I often hear from women who have been given the old “I’m not ready for a relationship but want to be your friend” excuse from a man who they really care about. They often wonder if this excuse is code for something else. They also wonder if, because he wants to be friends, they should continue on with the relationship or just let it go.
I heard from a woman who said: “I’ve been seeing this guy for about two months. It feels serious to me. I think I might be in love with him. I think that I might want to marry him one day. The other night, I started hinting at this and he stopped me cold and said he really likes me but he just isn’t ready for a relationship. He stressed that he values me as a very close friend. I know that he had a nasty break up right before he met me. So I think that he’s telling the truth about that. But the whole ‘I just want to be friends’ thing has me very sad. It would be better if he said he wanted to take our romantic relationship slowly but he didn’t. He said he just wants to be my friend. What does this mean? And how should I proceed? Should I just keep seeing him as friends? Or do I give up and walk away?” I will try to address these concerns in the following article.
Many Married Couples Today Started Out As Just Friends: I know that things might seem dire right now, but there are countless happily married couples today who started their relationship as just friends. In fact, many of them were on the receiving end of one of them not being ready for a relationship and yet, here they are happily married. So what he is saying today doesn’t necessarily have to dictate your future. People’s feelings and intentions change. This man was telling this woman that she was very important to him and that he wanted to continue seeing her. Yes, he was trying to redefine the relationship, but he wasn’t trying to end it.
He’s Not Asking You To Leave His Life: More to the point, if he had no interest in a relationship with her whatsoever, he likely would not have stressed how important she was to his life. Men who don’t want any type of relationship with you will often either make that clear or they will cut off the communication quite quickly after the “I just want to be friends” speech. Neither was the case here. He wasn’t trying to get this woman out of his life. Quite the contrary, he was stressing how important she was to him.
If He Wants To Be Friends, What’s To Stop You From Being Friendly?: It’s interesting to note that most of the time when women ask me if they should just bow out after a man tells the that he just wants to be friends, it’s often very clear that this is the last thing that they want to do. It’s often very clear that they want to remain in his life, but they are so hurt by his words that they are tempted to just give up. I know that this can hurt. But if he is really important to you, what’s the harm in pursuing a friendship to see where it leads? There is no reason to assume that he’s not telling the truth about not being ready for a romantic relationship. It was well known that this man had a nasty breakup. He was allowed to take some time to heal. In fact, taking time to heal ensures that the next relationship has a chance to succeed.
So there was really no reason to doubt what he was saying. And since he was so important to this woman, then a good strategy might be to continue on with a fun friendship and see where that leads. In fact, this really can be sweet time in a relationship. And happy, healthy relationships often come out of bonds that were first friendships. See this as an opportunity to build a foundation with this man. What harm can it do?
Only Time Will Tell What His Future Intentions Truly Are: I know that you want me to tell you what he’s thinking. But he’s the only one with those answers. However, the good news is that often, the truth will reveal itself with time. If he continues wanting to spend time with you and seeks you out, then it’s pretty obvious that he’s warming more toward a relationship all the time. But, you really do have to keep a positive attitude and just see what his behavior will tell you. If he’s as important as this young women was implying, it’s likely that this process would have been worth it.