Friday, March 29, 2013

Ask DrFran: How Can I Get Him Back?

By DrFran Babcock
Dear DrFran:
I am sure that you can help me with this problem I have been having for a few months. Since my boyfriend and I have broken up, I have been pining for him, and can’t get him out of my mind. The funny thing is that it was me who broke up the relationship.
Fred (not his real name) and I have been an item for a long time by Second Life™ standards. Just before the break up I was starting to feel a bit neglected, and wondering if Fred was seeing someone else here—something that is all too easy to do in this virtual world. I got really angry with him one night, and just unfriended him, and refused to speak with him for a while.
Now, several months later, I find that I miss him terribly. He kept Instant Messaging me after the break up, even though I did not return the messages. One day I did respond to an IM, and I found that feelings of having missed him started to well up in me. I realized that I had made a mistake in breaking up in such a dramatic way.
DrFran, although we haven’t re-friended (he says he was too hurt to let an unfriending happen again) we still do speak often. I have no way to know if he is online, nor does he know about me. Therefore, it takes some effort for us to chat, but it does seem to happen.
I want us to be back together, but that hasn’t happened. Yet, I think that he is really wanting the same thing, but just afraid to try being a couple again. I keep giving him gifts of builds I have made. In fact, he used one on his land. I started to wear purple hair, because I know it’s his favorite color. I try to stay in world at times when I think he will be online. I have even told him that I still care for him. What can I do to encourage him to take me back? I just know it’s what he wants. 

Dear Wanting: Sometimes I really hate my job. I get letters such as yours, filled with hopes and dreams for a better future all the time. How can I get him back? That’s probably the number one question I get asked. If you listen to popular music, you will hear songs about: “Come back to me,” all the time. Loss is a big part of being a human, and here in Second Life™ things feel even more intense. So, your loss is a great one.
The reason I hate my job at times, is because I have to tell people bad news. Wanting, the bad news is that more than likely Fred is not coming back. How do I know this? Well, (guys cover your ears) men are not very complex when it comes to women. When a guy wants a woman, he will usually go and get her. There’s none of the doubt and obsession, and constant inner debating that is the work of women throughout the world.
If Fred wanted to be back with you; he would so be there. I know you will try to tell me that he’s shy, or maybe he was hurt and is being careful. Invoking the world of the old Magic 8 ball: Odds are not in your favor. Fred is being nice, because most people would rather eat glass than look like a bad guy. So, he chats with you, may even IM you first, will accept your gifts, and other signs that he is coming back. He wouldn’t friend with you, and that is big. Did you feel rejected by that? It was a rejection, in my opinion.
There is nothing that you can do—no hair color, gift, availability, etc.—that will bring Fred back unless that’s what he wants to do. When people push, I always remember what Princess Leia said to Darth Vader, when he was trying to force information out of her: The tighter you squeeze; the more star systems will slip through your fingers. People hate feeling manipulated and forced. I am sure you do, as well.
My advice, since you asked, is to go one with your second life. If Fred wants to be back in your life, he will do that. Otherwise, you moving on is the only way to ensure that you will get to enjoy your time here. I hope you decide to let go, move on, and enjoy all those things you deserve. By the way: Purple hair? Well, Relay for Life is in full swing, so maybe your hair will do for that, but it won’t get Mr. Wont-be-your-Friend back in your life. 

Obligatory disclaimer: The column Ask DrFran is the work of DrFran Babcock, and may not reflect the views of SL Newser as a whole. Please direct any correspondence to DrFran Babcock. I look forward to hearing from you.


  1. Here's what I would have said:

    Dear Wanting:

    Communication is the key to any successful relationship. You dumped Fred without talking to him first. I don't blame him for not friending you again. The fact that he is talking to you at all has me convinced that you can fix this. Here's what I would do in your place.

    1. From this point on you must be completely honest with Fred. If you are feeling neglected, tell him. If you think he is seeing someone else, tell him. If you have missed him while you were apart, tell him. Don't hold back anything. A pet peeve that we men have with SOME women is the perceived need to be mind readers to tell what you are thinking because you never talk to us. Don't be like those women.

    2. Never underestimate the value of those three little words: "I was wrong." You've admitted you were wrong in what you did. Tell him so. Apologize and promise that it will never happen again. Swear to him that next time you have a question or a problem, you will talk with him and work it out before taking any action. He's not coming back to you now because he knows that some time in the future you're going to do the same thing, and he doesn't want to be hurt. You must make him believe that he is safe with you or he will never be your friend again.

    3. Stop sending IMs and make a date to meet him face to face in Second Life. Since we men are very visual creatures, cheat! Dress up in your sexiest outfit, the one you know he likes. Keep the purple hair and tell him why you're wearing it. Get an AO that has some nice feminine animations and use it. You have a lot of convincing to do to make him believe you won't abandon him without warning again. Be as beautiful as you can while you're doing it, and you might get him back.

    Good luck!

    - Hal

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