Will he leave her for me?

We must skip chat today for various reasons but we will be back next week.

My freshman year of college, I met a guy who lived in my dorm. I'll call him Joe. He was super nice, and needless to say, we ended up hooking up. In my mind, he was the best looking guy I had ever been with. We continued to hook up occasionally until the school year ended, and we also saw each other a few times during the summer. By this time I had developed feelings for him. When sophomore year started, we were no longer living in the same dorm. A couple of weeks into school, my friends started seeing Joe around with a girl. At first it didn't seem like anything serious, but as the year went on, I could tell they were more than just friends. However, Joe and I still continued to hook up here and there (he also hooked up with many other girls besides me and his girlfriend). This pattern continued throughout college, even when Joe and this girl became official. I know I was wrong for doing it, but I found it unfair that he received none of the blame when he was the one in the relationship.

Fast forward to the present day. Joe is still with this same girl, it has been about four to five years now of them dating. We continued hanging out and hooking up after we graduated, and my feelings for him subsided and I saw it for what it was – friends with benefits. This past December, we had sort of a falling out and didn't speak for several months. We started chatting again here and there but it took me until August to be able to actually see him. When we saw each other for the first time in eight months, I asked him all the questions I had always wanted to ask him but had been too nervous to actually say. He basically confessed that he is unhappy with this life right now, mainly his relationship, and he can't see himself marrying or having children with this girl, even after dating for four-plus years. He said that hanging out with me was his escape and that he has way more fun with me than his girlfriend. He said that hanging out with her is more of a chore, while hanging out with me was a treat (his words not mine). After our conversation, I am feeling very confused and lost. I want so badly to believe everything he said about not being happy. But if he was really that unhappy, wouldn't he have ended things with her by now? I am at a loss at what to do with this situation and need some guidance. Please help!

– Waiting


"But if he was really that unhappy, wouldn't he have ended things with her by now?"

Not necessarily. Sometimes people are more comfortable with the status quo, even if it makes them miserable. It's also possible that he's happy enough but decided to tell you otherwise to make you stick around.

Regardless, these are all cowardly moves. Joe has not proven to be a good partner to anyone. Maybe he'd be more transparent in a new relationship, but there's no reason to jump to that conclusion. You’ve been in his life for years and he hasn't given you any kind of explanation for his behavior. Joe has always been all about Joe. He is not thinking about what's best for you or what makes you happy. He's certainly not thinking about what's best for his girlfriend.

You need to drop Joe from your life because he is not single. You've spent too many years accepting anything he gives you, and it's been bad for your brain. After you end this affair, try to keep busy and distracted. Maybe he'll wind up unattached and seeking your companionship, but I wouldn't bet on it. I know he's gotten your hopes up, but please remember that it took him years to get to this place. There's no reason to assume he'll change his life in the near future.

– Meredith

Readers? Think Joe will break up with his girlfriend?