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Why is flirting hard to read and easy to mistake?
April 29, 2010 10:00 PM   Subscribe

Trying to decipher whether or not to embarrass myself by attempting to flirt with a guy in one of my classes. Should I even bother? Am I reading WAY too much into a comment? I was always bad at this.

Ok for those of you who weren't involved in my last question, I am in a relationship with a guy who I'm seriously considering leaving. He's bipolar type II, OCD, paranoid (possibly with schitzophrenia but so far, undiagnosed), ADHD, and suffers from heart problems; all at 24. I'm reaching my limit on patience and I feel like I'm finding little things I don't like about him because I'm generally unhappy with him and have been for most of the last 5 months. For more details, look at my other post.

Now, I'm taking German II this semester. Part of the classwork is that we have to give 3 group presentations, 2 of which are 100% in German. For the first 2 we could pick our own groups (she picked the last set due to lazy people half-assing their work). This guy, "M", had missed class the day we picked and didn't have one. He ended up being joining me and this other girl. He was really easy to work with and did good work. Blah blah blah all of that. He's never been a huge talker but then again, when you're constantly in new groups of people every 4 months, you don't have much time to get to know anyone. After we started working on the first project, he'd smile at me when I'd walk into class. This within itself doesn't say much as he's a fairly polite person and probably does this with everyone. Pretty much every conversation we had was classwork related.

Now, the last day of class for this semester is Friday. On Wednesday (this class is a MWF class), on the way out of the building, he stopped me specifically to ask if I was going to be in class Friday. It didn't seem like he was just making conversation because he hadn't said a word to me the entire time.

Is this guy just being nice or is he maybe trying to flirt a bit. Keep in mind he's seems to be shy or at least really quiet. Most of our conversations, although classwork related, have been slightly awkward with lots of eye contact and smiling.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes to Human Relations (51 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
He may want to practice making babies with you. Why don't you just ask him out and dump the unhappy guy anyway?
posted by maxpower at 10:03 PM on April 29, 2010 [7 favorites]


He smiled at you once and asked if you were going to be in class tomorrow? That's what we're going on? Never hurts to flirt but all that's a little vague. And break up with the other guy, too!
posted by otherwordlyglow at 10:05 PM on April 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh for Chrissake's, just throw him a smile, make a joking comment about his hair/backpack/clothes/mispronounciation of some word, ask him if he's taking any more classes, and walk out with him at the end of class. If he's not responding at any of these points then just don't move forward.

Nobody can promise based on a tiny off-hand comment that you two will fall madly in love and have tons of babies. But because it's such a tiny, off-hand, meaningless comment you should feel absolutely free to pursue it however you wish. The world will not end and you will not fall into a pit of utter public humiliation if he doesn't respond.

Flirting is something you do to draw someone in, if they were already there, there'd be no point and you'd be knocking boots already.
posted by schroedinger at 10:05 PM on April 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


p.s. drop the other dude no matter what happens with Vague Flirtatious Interest, life's too short
posted by schroedinger at 10:07 PM on April 29, 2010 [2 favorites]


It sounds like you're done with the relationship that you're currently in, but you're holding on until you can find something better. That suggest some tough questions you should probably be asking before you are asking about starting another relationship. Is it fair to your partner to hang on to him even though you're that unhappy and have been for so long? Is it right for you to stay in that relationship even though you're unhappy?

It sounds like you're afraid to be alone at the moment, so you don't want to end a dead relationship until you've found someone to replace him. If that's true, my answer is, work on your existing relationship before you start another one - fix it or end it. (It seems clear you'll be ending it now or later anyway)

And then talk to the nice boy in your German class and see if he's interested.
posted by jardinier at 10:09 PM on April 29, 2010 [3 favorites]


He could be doing one or both. And you could find out, if that's what you want to do. Just be aware that you might be pre-bounding. It's like a rebound, except it starts before you've actually left the person you're with. It allows you to grab onto someone new before you let go of someone old. It's good for dependency, not so much for balance. Just be aware of that and look out for YOU first and foremost (because being able to stand on your own gives you some options about whether or not you need to grab onto someone as you hop around through life).
posted by iamkimiam at 10:11 PM on April 29, 2010 [4 favorites]


You're not a mind reader, and what you've described could be a feeble attempt at flirtation on his part or it could be nothing. But who cares? Flirt with him if you like him, not if you think he likes you.

