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Missing My Best Friend
#1
Sad 
TL;DR
I’m gay. Met a guy through a friend. Became very close friends. His girlfriend gets jealous and stops him from seeing me. Over time I developed feelings for him but wasn’t expecting anything to happen. He was ok with me telling him how I felt but doesn’t feel the same way back – though I have my suspicions that may not be fully true. Her jealousy has stopped him seeing me and spending time with me. It’s gotten worse over time. Now we haven’t spoken in a month, we don’t see each other and I really miss my best friend.
 
Full Story:
I don’t really know what I expect to get out of making this post. I think maybe I just need to get this off my chest and I don’t really have any other way to do it because all my friends know him. Anyway, I’ll give you the whole story, start to present, you don’t have to read it, you don’t have to reply, I think I just need to get this out…
 
I’m a guy. Openly gay. 30. Happy with my life in general, good friends, decent job, etc. There was this guy, an acquaintance, he is an employee of a close friend, he’s also 10 years younger than I am. Somehow, about a year ago, we started texting and then started hanging out together. Let’s call him Josh. As long as I’ve known Josh he’s been in a relationship with the same girl.
 
Everything was fine to begin with. We’d hang out a lot. We’d see each other every day as much as we could. We work similar hours (evening/night hours) so it was nice to have someone to spend time with in the days. Over time things got a little flirtatious, but it was nothing serious, just fun.
 
After a couple months, Josh told me that we needed to “chill things for a bit…” because his girlfriend didn’t like how much time we were spending together and didn’t like that we were a little flirty with each other. Things cooled off for about a week until she calmed down and then we carried on hanging out with each other again. As much as we could, as long as we could. I should note, this never took any time away from him and her, we’d only see each other when she was in work. I’d make sure to take him home when she was leaving work. Occasionally we’d all grab dinner, a drink or go to the beach for the evening, but that was a rare occurrence and usually I’d leave them to be together.
 
Over the year, the flirting continued and got more physical. Not sexual. Just becoming more comfortable with each other, a bit more touchy-feely. I’d play with his hair, he’d rest his head on me, we’d sit close together on the sofa so that there was physical contact, I’d grab hold of his arm and compliment him on how big and muscly they felt, he’d then flex his muscles and tell me to feel them again, things like that. Josh was fairly shy when we first started spending time together, really quiet and reserved… but now he’d bounce around the place, singing and dancing, it was really nice to see him that comfortable and carefree, it was nice to see him be happy since he’s not had the easiest of lives so far and in general, he’s not a happy/carefree kind of person.
 
Over the year we had similar instances where Josh would tell me we needed to “chill things a bit” because his girlfriend was upset about how much time he was spending with me, but each time it would happen he’d become a bit more distant with me. It would never quite go back to how things were and he’d never talk about it or admit anything had changed, he just insisted this was how it always was. He’s kind of stubborn.
 
At some point, I started to develop feelings for Josh. It was impossible not to. He’s beautiful. He’s funny. He’s charming. He makes me feel like I matter. When I’m with him, I don’t feel like I have to be alone anymore. That said, I know he’s in a relationship with a girl. I had no expectations, I just can’t control how I feel. I didn’t say anything to him about it though and we carried on as normal. Though slowly over time, making plans got harder, he started having to be back by a certain time, he couldn’t leave town so we couldn’t go on little adventures or day trips anymore, then we couldn’t eat any place too nice or too fancy, it had to be cheap. It got to the point where all we did was get a sandwich and eat it by the reservoir, which was nice enough but I missed being able to do new things with him.
 
After Christmas, I barely got to see him. We’d still talk everyday but he’d make excuses as to why he couldn’t see me. The excuse always being the same, “I’m busy”. It got to the end of January, my birthday, and I think I’d seen him once but we had plans to do something together that day for my birthday. I had the day off work. It didn’t quite go to plan though. I was upset because I felt like I was losing my friend but, in a nutshell, I ended up texting him and telling him that I had feelings for him, more than just a friend. He replied kind of angrily “I’m in a relationship. Long-term. Forever. Got it?!” quickly followed by a “and I’m not gay” message. I didn’t reply to either one. Like I said, I wasn’t expecting anything. I just wanted to tell him, I felt like our friendship was strong enough that it could handle it and I needed to get it off my chest so that I would feel better and maybe he could understand me a little better. Still, he text me about an hour later asking what time I was picking him up, it was still my birthday, he still wanted to see me and hang out. So, we did what we had planned to do and it was like everything was normal.
 
