I have a friend who I am feeling estranged from and wanted to get feedback from all of you about what I should do about it, if anything. Here's the story in a nutshell:
We in the summer of 2009 in a town we both used to live in. The relationship was mostly physical for a few months and then we parted ways. We ran into each other about a month later and struck up a conversation, then began hanging out on a semi-regular basis as friends. We continued to hang out and over the course of a few months some feelings started to develop between us. He never brought it up, so I assumed he wasn't interested in pursuing anything. Finally, I couldn't stand the suspense and brought it up one night. I told him how I felt, just let it all out. He said that he'd been feeling the same way about me and that he had "strong romantic feelings." However, he was hesitant for some reason to get into a relationship. He kept saying he didn't want things to get messed up like every other relationship he's ever had, and that he didn't want anything to "mess with our connection." We ended up dating for about a month anyway, but I started to realize that he just didn't seem mature enough to handle it (he hasn't had many relationships at all). Furthermore, the whole thing seemed to be triggering some unresolved childhood abuse issues he'd had with his mother and he would often start hyperventilating and freaking out when we'd have intimate moments. At the time I didn't know how to handle what he was going through, though I tried really hard to comfort him and help him through it. We mutually broke off the relationship and went back to being friends, although we didn't spend as much time together after that since it was pretty awkward.
I've since moved to another city, and he has moved to a city a few hours away from where I am. The night before I left the town we were both living in, we spent some time together. He has been in the process of writing a book the whole time I'd known him, and was about to send the final manuscript to be published. Before I left, he showed me that he had specially dedicated the book to me and one other very close friend of his from college. I was very touched and felt that meant we would be good friends indefinitely.
I moved away in May of this year, and have heard rumors he is dating someone else now. Since I moved away we talked one time on the phone and the dynamic was kind of strained and awkward. I tried calling him again a few months later and he called back but didn't leave a message, and then started writing on my facebook wall alot. I wasn't sure how to interpret that, but I thought maybe he was trying to "phase me out" from having phone conversations or something. I went back to the town we met in last July to finish up some business (he was still there at the time) and had decided not to contact him since I thought I was getting these "phase out" signals from him, figured he had a new girlfriend, and also wasn't sure I felt totally over it. I ended up running into him randomly on the street! He seemed totally baffled about why I hadn't called him to say I'd be in town. We ended up spending an evening together, but I didn't bring up my confusion about the situation since I still didn't know what to say. He was kind and friendly that night, and a little bit flirty even.
Since then, we've had very minimal contact (just a few small notes on facebook). I feel like I've had a lot of time to process all of this finally, and I am just feeling like I need to have some sort of clarifying conversation with him about where we stand now. I have no idea if he's still seeing this new woman, and if he is I'm nothing but happy for them. However, I'm also of the mindset that you don't just chuck your good friends to the side just because they moved away (that's kind of how I feel, whether its the truth or not). I'll be visiting the city he lives in next month to see other friends, and am not sure whether to contact him or to just let it go.
I guess my question to all of you is: what is the best way to approach bringing this stuff up with him? Or should I bring it up at all? Is it obvious, from an outsider's perspective, that he isn't really interested in being friends anymore and I'm just not accepting it? We were really close at one point and it just feels totally lame to not be able to talk to someone I shared my deepest darkest secrets with (him too), for no apparent reason. Maybe he's afraid I'm not totally over it (maybe I'm not) and doesn't want the drama of dealing with that (although I would never ask him for a relationship again).
Can you tell we never had great communication to begin with? Sigh. Please advise. OH, and did I mention he and I are both INFJ's?