Confess your love or respect your friend's new relationship?
After reading both articles concerning two different love triangles, I felt compelled to write this. I'm sort of in one at the moment. Sort of, because I'm the crusher, secretly of course. What's worse about it is that she's my friend, of nine years, we met back on another MMO and while our friendship has had a few ups and downs, we always came back to each other stronger. We've both seen the other go through several relationships and bounce back as well.
When we first met, there were some sparks, and we did end up dating for a few months before she friend-zoned our relationship. It was silly, puppy love I'll admit, we enjoyed each others company and had similar interests. But the relationship at the time never went beyond talking in game or through IMs, and since I lived on the west coast, and she well, didn't, we never made plans to visit. After that break-up, we took a break for a few months from the game and each other, we came back and our friendship bloomed. Sometimes I felt that old feeling, but it was quickly and easily dismissed. And a mentioned, there were several relationships between then and now for the both of us, and many let-downs, but we always pulled through with each others help.Drama Mama Robin: First of all, I think we need to address your low self-esteem. You have been there for this woman for nine years, helping each other through hard times. But now comparing yourself to New Guy, you think you wouldn't be enough for her? Is it common to think so little of yourself? Or are you belittling yourself to get through this particular situation?
Well, after enough sour relationships, I began to reevaluate what I was looking for in a relationship. That's when I realized that she'd always been there for me, and that we never had an argument unless a third-party basically made us, and when that happened we came back together after kicking that person to the curb and were fast friends again. I saw that I could always depend on her and that she had never used our friendship for any sort of gain, she always appreciated my input and opinions and watched out for me when things went awry, as I did for her. I felt like she had always been that person I had been looking for amongst all the bad relationships. I couldn't think of any way to ever bring it up, my mind and feelings were all over the place at the time. I knew I had to collect myself and test the waters, see if there might be something there on her end too.
But before I got to even do that, her new relationship was announced in guild, with a fellow guildie, who is a great guy by all accounts, this one looks really promising, and I'm truly happy for her. So I figured the best thing I can do for her, is to just quell these feelings and be the friend I've always been. To be fair, I don't think she'd even consider a relationship with me again, after how long we've been friends and seeing all the failed relationships I had been in fall out from under me. I suppose I'm just looking for confirmation that I'm on the right path here, that I should keep these feelings to myself since I don't want to start any drama of any sort within our social circle. Everyone really likes the guy, and I know compared to him, I wouldn't be enough for her, but that's just a personal complaint to myself. He's a great guy and I like him too, and I don't even want to entertain the idea of any "future breakup" because of my own feelings.
As cliched as this is, I guess I just need the strength to know that what I'm doing is right. That these feelings won't lead anywhere, that I need to just get over it, and look elsewhere. It pains me to write this, but it is the correct path, right?
The Warlock with a Reflected DoT
If you feel like this in general, the Mayo Clinic has some suggestions for you. I find that exploring things I think I may be good at and pampering myself really help me when I've got low self-esteem. If you are just rationalizing your decision to not say anything by telling yourself you're not worthy -- ugh. Leave that reason off the table.
Usually, I can't stand what I call Soap Opera Misunderstandings. Oh, if Betty had only told Archie how much she loved him, then Veronica wouldn't be carrying his baby. The lack of communication that leads to months of drama has always irked me, but that's what daytime dramas are for. I don't think that helps your situation, however. And you don't want to end up with a messy rivalry.
We are looking to avoid drama, and therefore, I think not communicating your feelings is appropriate. If you tell your friend how you feel, you are only asking for drama -- and probably a huge rift in your friendship. Be there for her like you always have been. If she and Great Guy break up, offer her consolation. Do not offer yourself as Option B. Give her time to recover, and then let her know about your feelings ... if they are still romantic.
Yes, Warlock, you do want to look elsewhere. Start by being happy with and by yourself, then move on to noticing others in your social groups. Find new social groups, if your current ones have no possibilities. Or just relax and let it happen.
Spoiler: I'm rather fond of Lisa's response.
Drama Mama Lisa: I'm not certain, WWaRD, that you're not still struggling with the whole broken notion that considers girls and relationships to be commodities, things that must be obtained, things to be weighed and measured before a final selection and purchase is made. You've got a great friend here, and you know it -- so quit trying to total up her points and slap her with a AAA Girlfriend Certificate of Qualification just because she's female. All those things you say make her so great? Those are attributes of friends. Sure, a healthy romantic relationship should share those qualities, too, but they most assuredly aren't markers of an automatic romance.
So don't force a fit where none exists. You've already been down this road with her, and it didn't work out. There's no reason for you to try to force a fit just because you need to fill the girl quota in your life. You don't. There's no such thing. Being in a relationship is not the default state of life. Stop trying to stuff your life with a romance with someone who's not only already in another relationship but who's already proven not to click with you as a romantic partner -- and is a great friend, on top of all that.
As Robin says, it's time to focus on being happy with yourself. Quit shopping for a girl. As you yourself admit, it doesn't appear that you're having much success with the way you're approaching relationships at this point in your life. Change it up. Love will happen when you meet the right person in the right place at the right time. This isn't it -- so let go of that idea, and make room for new things to come along, romantic or otherwise. You'll be OK. You've always got yourself.
Dodge the drama and become that player everyone wants in their group with a little help and insight from the Drama Mamas. Play nice ... and when in doubt, ask the Drama Mamas at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read Robin's section of this post on how to get your letter answered and please remember that we cannot answer privately.