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Close friendship with sexual tension --> hesitancy to decide

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Old 25th March 2013, 12:08 AM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 30
Close friendship with sexual tension --> hesitancy to decide

Hi everyone, I've posted a bit about a recent situation in another thread, but it seems this subject is now better suited for here.

Basically, I've been close friends with a guy for almost two years, the last year of which has seen him hit on me (and I initially rejected him)...after we moved past that incident, we got to be close friends. But the boundary has been blurry, and got blurrier in the last couple months. However, he hooked up with a past on+off again fling a couple months ago and kept it secret from me. (She has always wanted more with him, but he has said there is no higher feeling, it was just a physical connection) - I only found out because I found out he had lied about this.

For him to lie about that seems odd to someone who is simply a "close friend"...and recently, we were spending more time together, texting/conversations were more sexual in nature, and we'd cuddle or get physically cozy together. Yet both of us were super-cautious to never do more than occasionally kiss or cuddle. The rationale was that the closeness + tense dynamic was enjoyable, for him, he said he "didn't want to do anything to disrupt it or mess up our friendship. But I would wonder." I wondered too, but was equally guilty of not having the courage to simply bring it up, either. Foolish + silly, I know, but it's a scary thing.

Anyway, we had a bit of a falling out after the fling discovery (though he had ended things altogether shortly thereafter). We had a truce, a cooling-down period, but I lashed out a bit at him during that time as I was still upset. After a couple weeks of this, we did agree to patch things up and he said he was still my friend and wanted to be close, and apologized for going into a "gray zone" as he had never had those feelings before for a close female friend - and that I was his closest female friend, perhaps ever.

We agreed to slowly start spending more time together again and building a good rapport back over the last couple weeks, but this has largely been in the company of others and not one on one.

However, I feel this situation needs some resolution at some point, but am not eager to force a conversation in a way that is abrupt and likely to also force a fast result in something pretty unfortunate in either case. Here is where things are now:

We ended up going to an old friend of his' place tonight for a small bbq/gathering for the old friend's wife (whose baby is due any day now) - another couple who we both knew was there as well. Altogether we had a really fun + pleasant time (and talked more with others than among ourselves, which was good). He drove me back home and I said that I felt good about how we were with each other at this point, but that this couldn't last because the same issues will come up again. He said he felt positive too, but that this wasn't a good point at which to make any kind of decision - he wanted to continue to see where things go between us. I agreed, and said I felt good about now, but that I had anxiety thinking about the not-too-far future.

Text interchange after (in essence):

Me: "Thanks for inviting me along! And thanks for hearing me out. I feel mostly good about where things are now. I feel that in the slightly longer run, we should decide where things are going...we seem to have a recurring pattern. if I've learnt anything from all this, it's that we ought to get the courage by now to make a more concrete decision about stuff."

Him: "Back home. I'm glad you let me know. Let's keep working at sharing and being current with each other."

Me: "Don't worry. I really do like our dynamic! But I realize it's ultimately not sustainable as an ambiguous you agree with me on things though? I'm not keen on ultimatums, but I feel like it's not fair or realistic to you or me to just maintain that pattern."

Him: "No I agree. We can fall back. I think we can be something new and different."

Me: "New and different?"

Him: "Close without struggles. "

Me: "That is still vague - though it sounds better. I'm not ready to figure anything out now but just know that we can't be vague + close forever. Not good for you or me! But things are good for now, and I'm glad.

Him: "Thanks. Let's just try to relax about us but be aware of feelings for now. Good night."

Me: "Okay. Deal."


I realize this is simply delaying the decision, though perhaps such a decision shouldn't be forced or made from this perspective right now.

I feel like he is still hesitant. And I feel increasingly ready to determine a path forward.

Can guys truly continue to be close and stay platonic with female friends they've been attracted to previously? I really don't think so anymore. I get the fear + hesitation to some extent, but in another way - what the heck! He has often been the one pursuing me/reaching out over most of the last year. I'm just kinda confused as to the reluctance to figure it out one way or another at this point...

Any help, advice, input would be greatly appreciated. It feels like a delicate situation and I want to handle it as wisely as possible. Thank you.
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