"I'm Attracted to My Ex's Friend. How Can I Tell Her How I Feel Without Alienating Her?"
Dr. Frankie's Love Seat.
Dear Dr. Frankie:
I've gotten myself into a bit of a mess and I would love to gain some insight and advice as to how to proceed. I was dating this girl for about 3 months when I realized it was no longer working out. Mostly due to compatibility issues and long distance. So I decided it would be best to break up with her. While in the time we were dating I met and developed really strong feelings for a close friend of hers. Unfortunately she is in a relationship with someone. However I feel like the feelings are mutual. It's been about 6 months since I broke up with my ex. Her friend and I have been spending a lot of time together. And I find myself wanting to tell her how I feel about her. The problem is, is that I would never want to come between her friendship with my ex and also her relationship with her girlfriend. She's graduating college soon and has plans to move after. I feel like I would really regret missing the opportunity to tell her how I feel about her. Any advice would be a huge help.
Thanks so much,
That *is* a bit of a messy situation, but kudos for having empathy for your ex and her friend and giving the situation some thought instead of simply reacting.
My advice is pretty basic: Talk to the close friend and tell her how you feel.
When having the conversation, it’s important to remember why you’re doing it. Are you telling the close friend how you feel so you can find out if she has similar feelings? Or are you telling the close friend how you feel in order to cause something else to happen? Because your friend has a girlfriend and is a friend of your ex, there will reactions from both parties. You’ll need to ready for that.
You can prepare for the conversation by scripting it out ahead of time and using “I” statements. For example, you might say, “I feel attracted to you and I’m wondering if you feel attracted to me. I’m expressing this because I sense that a relationship between you and I might be possible, but I would never want our romantic relationship to come between you and [your ex] or your girlfriend.”
At that point, the conversation is open for your close friend to express how she is feeling. I encourage you to have an open mind and an open heart and not be too attached the outcome. Honest hearts produce honest actions. Good luck.
Dr. Frankie Bashan