Home Forums Relationships General Relationships Confused by Guy Friend I've known for 8 years

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  • Confused Female
    Post count: 0
    #5363 |

    I've known this guy for 8 years since we were both 18 years old. Relationship wise, not sure how to categorize it; we never labeled it but we treated the other as we treated our mutual friends. We both ended up going to different colleges for undergrad and with our different career paths, we don't talk/correspond often. Our convos would always begin off pleasantly, and a majority of that time it would end pleasantly however, other times we would end up arguing about the other's stupidity. Our arguments varied in degree and cause: in the first 2 – 3 years, he would make vulgar comments about my appearance that would piss me off, with me questioning his logic and him apologizing for being an ass (he's known as a clown in his circle of friends by his crass comments but I never did like it); by the 4-6th year, whenever we spoke we would talk about his relationships and I would offer advice, we didn't argue as much as we did earlier, but when we did argue it was bad, and over something stupid he would say (it wasn't vulgar, because his vulgarity seemed to end by the time he hit 21/22 yrs of age; usually it was an insensitive remark); this as a result caused me to question the reason we were still friends, and I would offer him the opportunity to end our friendship and he would either ignore my offer OR give me space in which he would eventually contact me in a few months and act as though the fight never occurred; from 7 years to now he's been acting weird in the sense that he's being really nice.

    He travels a lot for business (by that I mean, he's pretty much in a different country every couple of weeks) so we don't exactly correspond often, so a few months ago I got a new hair cut and I was so excited to show my friends I sent a mass email out. At the time he and I were chatting (for the first time in months) and he said I looked gorgeous and that my hair really looks nice; well I was shocked! He never complimented me before (I mean, N E V E R complimented me, never). Then he started asking me what I'm doing with my life now (which was the second weirdest thing about that convo since we typically don't talk about me), at one pt he had to leave but promised to come back to continue our convo (something he had never done before) and HE DID come back lol. That was the beginning of a new weirdness. A few wks later it was his birthday, so I sent him an email w/a well thought out msg. He replied the next day, practically gushing over how nice my email was and said when he visits my city again, maybe we can meet up. Well soon after a very close relative passed away, so I let him know, but unlike my other friends he didn't say anything. Which was weird, but I guess to be expected w/him (anything related to emotions/feelings he seems to be distant… all he did was send a little heart icon from gmail. I guess, its his way of sympathizing w/e). Little over a month later he contacted me asking a very mundane question (e.g. Did you take blahblah test? How was it? Have any tips?) I answered the query and asked him how he was doing. He told me about his plans, said he wanted to do another degree and named his top three universities and asked where I wanted to do my degree at (since I told him a few months ago about this degree I really wanted to pursue), I told him about my revised plans and how the loss of this relative really put everything into perspective for me, so I asked him again how are you (since he didn't answer before) and I asked him how his mom was doing.

    He started expressing how concerned he was about losing a relative of his and about how he would cope and that he was glad to hear my perspective and then, he said his mom was well and that he does not want to discuss her business. Then we got into an argument; I said I didn't ask for her business I asked how she was doing, a simple “okay” would've sufficed; he said I was rude and began making a pt that I should've just left it alone, we argued for sometime before I just gave up.

    Then exactly a week after our argument he emails me and says he's in the city with his MOM and wants to know what I'm doing; I try to be nice and act like him for a change, like nothing happened, and I told him my plans. He then explicitly asked me to meet him and his mom for coffee. I politely declined because I had already made plans for that day (and I couldn't cancel them on such short notice); a few hours later he texted me asking to recommend a place to eat at. So I texted him back a few options, to which he didn't respond to. Around 11pm that night, he emailed me the same email he had sent that morning saying he's in the city and he wants to know my plans. I figured that email was sent by accident so I responded by asking if he tried any of the places I offered and I asked if he would still be in the city. He thanked me for the options but said he just went to random deli, but blatantly ignored my question about whether he'd still be in the city. This was about a week ago, and ever since then, he won't talk to me. No emails, no chat (even though he is on and changes his away msg every now and then), I haven't even dared to txt him or call him, he probably will ignore those as well. And if he doesn't ignore, he probably will avoid giving me a straight answer. In the past, he never spoke about his family except in passing mention, e.g. “Oh I have to go, mom calling for dinner, ttyl”, and I know how sensitive he is about his mom. But what I don't understand is, why would he want me to meet the woman he so pointedly insisted was none of my business, exactly a week earlier? Why is he ignoring me? I don't know; honestly I'm confused.

