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Tom Servo
09-24-2008, 02:39 PM
Hey everybody, I was kinda hoping for some words/advice with my recent troubles. I admit that on the surface it is merely high school dramatics, but try and put yourself in the shoes of a shy 18 year old boy if you can. I know that many here on Redszone are older than I am and I find comfort in the words of people who have been through the stupid hurdles that life throws at them.

When I was still living in New Jersey in my junior year of high school, this girl named Alyssa moved here. She was a junior too and while I thought she was a pretty girl, I remember not thinking much of it when it happened. But she was in a class of mine and hearing her speak I could tell she was different than all of the other girls (and guys for that matter) in my school, in a good way. She was the nicest person in the world and the two of us had everything in common. I slowly developed a crush on her only to find out she had a boyfriend who was in college and thus better than me. I was pretty disapointed but decided I still wanted to be friends with her, and maybe something could happen but I wasn't holding my breath. Around this time as well my mom caught wind of my sadness and wanted me to see a psychtrist to try and help with my shyness. I was hesitant but I complied. Alyssa and I quickly became really good friends.

So after a while into senior year Alyssa and her boyfriend split up (she told me about it as well as when other guys asked her out) and things looked pretty good for me. We were going and did go to prom together and we talked everyday. Only I decided I needed to tell her how I felt as I didn't want to move away if i could be with her, and so my best friend Jeff offered to do it. She came back to me and told me she wasnt sure of anything between us and that she didn't want to ruin our friendship like she ruined what she had with her ex. Fine, whatever. I just still wanted us to be close. Only we weren't. And I found out about a month ago why that was. She was having a secret relationship with Jeff, who already has a girlfriend in Florida he's been with since June 2007. Turns out she told him that she liked him when he told her how I felt, and he immediately started going over her house to makeout and whatever. All of those times I'd ask if we could hang out and he would say "I have to talk to my girlfriend", he was really seeing Alyssa.

I would tell Jeff everyday how much I cared for her and how she meant everything to me. I think of how we would hang out in a group and I would notice Jeff and Alyssa becoming really good friends, but I figured at most that maybe she had a crush on him. I told Jeff it bothered me how he flirted with her but I never suspected anything. I trusted him too much. I have never had any drama in my life nor have I even had a girlfriend. I thought Alyssa was a god-send as we talked all the time and I loved hanging out with her. And to find out that all along it was my best friend that she liked "because he remembered her of her boyfriend" just kills me. And that my best friend would do something he knows I could never forgive him for, and cheat on his girlfriend. It should be noted that he not only knew I was going to psychiatry, but he even drove me there on occasion and we'd talk about it. They were the two people I trusted more than anybody in the world, and to say that I'm devestated is an understatement. This is supposed to happen in movies, not to me.

And so here I am now at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, away from all the drama but at the same time away from everyone I've ever known. I'm going to the school counselor which is going good for me. But so far the stereotypes of sex, drugs, and booze seem to be right on the money and I don't really want any part of them. I've made some friends but far from many, and I can't get the memories of my best friend and girl that I cared for out of my head. I still talk to Alyssa because she apologized profusely but I doubt I should be talking to her and perhaps filling my head with more false hope. But talking to her does make me happy, and I'd be unhappy either way.

That was a massive amount of text and I commend anyone who read it. Any replies are greatly appreciated. :)

bucksfan2
09-24-2008, 02:55 PM
Been there done that. As a 26 year old I am a little removed from your age group but not much. Here is what I was thinking while reading.

First of all if you have feelings for someone, you should tell that person yourself. It may seem more difficult or it may be much easier to send a friend .to do so, but it is the right way to do things.

Second of all your 18. Crushes come and go. Everyone has been in a situation similar to where you have been. It may not be as "dramatic" as yours is but we all have been there. If you value the both of your friends friendship then it is worth continuing to talk with them. Who knows what will happen in the future. Maybe you will get together with the Alyssa, maybe not. If you enjoy talking to her but that is it you may find someone else better than Alyssa (Even though you think that isn't possible).

Finally you are in college enjoy yourself. It really is a completely different experience. It isn't all drugs, sex, booze in college. While I did enough boozing in college I still had time to pursue other avenues. Try going to the gym, try playing a rec sport, hang out with your doormates (I am assuming that you live in the dorms), join a club, etc. Find a hobby while up at school, something that you enjoy to take your life away from all the "drama".

As an old and wise 26 year old :p: enjoy yourself in college.

redsmetz
09-24-2008, 03:01 PM
I imagine you know from reading here on RZ that folks have gone through many different situation, some very serious. The depth of your feelings are perfectly understandable. If it helps, you're not alone with what's happened to you and how you're feeling.

When I was 24, a woman I had dated for almost two years broke up with me. We had even talked about marriage and she wasn't ready for it. We attended church together and the night she broke up with me, a couple announced their engagement to us all (with the wife to be being another old girlfriend). Then, boom, I walk her home and the bricks fall with her breaking up with. I ran into a friend on my way home and I cried like a baby. That took a long time to get over.

The irony is that when my wife moved here to live with her sister's family after grad school, she got to be good friends with my ex. In fact, when I called her to ask her out the first time, she was with the ex girlfriend. She ex said "go out with him, he's a nice guy". After her sister moved, she shared a house with the ex. Very complicated.

But the point is, it does get better. Life goes on and the pain subsides. Of course, this is all very easy for me to say from my keyboard here, because what you're feeling is pretty painful. Each day at a time, TS. I know that might sound trite, but folks who've goen through very difficult things can attest to that.

Hang in there.

Heath
09-24-2008, 03:14 PM
Fast Forward 15 years, add a wife, a job, a mortgage, 2.5 kids, and a mini-van.

Have a nice day. But don't stay out too late with "the boys".

15fan
09-24-2008, 03:25 PM
What's in the past is in the past. No one can change it, so don't beat yourself up over it.

College is a tremendous time. Meet new people, try new things, go new places. Learn to look at the world around you in a different light. Learn what makes you tick.

Each moment that you spend pining away over what was/wasn't, is a moment that you are missing out on what is/could be.

I'm also a big believer that everything happens for a reason. At some point down the road, your experience is going to impact the way you make a decision, the advice you give to a friend, etc. Chalk it up as a learning moment, and move on.

Carpe Diem, my friend.

