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I've had this friend since about 2000. We met online back then and we have stayed in contact ever sense, generally talking on the phone once a week or at least once a month. Four years ago, I finally got to go see them in person. It was a 550 mile drive.

 

This friend got a divorce back in 2006. Back around that time, we did lose contact for a couple years because I got busy with college and she had a lot of bad shit going on in her life (her dad had cancer + said divorce). One day I tried to call and her number had changed. Like an idiot, I didn't keep an up-to-date address either, so I was sad we couldn't talk anymore. I moved on.

 

But then as time passed, I began to miss talking to this person more and more. I still had no idea what she even looked like at that point. I made an effort to find her again (sending letters to old addresses) and was eventually successful in 2008.

 

Now it is 2012. Her divorce was finally "finalized" the other day. For years now, not a day goes by where I don't think about her. I have never told her that I feel this way. Should I? I don't want to move in with her or anything like that. She has just become important to me. I honestly don't know if I love her or not, but as I have felt this way for years and we talk often, I may very well.

 

She is planning to get married again at the end of this year. I personally don't believe in marriage because at least 50% of them fall apart (probably more!). Again though, should I tell her how I feel? If so, it seems that now would be the best time. Should I write her a letter or tell her on the phone? I would feel really bad if something happened to her (or me) and I never got to tell her. I wonder how she will react.

 

In all likelyhood, she has figured this out by now anyway.

--- War does not decide who is right, war decides who is left.

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I think you have some good advice here on this thread overall. The only thing I want to add is that it might work well to write it out in a letter first, then DON'T send it for a few days or a week, t

This.   I can't remember the name of the guy who said "Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another", but he hit the nail pretty much on the head (he also said that paying for sex actually

The event of such bonding online without seeing the other person feels unnatural and unlikely to me. Seeing the trouble to develop such a situation further into packages and long lasting relationship

The first rule in communications is that it has to happen for it to be succesful.

 

So instead of "talking with yourself", posting on random forums, asking friends for help etc, you should talk to the person in question. Tell her how you feel, what you think and ask them (her) what she thinks and feels. Otherwise, you will waste another few years and sometime later ask yourself "why didn't I ask her earlier".

 

And never ever account for "she has figured this out by now anyway" - assuming the other person did understand what you where trying to say is the first mistake - usually, the other person wasn't even aware you were trying to communicate something.

 

So, go and talk to her even tho it is difficult. You will fell better afterwards, no matter what the outcome.

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." -- George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

 

"Remember: If the game lets you do it, it's not cheating." -- Xarax

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Tell her how you feel. If she doesn't feel the same way eventually you'll get over it and move on. If you don't tell her how you feel you could spend the rest of your life wondering what if?

"I believe that what doesn't kill you simply makes you... stranger"

 

The Joker

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This whole thing have several facets that sounds a bit weird. The net effect is rather spooky to me. Just don't become some kind of online stalker, okay?

 

With the regard of the original question: fire away. You'll never get to know the result of the experiment, if you do not conduct the experiment. Just be sure to prepare yourself for a result you did not expect or which you did not prefer. It is important to accept the result.

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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The thing about communication is, it's not like you have to insist on an outcome. It's a valid thing to do to just say this is how I feel, and you can be honest that you don't know what the best thing to do is, and you don't know how she feels, but you wanted to say it anyway. Just think about it as something you should do for yourself if nothing else, so that you feel you said your piece whatever comes of it. And you don't have to feel too worried about it because you can't be responsible for how other people feel... They'll feel however they do. But I do think it's healthy to validate your feelings and be open.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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I don't know what is the best thing to do.. However, you should free yourself from this line of thought: depending on I say, things might work out or not. It doesn't work that way. This is what I used to think, then I realized that the girl had her mind set before I said anything.

 

I would suggest a personal meeting. Have dinner, have fun and then tell her how you feel.

 

By the way, I met my girlfriend online. We're together 8 years now :)

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What exactly do you hope to accomplish? This is a completely online relationship with someone who lives 550 miles away that you've met in person only once four years ago? And she's getting married to someone else?

 

If you need to do it just to get it off your chest, that's one thing. But if you're correct that she has "figured it out" then it doesn't seem to me like there's much to gain here.

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I would lay it out on the table. I was in a position years ago where a friend and I became very close. I laid it all out on the table, not because I knew she would reciprocate but because it was better to clear the air. In my case, letting it out really helped to put things in perspective. It's not that you expect anything from them in return, you just want them to know for certain how you feel. For me it all worked out. My friend was very understanding and didn't shun me in any way. Our friendship was very important to her, so it didn't offend her or frighten her away.

 

Every situation will be different of course.

 

I say tell her anyway. It's no good carrying such feelings around with us for the rest of our lives.

 

Best of luck.

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Forget it. Move on. If she cared about you you'd know it by now. If you're lucky she must just remember your name, but not a lot else.

 

The world is full of depressed rejected men who thought they were "in with a chance" or "in love" just because a woman once took some time to respond to their advances, but they don't understand how gender politics works. While you were obsessing over her, she will have been swamped with advances from tens or hundreds of other men, many of whom will have had more to offer her than you do, and (unlike you) had the benefit of frequent face-to-face contact as well.