I didn’t text him much for the next week, I was a bit upset, I hadn’t expected him to tell me he had the same feelings for me, I just wanted to talk about how I felt so I could kind of get it off my chest and try to move past it. I never got to do that. In his defence though, the week following the big revelation, it was like I had my friend back, Josh would text me non-stop. He’d check in on me. He’d make sure I was ok. He made all the effort that he used to make before he wasn’t allowed to make the effort anymore. I felt like things were going to be ok. At one point, I took a friend to the restaurant where Josh works, she didn’t know any of my story with Josh, she just knew he was a person that worked there. About half an hour in, she looks at me and says “what’s going on with him and you? He keeps looking at you, making eyes at you, and not in the way a friend would look at a friend…” That’s when I first started to wonder if maybe there might be more to our friendship than I thought?
 
Then I started to notice things. If I went on a dating app, he’d poke at the screen until I got so annoyed I closed out of it. Eventually I deleted the app and told him, to see how he’d react. He was surprised, but happy, he told our friends quite proudly that I had deleted the app off my phone. Despite it not really being something I would have announced. I got to meet his Mother. We were out for food with her and he made a joke about me being gay and then got really awkward and just blurted out to his Mum that I was gay. She was fine with it. I ran my hand through his hair to calm him down, he put his head on my shoulder, she commented that we were like a married couple. I mentioned to him that he smelled really nice one day, he’d put aftershave on, so I kind of made a fuss over how good he smelled. He wore it every day subsequently, until his girlfriend read a message I sent him saying how good he smells, he tried to play it off as if it was the first time I’d said it to him, he never wore the aftershave again. I went to see him at work one night, it was a warm night, I unbuttoned the top few buttons of his shirt, told him he’d stay cooler and make more tips if he showed off his sexy chest. He laughed it off, said he didn’t want just anybody looking at his chest, and did his shirt back up, but once we got in my car to go home, he unbuttoned his shirt again and flashed a big smile at me.
 
Soon after my birthday, Josh started talking about a business idea he had that he wanted to do and wanted me to help him with. It seemed like a genuinely decent idea and others had some success with it, so I said I would be more than happy to try and see how it goes.
 
The first week of February, I got news that I had to go to London for a while with work and I wasn’t sure when I was going to be back but likely not until April or May. I managed to see Josh for a few hours just before his birthday, just before I left. I said when I get back from London, we’ll go away for a few days, just him and I, Amsterdam, Brussels, Prague, wherever he fancied, and that would be his birthday present from me. He was excited but said he’d have to let me know because of work and money, etc. (I’d already cleared it with his boss, my friend, and time off and money wasn’t going to be an issue)
 
While I was in London for the first month, we continued to talk every day, started planning things for the business idea he had. We wanted to do things properly so we’d need to set up a company and a business bank account. Since I was in London working and unable to travel back except on weekends, it was going to make some things difficult. Work offered me free tickets for family etc to travel to London to see me, so I said he could come to London for a day, he has a couple weekdays off work, I could go with him to open the bank account and we could grab lunch and he could head home. He straight up refused to come to London. Despite the fact he’s always said he’d wanted to come to London and we had talked about coming here in the past. Plus he really wanted to get this business going, so I was confused as to why he wasn’t jumping at the chance but I didn’t push the idea, I was up here another couple of months, I figured he might change his mind.
 
Towards the end of my first month in London he text me saying he wouldn’t be able to go away with me either. That it was too much, too big of a gift, he couldn’t accept it. I asked a few questions until I got to a more honest answer: “we don’t want to have to depend on you”. It was the ‘we’ at the beginning of the sentence that told me all I needed to know. I tried to push a bit more and he changed the subject, asking “are we still going to do the business stuff though?” I stopped replying to him, I was hurt and upset. I figured he’d message me again, maybe in a few days, but he never did…
 
A month later I was back home for a weekend and I called in to see a friend at work, as I mentioned earlier, this friend is Josh’s employer. I had tried to call in early, knowing Josh wouldn’t be in work until a little later but I ended up getting side-tracked and was there for a fair while. Josh showed up to work but didn’t say anything to me at all. I would catch him looking over at me, making eyes at me, he seemed so sad the whole time, but I didn’t know what to say to him and so I left without saying anything at all.
 
