How Can I Get A Guy To See That I’m The One For Him?

How Can I Get A Guy To See That I’m The One For Him

I’m almost 42, and have been to the rodeo a few times (I have two of your books, read all of your stuff, and have been with you for some years now). I have a doctorate, a lovely home, a fulfilling job, three polite and accomplished children (one in college, one about to be), a collegial relationship with their father . . . I take good care of myself in all ways, and I struggle to get dates as a liberal and non-religious person in a southern town.

Recently, a promising prospect chatted me up on Match and we began emailing separately. Since I tend to try to communicate with about three men at a time (JUST communicate!), I thought things were clicking nicely, though he was slow to ask me out. Then he mentioned he took down his profile because he wanted to “see where things would go” with a girl he was seeing, though she “wasn’t a girlfriend” yet. To say I was clotheslined is an understatement! He says he wouldn’t want her having coffee with other men, so he wants to give her the same respect. I like that, a LOT. But he has the WRONG GIRL. He says he is willing to “continue the conversation” with me via email “as long as I would like to,” but I am not one to “sell” someone on me — au contraire! The problem is that I’m head over heels — perhaps because he won’t date me? Last night he said “Dammit, Karen! I wish we had met eight weeks ago!” He was complimenting me on Match just a WEEK ago! Isn’t it kind of soon for him to be exclusive with a girl who is “NOT his girlfriend”? I know I want him to see who’s out there, because I am confident that I’m a prize. But he says “I don’t believe in soul mates” — ok, neither do I, but I also don’t believe in making do! Normally I’m cool and collected – this is the first one who has me highly motivated in, like … ever. HELP!

Karen

I’m sorry, Karen. It means something to me that you’ve read my stuff, bought my books, and took the time to ask me this question, but it forces me to ask an uncomfortable question in return:

Why didn’t you absorb any of the information?

First of all, you’re communicating with 3 men? If you read Finding the One Online, you’d know that number should be 7-10 men, because if you’re screening men properly using my 2/2/2 rule, most of them will fall short or disappear, leaving you with 1-2 dates per week.

Next, your doctorate, your lovely home, your fulfilling job, your accomplished children…all of them mean absolutely nothing to a stranger on a dating site. If you read Why He Disappeared, you know two things:

1. “No man is real until he’s your boyfriend.” He’s just hope, fantasy, projection and potential. You don’t get excited about a guy until he’s committed to you, specifically because there’s such a high likelihood that things won’t pan out. It’s healthy to temper unrealistic expectations so that you don’t turn into well…this woman who is writing this email.

2. “Men are all about feelings.” How does he feel when he’s in your presence? Appreciated? Admired? Accepted? If so, there’s a good chance, he’s gonna stick around. Except for one instance…

No man is real until he’s your boyfriend.

Your guy met someone he liked more than you before he met you. Or maybe after. It doesn’t really matter. Point is that this guy has cast his vote with his actions. He’s taking down his profile to focus on her and explore the relationship. The fact that it probably won’t last is irrelevant, since most relationships break up before the altar.

What’s strange here is that you think he made a mistake here. Really? Says who?

Let’s put the shoe on the other foot. You’re talking to three guys at once. You like one guy more than the rest. You have four great dates with him. You both decide to take down your profiles and explore a relationship. One of the other men feels upset, hurt and confused. He writes you an email: “I don’t understand! You were saying nice things about me a WEEK ago! I have a great job, a great house, a great family! You’re making a mistake! You’re choosing the WRONG GUY!”

Most women would find such an email to be somewhere between laughable and pathetic and would not even bother to respond, except maybe to block his number.

So, Karen, it’s not that you’re wrong to feel you’re a catch. It’s that you’re wrong to insist that you’re HIS catch. It’s like you think you know what’s better for him than he does.

You don’t.

You can’t convince someone to like you more than he does.

You can’t logic your way into a relationship by pitting your qualities against the other girl.

You certainly can’t tell him that his feelings are wrong and that he’d be happier with you, when a) you don’t know the other girl and b) you haven’t even MET this guy.

You understand that, right? You’re head over heels over a fantasy, a creation of your own imagination. You’ve largely catfished yourself.

