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I'm Infatuated With a Woman Who Doesn't Seem to Care 

Dear Athena,

I find myself in a strange position. There's a girl whom I worked alongside in a restaurant for a number of years. I never paid her any special mind until she gave me an overview of her life, which has some very tragic elements to it, and I realized what an amazing person she is. For a couple months I got to know her better, until I took a few weeks off work in March last year. When I got back, she'd quit. It's now been roughly 14 months since I last saw her, and my infatuation with her hasn't waned even a little. I talk to her occasionally via Facebook and I've tried to meet her for coffee, but she's been too busy ... I get the feeling there isn't room for me in her busy life. Should I be trying to get over her, and, if so, why am I so infatuated that I'm not already doing that? 

Sincerely,

Perplexed

Dear Perplexed,

This is a two-part answer. Option 1: Get over it.

Whether she is not into you or is just way into her busy life, the next move here for you is to move on. But feeling disheartened need not be a solo journey. Get your buddies to take you out and set you up. Tell your friends you need help getting over the gal you never got to have. Your pals — especially the single ones — should be willing to troll the bars and clubs to help you find some distraction. A wingman is key.

If you're not the going-out type, then your infatuation must be stifled by other means. Buy some new books you've been meaning to read, take a trip, learn to sail, finish school or go back to school, immerse yourself in your work ... the list goes on. Stop sulking about what you don't have and enjoy the process of learning other ways to feel happy.

Remember, you don't really know this woman all that well. Maybe she's changed, or isn't as amazing as you remember. You've put her on a pedestal that time and imagination only lifts higher. But you can't lose what you never had, so it should be easier to move forward.

Option 2: Try harder.

If you really want to be with this woman, stop mooning around and be more proactive. Think Steve Martin in Roxanne.

Do you share any of the same friends? Enlist their help. Maybe they can set you up, or invite you to an event she might attend, so you can "bump into" one another. Then you can finally get some face-to-face time to show her how amazing you are. If she sees that you have the same friends and interests, perhaps you'll have an opportunity to woo her.

Or, write her an honest letter about how you feel. Tell her that she made such an impact on you that you'd love to take her out and get to know her better.

What's that expression, you can't swim without getting wet? Whatever. The point is, you have to really put yourself out there if you're going to have a chance. Be bold. Be real. Be romantic.

Yours,

Athena

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