Unrequited Love

I'm a 27-year-old woman who has found the man of her dreams. He is an incredibly kind, gentle, wonderful person. I've worked with him for five years, and we are the best of friends. We go out to lunch and dinner, and we talk all the time about almost everything. He calls me on days that he's off just to chat, and we talk for hours. I am never more content than when are together. However, he has a girlfriend of seven years whom he is due to marry this May. He always hesitated about the engagement and wedding when we spoke about it; I was sure the wedding wasn't going to happen. Now I'm extremely depressed. I cry myself to sleep every night. Part of me feels like telling him how I feel. On the other hand, I feel like I should hold my peace, since he probably doesn't feel the same way. I'm ready to quit my job. I don't know what to do. Please help! -- M


Sherry Amatenstein

Sherry is the author of The Q&A Dating Book and Love Lessons from Bad Breakups. She has taught dating seminars, appeared as an expert... Read more

Dear M:

This is truly a painful dilemma, and one that can't be resolved by wishing away this other woman. No one forced your coworker to get engaged. No matter how much he values you as a friend, well, he's got a fiancee.

Don't quit your job. You'll have more time on your hands to think about him, and less money. However, you should, as much as possible, avoid contact with this man who is not yours. It's time to cut back drastically on the cozy lunches, dinners and chats. Don't tell him of your feelings. He will soon be marrying a woman he's dated for seven years, and it's just not fair to burden him with this unsolicited information. One last big, big "do": Make an effort to meet unattached men, ones who might be as perfect for you as your friend -- actually, more perfect because they are available.

You might also want to plan a trip for the weekend of his wedding, which means you'll have to decline an invitation with regrets but best wishes.

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