You’re head over heels over a fantasy, a creation of your own imagination. You’ve largely catfished yourself.

Therefore, Karen, please take my metaphorical advice:

You’ve just accidentally driven your car past the yellow tape and orange cones into Crazytown. I suggest you drive it back to the other side of the border before you cause any more damage.

If his relationship breaks up and he contacts you again (which is quite likely), you can still save face and be given another chance. But if you utter a word of this to him, he will dismiss you so fast you won’t know what hit you.

In the meantime, refresh yourself with Finding the One Online and learn to email 7-10 guys simultaneously.

Believe me, you won’t worry this much about another guy when you have a deep bench of other guys lining up to meet you.

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Mark

    The cold hard dose of reality from Mark… :-).   But, she sounds lovely and it’s not her fault that guys can’t recognize that.  I found dating sites to typical end up being too shallow and superficial which, given the doctorate, probably makes her challenge that much harder.

  2. 2
    Karl R

    Karen asked:

    “The problem is that I’m head over heels — perhaps because he won’t date me?”

     

    No.  You’re head over heels with a fantasy of your own creation … one that bears a resemblance to this man.

    Whatever you know about this man, you’ve barely scratched the surface.  He seems great.  That’s because you don’t know him yet.

    Almost everyone puts their best foot forward in social situations.  You don’t find out about their less appealing traits until you know them for a while.  You’ve had no opportunity to discover the ways in which he can be annoying, irritating, etc.  And based on my personal experience, I’ve discovered that one important factor in the success/failure of a relationship is how much your partner gets on your nerves.

     

    Karen said:

    “he has the WRONG GIRL.”

    Over five years ago I met a woman at the dance studio.  I had been dating (fairly prolifically) for four years before I met her.  As I got to know this woman over the subsequent three months, I realized that she and I clicked extremely well.  We clearly had chemistry (personally, as well as on the dance floor).  We were close in age.  We were close in intelligence.  In addition to our mutual interest in dancing, we also had careers in related industries.  And as far as I could judge, the physical attraction between us was mutual.

    For a person whom had been going through the dating merry-go-round for four years, meeting someone like this was like finding a hidden treasure.

     

    Except … the timing was wrong.  When I met her, I was six months into a serious relationship.  By the time I realized how incredible this woman was, I was nine months into that relationship.

     

    If I had met this woman one year earlier (when I wasn’t in a long-term relationship), the decision would have been simple.  Ask her out … see what happens.  It was considerably less simple when I met her during the best relationship (at that point) of my life.

    One piece of Evan’s advice was particularly helpful to me: “Don’t evaluate your partner. Evaluate the relationship.”  I decided to stay with the best relationship of my life, rather than break it off in order to pursue someone who might be better.  (And particularly seemed better … because I knew none of the drawbacks of dating her.)

     

    It would be easy for the other woman to believe that I chose “the wrong girl.”  At least to the extent she knew me, we seemed to be a good match for each other.

    But this woman has some insight that you lack.  She has subsequently gotten to know that girlfriend (who became my wife).  They’re good friends.  I think she would openly admit that my wife and I are an excellent match for each other … even though she is more compatible in a couple areas.

     

    And as I’ve gotten to know that woman better, I’ve come to the conclusion that there’s only a 5% chance that things could have worked out in the long run.  There’s a 95% chance that she could have ended up as an amazing ex-girlfriend.

    I’m happy with the decision I made.  I have enough amazing ex-girlfriends.  I don’t need more.

     

    Karen asked:

    “Isn’t it kind of soon for him to be exclusive with a girl who is ‘NOT his girlfriend’?”

     

    First: That’s a strategic decision.  I’ve made similar choices (based on insufficient information) just looking out for my own best interest.

    Second: That’s not your problem.  If it turns out that it’s a bad decision, he’s the one that needs to deal with the consequences.

    1. 2.1
      Karl S

      Karl R said:

      One piece of Evan’s advice was particularly helpful to me: “Don’t evaluate your partner. Evaluate the relationship.”  I decided to stay with the best relationship of my life, rather than break it off in order to pursue someone who might be better.  (And particularly seemed better … because I knew none of the drawbacks of dating her.)

