Q: Meredith, I need your advice. During my senior year of high school (2006), I dated this guy (A) for two to three months. I ended up leaving him for my ex-boyfriend (J). A and I remained really good friends. He tried to get back with me a few months later and then a year later, but I didn't feel anything for him anymore.
One year later, J and I had a son and moved in together. Everything was fine for a while ... but then things started to go bad and I always turned to A, who was there for me. I slowly started falling for him. We ended up being romantically involved with each other for a few years. Then, two years ago, we ended things and he started dating someone else, but we still remained great friends. We hung out together and talked for hours and everything was pretty good. We haven't slept together in two years since he's been with his girlfriend. Recently he started distancing himself from me he doesn't even want my friendship anymore (at least that's how it seems). If he does contact me, it happens after 9 p.m. and we all know what that means.
I still have very strong feelings for him, although I'm sure his went away. I'm confused about why has he become so distant? Why did he stick around for so long? What should I do? I think I'm in love with him. Your advice would be appreciated. Thank you!
– He's pulling away, Illinois
A: Why is he distancing himself? The answer seems obvious to me. After many years of confusion, he has decided to commit to his girlfriend. It's possible that she asked him to stop talking to you. Or maybe he realized on his own that your friendship is too confusing to continue. Either way, he's creating some boundaries. And I think that's awesome -- for both of you.
You're in love with a guy who is unavailable. That wasn't such a big deal when you guys were in your teens and early 20s, but your love life isn't so fluid anymore. He's been with his girlfriend for two years. It's become clear that it's inappropriate for him to maintain a close relationship with an ex who clearly wants more.
He's doing the right thing (although some communication would have been nice, and he shouldn't be calling you after 9). And without him in your way, you can look for guys who are actually single.
Call on your platonic friends for support and let A go. Respect his boundaries and set some of your own. You don't want to be pining for someone else's boyfriend.
Readers? Why did A stick around for so long if he doesn't want to be with her? Should she confront him about his behavior? Will he come back around? Discuss.
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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.