Dear Dr. Romance,

I am in my late 20's and single. My problem is that I am in love with a man (who is the same age as I am) who reciprocates my feelings, but when we start getting close he backs completely off. When we run into one another while we are out with friends we talk and it is like we are alone in the room. I know he has strong feelings for me, but he just won't commit. He has had troubled relationships in the past, and I feel like those past relationships are the reason he won't let himself stay close to me. Meanwhile, I can't get over him and move on because every single time I think I am, I randomly run into him (he doesn't know I am going to be there either). I want more than anything to have a committed relationship with this man, but I don't know how. Any suggestions???

Dear Reader:
Have you tried asking him to do something that is non-threatening?  Maybe to show you how to do something on your computer, or to improve your workout at the gym?  Do you know what he's good at, or interested in?  Does he play a sport?  What if you and a few friends showed up to watch him play a game?  Perhaps one of your friends could invite both of you to go with a group to do something -- like a movie.
You need to find something that says "let's be friends" and take the romantic pressure off.  He shouldn't feel pressured to commit.  He doesn't know you well enough yet.  You might be scaring him off by wanting too much, too soon. Relax, focus on being his friend, and being fun and pleasant to be around.  Read "Where is Love?" for more ideas.  Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences will give you many ideas for non-threatening ways to get to know this man.

Love Styles

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Author's Bio: 

Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D. is a licensed psychotherapist in S. California since 1978 with over 30 years experience in counseling individuals and couples and author of 13 books in 17 languages, including It Ends With You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction; The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again; Money, Sex and Kids: Stop Fighting About the Three Things That Can Ruin Your Marriage, The Commuter Marriage, and her newest, Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences. She writes the “Dr. Romance” blog, and the “Happiness Tips from Tina” email newsletter.