      That is a super useful article/piece of advice to bring up, especially for where I’m at right now with a wonderful older women I’ve been dating for 6 months. All those little thoughts about who else I could be dating start to creep in, but the relationship itself is the most easiest, most peaceful I’ve ever had and I’d be a fool to throw it away.

      Regarding the OP, I was once writing to a girl who seemed like the perfect match online as well. Before we could meet though, she stung me a bit by telling me that she wanted to explore things with a guy she’d met a week or so earlier. Being an old-hand at online dating, I wished her luck and put her out of mind while leaving the door open for her to get back to me if things went south. As luck would have it, she messaged me again a few weeks later to say that she made the wrong choice. We went on our date and it was EXPLOSIVE (1 afternoon of coffee stretched into 4 days of staying at each other’s houses). I invited her to move in with me after a month (huge mistake) and we broke up six months later. Now she’s just an ex story I tell. The point is, you just don’t know if they’re the right one until you really know them. Most often, they aren’t.

  3. 3
    Sophia

    Karen, how do you know he has the wrong girl- do you know anything about that other woman b/c that’s quite a bold assumption to make!  The cold hard truth is that your MATCH guy has made a choice- HIS choice (safe to assume no one’s holding a gun to his head) and, at this point, all you can do is shrug your shoulders, console yourself a bit, see IF there’s a lesson to learn (not always so) and remind yourself there is someone out there YOU HAVE NOT MET YET who will CHOSE you. EVEN if he’s dating someone else, even if….

    Best of luck-

  4. 4
    Tom10

    @ Karen
    “How Can I Get A Guy To See That I’m The One For Him?
     
    Unfortunately, you can’t. He’s just not that into you. Truly interested guys aren’t “slow to ask [you] out”. Move on. Asap.
     
    The only point on which I which I disagree with Evan a small bit is about possibly giving the guy another chance if he comes back to you should his current relationship fail. This guy had his chance with you and he didn’t take it. So cut him off. Forever.
     
    I operate by a once-chance-per-person-per-lifetime strategy. It might seem harsh but it leaves little room for ambiguity.
     
    If they saw you as their dream catch they’d make damn sure not to mess it up the first time.

    1. 4.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Sorry, Tom. I STRONGLY disagree with you on cutting him off forever, based on considerable personal and coaching experience. Cutting him off is done out of insecurity and ego. “You chose another woman! Fuck you!” Except he didn’t choose the other woman OVER her; he never even got to know Karen at all. Thus, this wasn’t personal. This was about timing. Another woman got there first; time will tell if it was the right choice. But if the guy comes back in six weeks and said he screwed up, Karen would be foolish to pull a “hell hath no fury” on him.

      1. 4.1.1
        Tom10

        I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree  on this Evan, although I will accept that you have considerably more life and dating experience than me.
         
        But reading Karen’s letter it seems that she initially began communicating with this guy he was still single:“he mentioned he took down his profile because he wanted to “see where things would go” with a girl he was seeing, though she “wasn’t a girlfriend” yet
         
        This tells me he was weighing up his options and decided to pick someone else. No problem. That’s his prerogative. But he made his choice so now he as to live with it. If Karen leaves the door open for him in the future she fatally undermines her own value. She needs to be the CEO of her love life and demand proper treatment. And this guy didn’t meet the standard when he had his chance, which leads me believe that he won’t the next time either.
         
        JM2C.

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          He chose someone else based on limited information. No one is keeping score about “value”. Fact is: if Karen likes him and he comes back, she’d be a fool to turn him away because of how it looks to others. Let’s say that he MARRIES her; should she still worry that she was his second choice? I’ve written about this before – although I’m not sure where. This guy didn’t DUMP her for another woman; he never even met her – a clear indication that his decision making was based on chemistry, timing and limited information. Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face, my friend.

        2. Tom10

          On one level you’re correct Evan; I have a tendency to play “my way or the highway” in life which I’m trying to soften up on. Flexibility, moderation and balance are the keys to many situations.
           
