A Man Is Not Real Until He Is Your Boyfriend

You want to know why your heart gets broken each time a new guy disappears?

It’s not because you’re a fool for believing that good men exist.

It’s not because he’s an evil human being hell-bent on destroying your self-esteem.

It’s not because you will not be able to survive without him. You’ve gone your entire life without him! I’m sure you’ll be fine once he’s gone.

The reason your heart gets broken each time a new guy disappears is because you are SURPRISED when he disappears.

Look at your life. Men disappearing is probably a semi-normal occurrence. Then why act so shocked and devastated when outcome is so predictable?

I’m not blaming you for having feelings. What I want to do is show you how to manage them – to protect yourself from continual heartbreak.

The reason your heart gets broken each time a new guy disappears is because you are SURPRISED when he disappears.

Men may still frustrate you, but I can make things easier, especially if you use online dating as a means to meet men. By mastering this medium and understanding male behavior, you can finally be in control of your own love life, and not a victim of disappearing men.

Yes, it really is that simple.

If you’ve ever been really hot for a new online dating prospect, you’re not alone.

You see a picture, you read a profile, and you start to get excited.

You write an email and he writes back.

Suddenly, you’re flirting like crazy, eagerly anticipating his every response.

There’s wit, there’s sexual innuendo, there’s instant talk about making plans.

Better yet, he seems sincere. He’s a good guy. He’s trying hard. Your phone calls are effortless and frequent. You remember that this is how dating is supposed to feel.

You plan your first date for Saturday night, and you have butterflies beforehand. You know that dates are rarely as promising as the buildup. But, sure enough, when he shows up, he’s as cute as his picture.

You have an amazing evening, filled with easy conversation and laughter. He’s chivalrous, interesting, attentive, and warm. You close the restaurant, end with a goodnight kiss, and a promise to do this again soon.

He texts you the next day to say he had fun, and instantly makes plans for the following Friday evening. You say yes.

He checks in during the week – a call here, an email there – not too needy, not too distant. He’s doing everything just right. It’s almost as if he’s reading your mind!

Friday night rolls around. You play mini-golf and grab two rounds of drinks at a nearby bar, after which you go back to your place and make out on the couch for an hour. In fact, you do a little more than that, but hold a little bit back. All in all, a great night.

He says good night and tells you he’ll call the next day.

But he doesn’t.

You go online and see that he’s checked his email.

You wait for his call, his email, his text. Nothing.

Another day goes by.

And another.

You check him out on the dating site again. He’s online RIGHT NOW and he still hasn’t called.

What the hell is wrong with this guy? He seemed so great, so perfect, so kind, so consistent.

How is he turning out to be like all the others?

If this story feels familiar to you, it’s because it’s familiar to EVERYONE.

And the reason it hurts so badly is simple: our expectations aren’t aligned with reality.

Sandy was a 45-year-old client living in rural Wisconsin. She had seen a really cute guy on Match.com and signed up for my Passion Course to figure out how to get his attention.

I wrote her profile, got her professional photos, and started our weekly coaching sessions. By the second week, the cute guy had already written to her. (This stuff is POWERFUL!)

Soon, they were bantering back and forth multiple times a day, and he started to plot their first date.

But there was a problem.

When the cute guy Googled Sandy’s hometown, he was surprised to learn that she lived 3 hours away. He knew he didn’t want to get into a long-distance relationship, and so, instead of trekking to go on a first date, he emailed Sandy to apologize and wish her well in her search for love.

Sandy was destroyed.

Even though she’d only exchanged a few emails, she’d gotten excited about this cute, successful, articulate, enthusiastic man.

If 9 times out of 10 (in real life), the special guy doesn’t turn out to be all that special, it may be smarter to reserve judgment for later.

She started to picture life with a partner.

She started to dream about this man saving her from a life of loneliness.

As a result of this wishful thinking, Sandy was as hurt by this man’s simple email as she would have been if they’d been dating and broken up.

