Dear Swoonie B,
In August 2018, my freshman roommate convinced me to download Tinder with her to get over her ex. I didn't have any expectations going in but one thing led to another and I had this guy over. We had been chatting for a couple of days and when he came over, we watched a few shows and spent a few hours talking and getting to know each other. We have a lot in common and share similar views. He didn't make a move, it was a very innocent encounter. We continued Snapchatting and hanging out, then had a continuous "hookup" relationship. Long story short and a bit TMI, but he was a few firsts for me.. We found a cycle of falling out of touch, then he'd get in contact with me, we'd hang out for a while, then fall out of touch again. The getting back in touch usually consisted of him saying that he still thought about me and wondered why things happened the way they did. Prior to this, he had told me that he didn't want a relationship and I told him I didn't either. Now that I look back, I lied to him, but I was too proud to admit it and wanted to have a "free" freshman year. Fast forward to Summer 2019, he got in contact with me in July after we hadn't spoken to/seen each other since April. He was checking in and making sure I was doing alright (another common reason for him being in touch). An interesting turn in events happened back in April 2019 when I ran into my almost freshman year roommate and we became very close (future roommates in Fall 2020). Turns out, she's buddies with his then-hall mates and now roommates. She's been over to their apartment multiple times and at the beginning of the Fall 2019 semester, he'd ask about me. Toward the end of that semester, he was really drunk and was asking "what's the deal with her?" He didn't go into detail but he was still confused by everything that's happened. We've been at two different group gatherings in January and February 2020 and didn't speak to each other. It's a bit awkward. I've had feelings for him for the last year, but don't know how I'd ever let him know since we run in the same circle. He's a bit stubborn (as am I) and can be hard to approach. I feel like I should move on, but there's a big part of me that wonders if there's a reason for still being in each other's lives after having this history. I wanted to be the bigger person at the next gathering, but then COVID-19 happened and we won't see each other until August 2020. This whole situation is just confusing...
Wow. A rollercoaster ride it has been for you two since August 2018, huh? I can understand why it's so hard to let go — because moving on without closure is a very difficult thing to do.
About a month ago, a reader wrote in asking for advice on a similar situation — let's call her Daniela. She had been in an on-again, off-again relationship for about five years with the guy who took her virginity and she was in love with him. The problem was, she didn't know if he felt the same. While there are obvious parallels between both of your dilemmas, the clearest similarity is this:
Both of you chose not to share your feelings with the guys you're interested in. Why? Only you can really answer that. But I have a hunch that it's because you're too afraid of the answer he'll give you once you let it out in the open.
While I cannot tell you what to do, I will give you the same advice I gave Daniela:
The only way to get what you want is to ask for it.
Because to quote a classic film, "A Cinderella Story," waiting for him to come to you is like "waiting for rain in this drought, useless and disappointing." Sure, you could wait for him to talk to you, but clearly that hasn't happened in the last couple years and let's say he never does... what then? You'll never have the closure you need to fully move on — or, better yet, be in a relationship if that's what he wants too!
Regardless of the outcome of the conversation, I'm a firm believer in always voicing how you feel if for no other reason than to get it off your chest. In the perfect version of this love story, you tell him how you feel and he says he feels the same. In the not-so-ideal version, you do so and he says he just wants to be friends.
Either way, you can only gain something from sharing your feelings. In the first scenario, you gain a relationship with each other and in the second, you gain peace of mind, clarity, and the motivation to move on. The ending to either of these scenarios sounds much better to me than where you are now. So go ahead and tell him how you feel — whether that's while you're in quarantine (just make sure you're not only feeling this way because of the quarantine loneliness) or after.
In the meantime, show yourself some self-love:
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