Today we have two letters covering similar themes: what do you do when the person you’re seeing – or broke up with – is, well… kinda unhinged? To make it interesting, these letters cover both ends of the spectrum. To start, we have this letter from Miss ConFused:
As a nerdy female, I don’t consider myself too socially awkward, but there are times when I get very confused about how to handle particular social situations. This is one of those times. In short: how do you deal with crazy?
Here’s the story. About a year ago, I met the ex-boyfriend of a friend at a sci-fi con. I was instantly attracted to him, but he did not seem into me (he flirted with my friend in front of me, for example.) I did the smart thing, and moved on to casually dating other people. Imagine my surprise, when after hanging out four or five times over the span of a month, the guy (we’ll call him Will) suddenly asks me out.
I initially agreed to go out with him, as I was still attracted to him, but I was wary. He ran very hot and cold. I was also seeing someone else, with whom the relationship was getting more serious. After about two months of casual dating (we had discussed exclusivity, and I said no) I sat Will down and told him I couldn’t date him. We agreed to be friends. A month later, I and the other guy became serious. Will and I continued to hang out. He once asked if I had a boyfriend, and I said yes, and that was as far as we discussed it. Everything seemed normal.
Several months ago, Will started canceling our plans. He’d text me to hang out, I’d say yes, and on the day he’d suddenly have other plans. This happened about once a month; I didn’t take it personally, as I know how busy he is. The last time he texted me (and then canceled again) was 3 weeks ago. This week, I decided to call him, the first time I’ve initiated contact in 6 months.
A woman answered. When she figured out who I was, she went into full-tilt, fast-talking Valleygirl about how I broke his heart, and how she was SO lucky because he was sexy and amazing and sweet and an awesome f*ck. She ended by saying I should never call him again, and hung up.
I was… stunned, to say the least. I sent Will an email asking if everything was okay, and that if he didn’t want to be friends, I just wanted to hear it from him. I got no response, and I did not try contacting him again.
Today, our mutual friend suggested we stop by his work, as we were already there shopping. (He works at a mall.) He greeted her with a hug, and me with a very aggressive handshake. I pulled him aside and asked if we could talk; he agreed to meet up in the evening.
Instead, he sent an email. He accused me of cheating on him, leading him on, standing him up, and that my email and stopping by to see him had been “rude and uncalled for.” He told me he was ecstatic with his current gf and child (where did the child come from?!) and that if I ever contacted him again, he would file a restraining order!!
Dr. NL, there are too many words to describe what I feel right now. Flabbergasted, angry, betrayed, depressed. I thought he was my friend. I never got ANY indication from him that we were not. I never did any of those things he accused me of! We weren’t exclusive, and we barely dated for 2 months, nearly a year ago! Why did he text me to hang out? Why didn’t he just send a simple response when I first emailed him? Why all of this drama and insanity?
The worst of it is, I will have to see him in a month, as we are attending the same sci-fi con. I have been looking forward to this Con all year, but I’m terrified he’ll see me being there as harassment and go through with his threat!
Can you make any sense out of this situation? Should I still go to the Con? (My $100 ticket being non-refundable.) How do I avoid this insanity in the future?