I shared in Sandy’s pain, then informed her that she could respond in 1 of 2 ways:

1)    She could be devastated that Mr. Right turned out to be Mr. Wrong. She could have that sick feeling in the pit of her stomach and lose sleep over how she’s going to replace him. Or…

2)    She could realize that she’d never even MET this man. They’d never talked on the phone. They’d never met. They’d never slept together. They really didn’t have any relationship whatsoever. As a result, Sandy wasn’t “losing” anything; she never had anything to lose.

Which do you think is a healthier approach?

It’s not that Sandy was wrong to look at all the available signs and conclude that she had special connection with a special guy. Anyone in her right mind would draw the same conclusion.

It’s that, if 9 times out of 10 (in real life), the special guy doesn’t turn out to be all that special, it may be smarter to reserve judgment for later.

This is what I mean about adjusting your expectations to conform to reality.

I’ve had women tell me to chastise men to start following through more, to stop being so nice if they’re not ready for a relationship, to promise to call after having sex.

I hear you, and I agree that men could stand to do hundreds of things better to improve your relationships. However, as you know, I can no more stop men from being men than I can stop the earth from turning.

As such, your lesson, as a woman, is not to wish men acted another way, but to understand how they DO act and prepare yourself emotionally.

Because a man can be really interested in you, sleep with you, act like a future boyfriend for a few weeks, and be doing the EXACT SAME THING with another woman simultaneously.

Or he could seem like a great guy, make a great effort for you, and then realize, when it’s time to commit, that he’s just not ready for a commitment.

The point is that, by getting too excited about a promising dating prospect, you’re emotionally setting yourself up for heartbreak. And you don’t have to.

When you choose to be devastated by a man who is NOT your boyfriend, what you’re really doing is holding onto the loss of your fantasy. You’re not really mourning the loss of a guy you never had.

It’s the difference in feeling between losing a million dollars (devastating) vs. the feeling of NOT winning the lottery at all when you had 4 numbers (mildly irritating).

When you choose to be devastated by a man who is NOT your boyfriend, what you’re really doing is holding onto the loss of your fantasy.

You know when you CAN get excited? When the contract is signed, the ink is dry, and you know, without a doubt, that your dating prospect has become your BOYFRIEND.

Until then, each promising man is not actually “real.” He is merely hope, potential and fantasy.

Remembering this will save you a TREMENDOUS amount of trouble when you’re dating online. No longer will each flaky and disappointing man derail you. You’ll be able to bounce back and persevere instead of quitting. This is what’s going to pay off with a serious relationship in the long run.

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Comments:

  1. 31
    Mika

    to the previous post please correct

    Rule #3– read Rules #1 & 2.


  2. 32
    Mika

    helene @29
    I am also a physician and have come to realize that emotional intelligence does not correlate with an intellectual intelligence. As I already pointed out in my previous post, handling your emotions is a skill and a choice. As Evan always says and I totally agree with it — you can’t change men, so the only option you have — change yourself.
    We tend to treat negative emotions as natural aspects of our mind over which we have no control. Taking them for granted, we ignore their destructive power and fail to understand the importance of challenging them. Ironically, we actually seem inclined to nurture and sustain them. Why focus so much on the effects of afflictive emotions?

  3. 33
    Karl R

    helene said: (#29)
    “Well alas, it seems not all of us can aspire to the first rate intelligence of which you speak…. You’ll have to forgive me I’m only a cardiologist.”

    Let me give you an example that even a cardiologist can understand:
    When you refer a pation to a CV surgeon for a coronary bypass, the surgeon stops the patient’s heart as part of the procedure.

    So, are you sending the patient to surgeon to save him or kill him?

    starthrower68 said: (#31)
    “it’s easier said than done.”

    That’s true of almost everything.

    starthrower68 said: (#31)
    “But there is a certain cognitive disconnect that goes along with this, which is tough to pull off.”

