May 1, 2019 at 1:59 pm #292025
So there is a woman I’ve known for 2 years. We met at work, worked in the same department together, and seemed to get along really well. She’s one of those infectious characters, very pleasant company, always knows what to say and very sweet, funny, tad flirtatious at times. She is married, and just over 10 years older than myself (late 20s to her early 40s).
Our friendship never went outside of work until she added me on Facebook/Messenger. Even so it wasn’t until I left for another department after 6 months that we started talking regularly, virtually every day. First by work email, occasionally on Messenger. She left the company after a year but we continued to chat regularly, not daily but very often. She is very easy to talk to, easy to joke with and we have great banter, as well as the deeper talks, and have similar personalities. I’d say 75% of the conversations are initiated by her, which is incredibly flattering given how often we talk. Not even a topic necessarily, just a “how’s your day been?” We live in the same town, same neighbourhood actually, yet don’t often hang out in person unless with our old work group. During the time we worked together there was flirty banter, mutual but often on her part, which another colleague picked up on. She reigned it in after this and I doubt it was genuine, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t find her attractive in a way. The chats have gradually become daily since the Xmas just gone and we’ve got closer as friends as the two years have gone on.
I might say she’s a character I will never figure out, almost a contradiction to herself sometimes. There are times where she can be blunt, almost uninterested. Sometimes she will initiate but it’s me making the effort to talk…which is odd, and the other 25% of talks I start… I often don’t get the same sort of responses from her. It’s as if she only wants to talk when “she” wants to talk, which can be infuriating, and almost makes me hesitant to initiate when I fancy a chat.
I suffer from depression, introverted and slightly shy. I’m a classic overthinker and probably pick up and over-analyse a lot of nuances. Over time a lot of friends have come and gone in my life and a handful of short-lasting relationships, and my nature is very self-deprecating. These are some of the many things I’ve opened up to her about. Through music/bands as a passion, College/Uni get togethers, and workplaces, I have acquaintances/friends I see, but not many close friends. The idea of having someone so keen on talking to me is strange…when she’s got a husband, mutual friends from work, her family and other friends from her hometown and former places of work. I can’t imagine she talks to all of them so regularly. I do wonder if her affection and willingness to talk to me so much is genuine or out of pity, given my quiet life and her knowing how I feel a lot of the time. I would find it hard to believe someone could pretend to like you to such an extent and I have to remember how I am. Maybe to have a younger male friend makes her feel good in a way? I don’t know.
We’d recently caught up twice in person and, continued to chat more or less daily…up until two weeks ago. It was her anniversary no less (wished her a happy one) and since then I haven’t heard from her at all. I’ve tried to speak to her twice in that time. I was virtually ignored the first time, and tried to arrange a get together a few days ago to which she said she would get back to me. There have been previous occasions where she’s gone quiet on me, not many. One of the occasions we started talking again, another she said was illness after I’d asked. I would be lying if on those occasions I didn’t wonder if something was up or if I’d said/done something to offend her. I tell myself these occasions wouldn’t stand out if we didn’t chat so often, I also appreciate 2-3 weeks wouldn’t seem so long if we didn’t talk so much. If I had to say, based on what I know about her, I doubt there’s another man in her life that she talks to as much, except her husband. Maybe there’s a line she doesn’t want to cross? Or she’s got to a point where she decided she talks to me too much? Either way, to be cut off with no explanation and to be given the cold shoulder when I’ve tried to speak to her is pretty hurtful, especially when I’ve always had time for her many chats. As I’ve mentioned, I’m familiar with loosing contact with friends, but not so suddenly, and not with someone I seem to get along with so well.
What is the best way to go about it? I just want to ask why she’s gone quiet with me, maybe mention how often we usually chat. I’m positive I’ve not said anything to offend. Maybe I should wait a bit longer by which point I will be more certain she’s decided to stop talking to me.
CheersMay 1, 2019 at 3:46 pm #292055
One thing about Buddhism is that there is a principle of how we suffer because we are attached to something and inevitably everything is temporary.
I have had good friends ghost on me after years of friendship. I have and still have a hard time accepting such behavior. I also come to accept that people have different ideas of what friendship means and are in different places of their lives and I don’t know what is really going on with them.
