Be a boss
I’m friends with a guy I really like. We’ve hooked up a few times, but mostly I really like him as a friend. I’ve given him plenty of hints that I’m not really into it anymore, but do want to keep being friends. I’ve even told him about other guys I like and want to be with. He doesn’t get it. Now when we hang out he always seems to think it’s going to end one way, and when it doesn’t he won’t respond to my texts for days. I hate the way this makes me feel so I usually do what he wants. I don’t understand why he doesn’t get it. What should I do?
Admit to yourself that your friend can’t take a hint and there’s no reason he should. It’s your job to be the #girlboss of your life. Stop being indirect. Stop hoping he’ll get a clue. You’re not being a good friend to him or to yourself. When you hint, you’re expecting him to be fully accountable for your feelings and boundaries in addition to his own. That’s unkind to both of you. So take charge: Ask for what you want, give yourself what you need, and create more of what you love. It takes courage to establish boundaries and respect them, but it also makes relationships simpler.
By giving in and having sex to avoid a potentially awkward conversation, you’re teaching yourself not to trust yourself. Honesty rebuilds trust. Have a direct conversation with your friend and say the hookups are over. Communicating with him is better than making up stories in your head about how badly the conversation might go. Yes, it’s scary to confront someone about an uncomfortable situation, but it’s also an essential act of self-care. Try this: “I love our friendship. You’re important to me. I realize that I’m not into hooking up. Can we move forward as friends?” Keep the conversation clean and short. No justifications. No excuses. You might feel inclined to pressure him for an immediate answer. Don’t do it. Give him time to think things over. You may lose a friend but by facing what scares you, you gain a powerful connection with your soul.
One last thing, let’s unpack your need to be liked. It interferes with your ability to give your friend space after telling him you don’t want to hook up. He might feel angry or rejected. He has a right to his feelings. He even has a right to stew in his feelings. If you’re uncomfortable when he doesn’t jump to reply to your text messages, redirect your thoughts away from his life. When you expect him to respond immediately, you’re inside his mind, trying to pull strings to force him to do what you want. Get back into your own head and do something positive with your energy. Go for a walk. Tidy your living space. Write a thank-you note to a different friend or a colleague and snail mail it. Train your mind to flow out of drama and into actions that encourage you to enjoy happier, more fulfilling relationships.