    It’s easier that you might think, but that’s essentially correct.

  4. 34
    starthrower68

    @ Karl #20,

    Karl, I’m impressed.  You even disect my snark.

  5. 35
    Sayanta

    I think it’s impossible to do as Evan and Karl suggest, although it makes sense on paper. Women are wired differently, it takes us longer to get over things. Telling me, for example, to behave as Karl did with the woman in his example would be similar to telling a man to stop checking out hot young things and wanting to bed them.

    Ladies, we’re not going to ever stop getting devastated when men disappear. The only thing we can do is accept it (just like older men should accept that twentysomethings aren’t going to go out with them, unless they’re rock stars), and focus on finding a purpose other than relationship. This does NOT mean I’m advocating celibacy, but only that the key to stop STAYing heartbroken by men is to find a pursuit that takes attention away from them.

  6. 36
    Margo

    I think that Evan isn’t saying that it’s not going to hurt when a guy disappears, just that you should expect it as normal behavior for guys (these are your scumbags). This way, you can manage your expectations and won’t be completely devastated when it happens. That is the key.

    With this guy that just poofed on me, who was/is a friend nonetheless, a few years back I would have had high hopes because of the things he was saying to me and been completely devasted by his actions. Now, after reading Evan’s blogs, and similiar blogs, and stories of how often men poof, I knew there was a 50/50 chance of his disappearing-that number is actually higher because of his severe emotional problems. In any case, was I still hurt? Yes, but definitely not as much as I could have been had I not realized that disappearing men are common these days. Is it right and decent what they do? No. However, it is what it is. Therefore, protect your heart people. I think that is really all Evan is saying. Correct me if I’m wrong Evan.

    1. 36.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      You got it, Margo. You can’t change what guys do. You can only change your reaction to them. Are you going to let dating beat you? Or are you going to give each new guy a chance to show you why he’s worthy of your attention?

  7. 37
    Angie

    “Success is going from failure to failure without a loss of enthusiasm” – Winston Churchill :-)

    Had this quote in my head the other day, but think it applies to this post.  Not saying short-lived relationships/dating experiences etc. are “failures” b/c you can learn something from a “failure” and enjoy 90% of a “failure”… it’s just not “til death do us part”.

    Helene, I agree with Evan – I’m fully optimistic about meeting people.  Having enthusiasm doesn’t mean getting emotionally wrapped up.  If you are feeling worn out, cynical, and sick of it, give yourself a break for a couple months until you are feeling refreshed.

  8. 38
    Margo

    @Mika#34, no we don’t have to nurture and cleave onto the negative feelings. However, we are going to feel them.

    @Karl #35, I disagree. It’s NOT easy, Karl. Again, if you like someone and they leave, it’s going to hurt and isn’t easy to get to a point where it doesn’t hurt. That is human nature to hurt when we get disappointed. God made us that way, and that won’t be changing. Anything else is denial.

    To Karl and Mike, yes you can choose how to deal with that hurt. For instance, you can do things to help yourself get over it faster, but to say it’s not going to hurt when you liked that person on some level…Well, you’re not being honest with yourself.

    Also, Karl please humor me: What is your point to Helene with the “heart procedure” example?

  9. 39
    Apple Jacks

    Karl,
    I see. I asked because you have very good insight and I am learning a lot from reading your posts.

  10. 40
    starthrower68

    Sayanta,

    I tend to agree with you.  Women are wired to be relational creatures and relationship-oriented.  You are correct in that the best way to address the issue is to have a busy and fulfulling life and friends whom we can rely on for emotional support.  Men are better able to function with the “disconnect” because they have a greater ability to comparmentalize. 

  11. 41
    starthrower68

    @ Mika #32,

    I see the assumption was made that I am devastated when I guy disappears even though I said no such thing.  I personally am not devastated when a guy disappears because I am fully aware of 1, 2, and 3.  But thanks anyway.  Sorry abou the double post Evan,.

