Ask Dr. Nerdlove by Harris O'Malley

I Made a Mistake and Now My Crush Hates Me. How Do I Fix This?

DEAR DR. NERDLOVE: There’s this girl I really like and she likes me a lot too; at least she used to. We were very good friends and not in any romantic way at all. She was the only person I could have a normal intelligent conversation with.

Recently, I took her out with my other 5 friends for beers that I funded in celebration of my birthday and things got bad. First she got drunk and started making out with my friend while sitting on his lap, then I also got kinda drunk and I kicked her by accident in the ear (we were sitting down on a log when my friend dragged me off it from behind and she was sitting next to me…) and then later I fell on her.

Afterward, everybody went home except for my friend who made out with her, who I allowed to sleep at my place. Because we were both drunk, he kept getting in my face how good of a kisser she is and so on. I went on a rant how I always talk to her, listen to her problems, cheer her up and that I love her. So he convinced me to tell her that I love her. I just would have to use his phone, because my phone’s battery was dead.

And I did it… because I was drunk. She didn't write back.

That’s not the worst part yet. So the other day, I find out that when I kicked her in the ear and fell on her, I somehow f

ked up her nose and ear and she gotta have an operation now… and she hates me.  

I didn’t have the courage to talk with her about that, cause when I heard it, I was devastated so I didn't apologize to her kinda.

A little later on, I went for a smoke with my friends, but she came along too so somehow they got on the topic of her f

ked up ear and nose (it’s not visible; I think there’s just interior damage, which is worse) and she said that its my fault and that I’m a f

ked up person. I muttered “oh ok I’m sorry I was wasted,” which she responded “yeah, sure you were.” And the other day I found out from another friend that she said that she counted the amount of beers that I drank and it was only 2 and I got so f

king drunk just out of 2 beers.

THATS BULLS

T! I DRANK WAY MORE THAN THAT AND I KNOW IT! And I haven't properly apologized yet but I’m too much of a coward to do it I’m know I'm supposed to do it but she probably wont even want to hear it.

So help me out Doctor NerdLove cause Im in a giant stinking pile of elephant s

t. And sorry for the grammar, I’m polish.

Dun Goofed

DEAR DUN GOOFED: Hoo boy.

Well, on the plus side, DG: with a couple rewrites and some masturbation jokes, I’m fairly sure you could use this as the basis for a wacky teen sex comedy screenplay.

But on the more serious side of things: your friend’s kind of an a

hole. Now, you didn’t cover yourself in glory here with him in the first place; you don’t get to call dibs on a person, no matter how long you’ve been pining for them. However, someone rubbing your face in it with tales of how great she is at making out is a s

tty thing to to, even if you’re both drunk at the time.

But then there’s this wrinkle: so far just about every bad thing you’ve heard has been from a third party, not her. I’m not saying your friends have lied to you, but it’s entirely possible – likely, even – that the message has gotten twisted and confused as it’s passed from person to person to you and back to her. That means that there is room for a lot of misinterpretation here, up to and including how many beers folks think you actually had.

Now let’s look at things rationally: your female friend – let’s call her Emma for convenience’s sake – Emma got hurt because of some drunken roughhousing. It happens, it kind of sucks, but if she honestly hates you for it… well unless she thinks you deliberately kicked her in the face, in my opinion of an overreaction on her part to what’s ultimately an accident on yours. An accident that you weren’t even responsible for; it was somebody else’s horseplay that caused you to get yanked off the log in the first place. You, presumably, weren’t roughhousing beforehand; you were sitting, talking and having a drink when someone grabbed you and went “YOINK!”

Even if she got clocked hard enough to require surgery – which isn’t outside the realm of possibility; I’ve had friends crack ribs during drunken wrestling matches – it’s a little unfair on her part to put the blame on you for getting yanked off the log by one of your a

hole friends.

I’m left assuming that she didn’t KNOW that you were pulled off and thinks that you got so hammered that you couldn’t even sit without falling over. If she doesn’t know that other folks were involved… well, I can see why she’d blame you, even if it’s a pure accident.

Drunk texting her is another matter. Presumably Emma knew it was you even on your buddy’s phone, otherwise we’re well into the world of wacky sitcom misunderstandings. Even so: drinking and texting don’t mix, and I almost wish that smartphones came with breathalyzers built in. It’s likely that your texting her exacerbated the situation. Getting a rambling “I lurveyuo soomcuh” at 4 AM from the dude who just kicked you in the face is gonna be a lot like pouring lemon juice all over an open wound.

Now let’s be clear: all this is bad. Even though you were not at fault for other people messing with you, it’s still a bad scene and one that’s going to leave someone less than charitably inclined towards you. What made it worse is that you didn’t man up and apologize to her the next goddamn day. Waiting even longer – until your friend tells you that he’s heard via the gossip line that she hates you because you messed up her nose – just made exacerbated the situation.

Now? Now it’s just a giant festering abscess of misunderstandings and resentment that’s poisoning your friendships. At this point you have no reliable idea who said what or what anyone thinks occurred, and incidents like this can quickly twist and mutate into something night-and-day different from actual events.

What do you do now? Well, you make arrangements to talk to Emma – alone – try to figure out exactly what she thinks happened and tell her your side of things. You aren’t going to try to excuse yourself or rationalize things or try to minimize what happened; just lay out the facts. You had X beers – decidedly more than two – your friend yanked you off the log, causing you to flail around and kick her, you thought confessing that you had a crush on her was a good idea and had no idea that she’d been seriously injured. 

Then you apologize, PROFUSELY. You apologize for hurting her, even though it was by accident. You apologize for the drunk text. You apologize a hell of a lot more that you didn’t come to her earlier and apologize then. After you’ve begged her forgiveness – assuming she accepts it – you can try to piece together how your ideas of what happened differ.

Don’t make the mistake of trying to sort things out first – if she’s pissed at you, she’s not going to take “Wait, you can’t be mad at me because X said this and I thought that and Y said…” well. Muscle up, swallow your pride, do some groveling and THEN work out how things got this bad.

As a general rule, you the sooner you can leap on that to straighten things out the better. Waiting, even if you’re feeling devastated because you’ve been told your crush hates you, only makes it worse.

Will this fix everything? Well, at this point it’s impossible to tell. This sort of drama gets blown out of proportion and can be the end of friendships. But at the very least, you owe her an apology. It may not fix things and you may not be able to convince her of your side of the events, but an apology is literally the least you could do right now.

Good luck.

Please send your questions to Dr. NerdLove at his website (www.doctornerdlove.com/contact); or to his email, doc@doctornerdlove.com