In February, my guy friend asked me out. I said yes, and we were supposed to hang at my place, but he cancelled at the last minute. We didn’t talk for a while, and I’m really not into him. (I agreed to the date at the time because I didn’t have a boyfriend, but I got one soon afterwards.) I’m single now, and he clearly still fancies me; everything he says is dripping with innuendo. He’s always emailing, IM-ing, asking to hang out, which I generally ignore. He’s always asking why I don’t want to talk to him, and I don’t want to keep hurting his feelings. What do I do? Manswer too, please! Halley
To me, this is a simple case of telling the guy you’re not keen without crushing him like a bug. I wouldn’t waste too much sleep over it; after all, he hasn’t displayed the best behaviour, practically standing you up the first time he asked you to hang out. It’s a possibility he’s just the type of guy who’s into the chase – hence all the contact. But, I’m not sure ignoring him is going to do the trick. You need to have a proper, honest chat if you’re really not interested. I’m not picky about the means; face-to-face or phone is generally best but given you guys haven’t even dated properly it’s acceptable to let him know over email or IM if that’s easier. You just need to say something like: ‘Brad (or whatever his name is), ever since I’ve become single again, I’ve been getting the vibes that you want more than just friendship. I could be way off base but if I’m right, I’d rather be honest than lead you on. I really value you as a mate and that’s how I’d like to keep things between us. Hope that’s cool with you, because I really don’t want to feel uncomfortable around you if we’re hanging out’. I’d address this curly little issue sooner rather than later, or the innuendo and his constant barrage of contact is going to do your head in. Ignoring the situation will also leave him with even more hurt feelings and confusion, and you don’t want that.
Love, reality chick
Manswers Man MR E SAYS… Dear Halley, how annoying! Us men are basic creatures and we do tend to think that a deal is a deal regardless of the time-frame, or the other party even being entirely aware of the deal. (Ask any man who’s bought a round of beers, it’s OK because everyone will buy him one back … eventually.) What might have happened here is your friend feels that he took a raincheck and is still in the running for a future date. So you need to make it quite clear that the statute of limitations is very much expired. To give your friend some closure and make things final might hurt his feelings now but unrequited feelings are going to cause him more pain in the long run. With regard to his inappropriate comments, if they’re causing you discomfort don’t feel you must laugh such comments off; be honest. At the of the day it’s a form of harassment and no-one deserves that. He needs to grow up a little and move along. This might not be a friend you can keep, but if he’s able to understand and keep things at a platonic level then maybe your friendship will survive this. Good luck.