself. I laid my head in his lap as he stroked my hair. I tried not to get my hopes up, and I shouldn’t have.

For the next several months, we saw each other intermittently. There was more talking, more touching. He moved to a block away from me, and I thought we’d be hanging out all the time. I should admit that due to my fear and defensive personality, I never contacted him first. I was too afraid! So I would wait for him to contact me, which turned out to be roughly once every few weeks.

Eventually, we ended up having sex at the end of one of those nights. The next day I left town for a few weeks for Christmas. He texted me several times while I was away, conversationally and playfully. Right before I returned, he called to tell me that a few days after our encounter, he suspected he had an STD. He didn’t accuse me, but I didn’t defend myself either, although maybe I should have? When I came back to town, he called again to tell me the results were negative but he thought the results were a false-negative. I didn’t know what to say. Even though I had been tested shortly before our encounter, I felt that insisting on my innocence would seem crass. So I just let it hang there. He asked me if I had gone in for testing, and I said no. (After this, I did go: negative.)

A few weeks after not hearing from him, I asked him to hang out and he said yes. We went out to a bar where we had a great conversation and a lot of fun. We walked back to my place and there was more flirting and touching, just like before. But he was far too drunk, so I couldn’t say anything to him by the time I got the courage to do so. He ended up curling into my lap and falling asleep. I put a blanket on him and went to bed. He texted me the next day, and that was nice, but then I didn’t hear from him for a while. After about a month (we are finally getting to present day), he asked me to see a movie but I said I was busy.

And here we are. I have a lot of conflicting feelings about the way we’ve both behaved. I can’t shake this feeling that there is unspoken business. I want so badly to let him know how much I care about him, and yet we are not speaking. Whose fault is that? Is it mine for my defensive behavior, or does he just not really care about me? Perhaps the answer is right in front of my face and I am choosing to ignore it. It breaks me into pieces thinking that I am missing out on someone I have the capacity to love, and maybe all I needed to do was reach out. Or maybe I need to just move on with my life. Even if I wanted to reveal my feelings now, I would have no idea how to do so. He is a block away from me right this second. — Scared to Share my Feelings

Oh my good lord. What is with all this drama and drawing things out and the “we aren’t speaking” and “maybe I need to move on with my life”? And the whole STD plot line is so bizarre, too. It reminds me of when a girl freaks out that she might be pregnant because she’s slept with a guy once or twice and feels woozy even though her period isn’t due for, like, three days and so she tells this guy she’s freaking out in some effort to escalate things between them and then he’s all, “Holy crap.” But then her period starts three days later just like it’s supposed to and she’s all, “False alarm! Wow, that was scary, right?!” like it’s a bonding thing they share now. And he’s all, “Uh, yeah. Ok.” And then the mood is sort of busted and it’s this weird thing that hangs between them for a while.

I don’t know if this guy is into you or not. But I do know that you’ll have a much better sense if you finally screw together some courage and tell him already that you have feelings for him and would like to date if he has any interest in seeing if there might be something between you. Yes, it will be scary — not as scary as a pregnancy or STD scare, though! — but the relief you’ll feel when you have an answer, whether it’s the one you want to hear or not, will be worth it. After reading this long email, several paragraphs of which I edited out for brevity (!), I can only imagine how this self-inflicted drama must be eating you up. So, get on with it, girl. There are better things for a 22-year-old recent college grad to be focusing her energy on than some played-out “Is he or isn’t he?” story line.

*If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com and be sure to follow me on Twitter.

139 comments… add one
  • MsBorgia March 13, 2012, 9:07 am

    As soon as I read the part about her “aching” for him I buckled up for some drama. Tl;dr, sack up, get over yourself, and take a leap.

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    • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 9:22 am

      What is tl;dr?

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      • call-me-hobo March 13, 2012, 9:23 am

        too long; didn’t read.

      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 9:24 am

        Thank you!

      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 9:37 am

        “tl;dr” – really? i feel really old right now.

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:42 am

        Heh it’s a pretty popular tag on lots of forums. Generally the more nerdy the crowd the more likely you’ll see it. I first saw it on a video game forum like 2 years ago. The tag itself isn’t that old so don’t feel too bad.

      • cookiesandcream March 13, 2012, 9:51 am

        I feel so old and out of touch now… I thought it was some sort of typo; it didn’t even occur to me that it could be an acronym.

      • evanscr05 March 13, 2012, 12:50 pm

        haha I thought the exact same thing.

      • june March 13, 2012, 1:23 pm

        This thread is tl; dr.

      • MsBorgia March 13, 2012, 10:12 pm

        Sorry, I didn’t mean to confuse everyone with my newfangled internet-speak.

      • theattack March 13, 2012, 2:16 pm

        Same here! Except I assumed it was a series of random keystrokes out of frustration instead of a typo.

      • EscapeHatches March 13, 2012, 4:44 pm

        It’s from the internet repository Reddit. There’s also “FTFY” or “Fixed That For You” that you use to get someone’s point out of their denial. and dozens more. 🙂

  • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:13 am

    Dear Lord!!! How do you even move around with all that drama and anxiety hanging on your sholders?!? I’m exhausted just reading it.

    Look, just give the guy a call and invite him over and then tell the guy that you want to be his girlfriend and ask if he would like to be your boyfriend. That’s all you have to do. It doesn’t need to be any more complicated than that. Just say “Hey I like you, and I’ve liked you for a while now and it’s taken me for forever to work up the guts to ask you this but would you like to be my boyfriend?” It sounds like you two are friends so it’s not like he’s going to be cruel to you. Worst case senario he tells you he just wants to be friends, and it’s better to know if that’s the case so you can move on (and if this is the case then DO NOT sleep with him anymore or it will draw out the getting over him part). And no beating around the bush either. Be direct, be clear, and be concise. Either you’ll learn that you need to start looking for a different guy to be your boyfriend (which sucks but you’ll live), or you can finally be OUT of the “I wonder/what if? zone” and have him as your boyfriend.