But whatever you do, for the love of pete, break up with your boyfriend now unless you're trying to get back at him. Having skimmed the last thread, I certainly wouldn't blame you for feeling that way if you do, but if you love your current boyfriend as you say, cheating on him before dumping him would be poor form.
posted by drpynchon at 10:15 PM on April 29, 2010 [2 favorites]


jardinier:

I've been going back and forth for months about my boyfriend and whether or not to stay with him. Most of this "trying to work it out" stuff is his idea. When I say begging, pleading and crying for me to try to work it out with him, I'm serious. That's a LONG story unto itself.

And no, I don't think I'm afraid to be alone. I've been single for very long stretches, not even flirting with or dating anyone. I'm not volunteering to do it again but I'm not against it. It's just I've already agreed to trying to try and work it out with my boyfriend. I've been steadily losing interest in him for various reasons since around the 2nd or 3rd month. He seems to be trying to reignite the spark but I feel like it's probably too little, too late. I still love him but I rarely feel "in love" anymore.

Just to be clear, I'm not planning on trying to see what going on with this new guy WHILE maintaining my relationship with someone else. That's wrong and unfair.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 10:19 PM on April 29, 2010


You've moved on and just haven't told your ex-boyfriend. Which is fine. Just tell him it's really really over. And then make it be so!

You're not going back and forth. You've done that already. You don't think it's working and you're annoyed by his begging and you just want permission to move on. You have ALL of our permissions. MOVE ON!

You've already made up your mind. And now you're trying something new. It's totally working! He smiled! Now smile back. Ask him what he's doing this weekend, and does he want to study a bit with you or practice some vocab?

Report back how it goes. Good luck! Wear your cute shirt and smile! See how good it feels? REMEMBER THAT FEELING. You're probably not ready to jump into another relationship. But you can definitely definitely smile.
posted by barnone at 10:31 PM on April 29, 2010 [2 favorites]


he's flirting. obviously. but not obviously.
posted by lakersfan1222 at 10:36 PM on April 29, 2010


sorry to say, but people are generally not "just being nice". not when you are college students and stopping people on the way out of class....that's just not usually The Case.

know this.
posted by lakersfan1222 at 10:38 PM on April 29, 2010


1. Dump impossible guy (have already, quite recently, told you this.)
2. Have dignified period of mourning, marked by drinking too much with girlfriends, emoting on blog, bad poetry, listening over and over to breakup music of your choice. Can last anywhere from one day to about a year or so - after that friends become restive.
3. Go back to class. When walking out, if attractive boy says, hey, say hey back. Smile. Make eye contact. Suggest coffee to go over notes, or, alternatively, beer to get over insanity of professor, college life, angst of twenties, imminent sense of world ending.
4. Repeat step 3 as necessary. Do not neglect step 1.5, which is to say, make good and lifelong friends, discover creative outlets, figure out just who the hell you actually are without a guy in the picture, learn about trees, discover rocks, explore music, go to galleries, paint, laugh, live and then, but only then, go to step 3.
posted by mygothlaundry at 10:52 PM on April 29, 2010 [50 favorites]


omg, goth laundry. YES
posted by lakersfan1222 at 10:55 PM on April 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think he is totally flirting.

You don't need a period of mourning unless it involves orgasms. (That's just my opinion though)
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 11:03 PM on April 29, 2010 [2 favorites]


Speaking from experience, some of us guys can be hopeless. It really sounds like this one is interested, but maybe too shy to make anything other than a vague opening move. Ask him for a coffee, or to a movie and see how he reacts. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
posted by shimmerbug at 11:05 PM on April 29, 2010


mygothlaundry:

love that post. It made me smile. Of course with step 2, I couldn't do too much with it. Never been much of a "eat a gallon of ice cream and get plastered" kind of person.

barnone:

You are right about this feeling good. I believe it's actually making me me realize how little fun is left in my current relationship. I mean I literally just got off the phone with my boyfriend and the whole conversation was just...dead. The last couple of time we've hung out since the breakup have been...dead. Didn't want a kiss, rather he didn't touch me at all. I think it'd be easier on him if he did the breaking up but he's more likely to flip out about it again either way. Don't think I don't wish on a daily basis I did not get myself into this situation with this guy.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 11:06 PM on April 29, 2010


