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Love Advice, Friend on Rebound, In Love with Friend, Relationship Problems

Love advice: for a guy who's in love with 'friend on rebound,' he has relationship problems and gets advice...

   Relationship Advice from Dr. TRuth

Dear Doctor TRuth,

Hello, recently I have developed strong feelings for an old friend and those feelings have been returned. We have gone out on a couple of dates and we have even kissed.

There are a couple of issues surrounding this relationship that I am having issues with. The first one is that she just got out of an abusive 2 year relationship. I realize that I may be a rebound, but for some reason I have this feeling that we are sharing more than that. I am there for her when she needs to talk and I give her advice when she needs it. Do you think that is the right thing to do?

Second, her best friend is my ex-girlfriend, but we haven't dated for about 4 years; I guess her friend has developed feelings for me again, but I am not returning those feelings. I just want to be friends.

Should I talk to my ex-girlfriend about this issue (with the permission of the girl that I currently have feelings for of course) or should I leave it alone?

The girl that I have feelings for and I, have talked about this and she has come to the conclusion that it is just to much "drama" for her right now, and she just wants to be friends for now.

I told her that was fine, but I want to "keep the door open" once she has worked out her issues. She said ok and that she agrees because "you never know what is going to happen in the future."

Two questions on this subject. The first is the comment - "you never know what is going to happen in the future"; should I take that for face value or should I take that as "it's not going to happen, but I don't want to hurt your feelings?"

Second if I do take that for face value, how do I keep our relationship from getting to the point where we are too good of friends, that would keep us from pursuing a more intimate relationship.

I know that this sounds discombobulated, but if you could give any advice on this I would really appreciate it..

Thank you

Dear "Discombobulated"

The girl you like is definitely not ready to be with anyone and she is telling you that very clearly. She needs down time to recover and get her head together so let her.
I also advise against "rescuing" her or playing counselor or therapist. That makes you co-dependent with her and rescuers usually get kicked in the head by the people they rescue eventually so get out of that role right now!!

While it feels good to be "there" for her and give her advice, when she heals, she will look at you as someone who knew her when she was "down" and that may be an unpleasant association for her.

As far as keeping the door open, it's possible. You certainly can call her occasionally to see how she is or even see a movie once in a while if she wants to, but anyone who has been through an abusive relationship is pretty damaged for a while.

Don't forget that her self-esteem has taken a really hard knock, and no one can give that back to her but herself. So back way off, give her space, and see what happens.

As far as the first girl goes, if it's over, it's over. I don't think you need to say anything but if she pursues this, just tell her you like her as a friend, but that's all. Don't mention the first girl because that has nothing whatever to do with her.

Above all, try to avoid this triangle. If you are really done with your first girlfriend, then she has to acknowledge it is over. Don't discuss this further with the one you like. If she asks, just tell her it is in the past.

You are a good guy. I can see you have genuine feelings for this woman but she just isn't ready for anything!

In the meantime, take care of yourself, and let her do the same.

Dr. TRuth

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