Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Updates: “What Happened?” Responds

updatesIt’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today we hear from “What Happened?” who wrote in last week about the guy she met at a conference who told her he loved her after a week of corresponding, talked with her every day for nine months, and then suddenly told her he needed space. “He said a lot of people were telling him not to talk to a girl who lives a few hours away — that I was distracting him. A week ago I saw him at another event and we were able to casually talk. It was really nice. I thought about asking him to coffee. Is that a wise decision?”

Of course, I told her it was not a wise decision. But did she listen? Find out in her update below.

I have some crazy news! It turns out that I have a friend from college who happened to attend the same church as him! I found this out when she was visiting me! She said the name of the church she went to and I remembered that being the same one as his! I asked if she knew him even though I knew it wasn’t likely because it was a big church, but it turns out that they are on the worship team together! I told her about my weird relationship I had with him! A week after she left my house, she texted me! She said that she had talked about it to his sister (who is one of her friends and also on the worship team) and apparently he hadn’t had strong feelings for anyone in a long time and that’s why he jumped the gun so severely! In his past, he had only had one serious relationship and it hurt him badly, which is why his sister said she was the one telling him not to have a long-distance relationship because she didn’t want him to get hurt again! All this information helped a lot because now that I have gained a little clarity on the situation, I definitely feel like I have a little closure! Oh, and he isn’t married!

 
You say you feel like you have “closure,” but your whole update, especially with the many exclamation marks, sounds like you’re exited about the renewed potential this unexpected intel has created. But, listen, it all sounds pretty bad. The guy had one relationship and was hurt badly? Yeah, so were like 90% of people over the age of 20. He didn’t have feelings for anyone in a long time and that’s why he confessed his love to you after a week of chatting online? That isn’t normal and it isn’t healthy, and it’s still a huge, giant red flag. Finally, his sister has so much influence on him that she can tell him not to pursue a long-distance relationship and, after nine months of talking, he just drops you with no explanation at all? Not cool. Oh, and also: “worship team.”

These are all warning signs that I hope you will heed. Each one is enough of a red flag to stay away, but all combined, you’re really looking at a disaster in the making if you pursue this guy. If you’re going to take just one lesson from this, though, let it be this: If a guy ever uses the fact that he was hurt badly in a previous relationship to excuse his stunted emotional development, his inability to treat someone with respect, or his fear of commitment, RUN!

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If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at [email protected] with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.

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15 comments… add one
  • avatar

    bekahtravels June 25, 2018, 8:16 am

    “Oh and also: “worship team.””

    😂 Best part! Made my morning!

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    • avatar

      000 June 25, 2018, 8:42 am

      Can someone explain? I didn’t get this part. How is it funny or a red flag?

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      • Dear Wendy

        Dear Wendy June 25, 2018, 9:06 am

        I think it’s funny name because “team” implies competition and “worshipping” is a funny thing to compete in. That said, I think worship team is actually a church music group.

        Edited to add: I, personally, think the word “team” in any context that isn’t related to a competition sounds silly and didn’t mean to insult its use in a religious context. I am an equal opportunity offender. If I were single and some guy I was interested in referred to his co-workers as his “work team,” I’d probably see that as a red flag, but I acknowledge that not everyone is as sensitive to word choice as I might be.

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      • avatar

        redheaddesigner June 25, 2018, 9:34 am

        It’s usually the team that does music at a church. They coordinate the musicians and do the music at weekly services.

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      • Lucidity

        Lucidity June 25, 2018, 9:36 am

        I’m not religious, but I found this kind of insulting. A worship team has nothing to do with converting or recruiting people. It’s the name for the group of people involved in producing the music for a church service – the choir, musicians, etc. The use of the word “team” has nothing to do with competition; it refers to how they all work together to make the music.

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      • Dear Wendy

        Dear Wendy June 25, 2018, 9:44 am

        You’re right – I’m going to edit my comment to reflect that.

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  • avatar

    Ruby Tuesday June 25, 2018, 9:33 am

    Oh Carol.

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  • avatar

    GertietheDino June 25, 2018, 9:56 am

    I thought it was a Bible study group. Weird name for it though but every religion has different nomenclature.

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  • avatar

    BakerBabe June 25, 2018, 10:15 am

    I sense out of proportion enthusiasm with this news.

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    • avatar

      JD June 25, 2018, 10:19 am

      Because OMG he has excuses for sucking!! So it’s ok!!!

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  • avatar

    SpaceySteph June 25, 2018, 11:44 am

    He’s not married, y’all! That means there’s still a chance!

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  • CurlyQue

    CurlyQue June 25, 2018, 12:10 pm

    I think the LW is throwing up more red flags than the dude. She got her friend and the guy’s sister(!!) involved in explaining why he didn’t want to text with her anymore! He doesn’t have to give a reason for one, and two, the reason he already gave her was completely reasonable (doesn’t want to get involved long distance).

    LW, him telling you he loved you in less than a week wasn’t real. They weren’t real feelings and that you expected them to be real is a red flag for yourself too. He’s not a potential love interest that you lost, he’s a guy you met and texted with for a bit. Don’t act like this is some missed opportunity love. It’s not.

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  • avatar

    Stace June 25, 2018, 1:45 pm

    To quote one of my favorite tv shows (Frasier):
    [He’s] the devil. Run fast. Run far.

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  • avatar

    dinoceros June 25, 2018, 7:16 pm

    OK, but the fact that he can’t handle a breakup without running off and telling someone he barely knows that he loves them is just as bad. That’s a major lack of maturity. It also makes it even less likely that he liked you for YOU rather than just wanting something to make him feel better about himself. I’m not sure why you’re so excited?

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  • avatar

    allathian September 7, 2018, 12:26 am

    The LW sounds just as immature as the dude, so maybe they do deserve each other and both need this lesson on the kinds of relationships that aren’t worth pursuing…
    Team to me implies competition only in competitive sports, and some business contexts (sales teams). But even in business it isn’t necessarily always competitive, just that the people on the same team have the same team leader responsible for assigning tasks (often in addition to a supervisor in a managerial position who can hire and fire). Teams can be permanent where people on the same team have similar (or the same) jobs or work directly towards the same goal, or temporary for a project.

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