  12. 42
    Jules

    I have a bit of a different take on this.  While I agree with the rational argument that you should keep your expectations low, and not be surprised if a man (or woman) ditches you after a few dates, or a few weeks or whatever. I really like the excitement and anticipation of a new relationship.  I like feeling optimistic.  I have learned enough to not be surprised when it doesn’t work out, and yes, I am disappointed, and sad (and this is true even if I am the one end it).  Not so much for the loss of a man who obviously wasn’t right for me, but for the loss of the potential that maybe this time I had found a lifelong partner.

    The early part of a relationship–those first few dates and weeks and months–are exciting, and I’m not going to temper it in my mind just to avoid feeling disappointed.  I do live according to that old saying that you can’t ever really feel the highs if you don’t feel the lows. I let myself feel both.  It’s human.

  13. 43
    Terri

    IMO dating was much easier “back in the days”.  There were actually unwritten rules and men and women knew what to expect from each other.  When the book “The Rules” came out, it was quite controversial but it provided a game plan to follow for those who were interested.
    I have been happily married for a number of years and have two grown kids.  Perhaps I sound pessimistic but I feel that in 2011, single men and women have so many options that it is hard to make a choice.  Too many options!
    I think the answer is – there is no answer.  Men and women will have to blunder along, do their best and have other interests while looking for Ms. or Mr. Right.
    I have an MS in Psychology and have worked with different types of people for over 25 years, having had a brick and mortar dating service for awhile.  What my clients said they wanted and how they behaved were usually totally different.  Many of them had no concept of what they were bringing to the table and wanted/expected perfection.
    I think you can improve the way you write your online profile to entice more responses but you cannot change much about yourself – and who you basically are.  You can lose or gain weight and upgrade your appearance but essentially, you are either lucky or not so lucky in love!
    I wish you all Good Luck!

  14. 44
    Sarah

    I think part of the problem is a lot of people (both men and women) will behave in such a way as to give the impression that they are more interested or committed than they truly are.  This happens in many aspects of life, not just dating.  Your best friend might act all enthusiastic about going on vacation to Europe with you, but then when you make noises about buying the plane tickets, the **** hits the fan and you realize it was just a bunch of hot air — a fantasy for the other person, not something s/he actually intended to follow through on.
     
    I’ve been with guys who talked of love and commitment and marriage (yes, with me personally, not in a general sort of way) and would later completely disappear for no apparent reason.  Why?  I think they were very immature.  They liked the idea of getting married someday, and I was the most likely candidate at the given moment, and they thought nothing of leading me on when they weren’t truly sincere.
     
    What am I to learn from this?  Even a guy who says all the right things (“yes, I’d love to be your boyfriend”) can’t necessarily be trusted.  I’m tempted to think the only safe bet is to wait until he puts a big hard rock on your finger.  He might not mind toying with your heart, but he won’t spend that kind of money unless he’s “real.”  Perhaps experience has made me cynical.  And YES women do this crap too!

  15. 45
    Karl R

    Margo said: (#38)
    “I knew there was a 50/50 chance of his disappearing-that number is actually higher because of his severe emotional problems. In any case, was I still hurt? Yes, but definitely not as much as I could have been had I not realized that disappearing men are common these days.”
    “Therefore, protect your heart people. I think that is really all Evan is saying.”

    I won’t speak for Evan, but that’s what I’m trying to say. Look at it like a continuum. Evan’s client Sandy is at one point. I’m at another. You (Margo) are somewhere between us. You want to reach a point where you find the pain of a breakup acceptable.

    Margo said: (#38)
    “to say it’s not going to hurt when you liked that person on some level…Well, you’re not being honest with yourself.”

    I wouldn’t claim that I feel nothing under those circumstances, but describing the feeling as hurting or painful? Not even close. I can’t imagine describing it as being “devastated” as Sayanta did (#37).