    Be brave and good luck!

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    • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 9:23 am

      I prefer the note that says “circle one: yes no maybe”, but I guess your idea works too.

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      • Will.i.am March 13, 2012, 9:39 am

        The only reply I had is that my head is going to explode! Exhausting read indeed.

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:40 am

        Yeah those were fine for middle school … at least until you’re caught sending one and then have to get up and read it in front of the whole class. Yeah that’s reeeaaaal fun. And the best part is after you sit down the person sitting next to you whispers that your fly is down. *sigh*

      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 9:56 am

        Oh God, you just brought me back to humiliation in 5th grade. I was listening to a morning radio show getting ready for school and they were talking about musical condoms (I probably didn’t even know exactly what they were for at that point). Of course, I get busted passing a note about this in class and have to read it in front of my teacher…A NUN!

      • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 4:00 pm

        I left a note in somebody’s desk in middle school, and the teacher called me out in front of EVERYBODY by being like “WHO WAS SITTING IN THE 2ND DESK TWO ROWS FROM THE DOOR DURING 4TH PERIOD TODAY?? IS THIS” (presents note) “YOURS????” I didn’t have ot read it out loud… but yeah, pretty terrible.

      • rainbow March 13, 2012, 10:20 am

        I’ve had a couple of bad experiences with that kind of note. I remember once when I was about 8 years old I sent another little girl who was really mean to me a note that said “I declare war on you. ( ) yes ( ) no” and she gave it back with an X in “no” and it was totally confusing.

  • Nadine March 13, 2012, 9:14 am

    I SO thought the writer was a guy who was struggling with coming out, so I had some sympathy for the dramatic language and actions. If not, if you are just a girl who likes a boy, yeah, what Wendy said: tell him or MOA.

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    • rachel March 13, 2012, 10:02 am

      I was thinking the same thing until they had sex! I figured that wouldn’t have just been casually mentioned if the LW were a guy.

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  • MellaJade March 13, 2012, 9:17 am

    Girl – Vag up! Men do like when we reciprocate interest – you’ve never initiated contact? Why so passive in your own life? Don’t be a supporting actress – be the leading lady! Walk yourself the one block over there and talk to the guy. Geez!

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    • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:34 am

      Yeah I hate it when women take zero initive as it makes it harder to figure out if they’re just flirting to be nice or because they’re really interested. If you wait around for the guy to initiate EVERYTHING then you’re probably going to miss out on some great guys who went after someone else that was more clear about her feelings.

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      • 2_J March 13, 2012, 9:42 am


  • kerrycontrary March 13, 2012, 9:17 am

    I also think you need to take a leap of faith and tell him your feelings. What’s the worse that can happen? He says he doesn’t feel the same way, you are upset for a couple of weeks, a couple of months at the most, and then life goes on and you find someone else. If you do choose to tell him your feelings you need to do it sober. From your letter it sounds like a lot of your flirting/touching has been alcohol induced (which I totally understand as should most people who have been 22 or gone to college). As Wendy says, put on your big girl panties, go over to his house, and just spit it out. Keep it simple with “I value our friendship but I have feelings for you and I was wondering if you feel the same way.” I’m not sure how he feels about you. Maybe you are a good friend he occasionally hooks up with or maybe he wants to date you too but is too scared. Either way you need to speak up to find out or just move on.

    On the STD plotline-I don’t really know how he could think that his STD test was a false-negative, but you should use a condom next time to spare the drama.

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  • silver_dragon_girl March 13, 2012, 9:22 am

    O.M.G. Just tell him already. Doesn’t have to be a big deal…take a deep breath and say, “So I’ve liked you forever, I would really like to date you and be your girlfriend, but I’ve been too chicken to ask how you feel…but I’m asking you now. What do you think?”

    You can even ask while you’re walking around someplace, or playing a video game, or something, if that makes it feel less awkward.

    But seriously. RIP OFF THE BANDAID!

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  • bethany March 13, 2012, 9:22 am

    Tell him how you feel, and do it when you’re both sober.

    He might not feel the same way, but at least then you’ll know, instead of having it eat you up inside for years.

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  • SweetPea March 13, 2012, 9:24 am

    ” He talked about how badly he wanted children in the future, something I’ve been adamantly against for myself.”

    I know they are young… but does this seem like a problem with anyone else? Things rarely work out when two people foresee such different futures for themselves.

    This whole thing doesn’t seem worth it to me. You could tell him how you feel… but I just see a whole big pattern of drama for the duration of the “relationship”. I think the LW just needs to RELAX. Focus on other things for a while (as Wendy so wisely suggested).

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    • Michelle.Lea March 13, 2012, 9:26 am

      I’m with you SweetPea. As soon as I read he wanted children and she doesnt’.

      Honestly just move on.

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      • Kate B March 13, 2012, 9:32 am

        This line jumped out at me, too. That is a big difference between them and likely to be a deal-breaker for one of them. Better spare yourself more drama now and MOA. And don’t sleep with him anymore, it will just make it more difficult.

    • ktfran March 13, 2012, 9:33 am

      Yes! The children/no children is a fundamental difference. They are young and someone could change their mind, but I wouldn’t bank on that chance.

