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How Do I Handle This?

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Some months ago, I met a girl, G, on an internet forum. I sound found out that she was immediately attracted to me. There was an instant connection. However, g is quite young, and her attention soon turned elsewhere. Throughout it all, I stayed her friend, and tried to treat her as well as I could. She and I were open fairly quickly about our thoughts on sex, and some of the discussions I had were quite arousing. And I guess it's all too obvious that when two people are effectively friends with benefits, even in this case cyber benefits, one person is bound to become interested in a relationship. And soon enough, my heart fluttered. Her attention was elsewhere, and I stayed on as a friend, clinging to the fact that she was still attracted to me, and also reminded of the fact that she and I are wrong for each other in some ways, including a substantial age difference.

But a little while ago, things changed. I later settled into a comfortable friendship with her. She had explored a few real life relationships, but nothing really panned out. I have never dissuaded her from doing so because I think local relationships are much more sustainable than long distance ones. It was during one recent one that while kissing some other guy, she realized she wanted to try what he was doing with her with me. She soon fell hard, very hard, for me. I still thought very dearly of her, and since then, we've been all but officially a couple. I'm still somewhat guarded towards her, mindful of the 1700 miles of distance and the age difference, among other things. But there are enough feelings on my end that I will happily date her if the distance were eliminated. I absolutely am not using G for companionship or sexual pleasure or what have you.

Meanwhile, there's something interesting that has just happened. A while back, I ran into an intriguing profile for a young woman, T, on a dating site. She had freely invited others to add her to Facebook, so I took her up on that. She accepted. Some two weeks later, I recalled that I had not done as I normally do when requests are confirmed and thanked T for adding me. She failed to recall where we knew each other from, and I explained, which lead to some "get to know you" small talk.Just over a week ago, I sent another message to say hello and ,mentioned her recent birthday. She told me that she had a bf, but that she thought that we should get together sometime. I really liked the idea because I have so few real life friendships, mainly because my mental health makes me feel like there's no good place for me to fit in socially with any group of people. Besides, I think I'd rather have an in-person friendship with someone than online anytime.

T messaged me again today, saying she was splitting with her guy and wanted to make plans with me to meet up. We're going for coffee next week. I have two questions here. The first is what to make of T's motives, because I see a few possibilities. She could be just letting me know about the end of her relationship as an update, and she's acting on what she said before. The second is that the end of her relationship could be encouraging her to pursue friendship with me because it would no longer look bad. The third is this could be a romantic gesture on her part. I don't know that there's any way of being sure until Monday, but my curiosity's piqued anyway. The second thing is how to handle G. I have always made it clear to her that I don't want her turning down other opportunities for happiness given the distance and the fact it will be a couple of years before that distance could be bridged. She had never been bothered by me looking for other opportunities either, but her recent shift towards me makes me question whether she still feels that way. My plan for now is to keep this coffee meetup with T from G, and then mention something if things went from there.


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Hi Michael,

I think you maybe over analyzing this all a little too much. It's confusing sometimes getting involved in Internet relationships. I don't feel like there is anything "real" there until you make real life contact with that person. People can say and be anything they want over the Internet. You don't really truly get to know that person until you actually meet them and make a connection. Im very leery of it so I may sound a bit judgemental on this topic.

I think you should keep your date with T. Have fun...get to know her...don't over analyze what her intentions are. Just go with the flow and have fun. As for G, she isn't your gf. She is like T, a friend over the Internet. I don't think its G's business who you meet and friend in RL . You aren't in a relationship with her.

Best of luck to you

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