A confusing long distance romance

Dear Guys,

I have a situation that is completely interesting and confusing as all…

I have built a friendship with a person that I met through a friend. Well, I never physically met him until recently. I have known him for almost two years and he was my go-to “funny guy.” I would call him and bounce everything off of him. Funny dates, tragic dates, relationships, job searching, everything!

He was refreshing to me and I was amazed that I confided so much in someone that I had never been in the same room with.

Well, I got engaged and then called it off last summer. He waited a month or so and then laid everything on the line and told me that he was crazy about me. He went on and on for about 45 minutes. I was in shock and not ready to receive what he was telling me. After all, I had NEVER physically met him! I wasn’t sure if I was sexually attracted to him.

Then, I started dating someone locally and enjoyed a si month relationship with that person. In the meantime, my “long distance friend” kinda fell off the radar. He called me mid-relationship with this other guy to apologize for falling off of the radar and promised to never allow that to happen again. He said that he missed our laughing and jokes and conversations and really needed that back in his life.

I am going to be honest, I was fairly aloof to his absence (due to the other guy). So, I assured him that I was not upset at all. We started contacting each other…but not nearly as much as before.

Well, my relationship ended with the other guy and I reached out to my “long distance friend” for consoling. He was solid. However, this time he was clear that he was drawing the line and needed me to know that he wanted to meet me. He did everything possible to convince me to give “us” a shot. Two months later he texts me a question, “What are you doing for dinner?” He had bought a flight and was coming to see me. He was laying it all out there.

He told me that he had butterflies…that he HAD to see me…that he could not wait any longer. So, I was a nervous wreck when I picked him up from the airport. Needless to say, we hit it off amazingly. I have been to his city twice to see him and I find myself feeling more for him than I ever thought I could.

He has said that he loves me…but only after a couple of drinks. I have never said it. However, I do find myself arranging time to see each other more than he does. One caveat…he has been laid off and feels that he cannot give anything to me until he finds a new job.

How do I walk this path? Does this man love me? How do I not over-think this? Please help me to navigate these foreign waters?

Is he still into me and why do I care?? This is all too surreal…


Dear Michelle,

Thanks for your question.

Sure, these may be foreign waters but the feelings and emotions are familiar. These days, people meet in all sorts of different ways. So the “how” is not so important as the “who.” Meaning, is he truly the guy you think he is. And from what you’re saying, it sounds like it.

So why not just go with it? Stop over-thinking this. Worst case, it doesn’t work out, and you move forward with your life. Best case—well…. that’s probably pretty good. Sure, it’s difficult when it’s long distance and you have to rely on words—sometimes typed—instead of expressions and physical touch. But, if he’s making an effort to see you, and says he loves you—drink or no drink—then it’s a pretty good indication he’s trying to give this a go.

The only red flag for us, and really it’s not that big of a red flag is the reaction to his job situation. Yes, guys want to be providers. And their egos are often tied into their careers. But the fact that he’s pulling back just because he’s out of work puzzles us. If you were talking marriage or kids we can see how he might be hesitant until he’s back on his feet, but when you’re at the beginning stages of getting to know someone being out of work is not a great reason to put on the brakes. So that’s certainly something to consider. (We think you should talk to him about it. And let him know that it’s okay. Let him know you support him. Not financially, but emotionally until he finds work.)

But all in all, this sounds fun and exciting. Let yourself enjoy it, and hopefully it will keep moving forward. And if it doesn’t, well, you’ll still have a great story to tell.

Feel free to ask us a follow up question. And keep us posted as this progresses. Also, check out our “Relationship Memoirs”  page. You might enjoy reading some of the women guest writers.


ps. Please let your friends know about us. Thanks!

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24 Comments on A confusing long distance romance

  1. @Karel…..Remind us. is there a reason to visit his town other than seeing him? If so, just contact him when you get there. Then at least he can’t tell you not to come for some reason. However, it would be nice if you had another reason to go.

