I think this goes here, but since it's to do with a houseguest perhaps not?
Anyway, in the short version:
I have a friend who lives with her boyfriend but their relationship
is currently on the rocks. Because of some of boyfriend's past behaviours it would be unwise for her to stick around if they break up. I offered several times for her to stay at my house for a couple days if she needs to while she waited for him to calm down/looked for a place. I've previously done this for other friends.
However, Friend has since told me that she has feelings for me. I would like to withdraw the offer to have her stay with me because it would be awkward and innapropriate considering I am in a relationship
. Is there an etiquette friendly way to do this? I feel like it is rude to withdraw an invitation after it has been given.
In the long version,
My friend, dubbed Mary, also moved to MyCity from Hometown. We were highschool chums and dated, if you could call it that, for a couple weeks when we were fourteen. So she is technically an ex-girlfriend. Possibly more than technically we have an odd history. Since we broke up I've been her "default crush" which is to say that unless she liked or was dating
someone else she was desperately in love with me and needed me back. I've never had, or shown, any interest in her since but she is a good friend so each time I've let her down gently.
Mary currently lives with her boyfriend, dubbed Mark, in the north side of Mycity whereas I am in the southern side about forty minutes away by car. Mark and Mary do not have the most stable rel@tionship. Mark is extremely paranoid and protective of Mary and she resents that openly. They have other issues as well but this is the most obvious. A month or so ago while talking with Mary she brought up their issues and told me she didn't know what she'd do if they broke up. She hinted that Mark would probably fly off the rails and she didn't like the idea of being stuck in the same house as him while he was handling (or not handling) the breakup. I think, and I didn't tell her this, if Mark is acting as creepy/stalkerish as he is while they're d@ting he would be ten times worse if they broke up but were still living in the same house. I think she realises this as well, which is why she was asking me for advice.
At that point I offered for her to stay with me for a couple days. With a couple friends who had to leave home suddenly I've let them crash on my couch until they could go home or to stay with a relative, they found a place, etc. My parents generally approve though it gives Mum more ammunition on how I'm nice to everyone but family
Because I thought Mary might need a bit more privacy being a girl I offered to let her have my room while I took the couch but now I think that might have sent the wrong message.
Last night I got a text from Mary that out of the blue told me how much she missed me, how bad she felt because she had a boyfriend but she couldn't stop thinking about me, how hard it was to live with Mark considering our "history" and that she'd like to "stop playing games and go back to how things were before". I'm a little dismayed because: A) She made no mention of Tallgirlfriend at all - does she forget I've spoken about nothing but our anniversary for months??
B) We don't have a history, the way things were before was the same as it is now. The unfortunate truth she never gets is that I will probably never like her back.
C) Could I have come off as ready to cheat by offering her a place to stay? I'd never do that but if my actions made it appear I would then it would be inconsiderate of me not to avoid doing the same in the future.
Out of respect for Tallgirlfriend (and Mary, if she so desperately wants me it would be rude to tempt her
) I would like to withdraw my offer to have her stay with me. How do I say "Sorry, you like me, invitation removed." in an ehell approved fashion? I don't know if it's recognised etiquette but I've been taught that it's rude to withdraw an invitation.