A couple days later I messaged him, he replied instantly. We talked a bit and he’d said he was having some issues but didn’t want to tell me as we “don’t talk anymore”, I replied saying it’s not that I didn’t want to talk to him, just that I was upset and then I didn’t hear from him. He kind of shrugged it off and we kept talking. And talking. And talking. And talking. Back to normal.
 
End of April I came back home. We’d been talking normally again for a few weeks. I was excited to see him. Except he never asked to see me. He never asked to hang out. And slowly the conversation tapered off too – he wouldn’t reply for hours, when he did it would be one word answers. He’d answer whatever I’d asked him but wouldn’t properly engage in the conversation. He’d make excuses why he couldn’t when I’d ask if he wanted to hang out. I couldn’t keep making the effort when he wasn’t at least making some effort, so, I let the conversation die.
 
After a couple weeks he did text me and ask if I wanted to grab a drink, excitedly I said yes, to which he replied “great because I need my sunglasses, I left them in your car.” Slightly annoyed at that. I turned up with the sole intention of dropping off his sunglasses and leaving, but when I was with him, it was like old times. Following that, trying to text him was more of the same, hours and hours between answers, one word follow ups, etc. So I gave up again. Eventually he text me again asking to grab a coffee, so I said sure. Things again seemed fine and he was chatty and asked me a million questions… afterwards, back to being non-responsive. At this point I’d had enough and told him I wouldn’t be doing this anymore if he wasn’t at least going to make some effort, his reply “erm, ok, whatever.”
 
Now, I’m not super needy. I don’t need him to text me all day every day. I did love that he did do that, but I understand that when he’s at work, or with family or with his girlfriend that he might be slow to reply, or if he just wants a lazy day, or a break, I don’t mind that, I’ve never minded that and never been a dick about it. What I don’t like is when the pattern of behaviour changes and there’s no reason or explanation for it, when he just stops replying to me, or the way he writes his replies have changed.
 
Anyway, that was a month ago. I miss him. I have texted him to tell him that I missed him and he said “we should talk more” but nothing came of it. I know that he misses me, I know that he wants to see me and spend time with me because when I was in town (he gets Facebook messages pop up when I’m nearby) he text me to ask where I was and if I’d told him then we could have hung out (putting it back on me to make all the effort). I also know that she won’t let him make plans with me. He can’t make plans in advance with me anymore. What I don’t know is why he’s going along with it.
 
On the one hand I can’t argue with it because I do have feelings for him and I can understand it can’t be fun for her to watch her boyfriend spend so much time and effort with someone else. On the other hand, I don’t expect anything from him in that regard, I just want my friend back. I’m lonely without him. We used to talk all day, every day. We knew everything that was going on in each other’s lives. If he found himself in a difficult situation, he used to call me to help him out of it. Even his Mum phoned me one day to come and get him because he’d gotten into a physical fight with his brother and said he didn’t want to be alive anymore. I took time off work and I drove the hour and a half to his grandmothers to go get him. We spent the afternoon together, he showed me around where he grew up, the school he went to, where his friends used to live, etc. Couple hours of that and he was calm, he was ok again.
 
He has messaged me a few times here and there when he’s needed some information or had questions about something, but he never tries to make conversation and I don’t know what else to do. I’ve made it clear that I’ll always be here for him if he ever needs me, even if we’re not currently talking, but that he can’t treat me like an afterthought, that he can’t just be my friend when it’s convenient for him, that we’re either friends or we’re not. I’ve told him I miss him. I’ve told him I want my friend back. We haven’t talked in a few weeks, we haven’t hung out in over a month. I just don’t know where to go from here. I don’t think there is anywhere else to go.
 
I’m just sad, I’m lonely without him, I miss him… and I miss him as my friend. I still have additional feelings on top, but it’s the friendship, conversation and his company that I miss more than anything.
 
That was a longer post than I expected and I’ve still got stuff I feel I could have added in. If you made it this far, you deserve a medal. I do feel better having written this. I feel better knowing I got it out. You don’t have to reply, but thank you for taking the time to ‘listen’.
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