  2. Hi Guys, I met a guy on a dating site 2 years ago, he is an 56 years old divorced guys with 3 grown up kids, he lives in Sweden and I live in Hong Kong. After chatting six months he said he love me and decided come to HK to visit me and we spent 2 weeks together and had a great time, and I also went to Sweden to visit him few months later. And things seemed going so well, we keep chatting almost everyday. And in our conversations, he always tell me the problem and pressure about his job,but we still keep very close relationship until last month. He suddenly not sending me message or online for whole week, so I called him one night to see what is going on. And he suddenly said can’t the future relationship, as many problems come up on his job, also his son can’t find a job and need to move back to live him. And I was crashed and ask if he want to end us relationship. He said he want to find a way out and need sometime to figure out. Finally we had a discussion on last week, he said he want to break up with me because his career is in a critical moment and it would better we stay as good friends rather than as lovers. I appreciate his honesty and happy to keep him as good friend.
    As I think we both need sometimes to calm down, I decide not to contact him for a while. However, i found he deleted me on his Skpye yesterday. I was so hurtled that I text him ask him why he deleted me. He said because his son move back to his house and will use his iPad, so he deleted me. I said he hurt mine feeling and said his son won’t use his Skpye. He then said he realized that. So I ask him if he really want to delete me, he then add me back to Skype. When I ask him to promise not to delete me again. He said he wouldn’t promise that because he might not use computer one day. Or he can’t keep his job so may not have money to have computer. It makes me so frustrated, hurt and confuse. If he doesn’t want to contact me anymore, why he replies my messages and put me back on his Skype list? But if he wants to keep our friendship, why he say things like that?

    I know it may look silly, but I still care about him.

    Can you guys give me some of your opinions.

    Thanks so much

  3. @Ivy…….Obviously something about his son living with him is throwing him off. Or he’s using that as an excuse. If he deleted you because his son is going to use his computer then obviously he’s kept you a secret, which isn’t a good thing. Had he kept you a secret from his children? Is there a reason he’d be embarrassed of your relationship? Age? Culture? Has he said anything to this effect?

  4. Hi Guys, his son is 23 years old, He hasn’t told his kids about me. He only told his mother and few friends about our relationship. And when we first met, he had mentioned it’s kind of diffcult to tell his kids that he met a girl online. And also wonder if he can have a serious relationship again after his divorce. But still he said he love me.

    He is the one who raise to end the relationship but want to be good friends, which i agreed to do so. And our discussion was very peaceful and calm, not an ugly ending. so why he deleted me on skyoe so suddenly. But when i text him, he reply me quickly and add me back on Skpye immediately. If he want to cut me off, then he can simply ignore my message, but he doen’t. that’s why I am so confused for what he did. This is the question that always haunt in my mind, and I can’t let it go.

  5. @Ivy…..We’re sorry. Hang in there.

  6. Thanks guys. Can you tell me why he do that? Does he play me around?

  7. @Ivy…..We wish we were mind readers. Sorry. It’s hard to say why people do what they do.

  8. Thanks so much for your opinions, Guys. I will hang in there!

  9. I dated someone (Guy #1) this past summer where I was working. Everything was great. We talked a lot about what would happen if/when I was back the following fall. I left. We were both really sad I had to leave. We talked for awhile. After a few months of lackluster communication, I told him that I couldn’t do anything from 3000 miles away and it fizzled. I dated Guy #2 for 3-4 months. Guy #1 came to visit me in early 2013. I ended things with Guy #2 just before (mainly because I knew it wasn’t working, but I might have fast-tracked it since Guy #1 was visiting). I went out with and stayed the night with Guy #1 when he was visiting (no sexual contact, just snuggled) and realized throughout the course of that night that I had pretty deep feelings for him. About 3 weeks after Guy #1 visited, I found out he had lied about something HUGE. Long story short: I called him out on it, he owned it, apologized profusely, and said he didn’t know how I could ever trust him after this. I said I didn’t really know what to do with it, but that I wanted to talk about it in person. That hasn’t happened. At this point, I’ve cooled off and realized that I’m not really hurt by what happened, more weirded out that he lied than pissed about it. And if I’m not hurt by it, there isn’t much damage to me or anything going forward. I really like him. More than anyone I’ve ever been with and I’m still willing to see if something works out in the long run. At this point, I haven’t talked to him for 2 months, because he’s decided that what he did was unforgivable and I don’t really have anything to say to him until I see him in person. (Note: I’m dating someone else now, so I’m already moving myself along for the inevitable if/when this doesn’t work out haha.)

