Greetings!I have just graduated from university and now on my first job. I ‘m very much attracted to my colleague who is 3 years older and from a different race and religion. I have approached him but he told me that he is not interested. Reasons given was because he has had a relationship with a girl from my race 3 years ago and he faced a lot of problems, including protest from his religious father. To make things worse, she had betrayed him by marrying his best friend.He also admited that he is seeing someone from his own race, but it’s not like they are going steady or anything. He wouldn’t even call her his girlfriend. I responded by saying that I can accept his answer and appreciate his honesty and directness. However, after that we started going out for lunch and dinners, even for a candlelight dinner. He also sends me back after work almost everyday, although he does not live anywhere near my place. We could talk to each other about anything, share each other ‘s secret and problems, and also cheer each other up during down time. We might be very different in characteristics and likes but we do share the same believe in the basic concept of what life should be like.In short, we really clicked and become very good friends. At the same time, I cannot deny the fact that I still have feelings for him, and I believe he realised that too. There are two issues here. One thing, my friends and our close colleagues think that he is starting to have feelings for me too, but he haven’t realise it yet. That is because he is showing mixed signals which contradict what he had said ealier. Do you agree with them? I, however, think that he really want to be just friends and he do those things simply just because he happens to be a very nice guy. I ought to know him well by now.I also believe that pushing it after he has already told me that he was not interested will drive him away. The obvious solution looks like I should just get over him and move on. Apparently, it is not that easy. First, he is my dream guy. He is a combination of educated, charming and well mannered, and . . . at the same time, also spontaneous and adventurous. However, I am not oblivious to the fact that he does have his own weaknesses, of which I can accept.Secondly, we are colleagues and I meet him everyday. I am also very close to him and used to having him around. So, this brought us to the second issue, how do I get over him but also maintain our friendship at the same time? I ‘d really appreaciate your advice and I really need it. This is a very enriching relationship I have, either way, and I don’t want to throw it away. Thank you so much for your help.Yours, White Rose
You are conflicted about whether you should hang on to the hope that romance will bloom or give up and simply be friends. My goal is to help you clarify where you stand. It sounds as though this man likes you very much, and that he does have a romantice interest in you. That’s the good news. The bad news is: He is scared to death of his feelings for you.Since his last girlfriend betrayed him, this guy is literally gun shy of all relationships. His fear prevents him from starting with a clean slate with you because his mind associates you with his ex-girlfriend (your being of the same race, boosts the association. ) The problem here is that he hasn’t worked through the pain over this rejection. As a result, he sees you as the ghost of Christmas past (or girlfriend past). Until he works through the old hurt, he will never be able to see you for who and what you are or be ready to begin a new relationship with you.This being said, you need to decide how much you want to invest in this man. It sounds like he’s ‘it’ for you, so, I don’t think that you should give up on him so fast. What you need to do is maintain the friendship (as far as he is concerned) and hold on to your romantic attachment (in your heart.) You will also need to decide how long you are willing to wait for him. Give yourself an ‘end date,’ and then do the following.Tell him that you understand that he hasn’t healed from his girlfriend’s betrayal. And, tell him that you won’t give up on him and that you are willing to give him time to heal. He must realize that time alone will not heal this wound. He will need to talk about his feelings of fear and hurt with a counsellor. If he refuses to do that, then let him talk over his feelings with you. By offering him time to work on this problem and a patient, listening ear, you will actually help him to heal the betrayal wound. In sticking by him, you are showing him that you are not like the other girl: You aren’t rejecting him, even when times are tough.I think that if you give him this room to heal, he will come around, learn to trust again and eventually commit to you. There is a slim chance that we are dealing with a man whose wounds run deeper than this most recent rejection, in which case, he will never come around. Only time will tell. So, follow my advice. And, when you reach the ‘end date’ write me again and let me know what has happened. Good luck. I hope this works out for you.