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March 26, 2007 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Ask Becci

Q: Me and this guy have been best friends since we were seven. We’ve been through everything together and have always been there for each other, in a strictly friends kind of way. Last week he kissed me and told me he loved me. I didn’t realise it until that moment, but I think I’m in love with him, too. The problem is that I don’t want to ruin our friendship, and I’m scared that if we do start a relationship and something goes wrong, I’ll lose my best friend as well as my boyfriend. What should I do?

Becci replies: Whether you’re ready to admit it or not, your relationship with this guy – platonic or otherwise – changed the minute he kissed you and told you he loved you. Once a revelation of that variety is put out there, it’s very difficult to go back to just being friends – because you’re not just friends; you’re two people who love each other, pretending you’re only mates and nothing more. Of course, that’s not to say that starting a romantic relationship is going to be easy or that it’s going to work out, either. You’ve known this guy since you were seven, he’s your best friend, and you probably know each other better than anyone else. Chances are you already know what will happen if a romantic relationship between you doesn’t work out. And, if not, ask him! It’s possible that he went through the exact same thing before deciding to tell you how he feels. If the only thing that’s holding you back from starting a relationship with this guy is the fear of losing your best friend, then you should ask yourself one question: is it worth the risk? Maybe you will lose your best friend, but gain a fantastic boyfriend instead. Maybe it won’t work out, but you’ll still keep your friendship. Ultimately, remember that for some people, there’s nothing better than having a partner who already knows everything about you – and for others, there’s nothing worse.

Q: I’ve just started my second year at uni and I’m already thinking of quitting and going back home. I’m behind in my readings, I have two assignments due in next week, and an essay due in the week after that – I’m finding it hard to fit in time around my job to study. I never get to see my friends anymore because I’m always doing work of some sort, and I’m starting to resent them for being able to get all their assignments done on time AND have a social life. Help!

Becci replies: Starting a new year at uni is always a little overwhelming, but the important thing to remember is to keep calm. Don’t stress yourself out but don’t give up, either. If you know that you’re going to have trouble getting your assignments in on time, ask your lecturer or tutor for an extension. Most lecturers and tutors are very sympathetic and won’t have a problem with giving you some extra time, if you explain your circumstances. After all, they’re there to help you pass your papers and earn your degree, not to make you fail. Try to give yourself one night a week that you can catch up with friends, and take some time out from study – you don’t even have to go anywhere, if money is an issue. Not only could it help ease the feeling of being overworked, but talking to friends can help you feel better about your situation. You may even find that sometimes they also struggle to keep up with study. If you need any extra help or support, you can talk to someone through the Counselling Service, which is located on all the main campuses. It’s free, and the counselors are helpful, understanding and fully qualified to deal with any problems.

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