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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Coffee Talk

Completely mystified by male behavior, I decided to write my faux friend about his faux pas.

Savvy September 1 at 10:51pm

Dear Friend,

Things got better for me, so if you prayed for me I do appreciate that. It's true that talking about my situation at that time would not have really helped all that much, but I talked myself into calling you and following up on it because I reassured myself that it would be OK to call because you are my friend and I appreciated your concern. However, I got a less than friendly feeling from you about it. I think I don't have a really solid grasp on the friendship dynamics between men and women at church. it seems sometimes guys are less than friendly with us ladies to make sure that we don't get the wrong idea about it being anything more than than friendship. I'm fairly certain that none of the guys at church like me as more than a friend and it seems that none of them ever will. It would be nice if they would do me the favor of at least treating me like a sister.

Savvy (Keep reading for his reply...)

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Dear Savvy,
Thank you for sending me this message. I'm glad to hear you feel that things are better, and also grateful that you shared your perceptions about my response.

Yes, I blew it. It wasn't from me trying to send you some kind of signal, but rather that I have been too busy and haven't been getting back to people (including you) like I should. I apologize - will you please forgive me? As far as the "less than friendly feeling," you were probably picking up on my internal questioning whether I was the best person for you to meet with. I was raised in a very conservative home where it was emphasized that in most situations if people are going through difficulties, it's probably best for them to seek out someone of the same gender to talk/ pray with. I'm still wrestling through the balance of that idea and, like you said, the idea of treating women like sisters. So I aso apologize that my stuff got in the way and created more difficulty for you. Although yes, I have been praying for you. All that, however, is not a good reason to not respond to your call and facebook message, and I again ask for your forgiveness. It feels very sad to reach out to someone and not receive a response.

As far as whether anyone at church is or will be interested in pursuing you romantically, that's also tough; it must feel discouraging sometimes if you feel like it's impossible for the situation to be different. I am confident that it is possible. :) One book that's really helped me is Henry Cloud's "How to Get a Date Worth Keeping" - it might definitely be worth your time if you're interested! I've actually been praying for you in that respect too - I hope that God brings just the right man into the picture as soon as possible and that in the meantime both of you will grow into the persons you need to be.

Written communication is tough because it doesn't convey tone; I hope this note comes off with a tone of honoring you and caring - if not, please don't hesitate to let me know. I look forward to seeing you soon and to trying to respond more promptly next time. With best wishes from your brother,

Friend


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Dear Friend,

I forgive you.

I think the real miscommunication here is thinking that I was looking to you to provide spiritual guidance. That made into something bigger than it was. I was just thinking we were friends and that you were concerned for me and wanted to talk.

As far as getting a date worth keeping and other books like that, I have found them relatively useless. If I go on a date with someone and discover they aren't right at all, they are out of my life. They are usually men who wouldn't remotely treat me right. That book deals with mainly further sorting into a perfect spiritual match. I don't think that kind of perfect match exists. I'm thinking about writing my own book about dating since the Christian world has taken a very messed up turn with books like "I kissed dating goodbye". It seems like that perspective has demonized the idea of even going on a simple date to see a movie or have coffee and get to know someone--things that should be OK for friends to do also. You shouldn't have to think you're going to marry someone to have coffee with them and it seems like people do think that. So I was thinking you started to think it was a bad idea to have coffee because you didn't want to date me and I never expected that you did.

Anyway, that's just what I was thinking.

Savvy


The saga continues...


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6 comments:

Tabs A. Geek said...

That's impressive that you took the step to contact him about it, and I am sure it spoke volumes of your character to him as well.

I definitely know how you feel about the idea of meeting someone in the church. I tend to fall into the category of being one of the girls the guys won't give a second glance to.

My current boyfriend is not a Christian. He believes in God, but he isn't quite sure about where faith is really the right answer.

It's hard on two sides. One, because I wish I could share my faith with him, but the second, because he treats me with far more respect, love and attention than any Christian guy I ever dated has.

But anyways. Back to the point of your post. I think the email swapping so far suggests that there is a good chance this could at least turn into a pretty fruitful friendship for the two of you. I think from the sounds of it, there's areas both of you will be able to be a sense of support and spiritual growth/experience for one another.

Lindsay said...

and they say women are a mystery...

SavvyD said...

@Lindsay -- Riiiiight?
@Tabs He sounds like a wonderful guy. If you are attracted to him, he treats you with respect and all of the right stuff is there except religion, I say go for it. I would. However, I wouldn't want to date a Muslim/ex-Muslim because I would probably get stoned in a Muslim country.

SavvyD said...

@Tabs, seriously, the ideal is the Christian guy, but it's hard for me to tell anyone to hold out for perfect. I know how to do church by myself as that's what I've always done. I always thought I would marry this really great Christian man and our love would be a witness to my lost family. Well, that never happened and many of those perfect marriages ended in divorce. It would be nice to have someone waiting for me at home, so long as he was good to me.

Anetra said...

WOW. I have so much to say but I am SO with you on ALL of this. In 2006 I became the Christian self-help book QUEEN!. I read EVERYTHING. Until I got to "I Kissed Dating Goodbye." I got so angry at the author that I emailed him. His lawyer wrote me back but whatever. Anyway Love the post. Glad I am not alone.

SavvyD said...

@Anetra His LAWYER?? What a hoot!!