    It may partly be a choice of words. “Devastated” sounds more dramatic, and garners more sympathy than “somewhat bummed out.” But I’ve seen psychological studies that showed that our choice of words affects our perception of events … particularly in how we remember them after the fact.

    Sayanta said: (#37)
    “I think it’s impossible to do as Evan and Karl suggest, although it makes sense on paper. Women are wired differently, it takes us longer to get over things.”

    If you’re convinced that something is impossible and refuse to attempt it, it will be impossible … for you.

    In my experience, it was much easier than overcoming a phobia. It was more comparable to becoming able to laugh at myself instead of being embarassed or mortified during an awkward mishap.

    If I remember correctly, you’ve previously described yourself as being a smart and strong woman. Bouncing back from stuff like this is a big part of inner strength. Maybe the biggest part.

  16. 46
    Anita

    Evan, I’m wondering if Karl R is your protege?  Better sign him up to be one of yours before he’s snatched away!!! =P
    Karl R, are you a pseudo relationship coach or an understudy for Mr. Katz?  =P  Really like your comments.
    I do want to add a little of my perspective on what Sayanta (#37) mentioned about how women are wired emotionally and your response.  I do somewhat agree, Mr. R, from your words (#48) to Sayanta - If you’re convinced that something is impossible and refuse to attempt it, it will be impossible … for you.
    I hate to generalise but here goes….
    I guess it depends on the make up of the person whether they are more of an emotional creature or more the thinkers.  As a general rule of thumb, women are often brought up to be in tuned to their feelings hence they will be more emotional.  “We” may not compartmentalise as well as men do in some of the emotional department (mind you, it is very much dependent on the way you are brought up).
     
    Now speaking in a non-gender biased, when the gates of our hearts are “shaken” or “broken through”, our emotions/feelings come flooding.  Our heart often marches to its own rhythm as does our head.  The trick is to be able to connect successfully the heart and the head, which will take some time to adjust to. (It is often difficult to see the trees from the woods if you are in some emotional spin.) One cannot live by heart or head alone.  It either makes us too “overly dramatic” or cold/robotic.  We are feeling and thinking creatures, after all.  We can either be emotive thinkers or practical feelers (trying to be a smarty pants…. =P)
    If you’re hurt or bummed in the process of dating/relationship, there is LIGHT at the end of the tunnel.  The adage of “what doesn’t kill you, will make you stronger”.  The skin of your heart will thicken to a point where if it is thrown away, your heart will be able to bounce right back.  The thicker the skin will ensure the level of “bouncability” of your heart when thrown . (As is expressed in Karl R’s post #48)
    In my round about way of saying, I believe it is okay to go through the moments of grief/sadness but do put it into perspective which is dependent on the depth/length of your relationship with the person in question.
     

  17. 47
    Margo

    Well, the guy that poofed on me came back. I don’t know what he really wants, but oh well. I want to apologize to you men on here for using the word “scumbag” so loosely. There are MANY scumbags out there, but sometimes it’s my anger and disappointment that drives the use of that word.

    This guy that came back isn’t a scumbag. Now, the guy I dated 3 years ago and has tried to come back each year, now he’s definitely a scumbag. I think the guy I was interested in is just confused, dosen’t know what he wants, might not be in a good place emotionally for a relationship. Something keeps drawing him to me, maybe it’s the friendship, dunno.

    I do believe that if a guy really does disappear and doesn’t come back withint at least a week’s time, the lady is OWED a reason.

  18. 48
    Josie

    I am so mad, upset, enraged, disappointed all at same time

    We have been seeing each other since Feb, honestly not sure if it was dating…didn’t want to ask him.

    How can you not heard from someone for whole of Eatser holiday, not even a full stop!

    That only shows the lack of care, concern on the person..

