We Need to Slow Down. (I'm Feeling a Little Crowded!)

Letter #1


I got your letter and wanted to write back to tell you how I feel before things go any further. Besides, I probably couldn't say what I need to in person looking into those big brown eyes of yours!

First of all, I want you to know I've been having a great time with you and I've really enjoyed every date we've been on. I'm a little worried, though, that we might be getting a little too serious too quickly. I know you wrote that you were losing interest in going out with anyone else but I still would like to see other guys now and then. I'm in my last semester, and I need to focus on my Linguistics M.A., and not get involved in a long-term relationship just yet. And you I think you better keep your mind on your statistics courses and your Computer Science degree. I'm learning how much brain power that requires, just with the one stats course I took and trying now to validate my thesis by running complicated statistical tests.

The semester before last I made the mistake of getting too deeply involved with someone and my grades started to slip. Remember, with a B.A. we could get an A, a C, or anything in between and still graduate, but with an M.A. we've got to make the high grades or we'll have to repeat the semester. They don't accept C's anymore where we are, so we need to stay focused. There'll be plenty of time for serious romance later on. And another thing, those goodnight kisses are getting a little too intense for me and I'm starting to worry we could get carried away and do something we'll both regret later.

I think the best thing for both of us right now is to date each other less often and still be free to go out with other people if we want to. That way we can keep things under control emotionally as well as not lose sight of what our educational priorities should be at this point in our lives. Please, don't take this the wrong way. I think you're a great guy and I'm not suggesting I don't want to see you anymore, but just less often--maybe twice a month, okay?

I've been having a lot of fun going out with you--I just can't afford to have that much fun right now! I need to be more serious about my education, and so do you. Speaking of which, I need to go hit the books because I've got a long day tomorrow outlining the statistics chapter of my thesis, as well as teaching my afternoon class. Why don't you call me in a couple of weeks and we'll plan on getting together again.

I hope to see you soon (just not too soon).

Letter #2


I hope you know that I care a great deal about you, too. I will always remember the fun times that we have had together. But I'm worried that we're going too far, too fast. We really haven't known each other very long, and I'm just not ready to make too strong a commitment yet. We still have a lot to learn about each other; you might yet discover that my halo wobbles now and then!

We haven't really talked a whole lot about previous relationships, but I've learned from experience that it is best to take these things slowly. I've made mistakes, and I've been hurt badly in the past by people that I never should have let myself care about as much as I did. I don't know--maybe you have too? I don't want that to happen again. Your friendship means a lot to me, and I don't want to ruin that by letting our emotions (and our hormones!) rule our heads.

I still want to spend time with you, I still look forward to spending time with you, but I've got to take things more slowly (at least for a while). Why don't we try toning things down a little--maybe try only going out about once a week? Then we can have time to see other people if we want to, and we can allow our friendship to continue to develop without getting quickly in way over our heads.

I hope you won't stop writing altogether. I love reading your letters! Take care of yourself.

Letter #3


Oh, how can I say this without you taking it the wrong way? We've been seeing a lot of each other lately, and you've been so sweet to me. Each time you look at me with those big, blue eyes, I want to melt. Please don't misunderstand--I've enjoyed the time we have spent together. You are funny, smart, and generous. But when I received your recent letter, I realized that our relationship is becoming too serious, too quickly for me. I need to date at a slower pace right now.

You need to know that I have made a commitment to myself and to my parents that nothing would get in the way of my graduation. Until then, I want to enjoy dating several guys on a casual basis, but not get tied down to anyone yet. I've really had to adopt this mindset of no long-term relationships for the moment or I will never be able to complete my degree. Last year I failed in my resolve and entered into a serious relationship--only to have it and my grades crash. The readjustment process was too painful to repeat. I hope you can appreciate that. I'm just not ready; it's the wrong season of my life.

I hope you'll respect my request that we see each other less often and feel free to enter into other relationships yourself. That will give our emotions time to settle down and me time to graduate. That said, I want to say that I think you're a great guy. Do I want to see you again? Yes, but just not quite so often--maybe twice a month--and without the expectation of immediate commitment. I've had a lot of fun with you. But I have to maintain tunnel vision until graduation, and so I close this letter now and make my way to the books. I'm really sorry if this hurts you. If you still want to see me, why don't you could call me in a couple of weeks and we could plan something. Until then, let's give it a breather.

Thanks for understanding.

Letter #4


Although I realize I cannot expect feelings of constant bliss, I am beginning to worry that we might be getting too serious, too quickly.

Until we decide otherwise, let's not commit ourselves exclusively to this relationship. Instead, let's remain free to date others. Other aspects of our lives need our attention, too, so let's take some time to focus on our jobs and our studies.

I'm sure you will agree that we probably shouldn't try rushing our feelings. Let's make sure we are comfortable together first, and let's also take time to think about our relationship.

Maybe we can see each other less often, at least until we know which direction to pursue.

Letter #5


I want you to know how much I appreciate our friendship and how much I enjoy spending time with you. I'm concerned, though, that we may be rushing into our relationship. After all, we're just getting to know each other, and I've learned from sad experience not to rush into anything too quickly. More than once I've jumped into deep waters and found that I couldn't swim. I don't want that to happen to either one of us. We're moving too fast right now, and I'm starting to feel pressured to commit to a level of trust and intimacy I'm not ready for. I want you to understand this, because I know you will respect my feelings. I'm thinking that you may be feeling the same way.

I am at a point in my life where I still want to explore different possibilities, including having the freedom to date other people. You need to understand that I'm just not ready for an exclusive relationship, but don't get me wrong--I want to keep seeing you. If we are really right for each other, then slowing down and dating others will make us even more aware of how compatible we are.

I've thought about this a lot, and I'm convinced that taking things slowly will benefit both of us. I need to focus on completing my nursing degree and I understand that you are working towards getting promoted into management. The way we are doing things now, though, my grades have started to suffer and, from what you've said, I don't think things aren't going so smoothly for you, either.

I think we should slow down a little and see each other every couple of weeks for a while. Let's take our time to get to know each other better. Our relationship has so much potential, but I want to take things slow and easy.

Thanks for understanding and being sensitive to my feelings.

Letter #6


I really like you, but we need to slow down. It feels like our relationship is moving so fast that I'm no longer in control and that's not a feeling I'm comfortable with. I've been in relationships before that have moved too fast and then crashed and burned. I don't want that to happen to us.

As I said, I really do like you and I enjoy the time that we spend together, but I'm feeling a lot of stress. I'm torn because I want to see what happens to our relationship, but things are happening so fast that I'm starting to get anxious and worry about it.

I don't want this to be the end; I'd like to keep seeing you, but I'm just not ready to commit myself only to you. I would love to see you once or twice a week, so we can continue to get to know each other and let things happen naturally, but I'm just not ready to get too serious right now. I hope that you can understand that and we can still see each other, but not quite as often.