Friends with Benefits
Q: I was in a "friends with benefits" relationship for about three months. We talked to each other almost daily and saw each other at least once a week. The way he talked and planned for the future made me believe we were headed towards a real relationship. But a blast from the past wanted to try again and he accepted her. However, he will contact me about every two weeks, and he recently sent me a text stating that a mutual friend said I was losing weight and looking good. When I brought it up to the mutual friend, he said he never said that and they didn't talk about me at all. I believe him. I am confused. Am I reading too much into it or is he just trying to stay friends? -- Heather, 38
Dr. Susan: You're trying too hard to read something into a conversation that may or may not have happened, and that may or may not have meant anything regardless. If your friend with benefits decided to take up another woman's offer of benefits instead of yours, that imagined relationship you thought you were heading towards was only an illusion. Why not stop being there for his bi-weekly contacts? Don't let him think you're just sitting around waiting for him to come back and give you a crumb of attention. What you had was temporary until something more interesting popped up for him. Now it's your turn to find someone else to focus on.
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.