 

For you to turn up now and expect her to care about you would be like a shop assistant who you almost bought some socks from in 2004 showing up and asking you if you're still interested in buying them. Don't embarrass yourself. She may mean a lot to you, but from her perspective you're just background noise.

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That's assuming he really has anything to lose. If there's nothing to lose, there's no reason not to. Either you really are good friends with her, then you won't lose that because good friends understand and can stay friends, or you've grown distant and there's nothing to lose because you're already distant.

 

I personally don't sympathize with the "don't embarrass yourself" argument either. Most of life is constant embarrassment already... the crap you have deal with at work, at home, with family, with friends... It's a cosmic Beckett play. So it's not like you're really taking any high ground by staying the Stoic tough-guy that keeps his feelings to himself. Nobody thinks that guy is fooling anyone anymore. You just say your piece and don't make a big deal of it. It's how you feel and that's enough.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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The world is full of depressed rejected men who thought they were "in with a chance" or "in love" just because a woman once took some time to respond to their advances, but they don't understand how gender politics works. While you were obsessing over her, she will have been swamped with advances from tens or hundreds of other men, many of whom will have had more to offer her than you do, and (unlike you) had the benefit of frequent face-to-face contact as well.

 

A brutally realistic view. That's how it works, I suppose. However, the conclusion

 

Forget it. Move on. If she cared about you you'd know it by now. If you're lucky she must just remember your name, but not a lot else.

 

Has one limitation: if you don't play the game, you will never win. If you play, you will lose. But you may win sometimes too. The problem (and benefit!) with this stuff is that it often is utterly irrational business.

 

I know a few real life instances where victory via pure attrition battle were achieved against all odds. All logic states initial failure means permanent failure. Yet somehow people change their minds. It does not make sense, but it happens.

 

As a decision between forgetting the whole thing or trying, failing and then forgetting, the trying option has the benefit that you don't have to spend the remaining of you life contemplating what would have happened if you did try.

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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I think you have some good advice here on this thread overall. The only thing I want to add is that it might work well to write it out in a letter first, then DON'T send it for a few days or a week, then go back and re-write the letter and edit it so it sounds right, THEN send it, and THEN call and talk to her about the letter.

 

It's sort of an ice-breaker that way, and writing it out gives you a chance to be sure you say it right, and then you can talk about it more with real voices (or in person) later. It also gives her a chance to read the letter and digest it a little while before having to instantly react to you on the phone or in person, so it might be considerate of her that way too.

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It isn't just an online thing. Like I said, we mostly talk on the phone, and she pretty much never has time to get online anymore. She works 12-hour shifts, so is very busy. It didn't used to be this way. We used to hang out on VOIP and/or games every day back when she had a much less demanding job. That was years and years ago though. These days when she calls me she ends up sounding very tired/worn out.

 

I've asked her what her plans are for the future, and she doesn't really have one. It seems like 12 hours is too long of a shift. Think of it, you have to still live your life, sleep, eat, etc in the other 12 hours of each day. No way in hell I would work more than 10 hour shifts. Doesn't matter the pay, it isn't worth it.

 

My brother (who is a lawyer) figured this out. He was working similar hours. Though he made tuns of money, he never had time to enjoy his life until he switched to a less demanding (in terms of time) job.

Edited by lost_soul

--- War does not decide who is right, war decides who is left.

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I say go with Komag's advice. That's what I did. You could say it was a success: we have two children and have recently bought a house. Go for it. You'd regret for the rest of your life if you didn't. And THAT will eat away like cancer in your soul.

My Eigenvalue is bigger than your Eigenvalue.

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See first thing that comes to MY mind on this is, why not let her decide what to do about it instead of fretting about it? I'll grant that my world views are very different from most, especially when it comes to relationships as I am polyamorous. Her getting remarried just leaves me scratching my head thinking "people still do monogamy after divorce? wtf? Isn't that the definition of insanity right there?" So I guess I don't see why she can't just have both of you :-P.

 

With that being said, if your reason for telling her is that you expect there is some chance in 10,000 that she will call off her wedding and be with you forsaking him, you're deluding yourself sir, and it's not healthy at all. If your reason is to clear the air and feel that you can maintain honest communication regardless of her marital state then by all means, tell her. I hope this helps!

 

Edit: On a related note, if this woman DOES call off her wedding to be with you, I'd be seriously concerned about her mental and emotional state if she's so quick to jump out of an engagement... Just be aware that as wonderful as this woman, her crazies may not line up with yours (and remember, we ALL have our crazies.)

Edited by firoso

I'm in yur forumz,

Makin' them frobbable.

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@Firoso

lol... nah, that thought (really) hadn't even crossed my mind. Like I said, I will never get married. This will actually be her third marriage. My mother was married twice, and my father at least twice as well. My step-father at least twice too! All of which ended in divorces.

 

So, you can see how I formed my opinion on such things.

 

I think I'll take Komag's advice and start writing a letter in my free time. That way, I can explain myself.

--- War does not decide who is right, war decides who is left.

