Dear Annie: One of my best friends is a lesbian and has feelings for me. I found this out a few years ago and communicated to her several times in a nice way that I am not gay, but she says she cannot change the way she feels.
It was an awkward conversation because she doesn’t like speaking openly about her feelings. I was devastated by her response and even tried not speaking to her for close to a year – a painful time for me – hoping she would find a suitable partner and get over her crush.
A few months ago, due to a work project, we started communicating again. On the surface, it’s great. I have my old friend back, and we go out for drinks and discuss our work issues. However, deep down, I dread that it’s all coming back. I try chatting about my dating stories as a casual way to hint that nothing has changed for me. I fear that if I confront her again on this sensitive issue, I will lose our dear friendship a second time, and yet I don’t want to mislead her. What should I say or do? – Tormented
Dear Tormented: We understand your discomfort, but you are too focused on the crush and not enough on the friendship. There is no reason to bring up her feelings when she obviously doesn’t want to discuss them and hasn’t made any overtures to indicate that she is still interested. People have crushes on friends all the time, but they don’t necessarily act on them or let them interfere with the relationship. If your friend does anything untoward, feel free to say again that you aren’t interested, that it makes you feel uncomfortable and pressured, and that if she cannot control her feelings, you will have to limit contact.