How To Help Someone Get Over Me?
September 8, 2005 5:28 AM   Subscribe

CollegeRelationshipFilter: How can I help someone get over me?

This gets a bit complicated. I've recently (two weeks) arrived at college and found a good group of friends. I had been talking to one of them, Person A, throughout the summer online, and he had begun to get the idea (despite my best efforts) that we would have a relationship once we were both on campus. A few nights after his arrival, he tried to kiss me, and I was forced to let him down (easily). He's become a good friend, which complicates matters, because he's been lying for days about being OK about the situation as he mopes around campus.

The big complication is that one of his friends (Person A is a sophomore, the friend, Person B, is a junior) and I have developed a mutual attraction, but now after two dates have been forced to put it on hold out of respect for the fact that Person A still has feelings for me. I'm anxious to get things rolling again with Person B, so how can I help Person A get over me? Also, what kind of (time) limits, if any, on letting Person A get over it should I set with Person B? Thanks.
posted by awesomebrad to Human Relations (21 answers total)
Response by poster: I should add that cutting off all contact with Person A isn't really an option, I'm a freshman, and we're all gay.
posted by awesomebrad at 5:31 AM on September 8, 2005

Did you promise to love, honor and cherish Person A forever? No? Then go for it with Person B. Let Person A take care of Person A. You might be surprised- the person might not die without being in a relationship with you. You're probably not as wonderful as you think.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:37 AM on September 8, 2005 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: ThePinkSuperhero: Believe me, I know. But Person B thinks it's a good idea to wait until he stops moping around, so I don't really have a choice. It kinda sucks because it shows just how sweet Person B is, and I'm willing to give it a few weeks; I'd just prefer that it be much shorter.
posted by awesomebrad at 5:40 AM on September 8, 2005

Set Person A up with someone else.
posted by biffa at 5:41 AM on September 8, 2005

Geez, patience. Is it really going to kill you to wait a few weeks? Take a little time to respect the feelings of others, and remember the cheezy truism that time is the best medicine.

Really, there's almost nothing you can do in this situation except send clear signals. You play a risky game trying to set him up with someone else, and it may or may not be appreciated.
posted by onalark at 5:52 AM on September 8, 2005

I'm not entirely sure you can "help someone get over you." If Person A attracted to you, then your presence is going to fuel that — unless you start acting like a colossal asshole to him, and I'm guessing you'd rather not do that. I'm also guessing that you feel guilty about the pain you've caused him, which is natural — but you can't assuage your guilt by trying to ease his pain, 'cause dollars to donuts you'll end up just making it worse.

You shouldn't feel guilty about pursuing things with Person B. If you decide to do that, though, the one thing you can do to help Person A out with the situation is to be discreet in your new relationship — don't rub his nose in it.

Oh, and you've been on campus for what, a week now? This all seems like a very accelerated time frame for all of the above situation to have happened. Try not to get carried away.
posted by Johnny Assay at 5:54 AM on September 8, 2005

Hey, you're not obligated to do anything of course as regards to past commitments or the lack there of. That said, if you want this network of friends to remain functional, the best thing to do is not to date within it. Seeing person B is likely to further upset person A, drive A and B apart, etc.
posted by drpynchon at 5:57 AM on September 8, 2005

It's not going to work out if you're all friends. Get person B to agree that you shouldn't see person A, then tell A in a nice way.
posted by lunkfish at 6:05 AM on September 8, 2005

Briefly: it's not your job to make other people comfortable with your decisions. All you can do is be honest.
posted by elisabeth r at 6:36 AM on September 8, 2005

You should quit being so awesome, duh.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 6:49 AM on September 8, 2005

Best answer: Big, fat word to Johnny Assay above. This sounds condescending as hell, but all the drama of your first few weeks at college will be something you just shake your head about a few years (hell, a few months) down the road. I agree that you should endeavor not to rub Person A's nose in it, but have faith that he's going to eventually find someone he finds way more awesome than you, and he won't believe how much energy he wasted on pining.

Is it just me or did everyone develop a super-intense crush at the beginning of school, that later was sort of embarrassing in its melodrama? Just me? Okay then...
posted by justonegirl at 6:59 AM on September 8, 2005

You've been there a week you say?

Just relax.
posted by delmoi at 7:16 AM on September 8, 2005

Awesomebrad, here's some very friendly advice for Person A: The best way to get over someone is to get under someone else.
posted by seawallrunner at 7:52 AM on September 8, 2005

I think you need to have an honest sit-down with B and ask him whom he thinks he's dating- you, or A. A is just being gross and manipulative, and the best path for both of you is to ignore his shenanigans and move on.

Compound this with justonegirl's point- this is your first week at college. Everything is new. Having no idea where you're from, this may be your first time in an environment where gay men date openly. You'll look back on this drama in a couple months for what it is- stupid drama.
posted by mkultra at 8:39 AM on September 8, 2005

cutting off all contact with Person A isn't really an option

BTW, yes it is. Doesn't matter the circumstances. You may not be able to literally do so, but you can still create a "social distance" from him in situations where you happen to be in the same space. Welcome to the first of many lessons about being an adult- you're often forced to be around people you'd rather not.
posted by mkultra at 8:47 AM on September 8, 2005

The easiest best way to avoid things like this is not to talk about feelings on the internet.
posted by Laugh_track at 8:49 AM on September 8, 2005

mkultra, brad didn't say he didn't enjoy person A's company. It's just the unwanted romantic attention he objected to. (right?) I agree with Johnny; give it a few weeks then start dating person B. A's not going to like it either way, but there's a much better chance of saving a friendship and keeping a group of friends if A doesn't get the impression you're rubbing his face in it. View the wait as a decision that's good for your group of friends, instead of just to please person A.
posted by Happydaz at 8:54 AM on September 8, 2005

Person B thinks it's a good idea to wait until he stops moping around

You have no idea how long that's going to take, though. You can wait until Person A is over you, but as long as you're still available, Person A is probably going to think you're coming back to him and he just has to be patient. I've had my own Person A and trying not to hurt him prevented me from having successful relationships with any other Persons. Finally I had to get to the point where I realized that I couldn't be responsible for his feelings because there didn't seem to be anything I could do about it.
posted by srah at 9:05 AM on September 8, 2005

Response by poster: Not sure this will really get any more responses at the moment, but thanks for all the help.

Person A is in a dramatically better mood today, which is good. Am I right in thinking that it's not something I should bring up with Person B, rather, let Person B bring it up?
posted by awesomebrad at 12:05 PM on September 8, 2005

Am I right in thinking that it's not something I should bring up with Person B, rather, let Person B bring it up?

I don't see a problem with bringing it up if it's bothering you and you want to talk about it. Try to refrain from divulging details that B doesn't want to know about though.
posted by onalark at 1:47 PM on September 8, 2005

I would resent the hell out of someone that tried to help me get over them, well intentioned or not.

Let A deal with it. It sucks, but it doesn't suck for ever.
posted by sinical at 11:43 PM on September 8, 2005

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