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Well I was married once and it ended when I came out as polyamorous and she wasn't having any of that, which I totally understand. Either way, I'm happy not being married again and have no desire to repeat :-P Good luck sir.

I'm in yur forumz,

Makin' them frobbable.

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What exactly do you hope to accomplish?

 

I don't really hope to accomplish anything other than letting her know without destroying the friendship.

On second thought, maybe I should just call her. If I were to write a letter and her husband-to-be was the one to open it, that would be baaaaad. Very bad indeed.

--- War does not decide who is right, war decides who is left.

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I don't really hope to accomplish anything other than letting her know without destroying the friendship.

 

If the best case scenario is that nothing changes, that's not a lot of incentive to take action, is it? Seems like your have plenty to lose and nothing to gain.

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That's easy to say for someone not interested in this woman. For goodness sake, you only live once. You tell the person you're interested in that you're interested in them, or you'll feel lousy about it. Just one of those irreducible facts of life IMO.

 

If I were to write a letter and her husband-to-be was the one to open it, that would be baaaaad.

 

Obviously you email the letter.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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Simple questions:

 

Can you beat the suitor in a fight?

 

If so, are you also willing to risk him going crazy and using weapons (risk your life)?

 

If the suitor is unlikely to fight, are you significantly more attractive?

 

Do you make more money?

 

...

 

Yes, persistence can work but it's a slow kindle in a rain-storm.

 

Women like confidence. Spending years pining in secret does not exude confidence.

 

You would need to somehow forge a new "reborn" persona that isn't the love-sick emo

she would likely see you as in the current situation.

 

With these ancient rules and instincts in place, you would need to openly challenge this suitor.

 

It's the only solution to the above puzzle.

 

1) You are showing bravery (new persona)

2) You are (potentially) diminishing the appeal of the suitor (who is unlikely to have fought for her)

3) You are fulfilling a cultural meta-fantasy and primal human pattern (people like to be normal and want to inhabit "good stereotypes")

 

On top of the above, you will also need to pull-off a sly devil-may-care act essentially hinting that

you may only care about her as a cool chick you wanna have as arm-candy (but under the

gruff exterior you really care a lot). You need to convince her you'll be the fun confident guy

that turns her world upside-down.

 

Even if you pull-off BOTH of those milestones, you will need to hold your composure afterwards or

she'll recognize the false bravado too soon and start to perceive that you're still that pining emo "friend"

who just wasn't on her radar romantically. She'll start thinking your over-enthusiastic romantic gestures

are smothering her and she'll dump you like a stone.

 

Good luck with all that. You'd better start working-out.

 

In summary, it might be better to stay friends and work on your skills with some other lady.

If she ever breaks-up with this dude, she will see that you aren't just waiting there on the curb

for her like an abandoned couch. She'll see that you are in-demand as well.

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In summary, it might be better to stay friends and work on your skills with some other lady.

 

This.

 

I can't remember the name of the guy who said "Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another", but he hit the nail pretty much on the head (he also said that paying for sex actually works out cheaper in the long run). Pining after one woman you hardly have any contact with isn't an effective use of your time. You're better off trying your luck with someone more available, and who shares more of your values (like not pointlessly getting married over and over again).

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I can't remember the name of the guy who said "Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another", but he hit the nail pretty much on the head (he also said that paying for sex actually works out cheaper in the long run).

 

I think whoever said that clearly went after the same type of woman again and again....either that or they were just narrow minded. lol

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In my experience each woman is a complete other universe, sometimes very radically, so you can't take it literally.

 

But what that quote points to is that most all women, in my experience again, have the same kinds of expectations and needs, and you can't expect the woman you like is going to exempt you from them just because it's you... So geography and presence matters; if she's feeling needy you need to physically be there, and if you're not around you have to be in constant contact and have a plan to be around. Stability matters. She might not say your paycheck and job matters, or anyway your prospects, but it's part of how she's feeling, like in terms of her feeling you're able to take care of things and her, and her feeling confident that things will work out and she doesn't have to worry. You need to be doing things for her; the whole "what have you done for me lately?" is a real thing you have to pay attention to. But when you are doing things for her, you can't do them forever without her reciprocating and it building the relationship, which is the nice flip side of that coin. Edit: One thing on which women can't all be the same (but maybe in the same way?) is that chemistry matters, and you can't reduce that to any equation. You either have good chemistry with a woman or you don't. But if you do have it, it goes a long way to making them feel connected with you. It's definitely something you'd want to play up.

 

And like someone else mentioned, confidence matters. That's why it's strange you're even asking us what to do. The way you're supposed to do it, the instant you feel you might be interested in a woman, you tell her right away just matter of factly, this is how I feel, and I'll take care of you; what do you think? The more you pawn on it and draw it out and worry, you're getting away from that. BTW, I wouldn't worry about any other guy. What you're really doing is letting her know how you feel that she puts in the background, then if things fall apart with this other guy or she has some crisis or whatever, she knows you're there. So you're not even talking directly to her; you're talking to a future her in some alternative scenario (and it does work like this sometimes) -- So in that respect it doesn't even matter what she thinks because you weren't talking to her anyway; it matters what her future self in that alternative scenario thinks, and that's who you're talking to.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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