    The question! In August, I’m permanently moving back to where I met Guy #1. When I found out I was moving (about a month ago), I texted him to see if he could talk, he said he was busy but asked if everything was okay, I told him I was fine and to figure out a time when we could talk. He never got back to me (IMO because he’s too busy wallowing in self-guilt, but maybe he’s just not that into me). I feel like I should let him know I’m coming back. Even if it’s done, we were good friends. I personally wouldn’t want someone to just pop up on me and say “Hey, I’m back and I’ll be here forever” without some kind of heads up. That said, I made a good faith effort to let him know and he chose not to respond. What would you do?

  10. @Whattodo……So what about the guy you’re dating now? Are you just passing the time with him? That’s what we’d do. We’d focus on what we have and see if we could make that work. Who knows what’s up with this other guy? And frankly, we can’t answer you unless we have more information. What did he actually do? It seems a bit extreme that he’s wallowing in self-pity and guilt. Is that his way of keeping you at a distance?

  11. Passing the time sounds about right… I’m leaving my current city in a few weeks, so when I met this new guy I knew I wasn’t really down for anything serious and I told him that. Scratch working on that. Just enjoying my last few weeks here with someone and we’ve both agreed it’s done after that.

    Guy #1 was married (well, separated) for the entire time I’ve known him and never mentioned it. I didn’t find out because he told me, just through a random Google search a few weeks after he visited. When I asked him why he lied, he said he thought I’d be weirded out, that it was something he was still really uncomfortable talking about his ongoing divorce when we first met, that he didn’t think that we were going to ever be anything or that it mattered at first. Once it did matter, he didn’t know how to tell me because how do you say “Oh, by the way… I’m in the middle of the divorce and totally left that part out when you asked my about my relationship history.” From an objective perspective, I know all of that is total bull shit and there is absolutely no excuse for him lying about his marital status. From a subjective “I know me and how I would have reacted/I know him and how his mind works,” I would have been totally weirded out had he told me initially and probably not gotten to know him, I didn’t think we were going to be anything beyond a summer fling either, and after talking about it with him, I understand now why he didn’t want to talk about it.

    I definitely think he’s using this as a reason to keep me at a distance. From what he’s said, he feels awful about it (as he should), but from what he’s said and how he’s acting, he seems to have written off anything ever working out between us because he feels so badly and doesn’t think I’ll ever be able to get past it. I didn’t realize most of my feelings about him being married/being lied to until several weeks after I found out and I never told him what I ultimately felt/decided. Instead, I asked him to come here so we could talk about it in person. He said he would try, but nothing happened. He’d started backing off by then and given the circumstances, chasing after him in any way seemed like a terrible course of action. Like I said, after I got past the “why did you lie about this, who does that?!” and understood why he lied about it, I didn’t have much of a reaction to it. I was really far removed from him. It had been nearly 7 months since I left and even though I hoped it might work out down the line, realistically I knew I shouldn’t bet on that… So I didn’t. I dated other people and focused on school. Because I was far enough removed, I really wasn’t hurt and I like him enough that I want to see where (if anywhere) it goes when I get back. What do you think?

  12. @Whattodo…..We can understand his reasoning for not telling you, and we can see why this has played out the way it has. However, he’s now using his decision not to tell you as an excuse to keep you at arm’s length. Because if he was really into you, and wanted to make something work, he’d beg for forgiveness and do everything he could to prove that he’s a loyal and trustworthy person. The fact that he’s making decisions for you—”you’ll never be able to get past this, etc.”—is ridiculous. We don’t think anything’s going to come of this. Sorry. Just our two cents.

  13. Hey guys,
    I haven’t wrote to you in awhile but am pleased to say this message has nothing to do with my ex boyfriend so that is progress. After 10 years of being alone I have been seeing someone new and I thought things were so perfect that I’d never have to write you again lol. I’ve fallen for him and am in no doubt of his love for me. He is very thoughtful and good to me, supportive, speaks of marriage and our future, and is a Christian. He is at heart I believe a decent, good man. I knew he had a past that involved drugs and he said he was glad they are in the past. We had a long conversation last night (2 hour) about our future, and he asked me something that greatly disturbed me. He asked me what if we get married and he “slipped up” and did pot? I told it would be over between us and he said he isn’t sure he wants to be with someone who would end things for that. Drugs are not in my value system, and I am feeling very mislead because I didn’t think they were no longer a part of his either. I thought all this time (the last 4 months) that I’ve invested in him that we were on the same page. I know you cannot answer the question I need answered the most which is which of us will he choose? I love him but I choose not to have drugs as part of mine and my son’s life. My mom says I shouldn’t talk to him for a few days, not see him this weekend, tell him I “need time” and let him miss me. As guys I am asking your advice on how to handle this situation. I feel like he caught me completely off guard. I feel hurt, confused, scared that he may choose pot over me. This relationship is important to me and I want it to be saved if it can so I need to know how to best handle this fragile situation. I know guys don’t like ultimatums but how do I communicate lovingly that it is either me or pot? Thanks so much.. He will be calling me tonight what do I do?