          But I still feel that if this guy was communicating with a few different women without commitment to any of them, and then suddenly he met, oh I dunno, Jennifer Aniston, well you can bet your bottom dollar he would drop all his other options like a hot potato. The fact he didn’t do this is telling.
           
          I guess we’ll just have to see the opinions of other commenters to gauge the general mood on this one!

        3. Evan Marc Katz

          Thanks, but I don’t worry about the general mood. Just because a majority of people believes or feels something doesn’t mean it’s right.

        4. KK

          Even though he told her he wants to see where it goes with the other woman, he is still communicating with Karen via email. From the tone of her letter, I get the feeling she is going to continue. That being said, it doesn’t look like a situation where he’ll “come back” after it doesn’t work out because she’s basically still in it and triangulating herself.

        5. Adrian

          Tom10,

          Evan did a post on this very subject a few years ago (I can’t remember the name of it), and many female commenters agreed with you, that it was like being his second choice, his backup girl.

           

          I only bring it up because it was longer, and in it you saw some good arguments from both sides on the subject. Basically what I took from the long debate was, it came down to ego, low self-esteem, and arrogance.

           

          If you can find it may be worth reading.

        6. Buck25

          Tom,

          Sorry but I have to side with Evan on this one. If the guy had actually been in a relationship with Karen, I’d agree with you; no second chance for him (same for a woman who does that). If he had even been dating Karen when he met the other woman, I might agree with you; but neither of those things is what she says happened in this instance; he and Karen had not even met face-to-face. The guy did something I’ve done plenty of times; he met someone, thought it looked promising, and decided to suspend the rest of his dating/meeting activities, while he focused on the possibilities of that potential relationship and sorted them out. We can argue the merits and demerits of that approach. On one hand, it probably cost me a few potential relationships, when I stopped and focused on a budding relationship that never panned out; on the other, I at least didn’t have to wonder if something might have worked out, had I not had my attention and focus divided. By Karen’s account, this guy was at least honest with her about what he was doing, and why. It’s just a timing matter, and I agree with Evan, (for once, lol!); if it doesn’t work, and he does ask her out, Karen need not feel in any way “second choice”.

          I think maybe the most useful lesson to be taken from this story is that in the early phases of getting to know someone online, we have to operate with limited information, and until we actually meet that person face-to-face, our imagination tries to fill in the blank spaces. It’s pretty tempting (and pretty easy) to construct in our own minds a fairly detailed image of who this new person is. The problem, of course, is that mental image we essentially dreamed up may or may not prove to be accurate; essentially it’s just a fantasy. I know when I was dating online,  if I did that, I was completely wrong at least as often as I was right; I finally learned to assume as little as possible, keep an open mind, and wait to fill in the blanks after I actually met the woman in question. That’s somewhat less exciting, early on, but it felt a lot more realistic and grounded, to me. Bottom line: that “fill in the blanks” fantasy is just one more potential pitfall in online dating that’s a little different from the ones encountered in real life. Different game, different skill set, different minefield to navigate.

        7. Tom10

          That’s okay Buck.
           
          Without meaning to belabor the point or going around in circles I wouldn’t mind going through the parts of Karen’s letter which lead me to believe that this guy was never serious about her in the first place:
           
          “I thought things were clicking nicely, though he was slow to ask me out.”
           
          My take: when guys have a serious prospect in sight they make sure to ask her out, promptly. (Unless they’re total betas).
           
          “Then he mentioned he took down his profile because he wanted to “see where things would go” with a girl he was seeing, though she “wasn’t a girlfriend” yet.”
           
          Two things here:
           
          1) Why would he mention one potential prospect to another? This tells me he was playing some sort of strategy; he certainly wasn’t doing it from a sense of honor! Lol. If I had two serious prospects on my hands I would make sure not to mention that to either party, as that might jeopardize my chances with the other (in case they reacted like the way I would react). I would make sure to play it cool with both before making a (possibly irreversible) decision. This leads me to believe that he told her about the other girl because he wasn’t too concerned of the potential consequences with Karen. Thus, he just wasn’t that into her.
           
          2) The fact that he dropped Karen for someone else so quickly without exploring anything further (I know I know they weren’t dating) while he was still a single man implies to me that he wasn’t too bothered in the first place. Thus, he just wasn’t that into her.
           