^
okay, YES to this too
posted by lakersfan1222 at 11:06 PM on April 29, 2010


meaning YES to ifds, sn9.

word.

as per the Dead Guy, how long a relationship? is it totally out of the ? to let this one fade into the scurry of campus life? discover rocks, yes. very important. but do answer the call.
posted by lakersfan1222 at 11:10 PM on April 29, 2010


1) Dump the loser
2) Ask this guy out

The wost case scenario is that you feel embarrassed. Is that really so bad? NO! It's not. Go for it.
posted by delmoi at 11:24 PM on April 29, 2010


lakersfan1222:

Relationship has been going on since September 2 last year. Went for 5 months. Broke up for 3 days. Then 2 months. Broke up for a week. It will be a week tomorrow since we got back together. Not so easy to let it fade off either. He's clingy in the extreme and is dead set on sticking around. He talks all the time about wanting to make me his wife and having kids one day. I've seen the ring although he hasn't officially proposed yet. He's asked me what I'd say if he were to propose goodness knows how many times. So, if it were a normal person, I'd have no issue with letting it fade. I currently have very little issue with letting it fade. Just he is trying to make sure it doesn't fade and is currently making me feel guilty for wanting it to fade in the first place.

Haha, nothing like discovering rocks. Hopefully, they're more fun than math textbooks.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 11:24 PM on April 29, 2010


Flirting is an art and science. If you can't figure out whether this guy is interested, you shouldn't flirt with him as the letdown might be too hard for you.
posted by hal_c_on at 12:09 AM on April 30, 2010


It's just I've already agreed to trying to try and work it out with my boyfriend...

Just to be clear, I'm not planning on trying to see what going on with this new guy WHILE maintaining my relationship with someone else. That's wrong and unfair.


re: this question - Soooo, not to be (too much of) a jerk here, but the question in your post really seems moot. I mean, I think the guy is possibly interested in you, but if you're actually (regardless of whether your heart is in it or not) trying to work it out with your boyfriend, and you're not going to see what's going on with your classmate while maintaining your relationship with your boyfriend, then that leads us to "Unless he actually asks you out on the last day of class, you are going to be unable to ever find out if the guy likes you, because that would mean asking him out or flirting back with him, and those things seem to be off the table."

re: the elephant in the room that now follows you around AskMe - It's not good for your mental well-being to be all "If my boyfriend wasn't full of guilt-trips and freakouts, then I would've totally broken up with him already". Don't let someone else's reactions steer your life away from where you want it to be.
posted by 23skidoo at 12:27 AM on April 30, 2010 [3 favorites]


WHY HAVENT YOU BROKEN UP WITH BATSHIT CRAZY CREEPY DUDE ALREADY

And yes, he's flirting with you.
posted by dunkadunc at 12:36 AM on April 30, 2010 [2 favorites]


23skidoo:

Right now I'm doing two things at once. I was already in the process of deciding whether or not to bother with trying to work it out. Before the guy in my class ever came up as possibly flirting, I was already considering the fact that it's probably been high time to move on anyway. I'm not saying the only reason I've been around was because my boyfriend throws fits when I suggest leaving. Quite frankly, he throw fits about everything and that has not slowed me down except in this one way. There was a point in time (before the BS) that I loved this man very much. I know a great deal about him and we've gotten very close. THAT is the problem. As for reactions, he has that reaction to anything he doesn't like, want, understand or see coming.

Secondly, I'm trying to see if this guy is interested or just talking. Boyfriend or no boyfriend, I'd be interested to know either way.

The difference is in whether or not I'd pursue it. I would not do so until I broke up with my boyfriend. The possibility of that has been greatly increasing for a long time before "M" came into the picture. This opportunity may be something that just makes it happen faster since I actually wouldn't mind getting to know the new guy even if it lead to nothing but friendship.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 1:04 AM on April 30, 2010


You've been dating PsychoStud for 5 months and he has a RING? Pull the ripcord on that freaking relationship already and bug out!

