I have a… situation, which I would appreciate your advice on.
A little more than a month ago, I went on a trip with a good friend (Let’s call her Alice) who I had an interest in romantically. Asked her out on the trip, she said no, we moved on gracefully. So far, so good, and I’ve maintained a close contact with her as friends. (Speaking of, I vastly appreciated your book’s advice how to handle this situation, as I’m sure prior I would have made things awkward). However, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, there are… complications.
First: her (stated, at least) reasons for rejecting me: One, that I had just gotten out of a long-term relationship; two, that she was still hung up on her ex (her first and only serious relationship thus far); three, that she’s going to be moving for work soon. Just in general, she appeared to be careful to leave the door open for “not now, maybe later”, although obviously I’m aware this might be wishful thinking on my part.
Second: While on this trip, I got relatively close to a girl we met. Nothing intimate, just had a great time with her and clicked pretty well. What was interesting is that Alice got noticeably jealous whenever I spent time with this girl, and spent a fair amount of energy trying to “warn me off” of her and/or convince me that she was just toying with me. In general, Alice acted relatively possessive/protective of me over the course of the trip, more than I would expect from a typical friend.
Third: While on this trip, Alice and I had several intimate discussions of the sort I’m not generally acquainted with having outside of relationships (sex, porn, eventual desire for children, detailed discussions of close friends’ relationships and their pitfalls, etc). Her best friend (also my very good friend, who was aware of and encouraged my interest) was surprised when I later told her what we’d talked about; these conversations were apparently well outside Alice’s norm.
All of this is background to the following: Prior to the end of the trip, Alice strongly suggested I take an extended break from dating to work on myself. The period suggested on the break was, conveniently, about long enough for all her time-sensitive personal issues to work themselves out… and more than long enough to eliminate any residual rebound angst. I agreed to it, but now I’m second-guessing myself. I’m not sure I like the idea of submitting myself to a “vetting period”, which I kinda feel like this is. Taking myself out of circulation for another chunk of time feels counter-productive, especially when one of the things I need to work on is how easily I get attached. And I’m worried about developing oneitis even more than I fear I already have.
So, all this being said: Is taking a break a good idea? Am I completely bonkers for interpreting her actions the way I have? And, if I’m right… is this really a sound foundation to build a relationship on, when I’m basically being asked to “prove myself” for this extended time period?
Off The Market