Wednesday, April 25, 2007

ask nikki, pt 4

Dear Nikki,

I have a best male friend who is embarking on a "new" book situation, he is such the gentleman, such the constant source of support, such the end all, be all. The problem is, I think I've fallen in love with him and I'm definitely too afraid to tell him, don't want to risk losing the friendship in the process. What should I do, please advise...

hmmm...when i think on it, the answer is simple, really. all you have to do is ask yourself a few questions...

1. are you absolutely sure he is the man you want to spend the rest of your life with (or at the very least, willing to try it)?

i've got male friends of my own and at one time thought i was in love with one of them because he and i vibed on so many levels. turns out he was the safest route for me because he didn't inspire passion, didn't raise emotions within me that left me feeling out of control. we hardly ever argued, so everyone (including us) figured it made sense for us to get together. he was that nice safe friend who never demanded more of me and i thought i was cool with that. eventually i found myself unfufilled. i realized later i chose him for the wrong reasons because i didn't know myself well enough at the time to recognize he really wasn't what i wanted.

in other words, just cuz the brotha is a good brotha doesn't make him the right brotha.

2. are you ready for a serious commitment?

it's one thing to want it, another thing entirely to be ready for it. is he the cat you see completing you or the cat you see complimenting your life? hopefully your life is fulfilling on its own merits and having a guy in it would only enhance it, not be the reason for it. if this friendship is as cherished as you say, then you have to truly examine where you are in your life because the decision made here could change your life for better or for worse.

3. are you willing to accept the consequences of approaching him romantically?

in other words, if you tell him you're in love with him and he tells you he doesn't feel the same or he does feel the same and you two embark on a relationship that ends, are you okay with it? will you be aiight with the friendship possibly changing for the worse if you tell him how you feel? think about the worse case scenario and ask yourself if you'd be cool if that scenario actually happened. be real with it, too.

if you are convinced he's the guy you want to spend your life with, recognize he's a wanted addition to your life instead of an integral neccessity to it, and you're willing to accept the consequences of making a play for him, then i say go for it.

Dear Nikki,

I've developed an off and on friendship with someone that I met at work a couple of years ago. I say off and on because sometimes we don't see or talk to each other for weeks, even months. the minute we meet we become sexually involved. that's the kind of relationship that has developed. At times he looks at me and says "you really like me don't you". I fiqure this statement stems from the fact that we're sexually involved everytime we met. There's no explanation expected for the weeks or months that lapse in between. I would love to have more with this guy but know it's impossible due to his "situation". how do i break this unhealthy addiction?

ask yourself these questions:

1. how does being a part of this association make you feel? does your self-esteem suffer as a result of you being with this guy? i mean, you're not his woman, you're the 'other'. surely that can't make you feel good. also, don't falsely elevate your self-esteem because you think you're giving him something his woman can't because really what you're doing is allowing him to take something he doesn't deserve...your sense of self-worth. you're an active participant in an activity that makes you doubt yourself and your decision-making ability. you're giving him the power to make you feel that way by remaining at his beck and call.

2. how many times have you heard this story you're telling me from other women? what did you think about their situations when they told you? no doubt you probably thought to yourself "she's playing herself..." now of course it's different when one is actually in the situation instead of observing from afar, but that doesn't make the truth any less true, just makes a person less willing to accept it. are you okay with playing yourself, with allowing yourself to be treated in this manner?

3. why have you chosen to be this situation? there is something appealing about this situation or else you wouldn't be in it. i don't mean just the sex, i'm talking about emotionally. on some emotional level he's giving you something and you have to figure out what that is. do you like the idea of dealing with a man who is 'taken' because you see his inherent unavailability as a challenge or perhaps you like how he makes you feel desired?

4. what do you want? does this relationship as it is RIGHT NOW fulfill you on all of the necessary levels you desire to be content? many of us (me included) get caught up in the potential of a relationship, the 'what ifs'. meanwhile, if 'what ifs' were fifths of whiskey we'd all be dead from cirrhosis of the liver. bottom line is this situation could keep on for as long as you let it. if you want that, then aiight. if you don't, then you know what's up.

there is nothing wrong with a casual sexual relationship if both parties understand and accept it for what it is. however, if this association is adversely affecting your life, i.e. preventing you from becoming emotionally available to a possible mate or has you viewing yourself as some home-wrecking ho, then you know what to do. frankly, you're the only one who can break this addiction. recognize you made the choice to be in this situation. through that you gain the self-empowerment necessary to know you can make the choice to end it.

aiight folk...i'm sure i'm leaving some points out of here so i'd appreciate any additions to what i've said (or arguments against it if you really think you have a case. LOL)