I Am in Love
July 3, 2012 Ask Dr. Love Advice Column
Hello! I have a problem and i don't knwo how to cope with it. I am in love with a girl, and until last night i thought that we will be friends forever because she doesn't care about me at all, but that is what i thought. I found out that i am the best thing which happened in her life, i found out that she feels important when i am next to her, that i always know how to make her feel good and i can always make her happy. But i also found out that she is afraid that if we try to have a relationship and it wount last she might lose me as a friend. She said that she cares too much about my feelings, and she loves me too much in order to lose me. She would like to kiss me, to hugg me without our friendship being affected. But the thing is that i love her too much and i would like to be more than friends but at the same time i respect her and i don't want to make her feel bad. Please give me some advice related to this situation. Thank you in advance!
She's Afraid to Lose our Friendship if We Become Lovers
You can’t believe how many times I have received this question over the years.
I hear that you both love each other deeply and that you BOTH want to express your love physically.
First let me start off by commending you on your very high Relationship IQ, which I define as emotional awareness of one’s self combined with a highly attuned radar that picks up on other people’s feelings and a well-developed sense of control over your emotions.
From your question, I can see that you know how you feel and what you want, you know how she feels, and you are willing to be patient and consider her feelings rather than just act on your own urges and pressure her to become your romantic partner and lover. Bravo. The world would be a much better place is everyone functioned the way you do.
And, just so you know, when we truly love another, our heart muscles grow and stretch to the point that we want to place our beloved’s happiness and comfort ahead of our own! Your love of her is evident. Your tolerance of the frustration of waiting for her to come around is proof of your love and devotion. TrustMutual trust is a shared belief that you can depend on each other to achieve a common purpose. More comprehensively trust defined as "the willingness of a party (trustor) to be vulnerable to the...(Click for full definition.) me, her love is going to grow stronger in response!
The fact that you don’t want to disrespect her by pursuing her for more than a friendship is wonderful. Just so you know, there is no hurry to rush her into anything. When you follow the recommendations I’m going to give you, her fear will diminish naturally and she will fall into your arms, as naturally as a weary person sinks into a soft mattress.
So what you need to do is talk further.
The first thing you want to have her discuss is why she thinks your relationship won’t work out. Have her verbalize all her worst fears. Saying them aloud is a potent antidote. That’s why we call therapy the “talking cure.”
I would also suggest to her that the fear that she will lose you could be coming from a past trauma in which someone she loved abandoned her. Perhaps a parent died? Or her parents got divorced and her father or mother disappeared?
Generally we don’t develop fear of a specific outcome unless we’ve already experienced a trauma in that area. For example, if you walk on a golf course and are struck by lightening, and survive, it is normal for the brain to associate golf courses with pain; then you become terrified to step foot on a golf course, even though the likelihood of lightning striking twice is practically zero.
After she airs all her fears, then I would tell her two things: The first is that there is no reason for you both not to always remain friends. Emotionally evolved people often stay friends for life after a break-up. So why can’t you both?
In addition, she should be reminded that it’s not healthy to “futurize.” By this I mean it’s not healthy to leave the present moment and beam herself into the future. The future is synonymous with fear! Think about it. When you start thinking about the future, your brain automatically comes up with the most nightmarish “what if” scenarios, and these scenarious always involve doom and disaster.
To a large extent, preparing for the worst is an evolutionary survival mechanism that is meant to protect us from harm. But it’s a mechansim that runs amok for most humans and ultimately ruins our lives by causing us to tremble over imaginary, phantom demons rather than live, love and enjoy the NOW, which is all we have.
What’s more, the disasters that we brace for never seem to be the ones that happen. Life always seems to throw us curve balls that we never see coming. I’m living proof. My healthy husband died of a bee sting right before my eyes. My experience is a poignant reminder that we must enjoy the present moment and not mortgage the future.
So talk to her and tell her what I’ve shared with you. I’m confident that she will want to embrace the gift of your love and enjoy you and your relationship to the fullest.
Let me know how you make out!
"If anger and fighting are ruining your dream of a happy marriage, Dr. Turndorf’s conflict resolution program is for you."
-- John Gray,
Author of NY Times #1 bestseller Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus
"This well-researched book offers a thorough, step-by-step program that provides tools for couples to heal even the most troubled relationships."
-- Dr. John Mack
Pulitzer Prize winning author and Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School
“This book provides a down-to-earth, easy to apply, proven method for creating relationship harmony. This book should be mandatory reading for every couple that wants to head-off or resolve the inevitable relationship conflicts and build lasting love. Buy this book and put it to use!”
-- John Bradshaw,
Author of NY Times #1 bestseller Homecoming
"Dr. Turndorf is an amazing individual who has wonderful advice to offer men and women of all ages and in all types of relationships. Ignore her counsel at your peril!"
-- Bill Hammond III,
Winner of the Best Historical Fiction Award, 2012
"You are awesome Dr. Jamie. You really are. The best part about you is the way you translate complex psychological stuff into easy to understand and actionable insights."
-- Kajay Williams,
Producer Relationship Advice Cafe
"Let me tell you why you're extremely important now. I really believe your message is there. You're spot on. More and more people should be taking advantage of what you're offering."
-- Michael Dresser,
Syndicated Radio Host
"Good stuff. Great insight. I love your approach. Who doesn't need more healing. I love your idea of using your partner as a healing agent. That's such a great way to see your partner. You give great labels and patterns to look for. I love your method. You make it sound so easy. You have a great website with lots of great information and resources. These are the tools we all need."
-- Dr. Matt Townsend,
Host, The Matt Townsend Show