      Plus, they’ve been doing this dance what, a year now? And nobody has had the guts to do anything about it? I would say MOA. If wanted to date you, he would. And if you wanted to date him LW, you should make it more clear, because right now, you have not.

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    • JK March 13, 2012, 9:41 am

      YES!!! Otherwise in a few years we´ll be reading “I don´t know what to do, when I finally started dating my husband (after years of being in love, but not having the courage to tell him) I knew he wanted kids, and I didn´t, but I thought in time he would change his mind. Now he´s asking when I´m going to go off the pill. What do I do??????”

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      • SweetPea March 13, 2012, 9:50 am


        I think many of us have thought (at least subconsciously) that we could “change” a man (or whoever your object of affection might be).If there is any word of advice I can give… don’t ever get involved with someone that you would like to CHANGE. They are who they are!

        And call me crazy- but, it is a TERRIBLE idea to have kids just to please a man, LW. So, don’t do that either. Please.

      • 6napkinburger March 13, 2012, 1:09 pm

        Except their clothes. Many guys will wear what is purchased for them or what they know gets their lady hot an bothered, even if they’d never pick it out themselves. And the toilet seat. But that’s pretty much it.

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 1:37 pm

        Yes on the clothes. I don’t care how many people try to explain it to me or take me shopping, I’ll never have much of an eye for shopping. If wearing ____ is what you like to see me in then I’ll wear it.

      • Lili March 13, 2012, 1:42 pm

        Brad I want to see you in some Burberry!

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 3:27 pm

        I don’t even know what that is 🙂

      • Lili March 13, 2012, 3:56 pm

        A pretty print that you can rock with your skin tone!

        Bonus points if you agree to wear it in a vneck!

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 10:04 pm

        Why? Because you want to see my chest hair or something?

      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 2:06 pm

        I don’t know, if I feel like a douche bagge, I’m not going to wear it! I have given in to the occasional v-neck, but that’s about it. I did have to make up a song about it to get through it though.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 3:30 pm

        I loooooove v-necks…I’m going to stop commenting on this thread before everyone realizes how much I enjoy clothes shopping.

        In my defense I never “window shop” I go with the intention of buying sweet clothes that I usually have picked ahead of time…and just need to try on….efficient shopping.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 3:33 pm

        Also….we aren’t talking “deep” v’s here….those are gross.

      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 3:45 pm

        haha the deeper the better! I enjoy doing my own shopping, but I think I have my own sense of fashion. It’s like a mix of old school 90’s poor white kid mixed with 2012 target/Macy’s if they have a sale 30 year old white guy.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 3:49 pm

        HAHAHA. I didn’t really get into it until I graduated college really…didn’t have the extra money and before that I dealt with hand-me downs and JCPenny (who’s teen male clothes selection is abyssmal)…I guess I’d equate mine to some mix of young professional and late 2000 alternative rocker look…let’s just say I own I lot of v-necks, cardigans, and slim fit jeans…the ones inbetween “skinny” (tight as hell…too tight) and regular fit…

      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 4:05 pm

        Yeah, I’m really more of young professional now my self, starting to wear the V-necks, and a lot of polo’s, and if there was one thing I took from the Frisky, it is from John D. The darker the pants the better haha. Though I’m always a step behind when it comes to pants, because the stuff that is in style is just alway to expensive, so I don’t have a lot of rips in my pants right now.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 4:08 pm

        I don’t pay for ripped jeans, haha….I’ll rip them myself doing something memorable, stupid, and “at-the-time” cool, thank you very much.

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 3:43 pm

        I wear v neck undershirts so they’re not visable under my work shirts, do they count?

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 3:45 pm


      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 3:58 pm

        What the hell is going on here? The boys have taken over and are now talking clothes?! This makes me happy.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 4:01 pm

        I thought about posting asking if this really just happened….but it did….I didn’t want to draw attention to it…and I had flooded the recent comment section enough.

      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 4:07 pm

        My fiancee, isn’t here so I can talk about it all I want! I’m sure she would be rolling her eyes if this was a conversation in public! She has definitely gotten me my best clothes, or at least pointed me in the right direction.

      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 10:53 pm

        Seriously what the hell is happening?

      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 10:53 pm

        Hey Bagge – I went to a yoga studio in North Andover this weekend. Know the area??

    • CG March 13, 2012, 9:53 am

      ITA about the kids issue. Plus, he kind of accused her of giving him an STD, which seems kinda crass to me (I’ve never been in that situation, though, so maybe others don’t think it’s that bad). Honestly, I think this guy sees you as a booty call, LW. I’d MOA.

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      • rachel March 13, 2012, 10:05 am

        It may have been crass, but STD scares are really scary business, so I’d give him a pass on that one.

      • CG March 13, 2012, 11:56 am

        Yeah, I know, but I just think he shouldn’t have said anything until he was tested. Although apparently he’s hell-bent on blaming her because he thinks it was a “false negative.”

      • rachel March 13, 2012, 12:58 pm

        Yeah, that part was a bit weird. I’d love to hear his explanation about that.

  • ReginaRey March 13, 2012, 9:31 am

    I’m with Wendy. The way you alleviate all of your tortured worry and confusion is to just be up front! What exactly is the worst that can happen? Your pride is injured a little? Nothing happens with this guy (well…nothing IS happening right now, so that’s no mystery)?

    I think I know why you’re hesitant to talk to him, besides the general fear of getting rejected or having to be direct with someone. It’s because when you tell him, you don’t get to live through this melodrama anymore. You don’t get to be the best friend who’s secretly in love with him, which is a romantic notion that can be fun to cling to. I know more than a few people like this; who would rather stick with being the “star crossed” best friend who never speaks up, in a tragically romantic kind of way, than to be honest and put their feelings out there. Why? Well, because deep down they probably know that the truth isn’t going to make them feel as good as all of their secret longing and pining away does.

