Small problem, but keeps bothering me!


#1

I have a small dilemma with a long story.

I am active in the Cursillo movement. I met a sister’s brother, who is now a brother. He was quiet and shy, and we didn’t talk much, so I was glad to meet him but that’s about all.

After a while, other Cursilistas began to see how alike we are. Starting about a year ago, they began teasing us, thinking that we should start dating. However, my mind was on other things… religious sisterhood. Yet simultaneously the more they did this, the more I learned about him beyond “aquaintance” level. Slowly he began to be attractive, but it just seemed like an irrational infatuation so I tried to ignore it.

But I got to know him more and became friends. Our friendship wasn’t like my other friendships. It was kind of awkward because of all the pretenses surrounding us from other people, but I found I liked a lot of things about him. And I do know that he was attracted to me.

As I got to know him better, I became more afraid. I didn’t want to abandon my plans for religious sisterhood, but it seemed more and more I was attracted to him. So I had a natural urge to ignore him in the smallest things, or to avoid him… when he passed by, I pretended to look at something else or I’d walk in another direction. It made me just worry about it more. For some reason, I couldn’t separate my friendship with him from the idea of marriage. Probably because other people joked so much about us being married. It’s completely irrational, I know… but I automatically think we’ll be married if I’m friends with him!

I feel like our friendship has died because of my fear. I don’t know what to do. I feel like we didn’t have much of a friendship in the first place, at least compared to other brothers. That’s why it might be awkward if I try to re-initiate a friendship, as there wasn’t much of one anyway. Yet why should I compare relationships, as if one is better than the other, or people? And I feel uncomfortable with me not talking to him intentionally, or him not talking to me either.

I really do want our friendship to grow again. And in a platonic way. (I’ve desired religious sisterhood for the longest time, and I can’t at least give it a chance first before dating anyone.) For some reason, I feel like he needs a friend and is lonely. But also, this might be my pride, to think that I can fill some sort of vacuum, rather than just leave it to God.

I think about this all the time… when I hardly talk to him. I even have dreams. At the same time, I feel like this could just be a big distraction from bigger things on my plate, like my family, Confirmation class & team, work, school, ministries, etc.

I’ve never REALLY talked to anyone about this. It just seems like such a trivial and insignificant problem. But it bothers me often and intensely.

Any advice…?


#2

I am sorry for the frustrating position you are finding yourself in and will keep you in my prayers. Have you thought of marriage as a vocation for yourself? Or do you really and trully feel called to the religious life? I would think that if God is really calling you to the religous life then having a good friendship with a man would be okay and there shouldn’t be any tension…that being said, maybe God is calling you elsewhere. I would definitely talk to your priest or other friends and see what advise they have to offer, especially ones that know you and your situation. But most of all, I would delve into prayer and ask for guidance on this one. Good Luck.


#3

I’ve “felt” called to the religious life for a couple of years (I reverted back to Catholicism in 2007). Everything seemed to point so clearly in that direction. It is still a very strong thing but I lack a spiritual director.

I guess I never thought of marriage as a vocation for myself. It is truly a beautiful sacrament, and I’ve considered it, but for numerous reasons I don’t think it’s for me. But again, I have no spiritual director to really point me in the right direction.

I have older friends who are spiritual director-like, but they are very busy. They’ve told me to just continue living my normal, daily life until God directs me, meanwhile praying about my vocation, visiting local religious communities and getting to know them. Tis a very slow process. :wink:

I guess I never really talked about this with a friend because it embarrasses me. Is it weird that I’m embarrassed? :confused:


#4

There is nothing weird about what you are feeling. One thing you can consider is looking into third or secular orders. These would allow you to marry as well. Another thing you may want to look at it is a youth group or young adult group such as the one the SFO has where you can make a committment until a certain age. Here is the links to the Young Adult group for the SFO:

franciscanyouthusa.com/

If you look at the formation information you can get a better idea. Also at 26 the formation will “count” towards your profession if you want to make a profession into the SFO or you would have a bunch of experience to back up your decision to go into a religious order/convent/celibate life.


#5

Well, I wouldn’t call it “wierd” that you feel embarrassed about talking about it…I am just a very open person and like to get as many opinions as possible from people that know and love me. For me, I like sharing these kind of dilemmas with people that care about me…I know that through prayer and guidance, you will find the answer you seek.


#6

[quote="Mamanurse, post:5, topic:196378"]
Well, I wouldn't call it "wierd" that you feel embarrassed about talking about it....I am just a very open person and like to get as many opinions as possible from people that know and love me. For me, I like sharing these kind of dilemmas with people that care about me....I know that through prayer and guidance, you will find the answer you seek.

[/quote]

I think that's a big problem of mine I need to fix. I'm not too open with friends and family... but I should be. I will continue to pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance.


#7

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