Keeping It Casual--Or Not
Q: I recently reconnected with an ex who just moved to my town. We enjoy each other's company, but I don't see things lasting long-term. Still, we have fun and I'm currently too busy at work to put the energy into dating or meeting new people. She says she's fine with keeping things casual, but frankly, I don't think she's being honest with herself. I'm afraid she's looking for more and is going to get hurt. If it weren't for our shared history, I wouldn't care so much, but I don't want to cause her pain. Should I get out now or trust her to make her own decisions? - Philip, 49
Dr. Susan: Perhaps she's using you as much as you're using her? However, if she's falling for you, no matter what she admits to, and you feel nothing at all, neither of you is gaining much by this relationship. I'd repeat to her every so often that she has no future with you. By the way, if you're intimate, stay safe. And if you get any kind of solid hint that she does expect more from you, that may be the time to let her go.
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.