  14. @Katie….Well, if you’re asking how to say it lovingly, you just say it. Here’s the thing: He can promise that he won’t do it, and choose you over pot, as you say. But there’s still no guarantee that he won’t slip up even if he has good intentions. So you need to ask yourself the question: Do I love this man enough to take the risk and still accept him if he does slip up? The problem we see is that you’re looking for guarantees about the future and there aren’t any. And frankly, slipping up and smoking a joint isn’t the worst thing he could do. (Unless it became a habit.) There are so many worse things a person could do. Cheat. Lie. Betray. Abuse. We honestly think he’s trying to be real with you and you’re creating a situation that doesn’t need to happen. You’re making an ultimatum about something that he may not be able to promise. Understand that we’re not condoning drug use, although we’re a bit more lax than you. But we think this may have more to do with control. Because is it the drugs that you’re worried about or something else? It just seems like you’re looking for total control, when relationships don’t work that way. At least successful ones. We think you really need to think about this.

  15. Hey guys thank you and I think you are right… I did give it a lot of thought, and I think what scared me wasn’t not being in total control that honestly wasn’t my intention, but if were to become a habit. I guess I had this fear of him saying “what if” only for that to mean I invest in him and then the down the road drugs become part of my lifestyle because he uses them. We did have a long talk about this and I told him I love him and want to be with him. He said he definitely wasn’t looking to make it a lifestyle at all, he just wanted to know he was going to be with someone he wouldn’t lose- no matter what. Infact he ended up saying that he didn’t know if he even desired to use it again period. Had I not kept an open mind enough to talk to him again, I may never have known that and missed out on an amazing man. I agree with you that he was trying to be real and I appreciated that very much. I know what a special one he is and I told him exactly that and things are perfect between us 🙂 Thank you for your guidance.

  16. Hey guys, I actually need help in one more area of this lovely relationship. My boyfriend currently is living with his brother who is separated from his wife and constantly tells my boyfriend negative/bad things about women. How we are only about ourselves, how we only want to be worshipped, etc, etc. Now my boyfriend has never been in a serious relationship before at all. So I know stuff his brothers tell him and the divorces he has seen them go through scares him. He confesses this to me and tells me what his brother says negatively about women. But then he will tell me he loves me and knows I am unique. I know his brother is jealous of the happiness Joe has found with me and my impression is that he is doing what he can to end things between us. I know your advice to me will probably be to just keep being a wonderful, happy, and supportive, loving girlfriend. But is there anything else I can do myself to make our relationship even more secure and know I have nothing to worry about regardless of what his brother says? Thank you, Katie

  17. @Katie….You’re welcome. Good luck.

  18. @Katie….You’re right. Keep being a wonderful, supportive girlfriend. Don’t bad mouth his brother. It sounds like your guy has a good head on his shoulders and should understand that his brother’s point of view is jaded. But you can’t be the one to tell him that. He’s got to realize that on his own or have one of his buddies tell him that. Hopefully he’s mature enough and strong enough to stand up to his brother. And what’s up with his brother? We’re sorry he’s trying to derail your relationship. Hang in there.

  19. Hi,
    Thanks for the advice, and fortunately I have known better than to say anything negative regarding his brother’s comments against women. I will just continue being a great girlfriend, but what bothers me is the fact that we live a few hours apart and he lives with his brother and sees him more than he sees me… I only see him once or twice a week at present. I don’t think his brother dislikes me (he has never met me), I just think as you said he is jaded and has a negative view of women himself, therefore in my perspective he seems jealous of his brother’s happiness. This is something my boyfriend regularly mentions to me so I know his brother isn’t just making a random comment here or there and that is what disturbs me. When trying to build a nice relationship constant doubt doesn’t help.

