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Hi everyone,

Thanks to all your incredibly thoughtful and helpful feedback, I've done some serious thinking about what I want right now and what the best way to proceed is. I definitely have been feeling terribly and under a lot of pressure in terms of my medical situation (lots of pain, lots of doctors, lots of stress :confused: etc.) but I think I've finally gotten everything straightened out in my head, for the most part at least. I know it was probably bad of me to reactivate my online dating profile when I got an email from the site that included a guy who completely knocked my socks off, but I had to do it to check out his and other profiles. Ever since then, I've been increasingly convinced that I moved too quickly, getting involved in another exclusive, committed relationship so soon after my last one. I thought that was what I wanted, but after thinking about this honestly with myself, I realize that over the last few weeks, having J as a steady boyfriend has started to turn me off more than make me happy. It's not really anything about him, but as many of you have pointed out, I don't feel myself falling in love and actually have been pulling away and not feeling much more than platonic chemistry with him lately. I think that's because I'm feeling a bit guilty about having one foot out the door but not having made a final decision until the last few days.

So, I was tossing around several ideas in my head...it's become clear lately that staying committed to an exclusive relationship with J isn't what I want at this point. Although I feel a bit bad about that, I can't force myself to want something when truly I'm much more excited about the prospect of being single and playing the field. Iíve been really happy and excited to get such another overwhelming response to my ad now that itís back online, and already several men who look like excellent, promising prospects have contacted me. I know it wasnít cool to post that before officially slowing down or breaking things off with J, but there was one guy whose profile I couldnít resist reading, which required reactivating my profile, and ever since, itís just felt right to be dating again. That part of me who was worrying that I was taking a good thing for granted and being foolish to consider throwing away a relationship with seemingly everything going for it has been effectively silenced. The only options I've been considering over the last few days are ending things completely or proposing that we back way up and no longer feel obligated to date exclusively...after talking with a few of my closest friends, I've come to the decision that I'm just not that excited about pursuing this relationship regardless of its incarnation. Therefore, I think you guys were right that the only fair and honest thing to do is be upfront about my decision with J and be happy for the experience. I feel very fortunate to have met such a great guy at a time when it meant a great deal to me to have a sweet, kind, and committed boyfriend. Part of me thinks I should feel really badly about having what I guess would be considered a rebound relationship, but at the time, I really didn't know that this would end with me feeling this way. I just hope he doesn't see it as me using him when I needed him then chewing him up and spitting him out, because I do care for him and would never want to hurt him.

So I guess that brings me to...how exactly should I approach all of this? I've been distancing myself over the last few weeks and it's become pretty clear that I'm no longer as enthusiastic about any aspect of our relationship, to the point where just now I got an email from J saying he wants to have a "deep, heartfelt conversation" tonight. I know my signals haven't been exactly subtle and he's got to have picked up the message that I'm pulling away and losing interest. In a way I'm relieved and hoping he agrees that we're better off apart, then that will be that, but I'm also a little worried by his choice of terminology that he doesn't necessarily see us as needing to part ways. Everything would go quite pleasantly and smoothly if we were agreed that we weren't right for each other and needed to move on. But in case he wants to discuss and address concerns about our relationship, rather than sensing that I want to move on, I'm really nervous that I won't be able to think of anything to say that will be clear, coherent, and considerate. I don't know whether it would be good to mention that I need more time to be single after ending such a long term relationship, whether I'm not really feeling the sparks I've felt with the men I loved most in the past at the same stage in our relationship, whether I'm feeling a strong desire to avoid being tied down, or all, some, or none of the above? I don't want to provide TMI or rub anything in, but at the same time, I want to be prepared to explain my thinking if pressed.

Sorry for yet another excessively long threadÖI guess I canít resist trying to talk things through with myself as I write to you guys and hope you can weed through my ramblings. Iím basically wondering if you guys have any suggestions as to how I can most tactfully and least hurtfully bring up and discuss such an uncomfortable topic. Is there anything that comes to mind which I should either make sure to mention or be careful to avoid bringing up? I do want to be back on the dating site through which we met, so I donít want to say anything that would reveal me as a liar for doing soÖIíve had some difficulty in the past with letting down guys who didnít let up on emailing and calling. I know J isnít like that at all, but still, I wish I knew for sure that we were on the same wavelength about this. But I just havenít seen much reason to think thatís the case here. Anyway, Iíd greatly appreciate any feedback or suggestions you might have as to how I can best handle this situation, especially if anyone thinks Iím making a mistake here or overlooking something importantóSophia, your story about your friend was extremely helpful, so thank you very much . From everything youíve shared, it does seem like we share a lot in commonóIíd love to befriend her along with you! Anyway, when my instinct tells me something is missing with a guy, no matter how promising or enchanting he seems at first, Iíve never been disappointed by taking the risk of leaving in hopes of finding someone who truly blew me away. Iím thrilled that everything worked out great for your friend, and I hope the rest of us single (including the almost single!)
ladies here find similar fulfillment before long. Have a great weekend, everyoneÖIím eagerly anticipating a new start as a single girl after way too many weekends tied down in relationships. Iíve been feeling jealous of you all over the last few weeks, and I truly appreciate having you all to confide in honestly and be able to trust that youíll almost inevitably provide supportive, caring and wise feeback. Thanks again everyoneóhereís to an amazing weekend for all the HB members, regardless of their relationship status! :D





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