A Friday treat: Some advice from young people in Boston.
Q: I have been off and on dating a girl for the past year and a half. We are basically best friends and have amazing communication. We have talked hypothetically about being more serious, and even marriage. She has admitted to me that I am the first guy she has pictured marrying and being a father to her 3-year-old child. I am everything right to her.
However, as I said, we have been off and on for the past year and a half. She breaks things off and comes back to me. Most recently, when we officially tried being together, it lasted about 3 weeks. She admitted to me that it just isn't there for her. She still wants to be friends and still admits I am everything right, however it's just not there even though she really wants it to be.
My question is, do I still be a friend to her? Or do I need to move past her and let her completely go? I still have a lot of feelings for her, and I'm still very attracted to her. Why do I still hold on to her when I have so many other options with other girls?
– Hopelessly Holding On, Salt Lake City
A: You can't be her friend right now, HHO. As soon as she said that "it just wasn't there for her," it was over. She tried being with you many times and managed to walk away from all of your qualities. You need to cut her off so that you can accept your reality. Consider this a real breakup. Treat it like one.
As for why you want her so much when you have so many other options ... well, you fell in love with her. It's just that simple. It's also possible that you became a bit obsessed with winning her affection. The courting process can be very, very addictive. After a few false starts, this was about getting it right as much as it was about love.
Cut her off. Get some clarity. Explain to her that you need space to figure this out. Crawl under the covers and be sad about this. You need to mourn so that you can start getting excited about your other options.
Readers? Can you help him start the process? Should he continue to be her friend? Does motherhood play a role in her decision? What happened here? Untangle this for him.
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Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.