As for Otherguy. You can rarely go wrong by simply assuming everything you *THINK* is flirting...actually is flirting. Even if its not, you brush it off and be happy that you tried. Always flirt. Its fun.

But really. Get rid of Norman Bates first.
posted by jnnla at 1:04 AM on April 30, 2010


jinnla:

Oh yes. He has a ring. Showed it to me, had it resized to fit me and everything. He's asked me to move in with him. He's offered everything under the sun. I had trouble one semester with the type of financial aid I get. He offered to pay for the semester and have me pay him back later. That just a few examples.

Personally, I think it's just crazy to do any of that sort of thing after such a short time. He's been doing this since the 3rd month. I won't lie. It freaks me out every time he starts talking about what we're going to name our children.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 1:16 AM on April 30, 2010


My first thought was that maybe he was thinking of skipping and wanted to borrow your notes/contact you to see if the prof. gave any hints about the final exam or he wants to get together to study for the final. That seems to be the simplest answer (especially since he hasn't spoken to you about anything other than school work). Or, he was flirting with you and wants to get together. Either way, you'll know tomorrow/Friday if he shows up to class and if he says anything/asks you out.

If you're that interested in him, especially with your last question(s), then you might want to really think about the status of your current relationship. If you do decide to go out with this guy (if that's indeed what he is looking to do), then please please end your current relationship first. It would be bad enough to cheat on your current BF in any event, but especially with your current BF's "issues", you'd just be creating a whole lot of drama that you don't need (plus, it's a shitty thing to do) and you might be tempted to rationalize it based on your background with current BF.

Not trying to suggest that you would cheat on him or are planning to, but like I said, given the history, it's probably best to avoid it for a multitude of reasons which I'm sure you already get. But given your interest in this guy and your history with your BF and past posts, all signs are pointing to "time to break up with your current boyfriend".
posted by 1000monkeys at 1:41 AM on April 30, 2010


Oops, just saw your comment re: not cheating. I'm glad! I just think you've got a lot going on now, relationship-wise and I think you OBVIOUSLY need and want to end your current relationship, but I also think you need a breather before pursuing anything else, even casually.

I just hope you're not one of those people who crave drama so create a lot of drama for themselves for attention/to stave off boredom/masochistic/whatever. Because honestly, and no offence, but I'm starting to get that impression a little. Food for thought, maybe?
posted by 1000monkeys at 1:48 AM on April 30, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't think he was thinking of skipping. If he was, why would he have said he'd see me in class on Friday? There is no written final test. The presentation is the last thing we're doing this semester. He already gave his and the teacher doesn't take role; so if he wanted to skip he could do so with no worries. I also doubt he'd go so far as to ask me out when he's barely said a thing to me all semester aside from class-related stuff. Not that he won't but it doesn't seem likely. Now, there's always the possibility of next semester as if he takes German III, we'll be in the same class again as there's only one class, but that's getting too far into it.

I'll try not to be offended by that last comment. No, I am not someone who craves drama. I'm usually very good and getting rid of situations and people who bring it into my life. I've gotten rid of a lot of friends for that very reason, not to mention other boyfriends who needed to go. However, I do realize you have nothing to go off except what you thought of my first post and I'd be careful about assuming you can know that much detail about someone's personality/character from a few paragraphs about a messed up relationship as if most people would willingly seek that sort of thing. I have to ask though, what makes me seem like I'm drama seeking just because I ask a question about a guy who got my attention when he acted a bit out of character? The only thing that creates unnecessary drama in my life is my current boyfriend; if I craved drama I could just continue balancing school, 2 jobs and day to day life. Plenty of it to go around without creating any myself. Regardless, I'm sorry you think that I am.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 2:18 AM on April 30, 2010


One thing I really wish I'd known in my early 20s - if a relationship isn't working, or it isn't making you happy, it's okay to leave. Another: drama isn't intensity and a measure of emotional depth, but just bloody drama.

