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What does my ex-teacher actually think of me - and why did she pursue me?

Tagged as: Age differences, Big Questions, Forbidden love, Gay relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (15 November 2012) 7 Answers - (Newest, 25 November 2012)
A female United Kingdom age 22-25, anonymous writes:

I've asked a fair few questions on here about the same lady but with every twist and turn, she confuses me even more and I feel like I'm losing my marbles!

So - I'm 19, she's my ex-teacher in her 40s, she left teaching to work in a bra shop and I went in the other day for a fitting by one of her colleagues. I've been in 'love' with this woman since I was 14 and she's done nothing but entertain it. She came into my work after I left school (we became almost like best friends in my last year) after I hadn't spoken to her in some months, told me to add her on Facebook and has been flirty and treated me differently for as long as I can remember.

So, I went for this fitting and her colleague wasn't available so X (after being a bit off with me) took me to the fitting rooms, said to someone else who worked there "Is there anyone nice to fit (*me*)?" And the woman went "Well, there's you...?" to X, who FREAKED out and was like "Haaaa, I don't think that'd be appropriate!" which would be all well-and-good for regular teacher/pupuls but with us? It made me laugh.

Nothing in our 'relationship' has been 'appropriate' - I came out to her when I was 14, she was very protective of me, treated me differently, said she'd "protect" me ; fast forward 5 years and she's finding out where I work, telling me how amazing I'd been at supporting her and stuff (via Facebook), acting all flirty and acting like some kinda mascot for me.

The fitter came up and X said to her that I was "loveable" as she ran her hand down my back, despite saying fitting me was 'inappropriate'?! She said some horrible things about one of my friends and was just acting plain weird so I just had my fitting and left.

I knew that, even though she's never on Facebook, she'd message me later because I left without seeking her back out and hadn't gushed over her and given her my 100% attention (even when I first arrived at the shop and she had a sour face on her when she seen me, as soon as I said "I'm not here to see you actually..." She started following me up to the fitting room!) and despite not being on FB for months, she private messaged me the day after asking how I got on, but sounding sort of tounge-in-cheek about it..

She always fluffs her hair when she talks *to* me and rubs my arm/back while she's talking *about* me to someone else and I'm present. She knows how I feel about her - and even though she lives her with her boyfriend and there's a large age gap between us. And I can't even pluck up the courage to ask her out as friends...so, basically, my question is, what on earth could she be playing at?

Is she just flattered that someone half her age would do anything to be with her? Or is it amusing because I'm a girl? Does she want to be my friend? What? Her behaviour is SO strange! The way she got all coy and after everything is saying it was 'inappropriate' has really knocked me for six, even though it was always "get fitted!" and stuff. I thought we were better than that, we were so close.

Sorry for the length - but any thoughts? I'll answer any questions as honestly as I can to clarify because I'm rubbish at explaining things, please help! Thank you!

View related questions: best friend, bra , facebook, flirt, my ex

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A reader, anonymous, writes (25 November 2012):

You were outed without your permission and things got ugly. Yet no one in your family knows. How sad that you are so disconnected from the people who are supposed to love and care for you. No wonder you are trying to make connections with people.

My assessment of this woman is that she is unstable and not a good touchstone for your personal health and development. I think you are looking for a deep soul friend. What she seems to be is a confused ex-teacher with muddled priorities.

She "protected" you when you were younger. Now you are nearly a full-fledged adult and it is time to protect yourself. Sometimes people come into our lives for a reason. It doesn't mean that they will stay in our lives forever. In fact, in some instances, it is best that one moves on.

What does moving on mean? It means you decide to acknowledge that while there was something between you, it is now just part of the past.

You sound too fragile and vulnerable to allow yourself to be confused by unstable people.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 November 2012):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

If she likes me - that's nice. If she doesn't - that's really okay. I'm just fed up of the unknown, really.

I know; she was "protecting" me from people who were bullying me about my sexuality when I was 14 (I was outed without my permission & things got ugly).

The main reason she left teaching was because the head of her department bullied her, basically. And, long story short, I got ill and the head of dept was very, very crafty and unsympathetic, dropped me from my course etc, etc. So, we were both going through the same thing and ended up blurring the boundaries for some sanity so we could talk about it and trust each other. Noone believed us that the woman was as calculated as she was; only each other.

