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But she doesn't love me...

Discussion in 'Season 4' started by brittles, Nov 26, 2016.

  1. brinkster130

    brinkster130 Riley's BFF Staff Member

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    Sineya
    Exactly, Riley wasn't a priority, he wasn't someone she wanted to let in or share her life with. That's totally fine, but she can't expect to have someone stick around when she picks and chooses when she wants them in her life. IMO he didn't need Buffy to be crying on his shoulder but wanted a girlfriend who was able to be emotionally present in the relationship. That's how healthy relationships work; you don't shut someone out when ever convenient for you, you work through things together. She never once tried to talk to him about it or say that she needed space to deal with things on her own, she just pushed him away.
     
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  2. DeadlyDuo

    DeadlyDuo Scooby

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    Buffy confided in her friends, people she'd actually known longer than Riley. It just seems like Riley wanted to be the go-to guy and he didn't like it that he wasn't. If Buffy was doing it consistently over years then fair enough, but in the grand scheme of things they hadn't been dating that long and it was one instant so it does seem like a bit of a kneejerk reaction on Riley's part.
     
    brinkster130: Kinda going in circles here. I don't agree that Riley needed to be her number 1, but we're all entitled to our opinion.
  3. nemilyxo

    nemilyxo Townie

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    Sineya
    I agree - i really really liked Riley! I think they could have potentially been a good for each other.
    Its just a shame she realises after he has gone.
    I dunno whether because he's a nice guy she just assumes she can treat him that way and he'll always be there.
    I will happy have Riley aha :)
     
  4. BuffyBot22

    BuffyBot22 Potential

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    I don't think she treated him poorly because he was a nice guy. She just wasn't in love with him and he even knew it. He clearly stated it in that episode, but he still continued his relationship with her and put her through hell by getting his blood sucked by vampire whores while she was losing her mother. Maybe she could have leaned on him more, but she in no sense had to. And the reason why she didn't, was always very clear to me and seemed clear to Riley as well- she was NOT in love with him. He should have ended the relationship when he came to this realization, but he didn't and then chose to blame her for it. I lost all sympathy for Riley with the vampire whore storyline. It was sad when he realized Buffy didn't love him, but it became much less sad when he continued to be with someone he knew didn't love him. She should have equally let him go, but I don't think Buffy fully realized that she wasn't in love him because she did love him and this relationship was much less pain and agony than her previous one with Angel. But because of all the pain and agony that came with Angel, it made it to where Buffy never opened her heart again. She couldn't have been in love with Riley because she never gave herself the opportunity to be. And I'm a firm believer that Buffy and Angel never fell out of love with one another making moving on at the most impossible and at the least difficult.
     
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  5. GraceK

    GraceK Grr Arrg

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    I agree with both you and @brinkster130 . Riley wanted to be a priority in Buffy's life, just as she was a priority in his. He loved her, and wanted her to turn to him when she was sad and hurting, which is normal when you love someone. He wanted to be able to soothe and make things better, and I don't think there is anything wrong with that. I don't think that makes him a dominating guy who wants a 1950s housewife. I don't think he was at all threatened by Buffy's strength and her calling. I think he respected her for it and thought it was great. It was her emotional distance and fact that she treated him like old reliable that hurt him. he wasn't the one for Buffy, and he knew it. I think he hoped that he would be, which is why he stayed as long as he did. In no way does it excuse his vampire whoring or his ultimatum however, but I do think a lot of fans aren't fair to him and attribute qualities to him that aren't there.

    Also, on a slightly different note, I think a lot of fans give Parker way to much credit for Buffy's issues. He was a douche and hurt her feelings, but she didn't love him and honestly I don't think she even liked him that much. I think he was the rebound she made herself think she cared about to ignore the pain that Angel left and to prove she was over Angel. If anyone is too blame for Buffy's trust issues it's Angel...and I say that as someone who still loves Angel anyway lol :)
     
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  6. DeadlyDuo

    DeadlyDuo Scooby

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    I think Parker's act of sleeping with Buffy then immediately dumping her brought back her insecurities she developed after she slept with Angel and he turned into Angelus. Buffy's issues were less about Parker and more about she slept with a guy and he treated the act as if it was nothing...again.
     