Cyclone792
09-24-2008, 03:40 PM
Where's that old thread from a year or two ago that discussed the premise that a guy absolutely cannot just be "friends" with a girl? ;)

Tom, everyone's different so I'm not going to tell you what you should do ... but I can tell you what I would do if I were in your situation. And the first part of that is I'd pretty much move on from both Jeff and Alyssa. They're in the past; let them stay in the past. From what you've said, they both pretty much deceived you and lied to you, and it almost seems as if each of them used you. They had your trust and they blew it, and if it were me it'd be difficult to gain back the trust of somebody like that again. The thing to take from the experience is to learn from it so you can prevent it from happening to you again.

Secondly, you're in college, man. I'd get out there and meet some new people. Identify with people who have common interests and just be yourself. You'll find that you'll run into some pretty cool people along the way, and you'll also run into a fair number of idiots. The heck with the idiots, hang out with the people you get along with. Some you may become good friends with, others mere acquaintances.

The biggest obstacle you'll have to jump over in this is being able to trust new people you meet to be your friends and then finding some good, new friends down at school. But if you don't do that, then you're probably going to be pretty miserable.

Strikes Out Looking
09-24-2008, 04:30 PM
Tom, hang in there and put some perspective on it. I'm sure this is eating at you--I was there many times in my younger days and still have days filled with angst about relationships (and I've been happily married for 16 years).

Enjoy being young and having the whole wide world in front of you. She's probably not the one, but guess what, there are a zillion fish in the sea.

Good luck and as the late great Warren Zevon said "enjoy every sandwich."

And good lord, stay away from Jeff.

Chip R
09-24-2008, 04:40 PM
http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17842

Michael Young
09-24-2008, 04:43 PM
forget about her. don't talk to her on the phone. that is just going to make moving on and fully embracing college more difficult.

force yourself to get out there and go to events on campus and talk to people. youll find that plenty of ppl on campus are just as nervous about meeting new ppl as you are. take the first step of introducing yourself to ppl and you wont be disappointed

Highlifeman21
09-24-2008, 04:45 PM
Enjoy college, embrace the present and the future, while learning from the past.

If that means that you're a little guarded and reluctant to trust people due to Jeff, then so be it, but little by little you'll learn to trust people close to you once again.

Bottomline, don't let 2 people from your past ruin what should be a promising future.

SeeinRed
09-24-2008, 04:46 PM
The most interesting thing I observed when I first started college was that realization that high school really meant very little as far as the rest of your life is concerned. Its a weird thing. I never put much stock in High School, so it was easy for me. I took the work seriously, but the "drama" of high school was something I laughed at. I may be the only one there. When you get into college you see all the same types of people, the popular ones who think they are too cool for everyone else, the teachers pets, the geeks and so on. The difference is that the group you belong in doesn't matter anymore. The popular kids suddenly don't matter as much as they thought they did and the "geeks" have large groups to fit into. It suddenly becomes cool to be poor. Its a chance to start over, and a lot of people just don't handle that very well. That doesn't pertain to you Tom, but it is just an observation of college life.

Now, the thing that was hard for me was losing touch with friends. I have no problems making friends because I'm very laid back and easy to get along with. People don't gravitate towards me, but the people who come to know me end up keeping in touch. As usual, after graduation, all my friends went seperate ways. We tried keeping in touch, but it got less and less until some of they just seemingly dissapear. Losing touch with a good friend is tough. My friends were around since kindergarten for me. I went to a very small school and we all were friends from start to finish. I still think about where they might be from time to time, but don't regret losing touch as that is just how our lives took us.

My advice, forget high school. Its over, you've got bigger and better things ahead. Things won't come easy. You will have to work your tail off and you will eventually start to doubt what you are doing. It happens to everyone. Stay true to yourself and your values. You will make mistakes. Learn from them and don't look back. Drugs, sex, alcohol aren't just a part of college, they will be around you for the rest of your life. There is no reason that a person can't drink responsibly, but that doesn't mean you have to if you don't want to. I didn't drink at all until I was 21. It's not a decision I regret at all. People found me interesting, and I was look at with admiration for having a strong will more often than I was ridiculed. Don't fool yourself though, people will make fun of you for it if thats what you choose. Take it, laugh, get your shots in when applicable. Don't make it a big deal that you don't drink, don't tell others they are wrong for their choices, and don't refuse to hang out around those who partake in a little "partying." They aren't bad people, and some of them will be very good friends down the road. By no means am I saying that you need to start seeking the people who do those things, but don't judge them.

Most important of all, don't lose sight of your ultimate goal of success. You need to focus on the fact that college will make your life a lot easier in the long run. You don't have to decide on your career even now. The pressure of choosing what you do weighs heavily on a lot of students. It did me. I even dropped out for a little while and worked a few jobs to try to find what I want to do. I've re-enrolled and still haven't decided. Let me tell you though, walking out with a degree in a field you don't go into is way better than walking out with nothing.

Trust me, when you look back on what bugs you now, you won't even remember why you were so worried about it.

RichRed
09-24-2008, 05:12 PM
TS, I don't have any advice that's better than what the others have said, except to say that the pain you feel is no less valid just because you're young.

Good luck with everything and I hope you find a way to absorb all that college life has to offer; it truly is a wonderful time if you open yourself up to it.

paintmered
09-24-2008, 05:14 PM
The first thing I learned when I got to college was that everything I had done or not done up to that point didn't matter.

Put yourself out there and you'll meet the best and most lasting friends of your life these next few years.

Spring~Fields
09-24-2008, 06:58 PM
Monitor and watch your perceptions that lead to your thoughts, that lead to your uncomfortable feelings with people or situations. Your thoughts are what you can control, and it is your thoughts that can cause you the various painful or uncomfortable feelings.

If you have some form of performance anxiety in social interactions with people, keep an eye on your wants and expectations, try not to have wants and expectations of people to reduce what I call self inflicted anxiety, without wants and expectations it is easier to meet and to interact with people in a more relaxed and calm confident manner. Over time you build a rapport with them, hopefully with trust building and integrity.

Don’t forget something very simple, don’t forget to smile and to laugh, goes a long way with us humans, even if you have to learn to laugh with other’s at yourself from time to time.


I slowly developed a crush on her only to find out she had a boyfriend who was in college and thus better than me.

Stop buying into those types of myths.

College should end up a good experience for you that will empower you with knowledge and understanding, might even help you get rid of such myths that X or Y is better than you.

Spring~Fields
09-24-2008, 07:18 PM
The first thing I learned when I got to college was that everything I had done or not done up to that point didn't matter.

Put yourself out there and you'll meet the best and most lasting friends of your life these next few years.

Excellent advice and it will produce good results for him.

IslandRed
09-24-2008, 09:41 PM
Good stuff in this thread.

