Tuesday, April 20, 2010

What's He Trying to Say?

Hi, Terry-

It had been a while since I had heard from or seen an ex-boyfriend. We saw each other at a party. He welcomed me and almost immediately said to me that he had broken up with his ex-girlfriend. He had known that I disliked the ex-girlfriend anyway.

He has also known (I think) for the past two years that I still love him (and always will) so, a few weeks went by, and we started texting one night over a simple question I had about mutual interest. It ended up being a 4-hour texting session in which out of the blue he writes, "I am lonely, I need someone new in my life."


Then kept wondering if there was a hidden message, so I played it cool and said he would find someone, he has a lot going for him, it would just be a matter of time. Then he said, "I have no luck in finding the right person to spend the rest of my life with."

Excuse me? What was I? We had been together for almost two years. I hoped I was the one then! Again, why tell me this? I am unsure of how he feels about me, and I do believe he has a good idea that I still care for him. Can you help me? What is he saying to me and why? I need to keep my head on straight to figure out what he is really saying or implying or... is he just being friends with me? I, myself, would never say these things to anyone unless it was my best friend, never mind on ex-boyfriend or man for that matter.

Thank you.


Hi, S.-

The first thing the guy does when he runs into you is tell you he's single. Then you embark on a texting marathon (you don't say who started it), in which he tells you he's lonely. You assume he knows you still love him. You wonder why he texts that he has no luck in relationships, especially after you had one together.

You might conclude that the guy is still interested in you based on this. You might also conclude he isn't. But I wouldn't draw any conclusions at all.

Way too much is being hinted at, assumed, and left unsaid. I really dislike text conversations, for one thing. What stopped either of you from saying at some point, "Let's continue this conversation on the phone. Call me." Or, better yet, "Let's continue this discussion over a cup of coffee?"

You wonder why he chose to bemoan his failure to meet the right person to you, especially when you suspect (but don't know for sure) that he's aware that you still love him.

You know, you could have asked. You could have said (again, preferably eye-to-eye), "Why are you telling me this?"

Then you'd wait for his answer. And if he told you, "I miss you, and I want us to be together again," you'd know where you stand with him. And if he told you, "Hey, listen, you've always been such a good friend," you'd know where you stand.

Knowing where you stand equals freedom. And when you don't understand what a man is driving at, you have every right to ask him to make it clear: "Why do you say that? I'm not sure I know what you mean."

You say you'll always love him, but I suspect that if he closed the door on you, you'd experience the relief of finally knowing. You could move on.

And if he does still have feelings for you, gently encourage him to express them. Life is too short for beating around the bush.