This topic contains 22 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by allathian 3 weeks, 5 days ago.
- September 16, 2019 at 9:39 am #852417
This is the first time I have visited this site. I don’t know if I’m writing this because I want advice or if I’m just hoping that writing it down will help me deal with it.
Nine years ago, I started a new job in another country. I immediately hit it off with one of my co-workers; we had an instant connection and would always hang out together outside of work. She even invited me to spend Christmas with her and her family after only knowing me for two months. We were best friends. Colleagues would joke that we were made for each other, but she was already in a relationship and nothing sexual ever happened.
Around nine months later, she split up from her boyfriend but by then I was in a relationship with someone else. During the next two years, we both had a handful of short lived relationships but we were never single at the same time. We had unspoken feelings for each other but there was always a third person preventing us from starting anything.
I left the job after three years and moved back home. We have kept in touch through social media and I have been over to visit her on a number of occasions. Even after extended periods apart, when we’ve seen each other it has been like no time has passed and we are inseparable for the two or three weeks of my visit – but again – there’s always been a partner or a situation that stopped us from getting together.
I never really thought much about it until now but deep down, I have always assumed that we’d end up together one day; it almost seemed inevitable. We’d often joked about growing old together, as if we both knew it was only a matter of time.
Fast forward to three days ago, and her sister posted a video on Instagram (one of those that disappear after 24 hours.) My friend is in the video and she is heavily pregnant.
I have thought about nothing else since seeing it. We haven’t seen each other for 18 months and while I knew she was in a relationship, I had no idea that she was pregnant. We have been messaging each other a lot over the past month – more so than usual – and she hasn’t mentioned it at all. I have no idea why she’s kept it secret. I’m sure she has her reasons.
My emotions are all over the place. I know I have absolutely no right to feel anything but happiness for her – but I can’t help but feel that fate has robbed me. I hate that she’s having someone else’s baby. I hate that someone else is sharing this experience with her. I hate that I’ll inevitably be less important to her. Again, I KNOW THAT I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO RIGHT TO FEEL THIS WAY. I know I’m being immature and I know it makes me a total jerk, but I can’t help how I feel. I want to be happy for her, I really do. But I’m heartbroken and filled with jealousy.
I don’t know how to react when she eventually reveals that she’s pregnant or has given birth. I’m sure she’ll be expecting me to have feelings beyond what I show outwardly, but I don’t even know what my outward reactions are supposed to be. Given our friendship, a simple “congratulations” doesn’t seem enough but if I attempt anything more, my upset will be obvious; I’m completely hopeless at hiding my emotions. Realistically, I’m sure my feelings will be the last thing on her mind once she has a new born baby – but for my own sanity, I don’t want to handle it badly.
I keep going over in my head all the opportunities we had to get together; all the times when we stopped short of taking things further because there were other people involved. Even if things hadn’t worked out between us, it would have relieved me of the feelings I have now. I hate myself for not doing things differently. I hate myself for the way I feel right now.September 16, 2019 at 10:58 am #852419
I have a feeling you were always more into this relationship/friendship than she was. How do you explain that in the past 6 months she never mentioned that she’s pregnant? That’s something pretty important to tell your friends.
All you can do is send congrats, send a gift if you want as well. Whether you end up together… I suppose there is always a chance. But it wouldn’t be as a couple but as an instant family.September 16, 2019 at 11:24 am #852422
You have a right to feel your feelings however you have no right to make your feelings her issue to deal with.
It sounds like you never told her your feelings and never acted upon your own. When/if she tells you say congratulations and take yourself to therapy to understand why you never made a move and to have help working through your feels without her.September 16, 2019 at 11:53 am #852423
When/if she announces it or tells you, you say “congratulations, I’m so happy for you! You’ll be a great mother.”
You say the feelings were unspoken between you which to me says that they probably weren’t as mutual as you claim. I don’t think yours was a love for the ages or anything. Otherwise, you wouldn’t have been dating others. It’s okay to have feelings and mourn a path not taken. It’s also fine to feel jealous, but you don’t have to act on those feelings. If you’re struggling to work through them, see a therapist for a couple sessions. Maybe you’re feeling unfulfilled in other ways that make this seem bigger than it really is.September 16, 2019 at 12:07 pm #852424
LisforLeslie: To me it seems she rather deliberately kept this pregnancy from him. That is pretty suspect. Maybe she just likes basking in his affection and truly never shared it. But you don’t repeatedly joke about growing old with somebody and somehow remain that fucking oblivious.
