Things worked out well for two reasons. First, and most importantly, she was upfront and very clear about what she wanted — or did not want — at this point in her life. Second, I was able to adjust my expectations based on a fairly important insight: my feelings for a person don’t create any duties, responsibilities, or obligations for that person.
So, instead of anxiously fretting over what I didn’t have and wasn’t going to get, I was able instead to focus on what we both wanted in the here and now, and, as a result, some good to beautiful memories were made and no one hurt anyone else in the process.
I probably should be clear: this is a “way-to-go-brain” post and not a “woe-is-me” post. I mention the backstory only to provide context for the important insight that one’s feelings for another person do not create duties, responsibilities, or obligations in that person. Only a person’s choices, actions, and/or promises create duties which he or she is obliged to respect.
It’s an important insight and, I think, relevant to all relationships, romantic or otherwise. I suspect also that there are many people who would be a lot happier, if they also learned to adjust their expectations based on it.