Tom, the main thing is to realize that happiness is something that ultimately has to come from inside of you. You can't rely on other people for it, because other people can be unreliable. You've found that out. That doesn't mean you can't trust and love and let them into your life, but you can't turn over your self-worth.

Graduation and geography have given you the opportunity for a clean break. Take advantage of it. Sometimes high school is something you just survive to get to the good part.

College is fun, and it's an opportunity to reinvent yourself. Of course, if you're like me, you'll eventually get tired of trying on new hats and you'll just start being who you really are, and that'll work out okay. You might be amazed at how easily the people closest to you saw right through it all, and liked and loved you for who you were, not who you were trying to be.

SandyD
09-24-2008, 10:19 PM
Participate. Join in group activities. Intramurals, volunteer groups, study groups, clubs. Get a part-time job. Attend athletic events other than football/basketball.

You will make "connections."

M2
09-24-2008, 10:40 PM
Tom, it's been more than two years since I talked to anyone I went to high school with. I talk to someone I went to college with almost every day.

I know plenty of people keep close relationships with those they've known since childhood and I think that's great, but be open to the notion that the bulk of your life is in front of you and pursuing that unknown is going to be a lot more exciting/fulfilling/heartbreaking/etc. than dwelling on the pain of what happen with your high school friends.

My guess is the mere fact that you typed all this means you're mostly past it.

flyer85
09-24-2008, 10:41 PM
since you don't really have in interest in getting drunk and the other partying and what not that goes along with that lifestyle than I agree with Sandy. Find some groups to be a part of that share your direction in how you want to spend your college years and get involved.

Just focus on meeting people and enjoying the experience of hanging out with them ... don't have any expectations and you'll probably end up making some really good friends and having a lot of fun.

BTW, on Alyssa and Jeff. You'll look back someday and realize that they were just teenagers being young and immature and not really understanding much other than how their decisions affect them. let go of the animosity, it'll only make you miserable.

SteelSD
09-24-2008, 11:54 PM
I still talk to Alyssa because she apologized profusely but I doubt I should be talking to her and perhaps filling my head with more false hope. But talking to her does make me happy, and I'd be unhappy either way.

Tom, really heartfelt post and I appreciate you taking the time to write it. Hopefully, it was a cathartic experience. The reason I wanted to focus on this section of the post is that, while the rest tells us where you've been, this tells us where you are.

First, I have good news! There's another "Alyssa" out there. Always is. You just haven't found her yet.

But now the bad news...

If you keep pining over they "Alyssa" you think you lost, you'll never find the "Alyssa" you actually need. Actually, let me revise- If you keep pining over the "Alyssa" you think you lost without doing something to figure out if she's attainable, you'll never find the "Alyssa" you actually need. In short, if you're still interested in the girl, you need to make a move. Like yesterday.

In fact, knowing how you feel about the girl, it's entirely bad for you to keep talking to her unless your relationship escalates to "boyfriend/girlfriend" immediately after your next conversation. Yeah, and that means ultimatum. Date me or lose me. Period. Ballsy? Yeah. Necessary? Yeah. Otherwise you're going to risk perpetuating a cycle where you end up lying to yourself about your chances with a girl who may only be re-engaging in order to feel better about herself after crapping all over you (which is generally the true motivation behind the "friend" speech). Anyone been there and done that?

<Steel raises hand!>

Oh, BTW, y'know when you sent your friend to tell the girl what you should have told her yourself? Don't do that ever again. Ever. Faced with the proposal of two men she likes, I don't know a woman in the world who is going to choose the less aggressive option after knowing both for any amount of time. Why? Because if she was already far more interested in the less aggressive option, she'd have made the first move well before that time. Moving on...

Next steps:

1. Next time you're waiting in line for anything, force yourself to strike up a conversation with anyone nearby. Might sound stupid, but it's practice for shy people.

2. Next time you're walking toward an attractive girl, especially if you're in a class together, make eye contact and say, "Hi". Nothing more. Just "Hi". First, it's the best pickup line in the world according to women and, second, if she doesn't respond in kind then you've just met a pretty girl who feels less comfortable engaging strangers than you are. If you can't draw strength from that, then what can you draw strength from?

3. The next time you meet a girl you like, ask her out. Just do it. You can't possibly care about the answer or get hung up on them being a potential "friend"*. At best, you have a date. At worst, you've eliminated someone from your "Could be the One" book. The middle ground is that you've just let someone know you're interested when they dump their boyfriend a couple weeks or months later. Trust me, that's important when you find a "taken" girl who's finally had enough of the infinite number of jerks they meet in college.

* With very VERY rare exceptions it's nearly impossible for a straight male to have a female "friend" he once wanted to sleep with. The problem is that if the girl was attractive enough to want to sleep with in the beginning, the further growth of an emotional bond is only going to enhance that longing.

4. Figure out how to read signs. If you're talking to a girl and she's making eye contact all the time, saying "Me too" (or some variation) a lot, and complimenting you, she's probably interested. Go back to #3.

5. Again, figure out how to read signs. If the girl went out with you and she's paid attention to you the entire time, it's ok to go for the kiss at the end of the date. Nothing more, mind you (unless she insists), but don't wait for a written contract. The girl decided that you were at least "kissable" before she agreed to the date. Unless the date was a disaster, you're still at least that at the end.

6. While you're searching for the right girl to date, don't ask for phone numbers. In fact, you should be declining the offer of phone numbers unless the girl really insists. This is based on my own theory (IMHO, proven) that an attractive girl is asked for her phone number many times a night. So do something different and tell her that the best compliment she could give you is to call your own phone number to continue your conversation. You may not get a call from every girl, but you'll definitely get calls from girls who're interested (and, really, isn't that the point?).

Now, is that the end-all-be-all of advice? Not even close. But you should know that I was the shy type in high school, just like you. However, after I figured out a few things in college, I had a complete blast and it led me to marry an incredible girl who wasn't initially on my radar; but who appeared exactly in the right place at the right time. By then, I'd figured out how to all of the above and more (I was very shy in high school due to moving a LOT).

Not sure if all that helps, but the above only scratches the surface of how to really play the game. If you want stuff that's more manipulative, please PM me. :cool:

jimbo
09-25-2008, 01:33 AM
Steel.....what are your office hours and are you accepting new patients? :D

Great post and some very sound and useful advice.

paintmered
09-25-2008, 08:01 AM
In fact, knowing how you feel about the girl, it's entirely bad for you to keep talking to her unless your relationship escalates to "boyfriend/girlfriend" immediately after your next conversation. Yeah, and that means ultimatum. Date me or lose me. Period. Ballsy? Yeah. Necessary? Yeah. Otherwise you're going to risk perpetuating a cycle where you end up lying to yourself about your chances with a girl who may only be re-engaging in order to feel better about herself after crapping all over you (which is generally the true motivation behind the "friend" speech). Anyone been there and done that?