LW) Okay, this situation is… unfortunate. What to do? You just smile and say congratulations when you she tells you the big news. There is really nothing else you can do. And MOA. The dream is dead. Go find and meet another. Somebody that isn’t just content to remain unrequited.September 16, 2019 at 12:16 pm #852425
The only thought that I’m currently getting any comfort from is that we were never as close as I imagined we were. My thoughts are all over the place right now so I don’t know what to think. It’s perfectly possible that I was into the relationship more than she was but it doesn’t change how I’m feeling right now.
She definitely knew my feelings for her. I never acted upon them because we were never mutually available but my feelings were never a secret. Perhaps I’m making excuses for having never acted on them – I don’t know. This is partly why I’m beating myself so much right now. I wish I’d done things differently.
She appears to have kept the pregnancy secret from everyone, not just me. There’s no mention of it anywhere on her social media, or her family’s/boyfriend’s social media. The video posted by her sister was just showing a family gathering for her (the sister’s) birthday. It was tagged as for “close friends” only so I’m not sure why I was included. Perhaps it was accidental and I wasn’t meant to see it.
I don’t really know much about therapy or therapists. I’m British and I’ve never been exposed to that sort of thing.September 16, 2019 at 12:20 pm #852426
I am inclined to agree with BGM on this one, it sounds like she purposely kept this information from him. Why else wouldn’t she mention something? if she is ‘heavily pregnant’ as described then it seems deliberate.
LW – I know you are struggling and your feelings are valid because you are letting go, and you should. You always have the option of a big confession of love, but this isn’t a rom-com and it probably won’t go well for you. I am sorry the timing was never right, but please process your jealousy and grief with a counselor so you don’t take this into the next relationship.September 16, 2019 at 12:32 pm #852427
Well, maybe she didn’t tell you because she didn’t want to have to bear witness to your feelings. Maybe she was putting it off.
If it was obvious how you felt, but did nothing to make a move, I still think that’s a move of it’s own. Inaction is an action.
You’ve known each other nine years and nothing had ever happened. And you’ve let it be unspoken. This is probably a good lesson for you. That’s a long time. No one is going to wait around nine years when it’s all unspoken. If you’re into someone, don’t bide your time. Make a move. Joking about growing old is a joke, it’s not a definite plan or agreement. I’m sorry you’re feeling jealous and upset, but it will fade in time.September 16, 2019 at 12:36 pm #852428
Don’t hate yourself for feeling this. Of course it hurts. You’re human. If you do speak, keep it light and casual and you don’t have to address your feelings.September 16, 2019 at 1:25 pm #852429
You have a right to feel however you want, as long as you don’t take it out on her.
My main thoughts on this are that it’s totally acceptable to simply say congratulations. You may not feel that’s acceptable for your level of intimacy, but at the same time, you’re already entering into a place of less intimacy with her anyway, right? You don’t really need to respond to her in a way that aligns with being super, super close because this change will likely mean you’re less close (she’ll be busier, she’ll have other priorities, etc.).
I would also agree about this being a lesson. Not that you did anything wrong, but in most cases (and especially as you get older), having a years-long unspoken thing is generally going to be less and less likely to happen the more time that passes. People meet other people, get into more serious relationships, etc. In the future, you may want to avoid getting super invested in someone if you are not actually pursuing a relationship together.September 16, 2019 at 2:19 pm #852430
So, I guess you were a fairly awful bf to all of these other women you had relationships with while regarding this particular crush as the love of your life. When you learned she was free, why did you never break up with your current gf and chase after super love? That would be the fairer thing to gf. It also would have long ago told you exactly how much of a chance you do or don’t have with super love. My guess is that you never pursued anything, because you knew that you never had a chance. You need to leave fantasyland and live in the real world. If you had done this years ago, perhaps one of those other relationships would have worked for you. It’s next to impossible to build a successful relationship when one partner’s focus is so strongly fixed on pining for his lost great love.September 16, 2019 at 4:16 pm #852434
They don’t have therapy/ therapists in Britain?!?!
Your comment confuses me. I’m fairly certain that therapy is common in the UK.