She ended up depressed, along with my physical illness & we were each the only other person in the world that knew how the other felt. It was comforting, albeit strange. I guess we became each other's allies and things got inappropriate.

I went to counselling over my illness and my counsellor kept reinstating that he thought she was, like you say, a very unstable person who was majorly crossing a line. She is, and was more so then, but that understanding of each other always felt like a little more because it was things we felt we couldn't talk to our partners about, but could to each other. We both made sure the other knew they were supported and that they were okay.

She told me she'd leave when I did and I thought she was kidding. She lasted four months after my last year had ended - and now that school's finished and things, it's just a different environment, obviously we're not in the same department every day, five days a week now but they way we're both acting about not cutting contact is...odd. We were flung together but there must be some staying point...we're just being so awkward about it. :/

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A reader, anonymous, writes (20 November 2012):

I can see that her actions could be confusing. But at the end of the day, this is what you are left with:

she has a boyfriend

any signals she appears to be sending you end on the day, in other words, she doesn't follow up by dumping her boyfriend and asking you out

she has a job fitting people in a bra shop, that's a big change from teaching. Why did she leave teaching?

you said she was protecting you, what did you require protection from?

She sounds like a bit of a disaster personally. I think maybe you are keeping a flame alive for the fantasy woman, not the woman she actually is. She's a bra-fitter, ex-teacher with boundary issues and a boyfriend. Look at this with clear eyes.

She sounds stuck. You sound stuck. Is that really a healthy place to be?

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 November 2012):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

And sorry, missed out the questions at the end! I haven't come out to my family (I don't agree with it - straight people don't need to announce it!) & my friends are fine, noone really takes any notice. I've liked her since I was 14 so I've almost grown up with it as much as a distraction goes. We just went through similar things in my last year at school and confided in each other. Maybe she hates me now but she didn't hate me then. I just get on with her is all. :)

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 November 2012):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Also, there's two levels to her place of work - clothes on the bottom, bras on the top so I had to walk through the department she was on to get up the stairs and when she saw me I made it super-clear that I was getting a fitting from someone upstairs, then she made small talk, then as I walked away, she said she'd come with me. I engineered nothing.

I went in there for a simple bra fitting because it's renound for being the best & I really needed one, I didn't expect her to come with me and, slightly off topic, but she never even had to tell me where she worked or that she'd left teaching or that I should pop in - I would have been none the wiser. Just trying to clear up anything that's made me look like I've manipulated the whole thing, 'cause I wouldn't dream of it. I know she doesn't like me back but after everything, I'd at least like to be her friend, that's all.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 November 2012):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Hi - thanks for taking the time to write your answer :). I appreciate your honesty, but if she really didn't want to speak to me though, why ask mutual friends where I'm working and come out of her way to see me? Why tell me to add her on Facebook? We hadn't spoken in 5 months at that point, like zero contact, and she turns up out of the blue.

I didn't want her to fit me, trust me! I was relieved that she didn't. When I make it clear I'm not there to see her, she follows me around the shop - and when I don't say goodbye, she writes me a message. I wouldn't make any of that effort if I didn't want to talk to someone - it doesn't make sense. Why not just ignore me if she's so desperate not to talk to me?

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 November 2012):

It doesn't appear that she's interested in being with you. You show up at her place of work (bra fitting, really, how odd) and engineer it so she's forced to find someone else to do the measuring. From everything you've written, it would appear that she is hoping you will not pursue anything.

She has a boyfriend. You have an obsession.

She has a real relationship. You have a fantasy.

She doesn't want to be your friend. Her behavior is strange because she wishes you would stop stalking her, but apparently doesn't want to hurt you or create an emotional reaction in you that might harm you.

It's time to put the fantasy in the past. Lay the imaginings aside and look at reality.

She doesn't want to be your girlfriend.

Have you struggled with coming out? Are your family and friends accepting of your sexuality? Is it possible that this fantasy relationship is diverting your attention and shielding you from some other, more awful or difficult situation?

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