<Steel raises hand!>

*Paint raises hand* It took me until the summer before my senior year to figure this out as well. But the moment I did, my relationships became so much healthier, happier and less angst-filled. I had some really great catches (including my current girlfriend who is simply off the charts).

I spent the first half of my college life lying to myself over a girl. Sure, we'd go on a random date here or there, but it never progressed because I never pressed the issue. Looking back, I realize that she gave me every sign in the book and could have had a great relationship. But I never took the chance.

But eventually I woke and realized that I'm just not going to randomly find a great relationship at my feet. I had to hear "no" a few times after putting myself out there. And you know what? The actual answers I got surprised me. I wasn't hearing "no" at all.

And Steel is absolutely right when he says that don't ever send a friend to do your bidding. That's simply not a winning strategy.

bucksfan2
09-25-2008, 08:38 AM
*Question*

What are your motivations for talking to Alyssa?

When I was in High School I fell for a girl. Pretty hard in the high school way. A while later the relationship was over and I was upset. I quit talking to her completely but we still hung around the same group of friends. It took a year or so but we started to become better friends. When I would come home from college she would be one of the people I would want to see. After a year or so over a xmas break we got together again. Needless to say same result, a little while later it was over and I was back at square one again.

I guess I ask your motivations for talking to Alyssa because I knew what it felt like to value someone as a friends but at the same time it didn't stop me from wanting something more. When I look back it may have stopped me from pursuing a relationship with someone else at the time but no big deal. Just be careful in that your talking to this girl as a friends doesn't have an ulterior motive.

Mario-Rijo
09-25-2008, 09:28 AM
Wow some awesome advice Tom, really awesome. And Steel can you let me know when you are free for a consultation, crap that was good stuff.

All I can really add Tom is that I had thee almost exact same scenario take place. To make a long story short I did what you are doing for far longer than any human should. Let it go, because if you don't it will get worse along with everything else around you. You don't wanna be 35 years old and still having the same issues do you, cut it loose or you will.

What you have to ultimately realize is that your own self worth is greater than you allow yourself to believe. You are an intelligent, articulate and overall good man who deserves better than what you were dealt. And you will never fully trust Alyssa at this point anyway so I say cut her loose all the way and move on.

Anyhow it's time to explore yourself and there is so much time for relationships later. Take the next 4-5 years of your life and figure out Tom and what it is that you enjoy most about life itself.

Uggh...Tom let it go Bro! Live in the now and not the past!

RichRed
09-25-2008, 10:03 AM
Tom, it's been more than two years since I talked to anyone I went to high school with. I talk to someone I went to college with almost every day.


About five years after I graduated, I had already lost touch with everyone I knew in high school. Meanwhile, my closest friends today are people I met in college 20 years ago. Obviously, that's not everyone's experience but it's just an example of how quickly high school can fade into near-insignificance.

There's some really good advice in this thread, by the way. I could've used some of it when I was a shy 18-year-old. I found my way though and so will you, Tom.

Roy Tucker
09-25-2008, 10:41 AM
Otherwise you're going to risk perpetuating a cycle where you end up lying to yourself about your chances with a girl who may only be re-engaging in order to feel better about herself after crapping all over you (which is generally the true motivation behind the "friend" speech). Anyone been there and done that?

<Steel raises hand!>


Yo.

It's kinda funny. My children are 20, almost 18, and 15. Being relatively normal kids (an amazing accomplishment given the father they have), they are doing the boyfriend/girlfriend thang.

And I see this a lot. Someone does something really bad, wrongs the current boyfriend/girlfriend, but somehow feels thge need to feel OK about what they did. So they continually badger the wronged party saying "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, tell me its all OK and you don't hate me", i.e. have their cake and eat it too. And then my children say "Dad, what should I do?".

Being the vindictive bastard I am, I tell them their "friend" chopped them off at the knees and don't deserve a second chance. Smile, but tell them they blew it but they will always be "just friends". And *move* *on* and don't look back. Be the best person you can possibly be and let the ex-whatever have all the regret over missing out on a shining star you *will* become. Let them be the one that says "jeez, I really blew that one".

I'm getting to be a crusty old guy now, but I'm convinced that relationships in the developmental stage are a binary state. Either they work or they don't.

If its difficult, if someone dithers about and straddles the fence, if someone can't make up their mind, if there is ambiguity and doubt, then you know what? It's not worth it. You may be able to prop it up for a while, but you're just setting yourself up for 50 miles of bad road. When the right one comes along, it is plainly obvious. Their jokes are funny, you want to spend all your time with them, you seem to never get tired of them, and you can't wait for the next time you see them. And the biggest part is that they feel the same about you. It all just flows.

So chop off Alyssa and what-his-face at the knees, tell them you'll "always be friends" and not mean it, and get busy with your future. As in the cheesy movie "Gumball Rally" when the Italian driver twists off the rear-view mirror and says "the first rule of Italian racing.. what is behind you does not-a-matter".

redsmetz
09-25-2008, 11:14 AM
*Paint raises hand* It took me until the summer before my senior year to figure this out as well. But the moment I did, my relationships became so much healthier, happier and less angst-filled. I had some really great catches (including my current girlfriend who is simply off the charts).

Let me confirm what Paint says here. When I had those Reds/Cubs tickets available, she was ready and willing to step into the crucible of The Invasion of the Cubs fans to witness first hand whether they're jerks or not. And we beat the blue socks off them at the game. Paint is a lucky man, to say the least.

M2
09-25-2008, 11:31 AM
Gumball Rally quote! We're now working at a higher level of consciousness.

Love that movie.

Anyway, quick add here: One thing that most people seem to learn as they get older (into their late 20s), is not to treat dating like it's a quasi-marital situation. You don't have to become convinced the other person is THE ONE before you go on a first date. It really can be as easy as "you're cute, you seem like someone I could get along with, let's take it from there." The person you like who says yes may not be the person with whom you spend the rest of your life. And it's not the end of the world when you like someone and it never materializes. As you get older, you realize dating should be a lot more fun and 100% less dramatic.