    Sincerely,
    Confused female

  • Profile photo of MartinMartin
    Keymaster
    Post count: 250

    Thanks for the interesting background there, Confused Female.

    There’s probably a million and one things going on in his head.

    Without question though, the guy is growing up as far as communicating goes, from the historical recount you describe. Guys are certainly reclusive when it comes to expression of emotion, typically.

    I wonder whether he was actually ‘fishing’ around in seeing if you had any emotional interest in him, given he wanted to introduce you to someone that is exceptionally close to him – his mother. That’s one possible signal. And it might explain why he’s distant now, thinking that you aren’t interested in a relationship of sorts.

    Have you ever considered a relationship with this guy?

  • Confused Female
    Post count: 0

    I was interested in him years ago. I honestly can say, I'm not sure now though. This is the first time in a long time we are both single. When he asked me what universities I wanted to do my next degree at, I told him I wouldn't pursue another degree, he then asked me why, and in my explanation I told him I wanted to get married. I come from a slightly traditional Indian family where marriage usually takes place soon after one completes their education (he also comes from a slightly traditional Indian family). So he knows I want to get married and he knows I'm looking for a serious commitment.

    He's a genuinely nice person, but if I ask him about his family, he just starts a fight. And it's not like he'll curse me or anything like that (he's never cursed me, like I said when he was a teenager he'd talk about the assets of a woman, like “oh your boobs look nice today”), what he will do is question my logic and use my own words as evidence against me as his defense; which drives me insane!

    I've known him for 8 years and all I know about his family life is that he had a really bad childhood; his father was an alcoholic and from what little I can piece together, his father wasn't exactly nice to him and his mom. At some point, his parents separated, and he stayed with his mom, but he doesn't talk much about that aspect of his life with me. He won't even talk about his current family life with me. I do know he's never had liquor.

    I like talking with him; I feel so comfortable, I know he feels comfortable but anything related in the slightest bit to his family he just…freezes up. I want to continue, at the very least, to be his friend. And while his behavior has improved since we met when we were 18, I just don't know what to do from here on out. Because as you read, he's not talking with me. I sent him an email inquiring his opinion on something, and I just got it back today saying that it looks nice. That was it! He didn't say hi, he didn't say what's up? He didn't say anything in the email except “it looks nice”. And all my attempts prior to that email at contacting him was met with no response.

    I don't know what to do.

    Confused Female

  • Profile photo of MartinMartin
    Keymaster
    Post count: 250

    Well, if you currently don't have any interest in him as a boyfriend, let him carry on the way he's going now. No skin off your nose so you're free to go your own way.

    If you do have an interest in him that you'd like to pursue, there's probably a few questions and situations that need covering off first.

    • You need to discover that he's thinking the same thing. That's going to be a little challenging to do but it needs to be done. The best way is to be straight up and ask him. Such as ‘Hey, you know when you sent me that email? I got the impression you might have been interested in something more and if that's true, I'm kinda open to it to. If not, that's cool too.'
    • Secondly and best before anything does start if that's what he's thinking, you guys need to clear the air on his mother and conversation around his family.
    • Thirdly, lay some ground rules when it comes to talking between you. Nothing to hide, nothing to fear. Trust is definitely a key to a strong and enduring relationship.

    Make sense so far?

  • Confused Female
    Post count: 0

    It does make sense. Him and I definitely have to talk. I've invited him to an event that takes place at the end of next month, hopefully, he can make it. At least then he can't avoid me. I know, either way, I don't want to leave him.

  • Confused Female
    Post count: 0

    Interesting development. I contacted him and asked him to join me for two events in my city (I live on the east coast of the US) later next month. He said he would love to but needed specific dates to block off work vacation as he might be traveling. I told him the dates and he said he's not sure, he's working in Germany right now, but said if he can fly back before then he will layover. Hopefully, he'll come and we can talk. Thanks for your help! I really appreciate it! :)

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