My ‘friend’ sends me adult photos

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Mixed signals are a pain in the heart. “Carrie” and I have known each other for almost 20 years now, and up until a few years ago (since I got separated/divorced) we were good friends. Now that I’m available, she has been a lot more flirty with me; we exchange compliments and flirty texts often, and have even exchanged adult photos. In the rare occasion we do get to spend time together, we’re either having coffee together or cuddled up watching TV. 

She knows I’m into her, but when I bring it up she responds that it’s not a good idea to get together. There has been no kissing or other physical activity. Is this just friendly, flirty behavior? Or is she into me but just not sure if it could work? 

– Wondering in Worcester


Ask Carrie those last two questions. Let her answer. Then decide whether she should be such a big part of your life.

You’re divorced and ready to have flirty texts with someone who wants to take the next step. You desire more. Don’t let 20 years of friendship with Carrie stop you from moving on and meeting others.

As you seek answers from Carrie, spend time on a dating app. Remind yourself that so many people are really looking.

I do wonder whether Carrie will have any answers – or will be willing to give them. If she offers ambiguity, let her know you need time to reset the relationship so you can be friends again. It’s OK if she isn’t sure she wants to try more than this, but you have to move on. A good friend will understand. (Let’s find out if she’s that.)

If she wants to pursue a relationship but is scared, tell her you are too – because I assume you are. Relationships are scary! It’s not easy to be vulnerable, especially when it feels like there’s something big to lose. 

No matter what, next steps are risky. Tell her clarity is best as you figure it out. Be ready to take space.

– Meredith

Readers? Is Carrie a good friend? What if Carrie can’t answer these questions? Ever have a friend who flirts – and that’s it?

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