I've been with my OH for two and a half years. We haven't even got close to thinking about marriage, because there's too much other stuff that needs to happen first. Five months is too early. I have a feeling that proposal isn't about him wanting to make you his wife. It's about wanting to make someone his wife. You should be flirting with cute boys in your classes, not terrified to tell someone you don't want what they want.
posted by mippy at 3:13 AM on April 30, 2010 [3 favorites]


This might be hard to understand right now, but people say shit all the time that makes no sense. I think you're reading slightly more into this than was ever intended, but that doesn't change the fact that the guy likes you. See, any guy that's talking to you when it's not part of some kind of requirement likes you. It amazes me that girls haven't all figured this out yet. Now, that doesn't mean madly or even deeply, but if you're wondering if he's interested then the answer is yes.

Sadly, this knowledge doesn't help nearly as much as you'd hope.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:51 AM on April 30, 2010


Is this guy just being nice or is he maybe trying to flirt a bit?

Probably just being nice; might be trying to flirt.

I would suggest worrying less about what he's thinking, and more about what you're thinking. Do you like him? If so, start flirting yourself!* If not, it doesn't really matter whether he is or isn't flirting.

*Obviously taking into account your situation with your current boyfriend: as you realise, if you're interested in classmate, break things off with boyfriend first.
posted by Infinite Jest at 5:08 AM on April 30, 2010


Personally, I think it's just crazy to do any of that sort of thing after such a short time. He's been doing this since the 3rd month. I won't lie. It freaks me out every time he starts talking about what we're going to name our children.

Oy. Have you told him this? I mean, you had to at least be complicit in trying the ring on for him to resize it.

In fact, you have to be complicit to let him back into your life over and over again, no matter how pushy he's being. The way to break off contact is to delete him from your facebook, mark his emails as spam so you don't see them, change his name in your phone to something like "DO NOT ANSWER" and not to respond to any of his attempts to contact you. If he shows up at your house, call the police. Seriously!

I know you're going to say yadda-yadda-yadda, you internet people don't know me. But it's pretty transparent what's going on from your three posts so far. You need to cut off contact and need to do it cleanly. You need to not be swayed by offers for help (because those are just attempts at manipulating you). You need to tell him, flat out, that the ring stuff is creepycakes and you won't be marrying him. Even though I think he sounds like an enormous douche, you've chosen to stay with him--and so he deserves some modicum of honesty. You're not being honest here.

And yes, obviously, the other guy likes you. Ask him out on Friday. Don't let an asshole you don't even really like stop you from exploring new and interesting dating opportunities.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 5:19 AM on April 30, 2010 [6 favorites]


PhoBWanKenobi:

Nah. I know you don't know me but I don't expect you to. On some level I know what's going on isn't acceptable otherwise I wouldn't take issue with it. I'm not going to explain why I posted so many comments as to why he wasn't a complete asshole other than that was the purpose: there's a few good things left about him. Doesn't make him much of a better person and I realize that. And actually, I have been honest with him. He knows I've been increasily less and less attracted to him if he couldn't read it from me pushing away all of his advances most of the time because I've flat out told him. He's currently trying everything, including a change in personality, to keep me around. I feel like if you have to struggle this hard to maintain feelings about someone...there are no feelings to hold on to. I also told him that trying to change your personality is like trying to morph into another person; you can only do that for so long before the real stuff comes out. And clearly, I don't find the real stuff attractive.

As for the whole proposal thing and the ring, he'd spoken about feeling like I was "the one". The ring is not an engagement ring. It's more like a ring you'd give someone for a present or something. He'd bought me a really nice pair of earrings for Christmas but traded them for the ring since he wanted it to be something I'd wear on a regular basis. I was supposed to have the ring for a Christmas present but he never gave it back to me. So, yes, I tried it on and he had it resized. I just didn't know he was planning to use it to propse eventually. So nope, I don't have it.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 6:29 AM on April 30, 2010


mippy:

I agree with the proposal probably being about wanting someone to be his wife. I got that feeling when he started talking about that. It seems like he's willing to struggle no matter what to make a relationship work...apparently with no clue when to just give up on something. I mean, we had a conversations when we broke up about how I didn't think we were right for each other at all and that we both may be happier alone or with other people. He threw a fit and suggested something to effect of "any relationship can work, you just have to work at it". I told him that was ridiculous and that if it were the case, nobody would ever break up. I just think he wants to be able to say I have a wife and kids without caring who it is that's his wife and the mother of his children.

Creepy? You have no idea!