  20. @Katie….YOu’re right. It doesn’t help. But this is on your boyfriend. If he’s letting himself be influence by other people, then that’s something you need to think about. Because it’s not going to change even if the two of you stay together long-term. Good luck and keep us posted.

  21. It’s a true comfort to have you guys here to talk with, I will keep you posted.

  22. Hi guys, everything seemed great between my boyfriend and I until a few weeks ago.. He became very distant telling me things like he was feeling overwhelmed by things, it was too much, he didn’t know what to do, he wasn’t sure of our future etc, etc… He did tell me he loved me but he pulled seriously away and almost broke up with me on the phone 2 Saturday’s ago but then changed his mind saying “maybe he needed to think more” I told him to take his time. I made a mistake though and called him a couple days later to tell him I left my phone charger an hour away and my phone was about to die and asked him if he would be interested in coming over for dinner. I guess my thinking was it would be easier to salvage things while we were still together than just waiting to get dumped and hoping things could be better after that. He was cold on the phone to me and I kept my cool but ended the conversation quickly. That was on Tuesday and I didn’t hear from him until Sunday by email. It was very brief stating only that he would be coming to see me to bring me my laptop and to talk. Then Monday he called me and came over to see me. I was under the complete impression we were finished and I saw in his truck he no longer had the thing I made for him hanging on his mirror. He came in stoic gave me my laptop and said he was going to weed-eat my yard. I asked him why and he said “because you have no one else to do it for you” and I told him that was alright he didn’t need to worry about that. He said “so you aren’t going to let me help you?” and I shook my head. I wanted a man who loved me to do that for me, not pity. So he sat down and started saying about how since he met me he has followed his heart but hasn’t used his head. That he loved me and he feels bad but he is a touchy guy and I probably deserve better. He confided in me that his brother is getting divorced (you know the brother who hates all women and has nothing good about us to say).. So he was sitting on my couch not looking good, what seemed like was going to break up with me but didn’t. And then he wanted to get physical. He reached out and touched my hair telling me how beautiful it was. Then he asked me if it would be wrong to love on each other. He kissed me and after awhile I pulled away and asked him what he wanted. He told me time to figure out his situation (he is living with his brother and not supporting himself yet with having a place of his own, etc, etc) I asked him if he wanted to be with me and he said “I do” and I said then the rest would work itself out and that his brother’s divorce had nothing to do with what we have. I am sure you will tell me this was a mistake but I ended up sleeping with him. Normally he would spend the night but he didn’t this time. Although he did hold me tight for a long time after telling me he loved me. I told him I have a lot of love to give and I want it to be him I give it to but that I want to be with someone who won’t leave me and who is certain of wanting a future with me. He squeezed my hand when I said this and held me closer and he told me “I meant what I said about loving you, I do.” Then he left but when he said goodbye he said “I love you babe.” but made no comment about him calling me or when we would see each other, etc. And he always has throughout our relationship. So this brings us to the present. He didn’t call me at all yesterday and I have no idea when he will or when I will see him again or if it is over now. It didn’t feel like it was over when he was here. He didn’t break up with me. Does that mean he wants me or just chickened out of ending things?? Is there any hope for us or is a breakup just looming ahead of me? I feel so confused and don’t know what I should do? Up till the past few weeks when he nearly disappeared and left me hanging he has always treated me amazingly well. Where do you guys see things standing now? Is there hope or is he already over me? I feel so lost. Thanks for your help

  23. I forgot to tell you that after kissing for awhile he looked at me and said I’m going to weed-eat your yard. I smiled and said why, and he answered because I love you. This was before he came back in and we slept together. When he left that night he told me it was so he would be closer to work, he lives a couple hours away from me…. Anyways I am seriously struggling financially and through our relationship he was giving me money (I never asked him to infact I told him I didn’t want him to if it would jepordize our relationship). So when he says things are too much to handle and he wants time to figure out his own situation if he is referring to this at all. Thanks again guys. I believe he loves me and I want this relationship to work, I feel so confused.

  24. @katie…..We’re going to say it again. If he’s being influenced by his brother then that is a reflection on the strength of his convictions, or lack of. He should know by now what he wants. And his lack of certainty is an answer in itself.

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