    I really cannot stand anyone who is this distant/cold and heartless

    It may not be the best decision I have made but this time I follow my heart I already tolerate for 4 days already, everyday I kept myself busy not to think about it

    At end of day can’t help but wonder how horrible is this person making me feel, If that is the case, best to say bye now , so I sent him a text tell him take care and bye
    so by fifth day I said it and no reply on his part after bye.

    I don’t know anymore

  19. 49
    Karl R

    Margo said: (#50)
    “I do believe that if a guy really does disappear and doesn’t come back withint at least a week’s time, the lady is OWED a reason.”

    As long as you feel he is indebted to you, you are still connected to him. If he does not feel that he owes you an explanation, then that connection only goes one way.

    Do you want to remain connected indefinitely (or permanently) to a man who does not want to date you? As long as you believe that he owes you, the existence of that connection is under his control. He can either refuse to give you an answer, or he can give you an answer that you find unsatisfactory.

    Would you even be satisfied with the explanation? Most people don’t want to give an explanation that’s harsh. Most people don’t want to give an explanation that makes them appear to be the bad guy. (And the explanations get particularly convoluted when the person is trying to give you an explanation that fulfills both requirements.) Furthermore, you don’t want an explanation that’s harsh, or one that makes you appear to be the bad guy.

    Do you really expect that you’re going to get a reason that’s the unedited truth?

    When that woman vanished after six weeks of dating, I decided that she didn’t own me an explanation, because I didn’t want to remain tied to her. It was much easier to move on without that lingering connection.

    You’re getting hung up on what’s right or wrong. I’m telling you that it’s not in your self-interest to require a reason. Assume that the person who disappeared wasn’t that into you. That’s enough of a reason, and it’s probably as accurate as the reason they would tell you.

  20. 50
    TS

    I don’t think being mentally prepared for a man to disappear will reduce heartbreak if he does.  The reason is that, to like someone, one has to be open to them, and if one’s open to them, then one gets attached, and if one gets attached, it hurts when that other person leaves.  It doesn’t matter whether we’re talking a friendship, a dating relationship or the cat who came by for an ear scratch and a spot of milk, when the other person disappears, the heart breaks!   Okay, in some instances it’s only a stress fracture or a severe bruising, but the pain of rejection is still there.

  21. 51
    Trenia

    I agree with much of what you’re saying,but what’s problematic for me is what’s problematic with most dating advice, and it’s the assumption that the woman must placate and back peddle to make a dating relationship work. The assumption that “men can never change” implies that the woman must change or tweak her approach so that he’ll want her. I think what most women want is for a man to be a person of good character and integrity and be so in his dealings with us, regardless of whether or not it turns into something long-term. In short, be a grown up, plain and simple.

  22. 52
    Karl R

    Trenia said: (#54)
    “The assumption that ‘men can never change’ implies that the woman must change or tweak her approach so that he’ll want her.”

    You’re misstating the assumption. The assumption is, “The only person I can change is myself.” It’s true whether you’re a man or a woman.

    So if your current approach isn’t working, you can either continue the same unsuccessful approach (likely experiencing the same results), you can change yourself (in order to get different results), or you can say that the other person needs to change so it will work (and then wait an eternity while they choose not to change).

    Evan and I didn’t get our relationships by saying women needed to change. We got our relationships by changing as necessary until we could get what we wanted.

    And if the problem is the other person, you still can’t get them to change. You solve that problem by leaving and finding someone else.

  23. 53
    Margo

    Well, Karl, “owed” was a bad choice of words. The “decent” thing to do when ending a relationship is to offer some explanation rather than pulling a disappearing act.

  24. 54
    starthrower68

    Margo,

    I understand the spirit of what you are saying.  It would be nice to get that closure.  What I have found when a man disappears is that as long as I behaved well it doesn’t matter why he disappeared.  If he wasn’t into me, had another woman, whatever, if he chooses to go then he needs to stay gone.  I can get closure for myself.  Yes, having a man offer some explanation is the decent thing to do, but the road to hell is often paved with good intentions.