Civil_Disobedient:

I'm not trying to read far enough into it to figure out if we'll have a first date or something. I was just wandering if he was flirting or what. Not if it was going to go somewhere. Whatever, either way.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 6:36 AM on April 30, 2010


As for the whole proposal thing and the ring, he'd spoken about feeling like I was "the one". The ring is not an engagement ring. It's more like a ring you'd give someone for a present or something. He'd bought me a really nice pair of earrings for Christmas but traded them for the ring since he wanted it to be something I'd wear on a regular basis. I was supposed to have the ring for a Christmas present but he never gave it back to me. So, yes, I tried it on and he had it resized. I just didn't know he was planning to use it to propse eventually. So nope, I don't have it.

I'm going to be really frank here.

You need to stop accepting expensive gifts from people you don't care about.

You need to break up with him, finally and fully.

This isn't about him being a bad person. This is about you now. You're leading him on. You're being less than kind. And you're doing all of this to someone who's clearly unstable. I know it seems cruel to break things off when someone is cajoling you and wheedling you to stay with them, but it's far crueler to prolong things when you know you don't love him and won't love him again. Telling him you're not attracted to him and don't want to be with him is only honest if it's reflected in your actions--cutting off contact and staying away. Every time you go back to him, you're telling him that you can be worn down; this is why he's fighting so hard to keep you--because he thinks you can be swayed. And you haven't done anything to dispel him of the notion.

Again, I have little sympathy for him generally. He sounds like a douche. But your examples of how he's a good person are all about him plying you with money (paying for school), cushy living arrangements (asking you to move in) and gifts. You're pretty young, so I can understand how it seems innocent and kind to accept that kind of generosity--but you're smart, too, so I think you know, deep down, that these are loaded gifts, and that your acceptance of them hinges on implicit consent to continue to be with him. It's actually pretty grubby and selfish to allow this kind of thing to continue.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:55 AM on April 30, 2010 [9 favorites]


I have to ask though, what makes me seem like I'm drama seeking just because I ask a question about a guy who got my attention when he acted a bit out of character? The only thing that creates unnecessary drama in my life is my current boyfriend

I thought the same thing too, so I'll answer:

Respectfully, what makes you seem like you like drama is a couple things. First, for people on AskMe, your relationship with your boyfriend seems to define you, and you like to talk about how much you think he's awful, while at the same time making no steps towards admitting that you have the power to break up* with your boyfriend, and that the person who is most responsible for keeping you in an unsatisfying relationship is yourself.

Secondly, (and not to be the Bloodhound Gang but) your last AskMe, the one you mention in this one, was 8 days ago, and the tone of your responses in that question was very "I plan on staying with my boyfriend, what are you guys talking about", whereas now it's "My boyfriend is totally messed up, amirite". I can see twinges of both sentiments in both questions, but it still seems like a pretty big shift for 8 days.

I'm not trying to shame you or whatever, just trying to expound.

Also, are you in therapy? Because with all the responsing you do in your AskMes, it seems like you're really hungry to talk about this with people, and therapy might be something you totally get something out of.






*I understand and acknowledge that messed-up relationships are hard to break out of, but it seems your far enough along to admit how messed-up the relationship is, but are still choosing to be in it. While not the kindest interpretation of your situation, "liking drama" is an apt description of people who choose a life for themselves that they do not want.
posted by 23skidoo at 7:32 AM on April 30, 2010 [3 favorites]


Look, ChucksNPaintbrushes, I'd love you in a heartbeat. I'd treat you nice; we'd laugh, we'd play, we'd listen to each other. We'd fill our moments with the things we want to do and make each other feel good. We'd support each other. But you're with some jerk right now. You're not available to me or anybody else. Nobody else can get your attention right now. But you're awesome and if you'd just ask more of yourself and open up to the possibility that I'm in the company of thousands here, offering so much better, you'd see that and believe it and never settle for less. Ditch the misery and join in on the fun. Awesome, kind, loving people are everywhere, just hanging around, waiting for you.
posted by zizzle at 8:53 AM on April 30, 2010


ChucksNPaintbrushes, FWIW I think you're handling these comments and the situation with your boyfriend (and the guy from German class) pretty well. I can tell that you are confident and even though you are young you seem pretty sure of yourself outside of these situations. You're in school, you seem like you are smart and you know what you want. It's hard for us to see you go through shit with your boyfriend that we would never dream of putting up with (seriously if you were my sister I would kick his ass, I don't care how good he is to you). But I trust that, just based on your comments here, you know what is best and what you need to do.

