I met someone from out of town about a month ago. We hung out one night for a few hours with friends and then alone for about 8 hours one day and really got along great. We began emailing, chatting online and talking on the phone after that. We really got to know each other really well through all of this. After 3-4 weeks or so of this, I went to her city to visit and stay with her.
We had a great weekend together, got along great and had a lot of fun. We also had sex which was also really great. I left, and we talked about getting together again in a week or two.
Since then, however, a few things have changed. She had told me before I went to visit that she wasn’t sure if she wanted to date just one person and wanted to get out and have some fun and just date some people. She was divorced a year ago after being separated the previous year and hasn’t really dated much since. Since neither one of us is the type to sleep with more than one person at the same time so we’re now in agreement that we won’t have sex with anyone else and this is confusing for her as to how to proceed with things. She’s also torn between really liking me and losing the freedom to date other people. She’s also confused because she wasn’t expecting to have such strong feelings towards me this quickly. I should also add that she’s a recovering alcoholic and I’m the first person she’s been in a sober relationship with so there’s a lot of new feelings there too.
So, at this point, she’s holding off on making plans to come see me until she figures some things out in her head. She did stress that its not a matter of if she comes to see me, but just when, and said many times how much she likes me. I’ve dated several women over the last few years and haven’t had feelings this strong for someone in a long time, so I’m definitely willing to be patient and give her the time she needs to figure things out. She’s an incredible person and definitely worth waiting for.
I’m just not sure how to deal with this without driving myself nuts though. Its scary to continue to let myself build up feelings while knowing she’s having confusion about things. I’ve been hurt really bad in the past and am pretty scared about going through that again. With these things going on, it makes me really unsure which comes across in our conversations sometimes too. I know this is not an attractive quality so I need to be careful about that.
If anyone has any insight, or comments or suggestions, it would be appreciated.
Mine will be the oddest suggestion, but I can guarantee you that it will help your relationship out immensely if you truly are considering "forever" with this person.
Look up an Al-Anon group in your area. If (and I hope she is) going to AA meetings there is also sometimes an Al-Anon group (for friends & families of alcoholics) at the same time and in the same building as the AA meeting.
Her sobriety should be her first concern. It plays into so many areas of her life - including a relationship. AA counsels not being IN a relationship during the entire first year you are sober - and there are alot of good reasons for that.
Hmm, sounds like you have a lot going on for such an early relationship.
Right now it sounds like she is merely trying to figure out whether she wants to date you or enjoy the dating scene. I understand that you have a connection with this woman and it's good that you're being patient. However, I wouldn't hold my breath.
You can't really push her to make a decision, so you just need to stand back and give her some space. Giver her the time to figure out what she wants, but don't be one of these guys who stays home all day waiting for her to call. You could just as easily be enjoying the dating scene as well and don't need to be strung along.
How far away is she? How old are you both and what are your relationship histories? It does sound like there are a lot of obstacles in your path considering how short a time you've known each other, so while I think it's great that you're so patient and supportive, I also would try your hardest not to get ahead of yourself or get your hopes up that this will turn out happily ever after. I'm not saying it won't happen, and I certainly wish you all the best, but I'd hate to see you be disappointed by unrealistic expectations. Long distance relationships face much tougher odds than do other relationships, and the same is true of people who are recovering alcoholics and who are recently divorced, so when you consider all that combined with her reticence to commit to dating only one person, there are a lot of factors working against you. My advice would be to give her as much time and space as she needs--if things are meant to be between you two, it will happen, but the more you press or force things, the less likely they are to work out. I'd also suggest agreeing that you both can date other people (but you could still keep your rule about not having sex with other people, though I think that's a bit premature after being together only once and only spending a few days together all in all in person), as it just seems premature to agree on being exclusive with someone who isn't all that enthusiastic about the arrangement, not to mention someone with all those personal issues, not to mention someone who doesn't even live close enough so you can see her regularly. It just seems like a lot to take on, and I worry that you are already ahead of yourself and in a bit too deep here--I'd just hate to see you get overly attached and end up hurt if one of the substantial obstacles facing you as a couple ends up being too much to overcome. I really think it'd be best to back off, be free to date other people, and take your time getting to know each other (you have to spend time in person too if you really want to know someone) before getting so serious so quickly. That can be the kiss of death for any new relationship, but particularly in your case, I think you'd both be happiest and better off in the long run if you proceed slowly and cautiously without expecting more than a casual dating relationship at this point. I really hope that everything works out great for you, whether with this woman or not, and I think the best chances of that happening will be if you both back off, slow down, give each other more freedom, and just be patient about seeing what develops over time...remember that there is no reason to jump into anything before you're both 100% ready and comfortable, as this can cause even relationships with amazing potential to burn out early. You sound like a great guy--good luck and best wishes!