Like Roy said, when you finally do find someone you really like (and who feels the same way about you), you spontaneously become a couple. No one issues a mock proposal (e.g. will you be my girlfriend). It just happens. With the great ones there isn't a ton of palace intrigue. With them it's easy and unforced.

flyer85
09-25-2008, 11:44 AM
Gumball Rally quote! We're now working at a higher level of consciousness.

Love that movie.
Amen. Saw it at the drive-in when I was 13

Franco: And now my friend, the first-a rule of Italian driving.
[Franco rips off his rear-view mirror and throws it out of the car]
Franco: What's-a behind me is not important. (played by Raul Julia)

SunDeck
09-25-2008, 12:28 PM
Hey Tom,
I have never had any relationship problems, but I've been through some personal trauma in my life. If I may just offer one nugget; time makes a big difference. It may be a little overwhelming right now, but you'll look back on this a year from now and my guess is that you won't feel the same way about the situation at all.

That doesn't help you right now, but perhaps if you try to just focus on the priorities at hand in your daily life you will start to emerge from the post relationship funk. I would also suggest getting involved with some clubs at school. Find people with similar interests, build new friendships and start creating new memories.

You'll get there, just keep your priorities straight and things will be fine.

:thumbup:

Tom Servo
09-25-2008, 03:50 PM
I'd just like to say I genuinely appreciate each and everyone who took the time to read and reply to my topic. It means a lot to me.


Now to shed a little more light on my situation:

As far as sending a friend to do my work, I definatly learned a lesson about that. It just kills me knowing that it was all coincidence. Jeff convinced me to send him because he was afraid I didn't have the balls to do it that day like I wanted to, and of course Alyssa just happened to be smitten with him and decided to use the oppurtunity to tell him. But whatever, no more of that ever again.

In regards to what Steel was saying about love it or leave it, I've tried twice before to tell her my feelings with two different results. The first time was right after Jeff went to her and she told me "I'm sorry, I don't know. I'm not ready". So I took that as I have a chance and still just wanted to be good friends. Then when all of this came out last month I got the dreaded "You're an awesome guy, I really like you...as a friend". And I tried to cut ties with her at the end of the conversation, saying maybe we could talk but not particularly soon. And I made a joke that she took as me saying I wouldn't talk to her for four years and she started to cry. So I got suckered back in...

In regards to my intentions of speaking with Alyssa, that's what I myself am trying to figure out. Like bucksfan said, I'm not really sure that I can ever fully trust her again, so I really don't know what it is I want. Part of me probably still wants to convince her I'm boyfriend material, but I would be the first to admit that by doing that I'm just opening myself up for more pain when things stay the same. What still shocks me about all of this is that she is probably the nicest girl you'd ever meet, everyone who knows her loves her. But she said herself that she was selfish and I guess I learned a lesson about people.

It's not especially important, but what makes Jeff all the more disliked by me is that all along the plan was for him to live in an apartment with his girlfriend in Florida. And he is. And even when they were living together at the beginning of this summer he continued to tell Alyssa (who thought it would end when he moved) how much he loved and missed her. So he really screwed up his poor girlfriend's life as well. But she has apparently decided to stay with him, to which I say good luck with that. And I forget to mention the Redszone connection. Jeff's girlfriend is Dave Miley's neice. And when Dave's son died and his girlfriend went to her cousin's funeral, Jeff used the oppurtunity to speak to Alyssa who was shocked he could be so callous. Classy guy, my best friend is.

I very much take it to heart what bucksfan, redsmetz, paintmered, and Mario have said to me. It makes me feel better knowing others have gone through similar situations and can now speak of it as it is, the past.

I should note I wasn't trying to get on my high horse or anything about the college stereotypes. All of those things are fine in moderation, it's just that in my personal experience with people around them they lead to trouble.

And to everyone who had suggestions relating to college, I plan on listening. I really do want to put myself out there and will definatly be looking at more orginizations. I knew I would have to let go of high school but I never expected things to take such a sharp turn. But I can't let that detour me. I plan on making the best of what I have and finding what makes me happy. :)

paintmered
09-25-2008, 04:50 PM
Let me confirm what Paint says here. When I had those Reds/Cubs tickets available, she was ready and willing to step into the crucible of The Invasion of the Cubs fans to witness first hand whether they're jerks or not. And we beat the blue socks off them at the game. Paint is a lucky man, to say the least.

After the game, she said to me, "okay, now I understand why you feel the way you do towards Cubs' fans." :laugh:

Dom Heffner
09-25-2008, 05:05 PM
Tom, beofre I get to the advice (tough to add to what has been said here) I have one thing.

I think Steel had a great post. Always good stuff from him. Just don't, whatever you do, pull out a deck of Magic cards on a date. Steel has powers from beyond that allow him to have a successful love life while still doing things that would sound off the nerd alert if lesser men like me and you tried it. :)

So you're friend pulled a Pacey on you. Ouch. I had that happen to me twenty plus years ago or so (Footloose was out at the time to give you a more precise idea of how long ago we are talking).

Mine was a slightly different situation than yours- I was dating a girl and my best friend just started dating her, mid-stream, so to speak. There were no phone calls to let me know, either. They just one day were dating.

I was a mess for awhile, literally.

I think the older me would go back and tell the young me to lose people like Alyssa and your "friend" in a heart beat for a number of reasons, none more important than they aren't your friends. I stayed around a little while longer than I should have, I think. I don't want to see you do that. Accident scenes are best left in the past.

What should bother you is this: They are each going to date numerous people in their lives and they have to get together with each other after you send one to tell the other that you have feelings for them?

Your friends had a split second to make a choice and they chose the other way. Too bad for them.

Because what's going to happen to them is the same thing that happened to me at my 20 year high school reunion when I ran into the two I told you about.

I walked right up to the guy, shook his hand and said, "Hey, Brian, it's Alan."

He started in on an apology that would have lasted the entire night had I not, in a polite if not condescending way, cut him off. I let him know about the wonderful life I have lived since high school and then ended the conversation and walked away.

Same thing happened with the girl.

And it made me realize this: I got the better end of the deal by far.

I lost two people who didn't care about me and who got to carry around guilt for twenty years, while I couldn't muster an ounce of care over that situation if I tried by month two.

I sometimes think the ones who get left fare better than the ones who leave.

It will hurt for awhile and then it won't. Let it, it's part of the process. Read the lyrics to "Unanswered Prayers," get down in the dumps, listen to Pearl Jam's "Black" - whatever you need to do to get over it.