Also, that guy is totally flirting with you. Work it.
posted by stinker at 9:50 AM on April 30, 2010


Meta.
posted by ericb at 10:03 AM on April 30, 2010


Also, are you in therapy? Because with all the responsing you do in your AskMes, it seems like you're really hungry to talk about this with people, and therapy might be something you totally get something out of.

Great advice.
posted by ericb at 10:05 AM on April 30, 2010


I have to ask though, what makes me seem like I'm drama seeking just because I ask a question about a guy who got my attention when he acted a bit out of character? The only thing that creates unnecessary drama in my life is my current boyfriend

Hey, sorry if that came off a bit abrupt. It's the internet, and the nature of askme is to try to get to the point rather than be "chatty" so I was trying to be as straightforward as possible. I agree, however, with what 23skidoo said. The fact that you keep going back to your "lousy" boyfriend after all the drama that you've had with him and the fact that you keep posting about how awful he is and yet are still with him (and I believe in one of your other questions you were both posting how awful he was and then defending him? Maybe I'm mis-remembering that bit) and then wondering if some random dude in your class is flirting with you because he asked if you'll be in class (although he could very well be flirting with you) but you've said that you have no intention to pursue anything.

So I guess my question is, aside from creating some drama for yourself (whether purposely or subconsciously, and it's something you should really reflect on imho), well...what is the point of your question? Is buddy from class flirting with you? Yes/No/Maybe. We have no way of telling you that. Hopefully you'll find out today. I don't really see how your question can even be answered by anybody other than buddy in your class, so it doesn't come across as a "legitimate" AskMe question but as a way to chat about your current (crappy) boyfriend from a slightly different angle from your last question.

Again, apologies if that comes across harsh over the internet but if (at least some) people are thinking it, then maybe it's something to think about.
posted by 1000monkeys at 11:19 AM on April 30, 2010


Chucks, you come across as very defensive when you reply to people. Best thing to remember here is that AskMe is not a forum but more like a problem page where everyone's the agony aunt. Sometimes you will hear things you don't want to hear; just try not to get upset about it, and realise that everyone here is trying to advise in good faith.

If what you really need is someone to talk to, a sounding board, then therapy or a trusted pastor/friend/relative will be really helpful to you and will help you figure out the answers which I think, deep down, you already know.
posted by mippy at 11:54 AM on April 30, 2010 [2 favorites]


As to whether or not the guy in your class is flirting with you: It's impossible for me to tell. Maybe.

BUT, that's not the point I came here to make. My point is this: perhaps this guy in your class reminds you of what it feels like to have fun with guys. Guys and flirting are fun! And relationships can be fun, too! Sounds to me like your current BF isn't much fun. He sounds stressful. He sounds like he's trying to lasso you in and tie you down as fast as he possibly can. You are not responsible for him. Don't stay out of some imagined sense of obligation or something. Life's too short.
posted by cleverevans at 2:58 PM on April 30, 2010 [1 favorite]


mippy:

Sorry if I came off overly defensive but I'm also not used to a bunch of people barraging me with insults as if I'm creating drama for the hell of it by being in this relationship. I'm not disregarding everyone's advice nor am I saying most of what people said was offensive or a reason to be angry. However, there were some highly unnecessary comments that I didn't appreciate and those bring out defensiveness.

1000monkeys:

The point of this question was exactly what I asked. I've always been horrible at recognizing when a guy's interested as I've taken to assuming most of them are not. I was just wondering how many people would think it could have been an attempted flirt or just politeness. There's no catch in there; just asking a question.

As for things I've said in reference to my boyfriend, I just wanted as much information about BOTH sides of the story to be there. It's not fair to go on and on about how awful someone is as if there's nothing good about them. Just like it's ridiculous to carry on about how someone's perfect when actually, that's impossible. So if it came off confusing, I apologize but that wasn't intentional.

