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User Topic: This friendship is getting tricky- help!
♀ 39193
Member # 39193
Default  Posted: 5:27 PM, March 5th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hi all,

I rarely post in this forum but it seemed best for this question. Any input would appreciated!

I have a male friend. He is also divorced, also due to a cheating spouse. Though his D was several years ago, his XW still plays some headgames with him. Fortunately she's in southern CA, and he is in OR, so it's at a minimum... but in a way I think I'm further along the path to healing than he is.

Anyway, we met at a group salsa class. Just started talking and discovered the similarities of what we've been through etc. We like a lot of the same things. Since then we've gone out to dinner a couple of times, been to the zoo, caught a few movies (I go with him to the action flicks my girly movie pal doesn't care for). We attend the salsa class together and he usually picks me up, since it's in a crappy part of town with even crappier parking.

We have never kissed. We hug sometimes, but not every time, when we see each other. We occasionally text but never talk on the phone. Not long after we met we talked about our pasts and both of us said we had no interest in dating. Not each other, not anyone!

I'm still of that mindset. I have no interest in dating, and even if I did, I would not want to date this friend. I adore him as a person, but for me there is no spark there. I'm starting to get signals, however, that he is starting to feel differently. Little things he's saying and's freaking me out!!

His friendship is very important to me. He, as a person, is very important to me. But I have no romantic interest in him at all. I don't know how to handle this. Do I tackle it head on and say something? Last weekend he actually made me uncomfortable with something he just would not drop. If he does that again, I probably will say something for sure. I'm just worried. I don't want to hurt him. I don't want to mess up what has been a really great friendship for both of us. I don't want there to be weirdness in the salsa group, because I am totally hooked on it. (I should mention this is rueda Cuban-style salsa you do in a circle, changing partners constantly. Very fun! But no, he and I are not doing steamy hot traditional salsa with each other, lol. Most nights we dance together very little.)

What should I do? What should I say? I feel so stupid. Someone posted not long ago asking can a guy and girl truly be platonic friends, like in the movies. I responded and said yes. Now this is all screwed up and I'm not so sure.

Any advice would be much appreciated, especially from any Menz who might be reading.

Thanks for listening.

Me: Enjoying life
Him: Someone else's problem

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. ~ Anais Nin

Posts: 1042 | Registered: May 2013 | From: Oregon
♀ 21737
Member # 21737
Default  Posted: 6:26 PM, March 5th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I used to think men and women could be just friends. But, what I have found over time is the men usually have some feelings for the woman and not the other way around. So, I think most women are capable of being friends with a man but most men are not capable of just being friends with a woman.

As far as your situation - do you feel comfortable actually bringing this up with him?

Posts: 1450 | Registered: Nov 2008 | From: Southern California
♀ 34146
Member # 34146
Default  Posted: 6:48 PM, March 5th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Sadly, I have to agree with cissi.

After I became single again, I lost some of my male friends because they started putting the moves on me and then got embarrassed after I (nicely) told them no.

I'm dealing with a situation right now where a guy friend kept asking me out, I told him I wasn't interested, and then he got defensive and embarrassed, so he's probably a goner, too.

Currently, my male friends are mostly either gay or married and usually much older than me. I only have one single male straight friend, and we are so different that nothing ever could happen between us.

I'm not sure there's an easy way around this -- I'd probably try to work it into the conversation that I'm so happy being single and not ready to date yet to try to spare his feelings, since he hasn't yet been overt.

Also: NB is about so much more than dating. I hope you come by here way more often! I'll bump up the non-dating NB thread just for you!

Me: BW, divorced, now fabulous and happy!

Married: 11 years, no kids

Character is destiny

Posts: 3537 | Registered: Dec 2011
♀ 19946
Member # 19946
Default  Posted: 8:22 PM, March 5th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think it's possible to have male platonic friends and lesbian platonic friends. Not everyone is interested in us sexually. If they are, communication is important. If they cannot keep sexual feelings out of it, you will have to greatly reduce contact. Communication and honesty and kindness is key.

There is no need to freak if you know how to set your boundaries. If you don't know how to set boundaries than now is the time to learn.

If you are codependent and tend to want to take care of others instead of yourself then get that under control too. It is not your job to take care of someone else's sexual feelings.

These are important lessons and if you can improve your communication skills together than he is indeed a real friend.

BS, now age 54, d-day 6-2-08, divorced after 17 years M and 20 together. In some ways I have not 'gotten over it'. But I am resilient and have created a good life where I am mostly happy.

Posts: 5942 | Registered: Jun 2008 | From: Rural California
♀ 22870
Member # 22870
Default  Posted: 9:57 AM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have a male platonic friend - we've been friends for about 20 years (when we were both married). We're both now divorced, so we spend a lot of time together.

It's harder for those around us, because they don't understand how we can spend so much time together, and not be anything more.

If I were you, I would just say that you only want friendship. The problem is his, not yours.

