Troubled relationship

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Original Visitor's Question from a 31-40 year old Male
I appologize for posting this in other, but it covers too many topics to fit nicely anywhere else.
Okay, here is the long back story (made as short as possible) minus any of the minute details of which i remember them all. Back in April 2003 A girl and I started working at the same place, we quickly became good friends and developed huge crushes on each other. In November of 2003 it was more than either of us could stand and despite the fact that she had a boyfriend of 5 years or so we started seeing each other in a romantic sense. Her boyfriend and her weren't broken up, but they weren't together, we made sure that he was completely aware of what was going on, because neither of us are the type to cheat or be secretive. In March of 2004 the circumstances of her pseudo breakup and our relationship were too much for either of us, and though we loved each other very much she broke it off to try and work things out with her boyfriend. I was completely okay with this, though it hurt losing her I thought what she was doing was admirable, If I were him, I'd want the same consideration and the same chance to reconcile a 5 year relationship one last time before flushing it all away. She and I remained close friends, not without our share of awkwardness and rough patches along the way. Of course I still wanted to be with her, but not under the same circumstances as before. So I re adapted to my friend role. We both left the company we were working, but still spent time together regularly and talked daily. In one of our rough patches where she was frustrated with things between us and we weren't really talking she broke up with her boyfriend permanently roughly around June of 2004. We patched up the friendship and I was thinking "okay now this is a chance to try again but under the right circumstances" Instead she began dating a guy we'll call #3. #3 and her lasted a few months, but it was a horrible relationship and she had to get out. Throughout I maintained the friend role to the best of my abilities. Again I thought, that perhaps now was a chance for us to work it out, instead she begins dating another gentleman in August. This relationship has its share of problems too. Just this month in March of 2005 he broke up with her (two weeks after she had talked to me about breaking up with him). She is devastated and is moving out of state for a month with some old friends of hers to get some clarity. I've maintained the friend role again throughout this relationship of hers, and our friendship has been severely strained in large part due to that relationship. I think a month away is the best thing in the world for her. However, despite the breakup, they already have plans to try again in august to *maybe* get back together and move to LA together. I consider this what I call Post Traumatic Breakup Syndrome. Their relationship wasn't good, and all the things she has told me (I love him, I don't want anyone else, I've never felt the way I feel about him, he is my soul mate, etc.) are all things I've heard before from her immediately following every breakup. When she comes back form out of state we're going to try and get a new lease on our friendship as well. So now that the back story is out of the way, let me try to figure out my questions.

1)Am I right to assume that her PTBS talk is just that, and some clarity and time away will help her realize that it wasn't all roses?

2)Am I right to think that being apart from him almost as long as she was with him, and then getting back together and moving to LA is a bad idea?

3)How can I talk to her about the LA thing without her throwing up her defensive walls and blocking out the importance of what I'm saying and my concerns?

4)Is there any hope for her and I as more than friends? (I know she still cares about me romantically, but refuses to acknowledge any such feelings because she has been in relationships the whole time and it wouldn't be healthy).

5) If there is hope how can I pursue that course without coming off as the jealous ex/friend who can't let go?

6) How do I prevent or deal with feelings like "being a back up, not her first choice, not her true love, etc)?

7) any other advice is more than welcome.

In closing, she truly is my best friend, even in the roughest patches of our friendship we still care, and if something happened we'd be right there for one another. I love her unconditionally and would very much like us to be "in love" with each other again, and to have the chance we never got due to the circumstances involved.
--Dazed & Confused

User Submitted Advice from a 31-40 year old Female
You are a special man

Dear Dazed and Confussed,

I read your story and I think "Why can't I find someone to wait for me or be patient for me?". You seem to be a remarkable man. I do not hear many situations were the man is in-waiting for a love that was so special to him. You are truly unique. As for the woman of your dreams, she could have and would have come to you and pledged her love and finally say, "We are free to love each other and move on with our lives." but she doesn't. . .she just keeps finding someone else, but she has you to fall on when she is hurt or sad or needs to talk. Is that fair to you? Do you think that she is going to someday say, "He loves me. . .why am I not with this wonderful man who loves me. . .?" I think you are her comfort zone and she knows you will always be there. Therefore she will always try to find someone else and if that don't work, she will have you. but does she really love you like you say she does? I think she cares deeply for you because you are always there for her. I am a woman and I know how these things can work. I do not do those things but I do know of some women who have done it. If you really want her to fall in love with you again like before you need to not make yourself so available to her. She needs to see that you can move on without her and that will get her wondering what she might have lost. You seem to be a most wonderful man and she has to know that. Right now she knows she has you but you need to make her realize that someone else might have you too. She could loose you to someone else and then what will she do? She will think about you and the things you have shared together and she will compare you to her other failures and realize that you are the prize. A woman likes a challenge as much as a man does. If she knows what you are like and then realizes that she can't have you no more. . .she will want you even more. I don't mean any of this to hurt you or her, it is just what I feel I know and that I am sure it will help you win her back. You should look into yourself too and realize that you are a special kind of man with values, morals, and scruples and that any woman would be lucky to have you. Good Luck and be positive about yourself. . .

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