And no, I didn't ask this as a way to continue to talk about my boyfriend. I asked this because I wanted unbiased opinions on the question. Yeah, I realize you weren't there and can't guarantee an answer. I was there and can't even guarantee an answer. If you're going to post a comment referencing the relationship even though the actual question I'm currently asking has nothing to do with that short of the fact that you've read enough of my previous post to know about it, what would you expect me to do? You brought up a topic and I responded to it. Not just you, there were some others but the same applies.

stinker:

Thank you.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 4:34 PM on April 30, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'd go with not flirting, if that happened to me. But the point is moot, now, right? Because today is Friday, the last day of class, if I'm understanding your narrative. So, what happened? Now you truly know better than us.

Also, not to get to pointed, but this:
You brought up a topic and I responded to it
just isn't true. You brought it up, in your question, and there's no sense getting prickly with people talking about it now. I know you're new, but try to just let the rest of this thread unfold without responding. It's really the way AskMe works best, and then you don't give people a chance to sidetrack so much in all the back and forth with you. I mean that helpfully, not judgmentally, I hope you can hear it that way.
posted by donnagirl at 6:20 PM on April 30, 2010


Alright. I get that you're trying to be helpful; thank you. However, I've seen enough (not so much in this thread but in the other one where I'm being discussed) to know this format is going to do less helping than just causing a problem. I think it's outright hilarious that posting replies is "so far out of the norm" that it's "shocking" everyone. Oh my goodness, my posts need to moderating because...oh...I have a response to something. I'm not being sarcastic either; hopefully you're not reading it that way. In any case, I'm starting to see how this site works. People ask a question and just wait for x amount of people to respond. Doesn't matter that they may have comments they'd like to add as others make their own comments. Doesn't matter that you might have more to say than what the original question was since someone brought up some point. If that's how you get questions answered in life...well, good luck with that.

For the record, I just broke up with my boyfriend.

And to answer your question as to what happened: nothing. He asked if I'd be taking German III next semester and told me he'd see me then. Got my email to add me on facebook and that was that.
posted by ChucksNPaintbrushes at 7:51 PM on April 30, 2010


As for things I've said in reference to my boyfriend, I just wanted as much information about BOTH sides of the story to be there. It's not fair to go on and on about how awful someone is as if there's nothing good about them. Just like it's ridiculous to carry on about how someone's perfect when actually, that's impossible. So if it came off confusing, I apologize but that wasn't intentional.

And no, I didn't ask this as a way to continue to talk about my boyfriend.
Etc.

If that were the case, and you just wanted to know if buddy was flirting with you or not, then why did you need to bring up your boyfriend and his "mental illness", "heart problems", etc. again? I don't see how that information would have any bearing on whether or not this guy was flirting with you. Does not compute. I'm not trying to attack you, and I apologize if that's what came across, I'm just trying (as well as others are) to point out a few things that might help you take a different viewpoint on your issues; I'm sure if you didn't want varying opinions or viewpoints, you wouldn't be posting your questions here, right?

Anyways, it seems you already know the answer by now so please share with us...did buddy say anything to you? Ask you out? etc.
posted by 1000monkeys at 7:55 PM on April 30, 2010


Is this guy just being nice or is he maybe trying to flirt a bit.

He would be the best person to ask.


Remember, at work or school, if things don't work out between the two of you, you may have to live with a certain, daily awkwardness.
posted by xm at 8:26 PM on April 30, 2010


And to answer your question as to what happened: nothing. He asked if I'd be taking German III next semester and told me he'd see me then. Got my email to add me on facebook and that was that.

For manymanymany people, "friending you on facebook" is one of the first steps they take in pursuing someone.
posted by 23skidoo at 5:29 AM on May 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


If that were the case, and you just wanted to know if buddy was flirting with you or not, then why did you need to bring up your boyfriend and his "mental illness", "heart problems", etc. again? I don't see how that information would have any bearing on whether or not this guy was flirting with you.

Not mentioning it would have had a HUGE bearing on the way everybody responded to the question however. It's a kinda damned if she does, damned if she don't kind of situation.

Chucksnpaintbrushes, good on you for taking all these steps to put yourself first. You're on the path to happiness and I support you!
posted by iamkimiam at 1:36 PM on May 1, 2010


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