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How do you slow down / stop feelings for someone?

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ProbableIceCream posted 9/16/2013 18:41 PM

So I met someone who I think can be a good friend for me. Unfortunately, I've started developing fairly strong feelings (I guess? I looked up the Wikipedia article on limerence and it describes a lot of the stuff I'm feeling). I didn't want that. I just wanted to make a friend.

Developing mild feelings over time is fine with me, but not this. I'm not in a good position to pursue anything and I don't want to lose her as a friend. What do I do with this?

ProbableIceCream posted 9/16/2013 18:42 PM

(I think I get attached easily to people who I respect who are nice to me / interested in me as a person.)

[This message edited by ProbableIceCream at 6:44 PM, September 16th (Monday)]

Amazonia posted 9/16/2013 18:54 PM

Don't hang out one on one. Don't let yourself flirt. Don't spend time thinking about her. Get active and involved in social situations and keep yourself busy and distracted.

ProbableIceCream posted 9/16/2013 19:30 PM

Yeah, that makes sense.

It's not that I don't want to.. well, I mean, obviously I don't want to if they don't get reciprocated, but I have a hunch that feelings at this stage of my development are probably unhealthy. Does that make sense?

Amazonia posted 9/16/2013 19:47 PM

Yes, which is why you have to consciously choose to remove yourself from the situation. It's easy to fall into limerance with someone, easy to slip into something you say you don't think you should do, and do it anyway.

You control your behavior.

ProbableIceCream posted 9/16/2013 20:46 PM

Will do. It's hard because I don't have a lot of friends yet, but I'm working on it. (I do socialize, obviously, but it's only about once a week.)

A little background info: this is/was a single person I met who has kids who get along with my kid really well and we've done some joint kid activities and stuff.

Amazonia posted 9/16/2013 20:49 PM

Invite a third family along to play. Or ask her to, so your kids can make more friends (and so can you). You can retain the friendship if you put firm boundaries into place. How would you have acted toward this woman if you were still married? Would you have been capable of having play dates and being friends without crossing lines? If you were capable of it then, you are capable of it now, if you choose to establish boundaries.

If you would rather let yourself ride the romance, just be aware that your kids will lose their friends too when/if it doesn't work out (which you don't seem to think it would since you stated you're not ready).

ProbableIceCream posted 9/16/2013 20:52 PM

Yeah, I don't think it would work out. I'll follow your advice.

Edit to add: That's a good analogy. Just act the way I was used to acting when I was married. Easy. :)

[This message edited by ProbableIceCream at 8:53 PM, September 16th (Monday)]

Amazonia posted 9/16/2013 22:03 PM

ProbableIceCream posted 9/17/2013 19:34 PM

So it's easy for me to know when I'm not ready, but how do I know when I *am* ready however much time down the road, to be open to this with someone?

Amazonia posted 9/17/2013 19:41 PM

It'll be easy/natural when you're ready. Don't worry about that. I promise, it'll come much more easily when it's time.

ProbableIceCream posted 9/17/2013 20:26 PM

That's nice to hear.

My major issues here are --

* Still barely have any local
friends. Ramping up on socializing is my biggest priority.
* Person in question is too recently out of another relationship.
* (Also, I don't even know that the person in question returns the feelings, and like I said, I enjoy the kid time and the intelligent conversation, and I'd like to continue a pattern of making interesting friends and learning how to deal with my feelings on my own.)

ProbableIceCream posted 9/17/2013 20:27 PM

(and yeah, I know I'm supposed to be keeping busy and not thinking about this, but it's so hard at first...)

Amazonia posted 9/17/2013 20:34 PM

Focus on friendships.
What are you doing to make friends?

ProbableIceCream posted 9/17/2013 20:36 PM

I started out with meetups. Set a goal to do at least 3 a month. Started doing once a week with this one group (they're on hiatus but starting up soon). Looking for other groups.

Also recently reconnected with a local friend I hadn't seen in about 12 years who has a lot of really interesting friends, and they have get togethers every so often, so I'm really excited about that. (Guy I was in some college classes with.)

ProbableIceCream posted 9/17/2013 20:38 PM

It's really sad when people move to other states. I have a number of friends who used to live around here but moved away during my marriage.

ProbableIceCream posted 9/18/2013 18:10 PM

So this must be what WSes feel when they go through 'withdrawal' when they cut off contact with an AP. Wonder how long it lasts.

Either that or I'm getting sick.

(I'm very relationship-naive.. my wife was my first serious relationship. Protip: don't do this.)

Amazonia posted 9/18/2013 21:30 PM

Keep on with the meetups. Find other ways to connect to humanity as well - where do you volunteer? Who are you giving back to on a regular basis? Who are you helping? If no one, who can you help?

ProbableIceCream posted 9/18/2013 22:25 PM

Good idea with the volunteering. I was thinking of doing that anyway a while back. It does feel good to feel important/useful to people.

ProbableIceCream posted 9/18/2013 22:26 PM

(and of course it feels good to know that you're doing something good for someone)

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