She Cooled Off Quickly
Q: I'm in a confusing situation. I'm in love with a girl I met four months ago. Our first few weeks, we had lots to talk about and so many things in common. Every little thing we did or talked about was a lot of fun. She even said that sometimes she felt she wanted me as her boyfriend. When we went to movies, we would hold hands, and she even gave me a kiss, though just on my cheek.
But because of my work, I had to go to other towns during a several-week period. I promised I would be home by the weekends, but I couldn't make it, even though I did my best to get my work done fast so I could be with her. All of a sudden she changed her attitude towards me and said that I'm not dependable. Since then she's kept her distance from me, she doesn't talk like she used to, she doesn't share things like before, and she isn't sweet as she used to be. In fact she ignores me. And she even told me that I shouldn't expect much from her. Now, she doesn't even call me or text me unless I call first, and the conversations don't last for 10 minutes. And almost every time I ask her out, she comes up with the same excuses. But obviously she still cares about me, even though not as much as she did, because she's still willing to listen me. Does she have feelings for me? Is it worth loving her? Does she trust me? Is it possible for her to love me too? How? I love her so much that I'm too scared of losing her. -- Hank, 22
Dr. Susan: Why is it that anyone else can see what you, like a lovesick puppy, are unable to see? Let us count the ways your female friend has shown you her true feelings: She believes you're undependable though you tried your best, she no longer shares with you or has long conversations with you, she's no longer sweet, she ignores you, she said not to expect much from her, she no longer initiates calls with you, and she comes up with unbelievable excuses for not going out with you. On the plus side, all I can see is that she lets you talk to her for a few minutes at a time on the telephone without hanging up on you. Listening to a guy is not, by itself, a sign of affection. So I'd have to answer you by saying no, she doesn't have affectionate feelings toward you anymore. She's been trying to tell you that without hurting your feelings. If a girl gives excuses when asked on a date several times in a row, hear what she's really saying: No, thanks, I'm not interested. Also, never make a promise you can't be sure you can keep, as when you promised to be home by the weekend. She apparently held you to a very high standard and lost faith in you. Face it: You've already lost her. The short relationship you had, though fun, just wasn't strong enough to last.
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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.