    Does that mean this dude doesn’t have feelings for you? I don’t know. You could come clean, and it could be the start of a real relationship. But quite honestly, from what I’ve seen, he sounds like any 22-year-old dude who likes you and who likes having sex with you, but probably isn’t all that interested in a serious relationship. So tell him, yes. It may change nothing about your situation, but being direct and honest is the mature thing to do. Playing out all of this drama is NOT the mature thing to be doing.

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    • Muffy March 13, 2012, 9:49 am

      I was thinking the same about him liking her but not THAT much since he never bothered asking for a date after hearing she liked him and after she had sex with him. But if I were you LW I’d just fess up and tell him and then if he says he doesn’t want a relationship (or any sort of variation including being too busy or not in the right place) then you can move on and decide if you’re comfortable being just friends or cut him out of your life.

      DO NOT continue to have sex with this man unless you are in a relationship with him. It will just screw with your head even more at this point

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    • camille905 March 13, 2012, 11:56 am

      At the same time though she’s giving him totally mixed messages. She’s all cuddly and flirty when he calls her to hang out BUT she never initiates contact. If I were him I would think SHE wasn’t interested in ME despite having had a sex and being told she likes me.

      LW also should have defender herself over the STD thing especially since she says she got tested shortly before their encounter. It probably wasn’t easy for him to talk to her about it and then she got all weird on him.

      Anyway, she just needs to get her act together and ask him. They’re 22, it’s not the end of the world
      LW needs to

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  • caitie_didnt March 13, 2012, 9:31 am

    Oh wow, the drama!! LW: get over yourself, get over the drama, go focus on something else for a bit.

    This was a pretty entertaining read, though.

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  • rainbow March 13, 2012, 9:33 am

    If we should fail?

    We fail! But screw your courage to the sticking-place, and we’ll not fail.

    Just go talk to him already.

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    • silver_dragon_girl March 13, 2012, 9:47 am

      Mob: Light your torch! Mount your horse!
      Gaston: Screw your courage to the sticking place!
      Mob: We’re counting on Gaston to lead the way!
      Women: Through a mist, through a wood/Where within a haunted castle/Something’s lurking that you don’t see ev’ry day!
      Mob: It’s a beast! One as tall as a mountain/We won’t rest ’til he’s good and deceased/Sally forth! Tally ho!/Grab your sword! Grab your bow!/Praise the Lord and here we go!

      I JUST got that allusion. Wow.

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      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 9:59 am


      • rachel March 13, 2012, 10:06 am


      • Lydia March 13, 2012, 10:12 am

        I always loved that song, and even more since I found out the Shakespearean reference. 🙂

      • Ladybug March 13, 2012, 10:25 am

        Love it! The songs from Beauty and the Beast will now be my mental soundtrack for the rest of the day.

      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 10:35 am

        Someday I will have a real guest bedroom that I will decorate with a Beauty and the Beast theme and force my guests to fall asleep with Be Our Guest playing. Someday.

      • JK March 13, 2012, 11:41 am

        Let me know so I can send you my 4 year old.

      • JK March 13, 2012, 11:42 am

        Sorry, forgot the 😀

  • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 9:43 am

    LW – Don’t let these haters get you down — I’m coming to your defense on this one because I’m a pussy too when it comes to being upfront and honest with men I like. Yes, you’re a pussy. Don’t worry, I am too. We can get through this together. You need to suck it up and stop doing these things that are torturing you — bonding at a bar, flirting and touching, hooking up, waiting for him to text you. … God, it’s causing me pain and this doesn’t even involve me! So, stop doing those things until you’ve confronted this Samual of yours like everyone here is telling you. Then give me (fine, all of us) an update right away! Don’t wait even a day. Update right away. You may just encourage me to stop being a pussy too.

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    • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:51 am

      Addie, just because you have a pussy doesn’t mean you should be one! Besides you’re a lawyer, the next time you like a guy that you think likes you back, tell him that he has to date you or you’ll sue him!

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      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 10:29 am

        What if he’s a lawyer too and he countersues?

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 11:45 am

        Well then you’re left with really only one choice, blackmail.

      • lets_be_honest March 13, 2012, 11:49 am

        I’ve gotten some of my best boyfriends using that technique.

      • honeybeenicki March 13, 2012, 1:11 pm

        Sounds like the start to a horrible rom-com to me 🙂

    • Muffy March 13, 2012, 9:52 am

      I’m a chicken as well. But given a choice between having anxiety all the time and just (wo)manning up I would choose the latter. Not worth the torture – trust me. I did this when I was 18 LW and it drove me mental for a good semester – huge waste of time

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      • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 10:17 am

        Seriously! ANY answer she gets from him (even a rejection) has GOT to be better than this drama she’s stewing in.

      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 10:32 am

        See, now, I apparently prefer to be tortured. I can go months and years torturing myself like this LW is doing. But that was the old Addie Pray and the new Addie Pray has her shit together and is going to be honest and direct starting RIGHT NOW. Or the next opportunity I have to be honest and direct about my feewings. That opportunity may not come until lunch or tomorrow after work though.

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 11:47 am

        Sounds like SOMEBODY has a work crush… *smirks*

      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 12:28 pm

        Remember Just ask yourself what the green yoga bag would do, then do that!

      • Addie Pray March 13, 2012, 3:40 pm

        The green yoga bag is kind of smelly these days. It likes to stink and not much else.

