Lesbianing With AE! Moving on When She Doesn’t Return Your Feelings

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Dear Lindsey,

A lot of people think lesbians can’t be friends. Maybe they can and maybe they can’t. I still don’t know. Anyways, I met a girl and we became really close. We were friends. We hung out like friends do. We went out of town like friends do etc. during the course of our friendship, we also developed feelings (or at least I did). We would hold hands, kiss, be kind of intimate in public BUT still labeled it as a friendship. Most of the time she would initiate and I would follow through because I was attracted to her physically, mentally, and emotionally. I shared my feelings with her multiple times but she would never deny the fact she didn’t have feelings. And always she labeled us as friends. Eventually it led to the downfall of our friendship. Our last conversation didn’t go well and she walked away from our “friendship”. I guess the question I have here is why label it as a friendship when obviously it was more than that. Was it reading too much into the affection? And I would like to believe that I have the power to not text her but it’s so hard. I know that and accepted that we would never be in a relationship and I miss the times we would have knowing that she would never be mine. Torture? Maybe but we had a connection as two people. What should I do Lindsey? Text her? Let her be and find new friends?

Thanks,

Gem

Hey Gem,

The universe handed you a big old lesson in all this.

If you have feelings for someone and they do not have feelings for you, then don’t do intimate stuff with them because you will get hurt.

I know….when you’re into someone and they’re totally willing to kiss and cuddle, especially if you know they’re gay, then you are gonna do it no matter what your rational brain screams.

However….if this woman only wanted to be your friend and didn’t have romantic feelings for you, no amount of relationship stuff would have made her change her mind.

If this woman only wanted to be your friend and didn’t have romantic feelings for you, no amount of relationship stuff would have made her change her mind.

So many lesbians invest mental, emotional, or physical energy in women who cannot reciprocate it, whether it’s because they’re not gay or not interested. You’re the second reader this month to seek advice on this topic.

I know you can’t go back and do things differently, but please, protect your tender heart in the future by conserving your energy and only giving to people what they can give back to you.

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You can cuddle with female, lesbian-identified friends and think they’re hot and know they’ll never be your girlfriend when you accept from the outset the limitations and pull back if your feelings start to overwhelm you. If you cuddle and make out and whatnot hoping the whole time you will change their mind or convince them or get them in bed when they’re drunk (which we don’t condone), then you will get hurt.

Since you use the word torture and feel powerless to text your former friend, I would suggest you put your energy into other people and relationships rather than text her. Yes, you may get super sad one night and text her an “I miss you,” but try to let her be, because reopening the past seems like it will cause you more pain.

Put your energy into other people and relationships rather than text her. Yes, you may get super sad one night and text her an “I miss you,” but try to let her be, because reopening the past seems like it will cause you more pain.

Believe that you are worthy of reciprocal love and affection on a friend level, romantic level, and person to person level. Understand that whatever your connection was, you each experienced it differently and you wanted something she could not give you. Trust that new opportunities for reciprocal love will present themselves to you when you leave this woman be.

Maybe you will reconnect as friends one day, when you’re healed from all this and you’ve each got new partners and you can have a good laugh about it.

Find new friends—and get clear for yourself on what friends mean to you. If you want romance, look for lovers. If you want friends, look for friends and don’t try to turn them into lovers—at least, not if it is clear they cannot meet your needs.

Do you have a question for Lindsey? Send it to the editor at memoree@afterellen.com with “Q for Lindsey” in the subject line, and she’ll answer in a future post! 

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