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TherapistMaryAnn, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5770
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
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A few months ago I met someone with whom I entered into a physical

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A few months ago I met someone with whom I entered into a physical relationship fairly quickly. I'd say that it was definitely more than just physical as I felt at ease with this man right away and we have a lot of the same interests and spent quality time together.
Inevitably however he told me one night - in a panicked state - that he could not enter into a relationship with me but didn't give me a satisfactory reason for this.
Though this was very painful for me I accepted it eventually.
A few weeks passed and he contacted me again saying that we should meet up and talk. I agreed and we met up but we never really talked about the real issue.
Instead though we developed a close and really comfortable more or less platonic friendship (there were a few non-sexual sleep overs), saw each other 2-3 times a week and without fail always had a lovely time with each other.
Eventually though, I had to admit to myself that there were still things we needed to talk about mostly because I could feel myself becoming more and more emotionally invested in this person and that our friendship was headed in a non-platonic direction.
It turned out that he is not quite over a break-up with a previous girlfriend, thinks he is still in love with her and thinks that - if she is willing - he might want to be in a relationship with her again.
He admitted that he had feelings for me as well and that he was also aware that we were more than platonic friends. He said he wasn't sure if he wanted things to go that way though but that he definitely wanted me to remain a part of his life whatever happens.
He seemed puzzled when I told him that I couldn't remain a part of his life if he ended up getting back together with this other woman.
My reason for this is that I think I might be in love with him and being his friend while he is with someone else would just be too painful for me.
Now I don't know if I should tell him how I really feel about him. I don't want to give ultimatums or put pressure on him but I also have to protect myself.
I feel like breaking off all contact would be the best move before this becomes any more "tragic" but at the same time I really don't want to lose him.
I am willing to let him work everything out and figure out how he really feels about me because I do want to be with him eventually but I just don't know if it's worth it and if I should just let it go.
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

It sounds like this person's feelings for his ex is holding him back from enjoying a relationship with you. He seems to be interested in being with you, but cannot let go of his ex girlfriend. As long as he holds on to her, he will not be able to move on with his life.

You are right, you need to think of yourself first in this situation. The guy you are with is putting his feelings for his ex first at this point and not considering the position it is putting you in. Unless he is willing to let the past relationship go, a relationship with you is never going to be possible.

It is ok to tell him that you want more out of a relationship than he can provide right now and that you need to end all contact because of that. It is also ok to tell him that you are looking for a solid relationship with someone who wants to be with and only you. You can be gentle yet firm with him when you do say this to him. He needs to know that you are serious about how you feel and that he cannot go between you and the hope that his ex might want to be with him. Telling him you love him is ok as well, though that does leave you vulnerable. But just the fact that he knows might make him rethink trying to be with his ex again.

However, this is painful for you which is understandable. This relationship sounds like it would work out well if he could let go of his past. Hopefully, once you move on it will give him a chance to focus on his past relationship with his ex and determine if there really is a possibility they might get back together (which sounds unlikely). He needs to decide what he really wants as well, holding onto a past relationship that may never work out or a real relationship with you that has a great chance to work out.

I hope this has helped you,
TherapistMaryAnn and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
I hope my answer was helpful to you. If you have any more questions, please let me know.


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