The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

I have a "problem." I've already asked my grandpa, a close Christian friend my age, and an older Christian man about it. It's about a girl I think I really like.

We became friends in high school band. I met her my freshman year, her junior year. Where a lot of the other guys looked at her for her physical beauty, I always admired her for being such a strong Christian and a wonderful person on the inside. I have asked her for advice on numerous things about Christian struggles, and she has always been very helpful. I always thought of her as a big sister.

But recently I have been wondering if I like her more than that. I asked my friends regarding the fact that I didn't even know what my feelings were for her. They said it seemed like a good start to a relationship, and I should just ask her how she feels about dating.

Here's some of the problems: For the past two years, she's been attending a university in a different state. I found out near the beginning of summer that she is back for break. Before I had even asked or really thought about dating, we tried to get together with some other graduated band friends and hang out. But it seems one of us is always busy with something else. The other guys said to ask her in person, but I'm afraid that won't happen. My grandpa, who is the oldest and most experienced, said it doesn't matter how I ask, just text her. But I've been putting it off because we haven't texted each other in a while, and the last three were all random stuff from me. I'm afraid if I just randomly text, I'll scare her or freak her out. Even if she doesn't want to date, I still want to stay good friends. She is known to stop texting for long periods of time and then randomly pick up the conversation (it might be her phone), but I still get the feeling I somehow did something to make her hate me, although I do overreact (once someone didn't text for ten minutes and I had myself convinced that the only conclusion was that he was driving and I got him killed).

The other problem is that when summer ends, she'll be back in her university and I'll be going to a different one. I know if it's true love, it will survive, but I'm afraid of the long distance thing (although we've stayed in touch for two years now since she first started college).

I keep thinking about her, hoping to run into her. Yesterday at the pool I scanned around to see if by some miracle she happened to be there. Also, at camp, they do senior night where a lot of the alumni come back to listen to the current seniors' stories. Someone said that she was there, and my whole body tingled with excitement and nervousness, but I found out it was another girl who had the same name.

I guess I'm just wanting the reassurance of another's opinion, but I don't want to live with the regret of what could have been. The other day I heard a song where the guy said he fell in love with a blue eyed girl but was too nervous to tell her, and she moved away and he never got to find out her feelings for him. I don't know if that was a sign, but it sort of scared me. Any advice?


Answer

It appears to me that what you fear most is the possibility of being rejected. Saying nothing leaves you hanging, but you can still imagine the possibility could exist. Saying something might remove what you've imagined.

I wouldn't suggest just coming out and asking her to date you. That would be rushing things given that she has been town most of the summer and you haven't taken the time to see her. You've been thinking about her all summer, but from her point of view it will seem like a proposal with no foundation.

So send her a text saying it doesn't look like the band is ever going to get together and that you would like to see her again. No commitment, no agenda, just a request for two long-time friends to spend a few hours together. Suggest going out to eat or doing something you both like doing.

When you do get together, if things see good between you and she, mention that you've been thinking about her a lot but was afraid it might be a one-sided interest. If she indicates that she might be interested in you, suggest getting together again. See if you can get together several times before she and you both leave.

With that firmer foundation, you can spend more time texting and talking. In other words, let the relationship grow first, then decide: "You know what? I think we are going have to admit that we are dating."

What I don't recommend is saying nothing. You are better off living with reality than pining away in your imagination.