You can stuff your sorries in a sack, mister. -George Costanza
There is a special place in hell for women who don't help other women. - Madeleine Albright

Posts: 7862 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: Western PA
♀ 39193
Member # 39193
Default  Posted: 12:48 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thank for you support and advice. I think I will try to find a way to make a casual mention of how glad I am to be single, not dating etc and that I have no interest in dating anytime soon. I'm also going to be very careful with hugs etc and make sure that I'm not sending any mixed signals.

As williesmom said, this is really his issue... When we talked about this before we were on the same page. Nothing about how I feel has changed. If it has changed for him, he will have to figure out how to deal with or I guess end the friendship if he can't... I really, really hope it doesn't come to that!

We are going to see each other a lot over the next few days. We have dance stuff on both Friday and Saturday, and then Sunday afternoon we are going to see the new "300" movie.

Hope it all goes well and we can remain the comfortable good friends that we have been.

Thanks again!

Me: Enjoying life
Him: Someone else's problem

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. ~ Anais Nin

Posts: 1042 | Registered: May 2013 | From: Oregon
♂ 12908
Member # 12908
Default  Posted: 1:48 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

What exactly is he doing that you feel is crossing the line? I may be able to provide a good guess as what he is up to. FWIIW, I think guys are capable of being friends with proper boundaries.

BH - no longer 49
3 DD's - (29, 25 and 18)
Divorced on 8/6/09

Posts: 9200 | Registered: Dec 2006 | From: Eastern Washington
♀ 39193
Member # 39193
Default  Posted: 3:50 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


Just little things... being the one to initiate hugs, and wanting to hug longer/tighter. His hands have wandered ....uh... south a bit when hugging. Not all the way, but enough to make me uncomfortable.

Also when we go places, people naturally assume we are a couple. Before both of us would always quickly say "Oh no, we are just friends." Lately I find I am the only doing this, while he either remains silent or makes a little comment that implies we ARE a couple.

The thing that really concerned me was last weekend. At our salsa group they handed out free t-shirts to the women. Very cute, hot pink and it says "salsaholic" along with the name of the group. I was thrilled to get one. After we left I held it up and was disappointed to see that it is really small. It says "large" but I'm pretty well endowed and there is no way this shirt would fit me without being obscenely tight.

We picked up some food and were at my house eating and talking. He started bugging me to try on the pink shirt. I told him no, there is no way it will fit. Sure it will, just try it on, he said. I said NO, it will not fit me. He keep pushing and would not drop it. It made me very uncomfortable. Why was he pushing so hard? Was he trying to help because he knew I really liked the shirt and was disappointed it was too small? Or did he just want to see me in with my big boobs??

Yuck. Just rethinking the situation bothers me. Fortunately my little dog saved me by throwing a fit to go out, so I was able to change the subject, and soon after that my friend left.

I'm looking forward to a male perspective on this, though I have a feeling I know what you're going to say.

Me: Enjoying life
Him: Someone else's problem

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. ~ Anais Nin

Posts: 1042 | Registered: May 2013 | From: Oregon
♀ 32616
Member # 32616
Default  Posted: 4:19 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Don’t sweat this too much, the arrangement was bound to end eventually. Even if you aren’t interested in each other, at some point one or both of you will start dating, and you would have to scale back to respect the pursuit of a romantic relationship. If you don't want it to end awkwardly, and he is ready to start dating, maybe you can help him find candidates. That should send the message that you aren't one of them

“Happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue.” ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning

Posts: 3571 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: The Valley of the Sun
♂ 32368
Member # 32368
Default  Posted: 4:23 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

'm looking forward to a male perspective on this

Ok, well unlike some other posts, I can tell you a man can have a platonic relationship with a woman. I have had many for many years. This however sounds like a relationship that not unlike his hands, is going South. You know what's going on. If he isn't perceptive enough to figure out that you are not interested in parading your ample bosom in front of him, then he probably isn't a candidate for friend of the year. He needs a friend to friend wake up call...tell him what you are thinking and if he has a problem with that, you might want to dosey doe in the other direction.

I've wiped the shit off. It can be wiped off you know.

Posts: 586 | Registered: Jun 2011
♂ 39885
Member # 39885
Default  Posted: 6:25 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Unfortunately most menz aren't evolved enough to pick up on subtlety. I, personally, would not mind one bit if a female friend told me in plain English that they valued my friendship but all it would ever be is a friendship. In fact that has happened to me many years ago. I was hurt a bit (I was a bit smitten) but I got over it. If that means you lose a friend because he can't handle it then so be it IMHO.

Dudes have been taught by our dirt bag role models that persistence pays off. Most will walk right through the stop sign because it's "part of the dance".

Good luck Gypsy!

Divorced 7/11/14. New Beginning on the Gulf of Mexico. It's real nice.

Posts: 781 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: The beach.
♀ 39193
Member # 39193
Default  Posted: 7:03 PM, March 6th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks, guys. I will say something to him, subtlely if possible, directly if necessary.

You are all right. If he doesn't respect my boundaries and value my friendship for JUST that and not the possibility of more, then he is probably not a friend worth having.


Me: Enjoying life
Him: Someone else's problem

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. ~ Anais Nin

Posts: 1042 | Registered: May 2013 | From: Oregon
Topic Posts: 12

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