Confess love to friend and let chips fall where they may
Q: My friend and I have been close for years. She was the first friend I made at college, and she and I have been through everything, from bad relationships, my coming out of the closet, bad roommate, family, sorority issues, to graduation.
I have now realized I am in love with her. I do know she is straight and will never like me like that. But what do I do about it? I feel like I am in a no-win situation. I wear my heart on my sleeve and we spend lots of time with each other, so my hiding things from her is not an option. And because of my feelings for her, I find myself getting mad at her over stupid things and then crying about it. So do I tell her and risk losing her friendship, or not tell and hide it by just avoiding her altogether?
Losing a Friend
A: You tell her — but you don't present it in the form of an unspoken question, the "Do you love me back?" that lurks in so many declarations of love. Instead you tell her as an explanation: "The reason I've been an erratic, weeping mess lately is that I've fallen for you, and I know it's impossible. I hope you can be patient with me while I deal with this." There's no way not to put her on the spot, but at least this way you're asking for something she can give you: patience. Show yours by giving her room to process the news.
It's possible she won't respond well, that you can't win, that you lose your friend either way. But avoiding her altogether, while shielding you from rejection, guarantees you lose the friendship. Admitting your feelings at least gives your friendship a chance.
Impressed by opulence, or secretly wanting it?
Q: I know I'm a horrible person for admitting this, and feel free to throw flames at me, but I feel inadequate about my engagement ring. My mom never even had one, and I know huge blingy rings are just another product of the Wedding Industrial Complex that I so despise, but I just can't help feeling bad when I see my friends' giant rocks compared with my (very lovely but smaller) ring. Part of it may be that my friends already think my fiance is poor because he has a blue-collar job, even though he makes a decent living. How do I stop feeling jealous of others and putting so much importance on material possessions?
A: "My friends already think my fiance is poor"! Wow.
Smaller rock, meet the hard place: your conflicted feelings about status. Even if your friends are hateful snobs, this sounds like your insecurity talking — you gravitate to status-conscious friends, and then profess or parade that you've chosen humble things. Yes? As in, the rock didn't reject you, you rejected the rock?
It's a theory. If it has no merit, then this is probably all just bling envy. Admit you're impressed by opulence and leave it at that.
If the theory does have merit, next question: Is bringing a "blue-collar" fiance into your (apparently) white-collar world another ostentatious rejection of something you secretly value? If so, please make sure you're smitten with the person, not the statement he makes.