And then I would hop right back on the horse, this time with you in control. Work out. Keep the grades high. Set goals and achieve them. Fill that life right up with stuff and meeting people will happen naturally. Single people have a wonderful opportunity and never realize it until it's gone. You can sit there, on a Friday night, and ask yourself, if I could be doing anything in the world right now, what would it be? And then you can actually go do it without asking permission, without hurting someone's feelings, without any strings at all. Maybe it's watching planes land at the airport, maybe it's asking that cute girl out from your macroeconomics class. And if she says no, then it's the girl from the smoothie place. Or the library. Or the dorm. Life is a law of large numbers game, my friend. Nobody deducts points from you if you get turned down, but your value definitely goes up with each yes, so start asking.

In the blink of an eye, you'll be the person you want to be, with the job you want, the lady you want, kids, house, dogs, cats, and these foolish two "friends" are going to be a memory so distant that you'll wonder why you cared in the first place.

But it never will happen if you don't get busy making it so.

My uncle used to say, "You're never lost as long as you have a mouth."

So my advice to you would be this: Go heal.

And then go open that mouth. Let the world know what it is you want and it will come to you.

Sorry for the length, guys. Slow day at the office lol....

M2
09-25-2008, 05:14 PM
Tom, sounds like she is a nice girl and that she's young. When you get older you realize that you're not going to be friends with somebody if one of you desperately wants to be more than friends. It just doesn't work. In that case you've either got to move on to dating or be casual acquaintances.

She clearly wanted to keep you around because she likes you as a friend, but that, for whatever reason, you didn't trip her dating impulses (and when you're a teenager the yes/no dating impulse is pretty much instant). All of this stuff is relatively new to her too, so I don't see any reason to give her a piece of your mind. Sounds like she means well even if she hasn't done well by you.

Girls often want to be around guys and have it be safe. It's one of the reasons so many females have close gay male friends. There's no pressure and I can see where teenage girls in particular would want that. On the flipside, guys your age are desperately trying to figure out how to talk to girls and be unsafe. You understandably don't want the neutering designation of "just a friend." In time people (mostly) figure out how to work around that. Women figure out that their male friends aren't castrati and men figure out how to balance being the dangerous guy to some women with being the safe friend to others.

As for right now, you don't have to keep beating your head against that wall. Be polite, but keep your distance, which I assume is no problem now that you're away at college. Don't call her and make sure to check your caller ID before you answer the phone. Aside from everything else, you're in a new place now and a lot of freshman make the mistake of clinging to what and who they know back home rather than going out and tackling their new environs. Even if you're ready to make that leap, you don't want to be on the phone constantly with someone from high school who isn't (unrequited love interest or not).

Dom Heffner
09-25-2008, 05:24 PM
As far as sending a friend to do my work, I definatly learned a lesson about that. It just kills me knowing that it was all coincidence. Jeff convinced me to send him because he was afraid I didn't have the balls to do it that day like I wanted to, and of course Alyssa just happened to be smitten with him and decided to use the oppurtunity to tell him. But whatever, no more of that ever again.


I'll go away already in a second.

Look- sending the friend was a mistake, but I think the end result wasn't going to be favorable for you no matter what you did.

Two things going on here at once, though. One- I would rid myself of both of them.

A friend doesn't date the guy who was sent to share your feelings for her.

And a friend doesn't use the opportunity to swoop in on a girl that his friend likes.

Those aren't friends. Those are people who care more about their own feelings than yours.

The other issue is whether she is into you or not. If she is saying things like "I'm not ready," or "I need time," or "I like you as a friend," she is meaning "No."

And to add then- what kind of friend can't be straight with you?

Lose 'em.

You're never as attractive as when you walk away (she cried when you did the last time, eh?) and mean it.

Michael Young
09-25-2008, 05:51 PM
seriously tom, the best thing you can do. don't talk to her for a week or two... then, answer one of her calls and be really really nice to her. casually mention that you've met someone on campus and you two are dating. this girl is obviously used to you talking to her with those puppy dog eyes. this girl is used to having the upper hand. time to turn the tables. youre out there, you're dating and you are having the time of your life

M2
09-25-2008, 09:11 PM
seriously tom, the best thing you can do. don't talk to her for a week or two... then, answer one of her calls and be really really nice to her. casually mention that you've met someone on campus and you two are dating. this girl is obviously used to you talking to her with those puppy dog eyes. this girl is used to having the upper hand. time to turn the tables. youre out there, you're dating and you are having the time of your life

I'd stop after the first sentence (and I'd probably see if you could stretch out the radio silence for a month). Do NOT tell her you're dating someone if that's not the case or put up a false front. That's way more effort than you need to put into a conversation with her. Mind you, endeavor to have a good time regardless of what conversation you may have with her in the future. The point isn't to make her feel bad, it's for you to be doing things that make you feel good (not pretending that you're doing things that make you feel good).

SteelSD
09-26-2008, 12:03 AM
Just don't, whatever you do, pull out a deck of Magic cards on a date. Steel has powers from beyond that allow him to have a successful love life while still doing things that would sound off the nerd alert if lesser men like me and you tried it. :)

When you know that your future wife used to play D&D with her older brother and his friends, pulling out a deck of Magic cards is a lot less risky. ;)



I'd just like to say I genuinely appreciate each and everyone who took the time to read and reply to my topic. It means a lot to me.

Happy to do it, Tom. In my experience, the best way to learn is by making mistakes and the second best way to learn is by hearing about the mistakes made by others.


In regards to what Steel was saying about love it or leave it, I've tried twice before to tell her my feelings with two different results. The first time was right after Jeff went to her and she told me "I'm sorry, I don't know. I'm not ready".

Well, that's in the distant past and we know know that her words translated to, "I'm sorry, but I'm interested in pursuing a relationship with Jeff."


So I took that as I have a chance and still just wanted to be good friends.

While the following may sound a bit harsh, please understand that my intent is only to bring the truth to the surface. By doing that, we can understand our own motivations; which helps us stop fooling ourselves.

You DID NOT still just want to be good friends. You wanted an intimate relationship with a girl with whom you were fascinated. Did Alyssa screw things up? Not necessarily. Did Jeff screw things up? Not necessarily. Did YOU screw things up. Yes, and then later, not necessarily.

Steel's Dating Rule #3: The Intimacy Window

Now, I'm not sure how long you knew Alyssa prior to finally making your feelings known, but I am convinced (and I've seen this in action) that there is a statute of limitations on a single girl's interest in intimacy with a desirable male (doesn't matter if he's actually available, BTW). If a guy senses interest or has notions about wanting to have a romantic relationship with a girl, he needs to act quickly. How quickly? That might be different for each girl, but I'd estimate that it's well under 90 days. Going past that threshold is the kiss of death, especially if you fit the "nice guy" profile (and it appears you might).

