General Dating Questions/He wants me back, and to try long distance...
Ok so there's this guy I have a lot of history with. We have liked each other for years, and we have been off and on without ever actually "dating". When we're on, we text all day long and we become very close, and when we're off, it doesn't take long to get things going again. We just seem to always be drawn to each other. Although we have this connection, we were never really able to get it working. Last summer we got closer than ever to actually declaring us a couple, but oddly our relationship was mostly texting. When we were supposed to meet one day to talk about our relationship, he got scared and cancelled last minute. I was fed up and told him to stop texting and to f*** off. He moved away to university about 6 hours away at the end of that summer, and I stayed in our hometown, also going to university. Just a couple of days ago, he texted again, and I decided I should hear him out and I could maybe get some closure, since all I had been thinking of was him anyways. We talked and he said he made a mistake and it was his fault but he thinks it could work now. This was like a huge bomb being dropped into my life, because I now have no idea what to do. From what he says, he hasn't been able to get over me no matter how hard he tries and I have the same problem. He thinks it could work now, but I'm not sure if I can trust him again. I still have strong feelings for him, but with the past I don't know what to do. I'm worried that he might just feel safe being with me now since he can hide behind a screen for the most part, I think he prefers that. I asked him and he said thats not it, he says he's grown up and changed and he feels like he won't let go of me. Its hard to not get carried away with this, but I don't really want to do long distance, since it'll be like back-tracking to summer again. I would give him a chance if he were still here, but I don't know what to do now. My head and heart are telling me opposite things, and I was wondering if you could give me some advice, seeing as you aren't emotionally involved. So what do you think?
Thank you so much for your time, and I'm sorry its so long
Let's sort this out.
First of all the long-distance relationship (LDR) thing: don't do it. They never work out and when they fail they leave you devastated and with damage that takes months and sometimes years to straighten out. Trust me on this one. If he's not local enough to have a REAL relationship with, he's not relationship material. When he returns, that's a different thing.
Regarding all the texting; this is exactly where things have failed for you. Let me say that trying to keep up the texting while he's gone is also going to kill off any future potential as well. There's a ton of science behind this that I won't bore you with. Let me give you just a peek into one of the major problems with all this texting.
Imagine that you're in the center of a huge room that is full of stuff and the lights are off - it's totally pitch black. While standing there, someone turns on the light and you get a glimpse of what's in the room. It's full of all sorts of things; floor-to-ceiling, so much in fact that you can't make out but a few items. Then, after a few seconds, the lights go off again and you are left to discover the room only by touch.
So, you go about exploring with your hands. You touch some things you recognize but most of it makes little sense. You don't know if things are dangerous or fun or interesting or whatever. You are simply building an impression with only the barest amount of information.
That's what texting-relationships are. It's impossible to convey much real information in 160 characters of text. The very best you can hope for is a few facts and that's about it.
The real problem comes however in your own brain filling in the information! Imagine that room again. As you touch something you don't recognize, your brain begins building a picture of it. Where does it get that information? From your own past experiences. It's not a "fact" about the piece, it's your own impression! That's all it is! Thus, you create something out of it whether it's real or not.
That is exactly the sort of "relationship" you have with this guy. It's not any more "real" than the things in that room. It's based exclusively on your own impressions - not on experiencing reality. Thus, you have almost nothing to go on. You haven't established anything close enough to actually have something. Instead, you tried to hold your "dates" via text.
Bottom line: you never pulled the trigger when you had the chance and now, until he's back you have no chance of this working - again. Keep in mind that when he returns, he's going to be a different person as well. His college career is going to change him. He may not be the person you know him to be now.
Thus, listen to your head and move on.
Dr. Dennis W. Neder
Publisher of "Being a Man in a Woman's World I, II & III"
Producer of "BAM! TV"