Each week Swoonie B will give her advice on anonymous topics submitted by readers. Want to Ask Swoonie B something related to dating and relationships? Fill out this form here — it's anonymous.

There's this guy I've known since we were in 8th grade (I'm now a senior in college), and I'm 99 percent sure I love him. Always have, probably always will. After we graduated high school in 2016, I had lost my virginity to him (TMI, sorry) and before we had even started anything, he confessed his feelings, which happened to be mutual. However, I lied to him to hide my feelings because I was leaving to go to college in a couple months. He was unbelievably understanding, comforting, and just perfect. After I had gone to college, we didn't speak to each other or cross paths for a while, which was OK. Eventually, he did get into a relationship and after a year passed, he proposed to her... and a year after that (August 2019), he called it off. (I never learned the specifics aside from the fact that she was trying to rush things he wasn't ready for). He had reached out to me afterward and we caught up (basically rebound behaviors, I know), and because he had just ended a serious commitment but we still wanted the same thing, we compromised on a FWB agreement, which was fantastic (and yes, before we made the agreement, I was completely honest and told him that I had lied about my feelings before college and why). Now (starting in December 2019), I feel like I'm being ghosted but deep down I know that if there's something bad or weird going on with him, he needs his space and doesn't want to be pushed... I just wish he'd talk though. I also would love something more to develop between us — an actual relationship — but I don't want to rush him into that because I feel like if I did and he's not ready, he may grow to resent me later on and I desperately don't want that. The overall catch is that we're both seriously independent and way too busy for a conventional relationship right now. I just don't know what to do. I love this dude, and at this point in our lives, I'm now 85 percent sure it's mutual, but I'm just at a crossroads and don't know what to do.

Wow, the history! It's really a beautiful story even if we don't quite know the climax or ending yet.

The fact that you and this anonymous gent have been able to hold onto your feelings despite all of the ups and downs the last (almost) nine years brought is really special. What it comes down to, in my opinion, is communication and taking the risk to flat out tell him how you feel.

Because at the end of the day the only way to find out how he feels is to ask, right? That's it. If you wait around for the answers, they might never come. So my suggestion is to just ask, put your feelings out there, and see what happens.

Yes, I know I am suggesting you take a big risk but you have known each other for almost a whole damn decade. If he doesn't know he wants to be with you or he's not ready now, I truly don't know that he ever will be. So, instead of waiting around and wasting more time, you have to talk to him.

It's been long enough trying to navigate back and forth between friendship, friends with benefits, and more. Enough with the games! If your heart is telling you that you love him and you're 85 percent sure he loves you back, then DO IT.

Bring up the conversation whenever it feels natural/casual (preferably not via text) and don't put too much pressure on him — simply share your feelings, ask him where he's at, and then listen to his response. At the end of the day, it can go one of two ways:

  1. You tell him how you feel and he wants to figure out a way to make it work because he feels the same way.
  2. You tell him how you feel and he says he's not ready or doesn't feel the same way.
So let's break each down, shall we?
If option one happens, woo! You did it. It's been nine whole years and you're both finally ready to love each other and express it. Fantastic! Once you've opened this door, though, please don't rush it. It's taken almost half your life to get to this point, so don't make it a race now. Instead, take things slooooooowly. You don't need to immediately be boyfriend and girlfriend. An open conversation is enough of a step in the right direction. Start by sharing your feelings and gradually build up to a relationship from there.
If option two happens, don't panic! I know it might be a huge letdown, but the two of you have been through a lot together. I mean, he called off his engagement and immediately thought to contact you! Even if that isn't love for him, that's a very special relationship and one conversation about feelings doesn't have to break that (note: it didn't in the past, remember?). Should this happen, take a deep breath, gather your thoughts, and tell him where you want to go from there. Stay friends? Not talk for a while? The ball's in your court.

When all is said and done, you are in control of your life.

The only way to get what you want is to ask for it. If that person doesn't want the same things, that's OK and if they do, FABULOUS! Please remember that no matter what, you can be proud you were brave enough to be vulnerable and from there you can close that book and move forward.

Regardless of what happens, he's the one who popped back up into your life. So you can decide whether he gets to stay there.

Now for the second piece...

THEN my mom decided to be a wingman for me with another guy that happens to be her best friend's nephew. He and I have talked and we'd love to meet because we vibe well but our schedules, work and school, are just too hectic and it doesn't help that we go to different colleges. I just don't know. If I choose my eight- or nine-year love, I'd be leading on the nephew. If I choose the nephew, I feel like my eigh- or nine-year love would feel some type of underlying betrayal and wonder why he wasn't good enough.

It sounds to me like this nephew guy is really only even being considered because your mom set you up. Maybe I'm wrong, but given your history with Guy Number One, nephew dude doesn't stand a chance — not to totally kill the vibe, but yeah...

Before you make any life decisions, talk to the guy you lost your virginity to (Guy One). Because you yourself said you're in love with him, so why even try with Guy Two just yet?

Trying to date someone else when your feelings are clearly elsewhere is unfair to all parties involved. Yourself included. Talk to Guy One first and if he isn't looking for a relationship with you, close that chapter (immediately) and see what else is out there.

If at that point the guy your mom set you up with is still on your mind, then consider going out with him — not because he's second best, but because you deserve to date whoever you want without having your feelings for someone else holding you back.

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