Tom, a young guy who fits your profile needs to be at least as aggressive as the jerks in the room because girls you'll meet (almost without exception) have issues with self-esteem. Yes, it's true. The girls you're likely to target all have self-esteem issues and you need to remember that while you haven't seen them naked, they have (that's important). What you think about yourself has nothing to do with them and it has everything to do with you. That's a lesson I learned in the long-ago time of college. How you carry yourself and your sense of humor (which you have in abundance) is far FAR more important than you think.

Forget the above and you risk waiting to the point where your "boyfriend" window of opportunity closes because the girls you'll be meeting will be looking for acceptance and self-validation. You can give them both, but only if you're willing to put yourself out there as an actual romantic prospect soon after you connect with them. Wait too long and you enter into "friend" zone. Why? Because the girl has now determined that you can satisfy their emotional need for acceptance but that you might not have enough interest in satisfying their body ideal (told you that was important). That leads to...

Steel's Dating Rule #4: The "Friend Zone" Isn't Always a Bad Place to Be

This rule is always about "taken" girls or girls with whom you've missed your window of opportunity. It's manipulative as all get out and may involve aligning yourself with a male "friend" (even if he's a jerk) who has a desirable girlfriend. Basically, it's about social networking.

Step 1: Find an attractive girl you get along with who's either taken or who's placed you into the "Friend Zone". These girls run in packs. If the "taken" girl is the girlfriend of a friend of yours, all the better. If your "friend" is a jerk, that can also work to your advantage because you're the "nice guy". But you need to make sure that you're willing to turn on your chosen guy "friend" if he's a jerk in order to maintain your own credibility.

Step 2: At every opportunity, mirror your "friend's" aggressive behavior with the group but resist anything that would paint you as a jerk. If your "friend" insults anyone or does something stupid, apologize for his behavior. If he's not a jerk, you've gained mondo rep points from the girlfriend's entourage. If he is a jerk, you've gained mondo rep points from the girlfriend's entourage. It's basically a no-lose situation.

Step 3: If your "friend" actually is a jerk, target the girl who is most put-back by his behavior. After all, you're the "nice guy" who is also fun enough and confident enough to hang out with the crowd.

Step 4: If your "friend" is actually a jerk, leave behind any feeling of loyalty to him if he actually does something that conflicts with your moral code. It's a dog-eat-dog world and you need to remember that a jerk isn't going to be looking out for you in the first place. In fact, the reason you're there is likely to add credibility to him in the first place. He's looking to use you, but you can use him if you've continued to be outgoing and credible.

Step 5: If you get to this step, you're probably able to date just about any girl who's heard your name or who's seen you hanging out with that crowd. Trust me. You have NO idea how many rep points you get from being aligned with a really desirable guy and then turning on him when he proves that his character is undesirable. Let me tell you a story...

I moved to a new college many moons ago. Through social networking, I came across a guy (we'll call him "Mark"). Mark was a really good-looking cheerleader who knew a ton of incredibly attractive women. Mark was a complete jerk who thought way too much of himself and who'd run a male "friend" over with a bus if he thought it would serve his needs. But Mark was also a guy who behaved so badly that he needed a decent-looking (I'm not at all Brad Pitt) wingman to create credibility. So I played along.

I met an incredible number of really attractive girls through hanging with Mark. But I knew his rep and so did they. So unless he did something completely off the charts, I'd back him. Because I was the "nice guy". And frankly, hanging out with Mark allowed me to get to the point where I was aggressive as all get out with women. My association with him allowed me to build his rep (because I was a "nice guy") and also allowed me to build my prospects.

Then Mark did something entirely below-board. He dumped a girl he was dating through me, which allowed me to pick up the pieces and gained me much respect from the entire female establishment. Swimming in that world was easy prior to that, but because I demonstrated that I was a trustworthy stand-up guy after, the entire female contingent opened up to me. There wasn't a single girl in that town who wouldn't go out with me and all because I'd held to my standards. Well, that and the fact that I'd played the game perfectly.

Dude, I had five girls calling me per day. And all because I'd welcomed the "Friend Zone" with one girl who couldn't possibly be more. Think about it.


Then when all of this came out last month I got the dreaded "You're an awesome guy, I really like you...as a friend". And I tried to cut ties with her at the end of the conversation, saying maybe we could talk but not particularly soon. And I made a joke that she took as me saying I wouldn't talk to her for four years and she started to cry. So I got suckered back in...

Steel's Dating Rule #1: Look Out for Yourself

Seriously, she didn't sucker you back in. You did. Was she crying because she cared about you or because she cared about herself? Let's get real here. The girl was crying because she feels badly about the fact that you might not be there to give her the emotional validation she needs. Yet, she's never given you the emotional of physical validation you need. At this point, you need to let her know that you have absolutely no interest in speaking with her unless there's an imminent physical relationship. And you need to hold to it. Here's another story about a girl who actually did give me physical validation:

Prior to meeting my wife, I was very interested in a girl who was about the same age as my wife when I met her. We actually did have an intimate physical relationship prior to the following conversation, which played out in my apartment:

Her: "I'm not sure I'm ready for a relationship. There are a lot of other guys out there I could date."

Me: "I understand. But there's no way I'm going to sleep with you while you're dating other guys."

<Steel gets her off the couch and shows her the door>

Her: "Well, if you were interested in me, I don't understand why you wouldn't fight for me."

Me: "I have fought for you, but I'm not at all intersted in sharing you with other guys. Have a nice life."

Best decision I ever made. There's no possible way I could trust that girl after her disclosure about the nature of our relationship and considering the potential health risks of her putting herself on the market, she was a "DO NOT WANT". In short, sometimes you have to cut the cord right away in order to stay happy. At that point, I had absolutely no interest in a girl who'd initiated a physical relationship with me and then who wanted to play the field.

Way WAY too many girls out there. The rest of my dating rules? Well, those are available upon request.:cool:

Mario-Rijo
09-26-2008, 06:00 AM
Good god Steel you kill me. :bowrofl:

Seriously though Tom Steel's right on the money, I mean right on it. We should call him PimpSD. BTW I have done the cut her loose right now move and meant it wholeheartedly and of course....let's just say (since this is a family board) there are fringe benefits for such actions, assuming you are interested in them. Unless like Steel said they wanna play the field. But there is nothing more appealing to a woman than something she knows she cannot have.