  25. 55
    Margo

    Thanks, Karl and Starthrower, @Karl, I’d like to know who did the heavy lifting in your relationship in terms of initiating contact, calling first, planning dates? For some reason, I get the feeling it was your fiancee.

    Evan’s wife is an extroardinary woman for staying calm and collected when Evan was doing his once a week thing. I’m not that extroardinary. So, for the rest of us what do we say when someone has been MIA for a week or so, then reappears? Why are you back?

  26. 56
    InsertPseudonymHere

    @Margo

    Another is “Why did you go silent?” Your question is as good as saying “Go away.” If that is what you really feel, say that directly. If you want to work on the interaction, the former is better.

    @Josie You sound pretty roughed up. I am sympathetic to your pain even as I point out your path into it and out of it is under your control. He has been inconsiderate, but he is not “making” you feel anything.  How you feel about his behavior is on you. Until you acknowledge you own your pain and feelings and stop relying/allowing others to make them, I guarantee you will be tossed around again and again. Good luck

  27. 57
    starthrower68

    Unless he offers a good explanation (because I would not demand or expect one), has disappeared and then returns, it would be difficult for me to continue on.  While he’s been doing whatever it is he’s been doing, I’ve accepted that there’s nothing there, moved on, and went about my life.  Its difficult to do a complete reversal of that.  I’m sure I will be told it shouldn’t be, but I don’t tend to mess around with these things.

  28. 58
    AS

    Just reading through the threads and some great points made. I believe that it ultimately comes down to a couple of things…

    When you do not get closure from any experience it often superficially intensifies and prolongs the process of getting over someone, so inevitably it’s going to hurt when someone just disappears, no explanation.
    Secondly, I think women are more guilty of doing this then men, when you are dating someone you forget to live in and enjoy the present moment. You over analyse and rather than taking what a guy say’s at face value try to read too much into it. Add to that fantasies of being with this person in the future, dreaming about how things would be etc you then create false expectations. But note, you created them not him. So when the guy disappears you risk losing sight of actually what you had and start mourning over what you had plus what you wanted to have. In fact you could have saved yourself from some degree of heart ache if you just made a conscious effort to manage your own expectations and accept the present moment rather than looking beyond, even though it was really bad mannered of him to actually disappear without an explanation and I am not trying to take away from that.
     

  29. 59
    Gem

    We women are great at getting ahead of ourselves. Maybe because we are more emotionally or relationally wired.

    I think Evan’s advice that you can “hope” for the next date and nothing more while getting to know someone is very smart. Remember, we are checking them out to see if we even want them and to do that, we need to view them realistically and not place hopes and dreams on the initial chemistry and sweet things they may say.

    The phrase “He’s not real until he’s your boyfriend” should be printed in bold letters and read daily while dating someone new to remind us. This statement is also why women shouldn’t sleep with a man until he’s their boyfriend. Sex confuses our thinking as well. Once our bodies are involved we want him to be what we hope, and it’s more difficult to see him realistically.

  30. 60
    Karl R

    starthrower68 said: (#60)
    “I’ve accepted that there’s nothing there, moved on, and went about my life.  Its difficult to do a complete reversal of that.  I’m sure I will be told it shouldn’t be,”

    I’d say that doing a complete reversal would be a mistake.

    Unless the person has an exceptionally good reason for being absent and incommunicado, you have learned something about them that affects the relationship going forward: you now know that under certain circumstances you can’t rely upon them to communicate with you.

    That is who the person is. You can’t count on them to change. And it’s generally not an easy trait to live with.

    Margo asked: (#58)
    “Karl, I’d like to know who did the heavy lifting in your relationship in terms of initiating contact, calling first, planning dates?”

    I did most of the initiating, asking and planning. (I checked with her, and that’s her recollection as well.)

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