Dear Papa Bear,
Sorry in advance about the mess and tangle of words and ideas in the upcoming text...
Is this a good idea? This question deserves a long story, to begin, I'm gay. Simple right? Not really... Anyways, to officially begin, ever since last year, grade 7 or high school. (Canada schooling)... I've had a crush on this guy right, let's call him Luca. So, when this crush started to develop, I decided to tell him I like him, so I did and he took it very well. He said, "Hey, I don't care that much, well, I care that it's me but, you have the right to like anyone right? But I don't want to be more than a friend. Cause, I need a friend like you." So to this I responded in like, as in, I responded by saying, "oh, ok, thanks for the understanding, it means a lot to have a friend like you..."
So we remained friends for the past year and this year. Catch is he isn't that much more than an acquaintance, but then again, we still considered each other friends. So anyways, we remained that way for the two years, and now, my heart is just exploding with feelings that I can't contain anymore. My idea was to invite him camping with my family and I, (I sent an email asking and still haven't got a response.) And now I think that by doing that it could've wrecked all my chances with him... I did take precautions by saying, since we don't know each other that well, it may be a good idea to have your parents meet me and vise-versa.
So, it doesn't stop here, when I send him an email, he never responds. So this time I'm worried he won't respond again... And I'm scared to think of what will happen, I'm scared of rejection etc... But my logic behind this idea was that maybe if I become closer to him I might have a greater chance with him. And I'm scared to talk to him, to ask him, I have barely enough courage to tell him to check his emails. Which I will do tomorrow... But, I feel like that this while idea was a bad one, and I'm starting to regret it. Please let me know if you think if this was a good idea and if you have any suggestions to reduce the amount of fear I have about everything. And you readers who read this.
Steve (age 13)
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I think it might help you to look at this scenario from Luca’s point of you. Imagine that you are approached by a guy who, to you, is not much more than an acquaintance, though a friendly one. Suddenly this guy says he has a crush on you, which would be a bit of a surprise to you, yes? I mean, you don’t know him that well and suddenly he says he has loving feelings for you. So, being a nice guy, you try and let him down easy, expressing that you are flattered but would just like to be friends.
Next thing you know, you are being asked to go camping with his family, people whom you know even less well—if at all. Wouldn’t this make you uncomfortable? The other guy says, “Let have our parents meet each other and discuss the trip.” You might be like, “Huh? This is weird; don’t you have some closer friends to ask on a camping trip? Ohhh, I get it, you still have a crush on me, and you want to get me alone in the woods somewhere, don’t you.”
Can you see how this line of reasoning might come about? And, if you do, can you see why he might be avoiding you now? Private invitations to camping trips with one’s family are best left for those who are already very close friends (Papabear would never camp out with people he doesn’t know). For those who you are just starting to get to know, it’s much better to do something like a movie or another public activity, and preferably one that lasts just a few hours, not days like a camping trip does.
It’s understandable that, at age 13, you got a little head over heels in love and it kind of stopped your brain from thinking things through. Excusable at 13, most definitely, but older readers of this column could pay heed, as well.
You may have already scared Luca away, and it will be very hard to get him back, I predict. Take it as a lesson learned that in matters of the heart it is not just your feelings—no matter how sweet and romantic—that matter.
This isn’t meant as discouragement, Steve. Next time, look for a spark in the other person as well. Yes, there are times when love at first sight can happen, but more typically falling in love occurs over time. I admire your boldness in one so young, but it’s okay to let love come to you, sometimes, too.
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