  • jlyfsh March 13, 2012, 9:44 am

    First sharing with a sexual partner that you were tested and were negative isn’t crass, it’s just smart. It seems to me that you are either very shy or very good at getting caught up in your own head and making a way bigger deal out of things than they are or ever should be (= you enjoy drama). I think before you approach him or any guy you need to figure out why you have such a hard time communicating with others. Is it because you’re painfully shy or do you have underlying self esteem issues or do you really enjoying getting caught up in the emotions (both good and bad) of it all?

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    • Skyblossom March 13, 2012, 9:56 am

      I think you’re right about the communication. If she can’t talk to him enough to even ask him out on a date how would she discuss any serious issue with him, like having children.

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  • Lindsay March 13, 2012, 9:45 am

    I realize that nothing’s ever been laid out, but the fact that your friend told him your feelings and nothing happened (well, sex happened, but you know) seems sort of telling. And that you’ve had sex and he’s never tried to have a relationship with you. It’s not like he doesn’t know you have some sort of feelings for him. Plus, the STD thing was just weird. He was convinced he had a false-negative. Why? I think you should move on. I had a crush on a friend my senior year of high school, and I felt all sorts of feelings about it, but in reality, I think I was blowing it out of proportion because leaving college seemed like such a big deal. Try to find someone who you can have a simple relationship with. And don’t do the stoic, “I”m not going to tell you I don’t have an STD” thing again. You’ll freak someone out.

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    • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:52 am

      “He was convinced he had a false-negative. Why?” Probably because he’s been sleeping around.

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      • kerrycontrary March 13, 2012, 10:27 am

        I’m thinking he had some problems down there that wern’t an std, but because they persisted he was convinced it was.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 1:46 pm

        Probably needed to use lube…got chafed during their romp…refused to let it heal before he me-sagged himself and it persisted long enough for him to worry.

    • Budj March 13, 2012, 9:54 am

      He asked her if she wanted to talk about it…and she said no…if I were a young guy I would think that meant she either wasn’t interested at all or wasn’t interested in pursuing the feelings.

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      • Brad March 13, 2012, 9:58 am

        I would agree. Back when I was 21/22 I would have assumed that meant that being outed made her lose interest or something, so I wouldn’t have bothered to persue it.

    • Muffy March 13, 2012, 9:55 am

      Yeah, really weird about the whole “I’m not going to tell you I’m clean I’m just going to let you guess” Next time someone accuses you of having an STD tell them you’ve been tested and are clean. Do you really want him going around telling your mutual friends that you might have given him an STD? You never denied it.

      Also agree with the whole thing about him likely not wanting to date you.

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    • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 12:31 pm

      I think nothing ever happened, after her friends her under the bus, because he asked her to talk about it, and she said no.
      “He asked me later that night if I wanted to talk about it, and I said no. A few weeks later, he moved out and away for the summer.”

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      • bagge72 March 13, 2012, 12:32 pm

        Sorry didn’t see, that my homie Budj, already got at you with this one, ya dig.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 1:06 pm

        werd up!

  • Budj March 13, 2012, 9:52 am

    You have been friends for years… had sex… yet you are still afraid to tell him…. if you don’t like “aching” then have out with it already. This guy has given you sooo much initiative…I’m like 95% sure he is holding back because he is sick of the never-ending onion layer peeling he has to do with you. Open up and figure it out or MOA.

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  • MandaNoA March 13, 2012, 9:53 am

    Maybe it’s because I am older (27) but I am very much of the oppinion that there is no point wasting your time on someone who isn’t interested in what you’re interested in. If you want a relationship tell this guy that’s what you want. If you’re ok with continuing to be awkward friends with benefits, then tell him that. The worst that will happen is that he won’t feel the same way, in which case your pride will be temporarily hurt but you’ll get over it. The one thing I have learned through my many years of dating is that being up front with someone is always the way to go. That way you don’t waste your time or theirs and its a lot easier to get over someone you’ve liked for 2 months than someone you’ve been into for a year.

    Also, never be afraid to tell someone that you DON’T have an STD! If that person doesn’t believe you, get tested and then show them the negative result. A girlfriend of mine dated a guy who admitted to her that he had herpes and when they broke up she told our WHOLE company that he had it. Don’t trust that this person won’t go telling everyone you guys know that you gave him an STD. If someone accuses you of giving them an STD and you didn’t: DENY DENY DENY!

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    • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 10:13 am

      Sorry to be the one always chiming in on the STD thing, BUT…

      A lot of times, people think they are “clean” when indeed they are not. And many times, people think they have been tested for “everything” when it’s not really the case.

      For instance – Women, when you go for a pap smear, your doctor is NOT also testing you for STDs unless you ask. If you ask her to test you, then all you’re getting while she’s down there is chlamydia and gonorrhea testing (in addition to the pap smear) UNLESS you also have a blood draw. If you did not get your blood drawn, then you were not tested for HIV and syphilis.

      ALSO, a herpes test is not included in a general screening. If you have symptoms present at the time of examination, then they should do a culture. Otherwise, it’s a blood test, and it’s not going to get done unless you ask.

      I’m not trying to insult anyone’s intelligence, but I wanted to throw out a couple of common misconceptions.

      If the LW’s friend thought he might have a “false negative” then it was likely that he was in some type of window period or incubation period. In other words, he got tested too soon after the exposure for it to show up positive on the test and needed a retest.

      Moral of the story is – if your partner tells you they think they have something, don’t assume you are “clean” – GO GET TESTED.

