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I've got a story about The One that Got Away... and then ten years later showed up again. I really need some advice.

Thirty-year-old gay guy here. Ten years ago on a night out with friends, I met a guy who I felt instant chemistry with. The two of us spent the whole night hanging out/making out. He lived a long way away and was leaving super-early the next morning, so we weren't able to spend the night together. But we exchanged details and stayed in touch.

We were both really into each other, and while we didn't start a long-distance relationship, we did have a pretty close and emotionally intense friendship (all over e-mail, instant messenger, etc.). I tend to fall for guys hard, and this guy felt like the Real Deal, so I was coming on pretty strong. Too strong—I was pushing for something he didn't feel ready for. To make matters worse, he and I both went through a pretty rough depression at this time. After a year of emotional rollercoasters, we finally had a falling out and fell out of touch. I knew I'd pushed too hard, and was so embarrassed about what I'd done that I didn't want to reach out to him in case it would make things worse.

As time went on, we were no longer facebook friends and I lost all his contact details. But to me he was always "the one that got away"—and it hurt to know it was my out-of-control emotions had caused it. But I took it as a learning experience, cherished the good memories, and moved on.

Fast forward to last month.

I'm visiting a friend out of town and he throws a party at his place. And who shows up at this party but... Mr. One Who Got Away. Turned out he'd gone to high school with a friend of my friend's, and was visiting that weekend too. He was just as gorgeous and charming as ten years ago. We patched things up—he thought he'd been the one to fuck things up—and actually ended up spending two nights in my hotel room together. It was amazing, and we both kept saying how happy we were to have met again.

We've had a couple serious conversations since then. He lives a long, long way away from me. I'm not a fan of long distance, though for him I'd try. But he says he's had some bad relationships recently and doesn't want to embark on another one. I totally respect that, and I know it wasn't anything like "fate" that brought us back together. But I can't get this guy out of my head. And yet I also don't want to make the mistake I made before, of pushing him into something he's not ready for.

What do you think? Would be grateful for your advice.

Fated And Rare

Don’t have an LDR. Do go see him, invite him to come see you, and continue to see each other, casually and occasionally, without feeling like you need to put a label on it—or a ring, for that matter. If you're still making an effort to see each other a year and a few visits from now, FAR, you can start talking about labels and moves and rings.

Also, and forgive me for this, but...

"I've had some bad relationships recently and don't want to embark on another one" could be a big little white lie. It's entirely possible he's had a string of bad relationships and is now gun-, dick-, and boyfriend-shy. It's also possible that he's not as into you as you are into him, FAR, and he only said that to be kind. So if you offer to come see him—casually and occasionally—and he passes... then you'll have to do a little auto-translation. That'll mean his "I've had some bad relationships recently and don't want to embark on another one" is a variation on "It's not you, it's me."


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