A.sk Ross is where I, Marissa A. Ross, answer questions you ask me. Keep in mind I am simply a girl who’s been through a lot & has acquired some wisdom along the way. I own no certificates proclaiming my word is law, so please don’t take it as so. If anything, take my advice with a grain of salt and a pinch of optimism.
Dear Miss Ross,
I recently reunited with a formerly close female friend after a year of not hanging out (I moved away and back to our college town). We got along perfect and she was always open and flirty like you would want your opposite sex friend to be when single. After going down the friend path, I made it plain I had feelings beyond friends, and she made it plain she didn’t. Obviously the dynamic went pffft and it was convenient timing when I left to stop talking.
Cut to now, where that seems forgotten except the good feelings. I have been reluctant to dive back in, but she seems all for it. My friend said my best chance is to pull a 180 and think and do everything opposite from before, like George Costanza. That would be a fascinating experiment, but seems megahard and dishonest. Because honestly, I think the world of this person and need any tips you have to remove the former stench of friendship and failure? Would she still think the same or is a year enough for a female restart?
Alright, let me start by asking you & your friend this: WHEN HAS GEORGE COSTANZA EVER HAD A GOOD IDEA? LIKE, REALLY? I mean, from knowingly buying damaged gifts, to his baseball themed sheets, WHEN HAS GEORGE EVER HAD A GOOD IDEA?
The answer is never, especially when it comes to women. Look, I love Seinfeld as much as the next self-deprecating girl everyone thinks is Jewish who isn’t, but I don’t go around making life decisions based on the self-absorbed characters of my favorite TV show. That is just, a really bad idea. Not even just because George did it, but because in general, it’s just a really bad idea. Like you said, it’s totally dishonest and in all actuality, really pretty creepy if you think about it.
Alright, now to the heart of the matter. People who are the rejecters have a much easier time being able to let go and pick up where things left off because they didn’t have their feelings crushed to bits. Of course if you guys were close she wants to revive the relationship, but for it to ever work you’re going to have to do two things:
1. Totally let go
2. Not have any expectations
These are quite possibly the two hardest things any one human can do, but for you to have any sort of relationship with this girl, it is exactly what it is going to take. If you want to be her friend, you need to let go of your prior romantic sentiments. If you hope there could be a romantic future, then you need to let go of your expectations, be able to just be happy with the friendship and see where it goes.
Obviously, everyone has different ways of accomplishing these two things. Personally, I’m a huge fan of guided meditations on tape from Deepak Chopra or Wayne Dyer (I know, I’m mad self-helpy). I also usually take one day to be totally pensive and pissed off about whatever it is I’m trying to let go of. By acknowledging your feelings and letting yourself express them, you are freeing them from your mind and body, instead of keeping them all pent up and letting them fester resentment. Not having expectations is a lot easier when you have already let go, because you can live in the moment and just enjoy the time you are having with the people in your life.
There is a chance she could develop feelings for you now. When you let go and you don’t have any expectations, this opens up your entire personality and heart to endless possibilities. You can just have fun and enjoy life. People are attracted to that. But only if you’re yourself and not some freaking scenario from a TNT re-run of a 90’s sitcom. Be yourself. Always be yourself. And if she doesn’t like you for you, I promise you will find someone who does.
Dearest Marissa (this kind of makes us seem like long lost friends),
So there’s this boy I’ve been dating for like… since January. And he’s been screwed over by his other girlfriends, blah blah blah, you know how it goes, so he’s all weird about commitment. (I mean, it’s exclusive, we’re committed, everyone else knows it but I think saying it out loud would freak him out. It’s whatever, doesn’t really bother me.) But anyway, I’ve been feeling like it’s time to drop the L-bomb. Except, I’ve never said it first before. What if he doesn’t say it back? I feel like sometimes he’s about to, but he just doesn’t. Should I just suck it up and throw my feelings at him, or suck it up and wait until he’s ready to say it first?
Let’s recognize that this is your ego talking and it’s spitting a whole lot of BS at you. Who says it first and if it is said back are both inconsequential. I’m not trying to be unsympathetic to your fears, but that is all that they are. Fears. Why are you scared of your feelings? You shouldn’t be.
You need to give yourself the freedom to have your feelings and express them how you are comfortable expressing them. If you express your love by telling someone “I love you”, then you should say it. By not saying it, you’re just creating a pressure cooker with your emotions and putting unnecessary stress on your relationship. This kind of tension builds up and causes rifts in relationships because you’re suppressing yourself while putting unspoken expectations on your loved one. Two, totally not-chill, things to be doing to yourself or your significant other.
If he doesn’t say it back, that is okay. He may not be ready, or maybe he just expresses his feelings in a different way. At the end of the day, it is just a phrase. A phrase does not make or break a relationship, and you shouldn’t judge his love based upon it. You should judge his love based on how he treats you. If he treats you with respect and caring, a reciprocated “I love you” doesn’t matter because he shows you he loves you. Stop putting so much power in words, and put it in actions.
I personally said “I love you” first in my current relationship. Not only did I say it first, but it wasn’t said back to me for another three or four months. But that was okay, because the proof was in the pudding. He was devoted, respectful and caring. That was how he expressed his love for me and I never stopped saying I loved him for it. I’d rather have a man respect me and not return my “I love you”, than have some bro who treats me like crap tell me he “loves” me all the time.
And bottom line, if he gets weirded out with his “commitment issues” (ha, like we all haven’t been screwed over), then whatever, it wasn’t meant to be. I know if you read my dating advice, this will be like a broken record, but you really can’t say the wrong thing to the right person. If you love him, say it and be proud! Own it, girl! If he doesn’t jive on it, he can take a hike. It will probably be for the best.
Thanks to everyone who wrote in this week! For everyone who needs advice, email me at A.skRossNow@gmail.com.