    GraceK: Oh yeah I can see that. :)
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  7. Priceless

    Priceless She doesn't just fight evil, she redeems it

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    I agree Riley didn't want a 1950's housewife and that he did respect Buffy's strength, but I also think he felt threatened by it too. He was torn in his feelings. He felt he couldn't be the man she needed because he couldn't match her level of physical strength, shown by his reluctance to have the life saving operation. Once he had normal levels of physical strength he believed Buffy wouldn't want him. Riley had a lot of insecurities and Buffy can't be blamed for that.

    I would also say that meeting Buffy had a negative effect on Riley in the first place. He had a conservative view of the world prior to meeting her, he believed deeply in the superiority of human-kind and the inferiority and animal-ness of demons. Buffy's world view was something he'd never come across before and it shook the foundations of his beliefs. Along with Maggie's betrayal, I think Riley's life would have been much happier if he'd never come to Sunnydale and didn't ever have to questions his beliefs
     
  8. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    For all Riley's faults about his self-perception and masculinity issues (which had more to do with his out-of-place-ness after The Initiative collapsed) he could stand up to and challenge Buffy's opinions and preconceptions when he disagreed with her. (He did that a few times in S4; 'Doomed' and 'New Moon Rising' spring to mind.)
    Which is more than some romantic partners on the show managed.
     
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  9. BrownJacker

    BrownJacker A Reader of All Things

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    Sineya
    I once had a girlfriend, we had been dating for a while, and then my mother was hurt, in a really bad way. The first person I called was my Dad, and that was mostly to tell my brother and sister what happened. Then, I called my best friend, the next day. Eventually I told her, but that was to cancel plans, and because I didn't want her around me at the time. I needed space to let myself deal on an emotional level and she understood that and gave me it. I am still close friends with her because of that, and could never thank her enough for understanding that I needed space, and maybe a friend or two who wasn't her, to deal with it until I could tell her about it. My mother eventually recovered, after a few years, and we broke up mutually after she had to move, but she gave me space to deal on my own. Riley did not give Buffy that space when she wanted it. I believe Buffy would have told Riley when she was ready to deal with it with him, but when he confronted her she wasn't ready. I can't respect Riley's position because I, in a similar situation, would have hated it.
     
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  10. Meliza

    Meliza Townie

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    Agree but Buffy was not confiding in somebody else or crying on her friends shoulders either and it's not because she didn't need anybody, she shut people out. Post Angel break up and sending him to hell, I like what @Guy said about psychological scars, true to life those things stay with you. Buffy wasn't doing it on purpose, she didn't feel like she "had" to be hard but she felt like being the slayer was making her hard, she had trouble being vulnerable... well duh, being the slayer would and probably should do that to you.
    Like the way she handled things after Joyce died, she told Dawn I didn't mean to shut you out but I couldn't let you see me (to be vulnerable)
     
  11. white avenger

    white avenger white avenger

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    Riley represented something that Buffy really wanted, or at least THOUGHT that she wanted in her life: a normal relationship with a normal boy. At least, it started that way, before she knew that he was part of the Initiative. She wanted to love him, and even thought that she did at one point (She told Angel, "There's someone new in my life. Someone who I can love and trust...") but she was just deluding herself. The fact is, Riley never fit into her world, and because of that, he could never share her life. Riley was a soldier assigned to a special unit that fought supernatural beings. That was his job, and he could walk away from it at the end of the day, or go back home when he wanted a break. He was, at best, a visitor in Buffy's world, and at worst, ultimately, an outsider.

    I don't think that Buffy was consciously using Riley for sexual recreation, but that's pretty much how it worked out, pretty much like she used Spike in Season 6, but without all the violence and mutual destructiveness. Or the attempted rape.

    It should be pointed out that both boyfriends left Sunnydale, one came back with a wife, the other , with a soul. (Just thought that I'd toss that in)
     
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  12. Meliza

    Meliza Townie

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    We definitely relate to things depending on what we have been through and there are so many perspectives because things really do look different depending on where you're standing.
    This is not one of those cases, if you haven't seen the rest of the episodes then this take on where Buffy is coming from would make valid sense but it's not borne out in the show, it was not communication issue resulting in a misunderstanding where Buffy just needed space and Riley wouldn't give it to her. Buffy realizes and admits Riley felt rejected because it was true, she wasn't allowing herself to be vulnerable with him hence have true intimacy. She wouldn't have cooled off, processed, come back on stronger then ever if the insecure guy would just back off for a weeks and months, in fact he does stick around but communication and space was not their true underlying problem. Which ironically, considering Riley's insecurities, was connected to being a slayer and what it was, she felt doing to her.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017