What I have done was send them an email saying how I am upset that they have not responded to my texts/emails/voicemails and how that hurts me for I valued their friendship. I leave the door open to hoping that I would hear back from them. I also wish them good wishes in their life even I don’t hear back.
Then I work on moving on.
MarkMay 2, 2019 at 5:59 am #292119
This may be hard to hear, but are you ready?
As a woman in her forties who has a dear friend in his twenties, I can definitively say… She’s not thinking about you at all.
The forties are a trippy time when our parents suddenly need our care and when we may start to get our own health scares.
When the children are teenagers and our property taxes go up.
When our husbands get mid life crises and want to move to France.
You get the picture.
Also, to you two weeks are like two months. To her two weeks are like two days. As in “Where did the time go??”
What I would do is dial it WAY back. Call her on her birthday. Invite her this summer to a get together.
InkyMay 2, 2019 at 9:40 am #292145
She is married, in her early forties; you are single, in your late twenties. She is “one of those infectious characters”, extroverted, initiates conversations; you “suffer from depression, introverted and slightly shy”. She has “a husband, mutual friends from work, her family and other friends”; you have “acquaintances/ friends… not many close friends”.
“I do wonder if her affection and willingness to talk to me so much is genuine or out of pity, given my quiet life”- I would say that it is possible that she enjoys hearing herself talk and she can hear a whole lot of herself talking when she is talking to you, because you are quiet, and you are not competing with her for talking-time. Maybe her children compete with her, maybe her husband does, maybe other friends.
A whole lot of the time when two people talk, each person is not really listening but waiting for his or her turn to talk next, planning what to say next, waiting for the opportunity to talk. If you are not like that, if you really listened to her, then you are different from the other people in her life.
You being a man, and a younger man, it may have played a part in her motivation to communicate with you.
She’s gone quiet on you since her anniversary maybe because her anniversary didn’t go well. Maybe she is troubled, and … she doesn’t want to hear herself talk, she doesn’t like what she has to say this time.
“What is the best way to go about it?”- because maybe her marriage is in trouble, it is better that you don’t contact her, being a man, a younger man, past flirtation, some attraction to her on your part… better stay away from a married woman who may experience trouble in her marriage.
What do you think?
May 3, 2019 at 10:34 am #292327
- This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by anita.
As I said, two weeks feel like a while because chat is usually so often, and its stopped so sudden. I will say two weeks feel like two days to me too actually. Time sped up for me as soon as I hit 20. Naturally I’m asking the question “is it something I’ve said or done”? My chats to her are about what you’d expect, once/twice a week at the most, hers being more than that is just a massive compliment.
But to chat so often for so long, you really think “she’s not thinking about me at all”? Can you explain that? Am I being used? The rest of your points I understand but I can’t help but think it would just be incredibly cold to treat someone like that and completely out of character for her. Our conversations are very two way, and she always seems to show interest in how I am and what I’m doing, she’s not just talking about herself.
I didn’t really get an answer when I asked if things were OK, just her confirmation how often we chat and an apology. I feel something has changed and its not a nice feeling when its not to do with anything I’ve said or done. I guess I value that kind of friendship more than someone who doesn’t have my traits or has a larger circle of friends.
But I’m not the sort who will bombard her to get an answer or start to talk to her as often as she did me, despite feeling pretty down about it. I care too much about how I would be coming across, especially now I’ve hinted to her I’m aware she’s gone quiet on me.</span>
Thank you for replying anyway. Grateful for the honesty.
May 4, 2019 at 7:31 am #292367
- This reply was modified 3 weeks ago by Vaughn679.
If you’re wracking your brain, trying to figure out if you said or didn’t say something, did or didn’t do something….. Chances are it’s not you at all.
One thing I’m still learning in life is not to take anything personally.
This reminds me of the time this woman came up to my sister and asked if she did anything wrong because they don’t talk anymore. My sister said incredulously, “I’m going through a divorce!” The woman felt a little stupid. You are not the leading role in someone else’s story, nor are they supporting characters in yours, generally.
If this woman wants to contact you, she will. On holidays and birthdays, she will know why you’re calling, so it’s not weird. Again, if she doesn’t explain herself after gentle prodding (“Hey, how are you, what’s been going on?”) I would leave it.