      Reply Link
      • SweetPea March 13, 2012, 10:25 am

        I did once have to specifically ask for the blood test… my Doctor said she didn’t feel it was necessary because I had already had it last year.
        I didn’t suspect anything, but I’m a bit of a hypochondriac- so I demanded it. I think it’s a good idea to do so.

      • MandaNoA March 13, 2012, 10:27 am

        I definitely agree with everything you’re saying here. I personally get tested about once a year and I always tell the doctor exactly what I want (herpies blood test, hiv test, etc.). It’s true that a lot of women take for granted that their OB is testing them for STDs when they go in for their yearly pap. This is not true!

        However, since this LW said she got tested and it all came back negative I think it would be acceptable for her to tell this guy that she didn’t give him anything. But I agree with you: get tested people!

      • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 10:33 am

        Yeah, sorry, I do some sex ed so this is just habit for me. I think most of the readers here are pretty well-versed in sexual health, but I always jump in and educate when I have the chance. 🙂

      • cmary March 13, 2012, 1:42 pm

        This is new to me- well, the information itself isn’t new, nor is the fact that getting tested is a solid idea, but having to actually think about it and apply it to me is new. So I very much appreciate the explanation!

      • 6napkinburger March 13, 2012, 11:57 am

        Weirdly, most doctors won’t Ive gone to won’t test me for herpes even if I ask, because the test doesn’t really help, because it can’t tell the difference between cold sore herpes and genital herpes. So if it’s positive, you still don’t know if you have an STD. Only a negative means anything, or so they convince me.

      • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 1:03 pm

        They can differentiate between HSV1 and HSV2, with 1 usually being cold sores and 2 usually being genital herpes, BUT either one can end up in either area, SO if you’ve never had any signs or symptoms, then yeah, it might actually be pointless to test. A positive blood test with no history of signs or symptoms just tells you that you’ve been exposed at some point.

      • Zepp March 14, 2012, 5:34 am

        Same thing here! They told me they wont do blood tests for it because it just causes more drama/trauma than its worth and the test is so inconclusive. They would only test if i had symptoms.

  • TheGirl March 13, 2012, 9:55 am

    LW, you lost me at the whole he desperately wants kids and I desperately do not. DEALBREAKER.

    I’m not even going to get into the drama. For the record, next time someone accuses you of giving them an STD when they haven’t been tested, YES, you do in fact want to tell them that you’ve been tested before and came up negative. That’s not being defensive, that’s being courteous.

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  • Anna March 13, 2012, 10:12 am

    OMG, grow some balls! You say you want a relationship with this guy but when he asks you out you decline and play mind games with him? What kind of sense does that make? It is a little worrisome that he wants kids and you don’t, but you are only 22. Lots of people can’t imagine wanting kids when they’re 22…you may reconsider that when you’re going on 30. And in the meantime it’s not going to hurt anything to date him and see where it goes. Stop being a chicken and just do it. No bars either. I say invite him over for a homemade dinner with wine and just tell him how you feel. Whether he reciprocates your feelings or not, it will be a relief to get it over with.

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  • Jess of CGW March 13, 2012, 10:36 am

    Now, now, folks, don’t be too harsh. For those of us older than 22, it helps to remember what it was like. These early navigations into love, dating, and sex, are painful, murky, and confusing. And that’s not even addressing the changing social fabric of casual hook-ups, FWBs, delayed marriage, etc, that are the hallmarks of young adulthood in 2012.

    In fact, reading Wendy’s story about the pregnancy scare made me laugh and cringe. I totally did that with my first boyfriend!! But only because, yes, all those after-school specials and school assembly meetings had scared me into thinking that having sex (even when protected) pretty much equaled a pregnancy. And in some childish way, a young girl becomes entranced by the idea that, for the first time ever, the possibility of getting pregnant officially exists. That does kind of rock your little world.

    All that aside, I agree with Wendy’s advice –the only course of action to be taken here! Be honest , get answers, and be ready to roll with the outcome. There is a lot to be said for having clarity in your life. Even if it ends up hurting, it’s better than floating in a haze of indecision and uncertainty.

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    • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 12:06 pm

      Haha, yeah, I do remember having some torturous and intense crushes around that age. My diaries from back then are sooooo embarrassing.

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    • MissDre March 13, 2012, 12:17 pm

      LoL I did that too when I was 18… I really was freaked out tho.

      “But only because, yes, all those after-school specials and school assembly meetings had scared me into thinking that having sex (even when protected) pretty much equaled a pregnancy.” – very true.

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    • S.B. March 13, 2012, 12:16 pm

      Hey, I’m 23 and have not been that full of ‘do-they-like-me’ drama since I was about 13/14. The LW just needs to get a spine and ask.
      Also, the wanting to have kids thing may not be an issue at their age, since many people change their mind– at 22 my mom didn’t want kids, but decided she really, really did a bit later; her BFF wanted kids in her early 20’s, but is now happily childfree.

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      • Jess of CGW March 13, 2012, 12:19 pm

        Some of us mature faster than others, no doubt!!!

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 3:30 pm

        Yeah you got that right. I can never get my friends to join me at the community center for Bingo or Shuffleboard. An no one ever wants to try my prune juice.

      • Budj March 13, 2012, 3:32 pm

        You probably play Euchre too, right?!!?

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 3:41 pm

        No, Chess in the park

      • MandaNoA March 13, 2012, 5:05 pm

        Hey there is nothing wrong with Euchre! I was hanging out with my 23 year old cousin and his friends the other weekend and they tried to convince me to play euchre with them. However, we were trapped in a house during a blizzard with no power, surrounded by 14 inches of snow…

      • Brad March 13, 2012, 10:12 pm

        Why didn’t you offer to pole dance for them? I’m sure his friends would have loved it.