Anyhow I'm glad we have this board for stuff like this, just think you have so many people here who truly have only your best interest at heart, that's an awesome thing to know you have backing you up. And it certainly is fun to get away from arguing about baseball and getting into something else so very fascinating and not stale at all.

BTW where's VP and Kitty, shouldn't we get a womans perspective on all of this stuff PimpSD is saying? :D

P.S. Happy Hunting Tom!

Chip R
09-26-2008, 10:33 AM
BTW where's VP and Kitty, shouldn't we get a womans perspective on all of this stuff PimpSD is saying? :D



It must be good advice or else they would weigh in and tell us we're full of crap. :lol:

Alyssa sounds like a great girl but I think you need to step back for your own good. Instead of talking to her as much as you do, gradually pare back. If you talk to her several times a week, cut it back to once a week. Then once every couple of weeks. Then once a month. Then just a few times a year. I don't know what your "talking" consists of but try to make it non-verbal. E-mails and texts instead of in-person conversations and phone calls. But even that should happen less frequently. As tough as it is, you've got to move on without her. Sandy, et. al. had good advice. Join clubs, intramurals, whatever. You never know when Ms Right is going to come along. Pretty soon, you'll be so busy you won't be thinking of Alyssa. I'd think Alyssa's going to want to know why you two don't talk as much as you used to but you just tell her with school and other stuff you've been too busy to talk.

Look at my previous post in here. I posted a link to a thread the great and powerful Raisor started about a girl he was fond of. He ended up getting married to a friend of hers.

Ltlabner
09-26-2008, 02:34 PM
There's a world of difference between being a nice guy but still confident and assertive and being a nice guy who's got puppydog eyes and is willing to trade dignity for a chance at romance.

Most women, generally speaking, don't like guys who aren't assertive and confident on some level. The ones who aren't, or who's puppy-dog eyes are there for the world to see, end up in the "friend zone". Quickly.

AmarilloRed
09-28-2008, 10:46 PM
I can definitely identify with this thread. I ran into some job troubles lately. I had my front-end manager red-line my schedule, because it was totally different from what I had been working. Two weekend day shifts to 2 weekend closing shifts. It turned out there was no one else who was expected to close, and I got into a bit of trouble. I think my Wal-Mart career is coming to an end. Eight dollars an hours is not worth this sort of trouble.

camisadelgolf
09-29-2008, 07:31 AM
If you never meet Mrs. Right, you could regret not pursuing her for the rest of your life. My recommendation is to go after if you can't think of a very good reason she couldn't make you happy for the rest of your life. If you decide to pursue her, just make sure you don't half-ass it because you'd just regret that, too. Regret is one of the worst feelings a person can have, and I just recommend trying to avoid it at pretty much whatever cost. Personally, I know I'd rather regret something I did than something I didn't do.

bucksfan
09-29-2008, 05:02 PM
...In regards to my intentions of speaking with Alyssa, that's what I myself am trying to figure out. Like bucksfan said, I'm not really sure that I can ever fully trust her again, ....

I believe I am being credited for advice I did not give :) but I have actually been reading through this since the initial posting.

I certainly do not have the background to give the level of advice Steel offers ;) as I have been lucky enough to not have had to truly "play the game" - or perhaps I really wasn't aware of the existence of a "game to be played", so to speak - I just reacted to the situations with my heart and head in varying degrees of balance, not really trying to ever anticipate how others would react other than to follow the general guideline of treating people with respect and honesty unless their actions clearly merit otherwise.

My background is that I was simply in one long-term relationship that was "not right" - nothing horribly wrong, just not right. As I got older and knew what I wanted (or at least didn't want), I eventually saw that for myself after about 2 years of friends telling me the same thing. I met my wife (of 15 years) within months after that and it certainly has been a "happily ever after..." situation from that point onwards. Everyone's story is different for sure and only you know best how to apply the various pieces of helpful information in this thread to your own situation.

I agree with the many who have said to take your time in college to truly get to know yourself and others. Be outgoing, honest, friendly, and yourself.

Hap
09-29-2008, 05:49 PM
Are there any girls you might happen to meet in the dorms that might happen to be going through something similar with their high-school exes and who might happen to also be going through loneliness and pain and who also might happen to be looking for a chance to (ahem, ahem, hint, hint) get some healing from someone who just might happen to be there (ahem, ahem, hint, hint) in the flesh?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/6a/Beach_Boys_-_Help_Me%2C_Rhonda.jpg

vaticanplum
09-29-2008, 06:45 PM
Tom, sounds like she is a nice girl and that she's young. When you get older you realize that you're not going to be friends with somebody if one of you desperately wants to be more than friends. It just doesn't work. In that case you've either got to move on to dating or be casual acquaintances.

She clearly wanted to keep you around because she likes you as a friend, but that, for whatever reason, you didn't trip her dating impulses (and when you're a teenager the yes/no dating impulse is pretty much instant). All of this stuff is relatively new to her too, so I don't see any reason to give her a piece of your mind. Sounds like she means well even if she hasn't done well by you.

Girls often want to be around guys and have it be safe. It's one of the reasons so many females have close gay male friends. There's no pressure and I can see where teenage girls in particular would want that. On the flipside, guys your age are desperately trying to figure out how to talk to girls and be unsafe. You understandably don't want the neutering designation of "just a friend." In time people (mostly) figure out how to work around that. Women figure out that their male friends aren't castrati and men figure out how to balance being the dangerous guy to some women with being the safe friend to others.

As for right now, you don't have to keep beating your head against that wall. Be polite, but keep your distance, which I assume is no problem now that you're away at college. Don't call her and make sure to check your caller ID before you answer the phone. Aside from everything else, you're in a new place now and a lot of freshman make the mistake of clinging to what and who they know back home rather than going out and tackling their new environs. Even if you're ready to make that leap, you don't want to be on the phone constantly with someone from high school who isn't (unrequited love interest or not).

There's a very good tone to this post. Being vindictive in any way gives you a moment of triumph, but ultimately I don't think it's ever good. even thinking of and carrying out the details invests you further in the situation than you need to be and makes it harder for you to let go. You need to be focusing on bettering the future, not complicating the past.

I don't really have anything to add, except to say that you've always struck me as a very smart, funny, respectful, mature kid and based on that I think that, regardless of how difficult this may be for you know, you are going to be absolutely fine. It takes effort to develop those qualities, and if you continue to invest in them they are bound to serve you in good stead and a like-minded girl will eventually recognize them too. And I think your godsend at this point is that you're in college far away from home. That is going to be great for you. Focus on getting the most out of everything you can and a lot of your shyness may dissipate on its own.

And Steel cracks me the flip up.