My heart goes out to you as I have just gone through this exact same experience.
While others have encouraged you to still reach out to her intermittently, which I think is fine, I do think you should keep yourself open to new experiences with other people. Though there is a chance this girl may come around, there is no guarantee that it will happen. You can certainly be a friend, but you can’t put your life/hopes on hold. If it’s meant to work out, it will but you can’t hold your breath waiting for it to happen.
It’s been my experience that these situations can lead to very murky waters. I myself have just wasted two years with a guy who clammed up and claimed he wasn’t ready for a relationship but that we could remain friends (which we were, closely so). He later dropped me a year later after he ran into an old classmate (with whom he promptly jumped into a relationship). At the start I was told the same things as you – “it’s fine to check in, be a friend etc, you never know…” but in the end it resulted in a lot of hurt feelings.
Understandably, things will not feel the same with other girls, but have faith that you will a strong connection like that again. I was gobsmacked when I felt things for a new person because I was convinced it would never happen again.
It’s noble that you want to demonstrate your patience and understanding for this girl, but you should proceed with caution.
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