  • Renee March 13, 2012, 12:08 pm

    Even if you confessed, he wouldn’t give you a straight answer.

    I feel sad thinking about other men you could of dated, rather then torturing yourself with this crush on a friend.

    Off topic: I always seeing dating a long term friend, like dating a second cousin.

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  • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 12:13 pm

    LW, I kind of suspect you like feeling this way, to some extent? After all, if you’re NEVER straight with this dude, and the two of you NEVER have a frank discussion about your respective feelings and what to do about them, then you can just keep this idea in your head that you guys have some secret, special connection.

    The language you use in your letter makes it seem as if you think you’re in a romance novel. “He is the first person I’ve ever wanted to compromise for, the first person I’ve really ached for…” What? I think maybe you’re unable to talk to him about your feelings because you want to phrase it this way for some reason, but you know that would sound ridiculous?

    So… stop with the “aching”, “unspoken business” ,”fears and dreams”, “encounters” stuff. Don’t sit there thinking OMG HE’S A BLOCK AWAY THIS VERY MINUTE. Don’t go to bed tonight feeling like your heart is breaking and life is so tragic and I MISSED OUT ON THE ONLY PERSON I HAD THE CAPACITY TO LOVEEEE AAAHH. There’s still time to call him up, ask him to get together (preferably in a neutral kind of setting where you’re maybe sitting across from each other & not lying in each other’s laps stroking hair?) and tell him you’ve had feelings for him for a while. He either feels the same, or he doesn’t.

    If this sounds too scary, then I recommend actually contacting him once and a while to hang out instead of waiting weeks on end for him to want your company. You’ll get to see him more, and you’ll probably get a better idea of how he feels about you without having to “confess” anything.

    The last thing I’ll say is in response to the whole STD fiasco. Even though he didn’t “accuse” you, the correct thing to do would be to tell him you’d gotten tested shortly before you guys had sex & were in the clear at that time (since this is what you say in the letter). It’s not “crass” to do this, it’s what responsible people do. If you can’t have a conversation about this, then you shouldn’t be having sex at all. If you can’t have a conversation about it WITH HIM, because your intense love has you tongue-tied, then he probably isn’t a good match for you anyway. (Not to mention the differing opinions on children, which a few other people already covered)

    Reply Link
    • 6napkinburger March 13, 2012, 12:23 pm

      To be fair, when my ex and I broke up, I felt like I physically ached for him. I’d come home from work to an empty apartment and feel a real, physical pain in the center of my chest, or like, my gut, that wouldn’t go away. And even though I was totally alone, there would be wailing and crying, and such, which definitly wasn’t a show (no one was around to see it) nor was it something I wanted to feel and I’m very happy I no longer do. So while I agree that it seems a little over the top to explain it that way, there’s a good chance she’s not exaggerating.

      Reply Link
      • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 12:59 pm

        I did too. 🙁 A pain and a burning in the chest. And in between my choking sobs, I would cry, “It hurrrrrrrrrrrts” to no one (unless my cats were listening).

        God that sounds pitiful.

      • 6napkinburger March 13, 2012, 1:05 pm

        Mine was a long and drawn on rendition of “I changed my mind; come back” on repeat to an empty room … not even cats. But, we gotta do what we gotta do to get through it, right?

      • CatsMeow March 13, 2012, 1:35 pm


      • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 2:32 pm

        Ooh god, I’m not a huge Dane Cook fan, but this reminds me of one of his old segments about what people do when they cry & it was REALLY funny and true. I’ll try to find a link but does ANYONE know what I’m talking about based on that (brief, not-very-detailed..) description?

      • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 1:01 pm

        Oh yeah, I’ve definitely felt that physical pain you’ve described, so it’s not that I think she’s exaggerating…it’s just that she’s using this very serious, harlequin novel tone throughout the whole letter seemingly without any self-awareness? I don’t know if that helps explain, but I just think maybe she could manage better if she stopped thinking of her feelings in such an over-the-top way.

      • Lili March 13, 2012, 1:17 pm

        I still like to use missing an ex as a distraction from processing some childhood stuff about trust and feeling vulnerable. We broke up 10 months ago! Sigh I know I know, I need to get over that other stuff and MOA.

    • Leroy March 13, 2012, 1:33 pm

      >> I kind of suspect you like feeling this way, to some extent?

      What gave you that idea??

      The best part is that his test results came back negative, but he’s convinced that it was a false negative! How tragic is that?!? – he’ll never know .. never know.

      Something tells me that these two were made for each other.

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      • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 2:21 pm

        To elaborate…I meant that her inaction and the resulting tortuous thoughts she has are so status quo now, maybe to the point where she has an almost perverse pleasure wallowing in her own misery. Subconsciously, of course, not like she’s actively loving being in this situation.

        I know I was kinda harsh on her, but I’ve had feelings like this in the past and they become consuming to the point where they become a part of you.

      • Leroy March 13, 2012, 3:30 pm

        I was being sarcastic, because I think that you’re totally right.

      • Fabelle March 13, 2012, 3:51 pm

        Whoops, read it too quickly & assumed you were actually asking “huhh why do you think that?”

        But yeah, it does sounds like the dude might be a piece of work himself… “They said I was clear for STDs, but I have a feeling that… it’s a FALSE NEGATIVE.” I mean, I know it happens, but between that & all the falling-asleep-in-each other’s-laps-after-discussing-our hopes-and-dreams, it’s hard to tell what the hell is going on with these characters…

  • sparky629 March 13, 2012, 12:31 pm

    I’m sorry that was just too much drama this early in the day. I felt like I was reading the script for one of those angst filled teen drama shows.

    Good grief, Charlie Brown.

    Can we get a moratorium on the angsty 12 year olds who are trying to play adult?

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  • Moneypenny March 13, 2012, 12:37 pm

    Oof, that was quite a long and twisty story, but what it comes down to is that in order to get the answer she is looking for, she needs to have a talk with him. Of course that’s scary, and personally, I am one of those scaredy-cats who is afraid of letting a guy know how I really feel too, so I get it. But if she wants anything to change, she may just have to be the catalyst that puts the change it motion.

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  • atlimbo March 13, 2012, 12:42 pm

    I love Wendy’s comments. I met a guy a lot like this in college, on the first day, and you know what? I told him how I felt about a month later, and we’re still together today (nearly 10 years later). It really isn’t that dramallama a deal, I swear!

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  • AndreaMarie March 13, 2012, 12:53 pm

    I’m sorry LW, but I think you should just MOA. I don’t even think it’s worth your time to do the whole confession feelings thing.

    First of all, I know you are young but I think you need to mature a little if you want o get into a meaningful relationship. I mean, you’ve known this guy for years, talking and confide in each other, have had sex, but you are still afraid to even call him to make plans? And you were to scared to tell him that you don’t have an STD? I just don’t get it. If you are too scared to tell him your feelings or discuss anything because you are afraid how he’ll react now, what are you going to do if you were to be in a relationship with him? It’s destined for failure if there is no open and honest communication.

    Also, no offense, but I really think he’s “just not that into you”. He’s already had your mutual friend reveal your feelings for him. He spends time with you. He flirts and plays and has even had sex with you. He tells you all his hopes and dreams…..all this and yet he still hasn’t ask you to be his girlfriend? He still hasn’t made any attempt to take things further. Either he’s just as timid as you are (which makes this potential relationship no good) or he just doesn’t share your level of feelings.

    I think you need to MOA

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  • honeybeenicki March 13, 2012, 1:30 pm

    I was in a meeting all morning, so I didn’t get a chance to chime in earlier, but I have a few things to say to the LW:

    1) The only way for you to ever find out if there are reciprocal feelings is to tell him – and do it sober. There’s no point in pining away for someone. Yeah, it may suck if he doesn’t feel the same but if he doesn’t, then you move on and find someone who will love you. And don’t always wait for him to contact you. Sometimes you have to put yourself out there to show that you’re interested.

    2) For the love of all things dirty, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE use protection when you have sex! Sure, condoms aren’t 100% effective but they’re your best defense when you choose to sleep with someone else.

    3) I happen to think you should have said something when he accused you of giving him an STD. Also, I wouldn’t want to be with someone who was accusing me of giving him an STD.

    4) If you don’t want children and he does, that is going to be a major issue down the road if you start dating. For most people, its a deal breaker. If you can’t even discuss your feelings, how are you going to discuss something big like whether or not to have kids?

    I don’t know if I missed anything, but pretty much covered what stood out to me.

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  • LW March 13, 2012, 2:23 pm

    Hi all, LW here. I want to say that I’m reading and appreciating all the comments! I am not sure what to think yet, but I’m taking it in.

    I do apologize for both the length (wanted to avoid the oops-left-out-this-important-detail update) and the melodrama. Truthfully I am more defensive than pansy (although as we can all gather, I am certainly both!), so I really wanted to make sure that it came across that my feelings were genuine. Although since you don’t know me in real life, I probably could’ve just said so and you would’ve believed me.

    Anyway, thanks for all the advice so far. I do like this site, so I appreciate it very much.

    Reply Link
    • Zepp March 14, 2012, 5:45 am

      I’m kind of confused about how you’re being defensive… I mean, wouldn’t that involve defending yourself against STD allegations? I guess you mean defensive in that you are trying to defend yourself from being hurt. But to me that is the same thing as being a pussy. Rejection is not as bad as it seems! I think everyone needs a good reject in life to put it in perspective. You’ll get over it and it will be fine and you won’t care at all anymore It doesn’t take as long as you think it will. Taking risks/chances is the only way to live your life to the fullest.

      Inspirational quotes:
      I’d rather have a life of ‘Oh wells’ than ‘What ifs?’

      A ship in harbor is safe – but that is not what ships are for. ~John A. Shedd

      Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. What if they are a little course, and you may get your coat soiled or torn? What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice. Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

      Do you want a safe boring life or an exciting fulfilling life? Your choice.

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  • MiMi March 13, 2012, 2:51 pm

    Oy vey!
    Dear Silence of the Clams,
    Until you can speak up in your own defense when someone accuses you of giving them an STD (and what was that BS about a false negative!?) and stop trying to create meaning in the aimless wanderings and vagaries of this very poor specimen of manhood (who so far has not demonstrated care, consideration, love, or passion for you), I suggest you stop hoping for this particular romance.

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  • MKS13 March 14, 2012, 10:38 pm

    Dear LW,
    If you can’t muster up the courage to communicate with a good friend that you’ve known since your first week of college (whether it’s about the STD issue or your feelings) then I’d say MOA. If you can talk to someone about your family, dreams,and other intimately personal details about your life but still can’t tell him how you feel then I’d like to know what’s holding you back.
    Regardless of how much you like him or if he likes you this seems like a relationship where you’re both prone to creating unnecessary drama and I can’t see this ending well.

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  • Caris March 14, 2012, 10:41 pm

    He wants kids, you don’t. Move on.

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