          “He says he wouldn’t want her having coffee with other men, so he wants to give her the same respect. I like that, a LOT”
           
          Okay, he doesn’t want his other girl (the one he picked), having coffee with other men, but he doesn’t mind Karen having coffee with other men?! This tells me that he just wasn’t that into Karen.
           
          “He says he is willing to “continue the conversation” with me via email “as long as I would like to,”
           
          Oh how gracious of him. He’s willing to email Karen while dating another woman exclusively? That seems like he’s still keeping his options open – despite implying (by taking down his profile) that he is going to try and be serious about his other girl. This actually tells me that he’s not really into either woman!
           
          “Last night he said “Dammit, Karen! I wish we had met eight weeks ago!”
           
          Empty platitude. He was still single when they met therefore this statement is inconsequential.
           
          “He was complimenting me on Match just a WEEK ago!”
           
          Hmm. Talk is cheap so I wouldn’t take much meaning from that.
           
          —————-
           
          I just get the overall impression from Karen’s guy that he just wasn’t really into her from the getgo, thus if he ever comes back it will only be for kicks, an ego boost and/or possibly some sex.

          Sometimes I just go on hunches, vibes and “male intuition” lol. 🙂

          But I accept I’ve been roundly beaten on this one, and don’t want to annoy our gracious host any further, so I will humbly accept defeat and bow out on this thread.

          I can’t always be right. Lol.

        8. Emily

          Tom,

          Don’t bow out! Differing points of view keep things interesting!

          I agree with you in that this guy seems a bit full of it. What someone says is irrelevant. What he does and what are the end results of his actions are what’s important. The reasons why don’t matter. Who cares if he has a  girlfriend or 5 girlfriends. He didn’t proceed forward with Karen. End of story.

        9. L

          Tom, I would agree with you if they had met and seen each other a few times.  However, say you are on Match and are corresponding with a few people.  You meet a person for coffee or a drink and hit it off.  Meantime you schedule a drink with a second person, that person is nice too, you go out with both.  One fizzles out, the other turns into a third date.  Meantime you are chatting with a few other people on match.  They seem nice, but it is too early to be exclusive with person #1.  You have a good feeling, so you hold off on scheduling other dates.   But you aren’t ready to make things excluding.  You go on date #4. Then you decide to not strong those other people along as you continue to date person #1.

          There re is nothing against the people you are emailing, it’s just timing.

        10. Adrian

          Tom10,

          I disagree with your first argument, giving second chances.

           

          I agree with your second argument, he’s not that into her.

           

          You dissected the email well enough to prove your views about the guy not being that into Karen or at least showing that he feels the other woman is better looking or has a better personality (that does not mean he is not into Karen, it just means he feels the other woman is better).

           

          After reading your argument, I now also feel Karen should not give “this guy” another chance. NOT because I am against giving second chances but because it DOES seem like he is stringing her along, until he sees if things will work with the other girl.

      2. 4.1.2
        Callie

        Totally agreeing with Evan on this one. I actually have a friend (female) who was in almost this exact situation. Started talking with a guy on OLD, he then told her he was giving it a try with a different girl he’d met online, she understood and appreciated his honesty. And that’s it.

        Or was it . . .

        A month or so maybe later he got in touch with her again. Said that it didn’t work out with the other girl and was curious if my friend wanted to go on a date. Now she could have felt like a second choice I suppose and done the “one chance per person” thing, but what she saw instead was someone who remembered her, who liked her, who put an effort into getting back in touch.

        So she went on that date.

        And now they’re married.

        So . . . yeah.

        People make choices when it comes to OLD for many reasons. One of the biggest ones is timing. Someone is just getting to know someone else and then they meet this other person but they need to see where the first thing was going. It’s not choosing someone over someone else. It’s not knowing either person very well and deciding that the one that you’ve invested more time in is the one that makes the most sense to pursue. But it doesn’t mean that that person will be the one once they get to know each other. And it really seems silly to me to go with this love at first sight notion especially when it comes to OLD. At least in my opinion.

         

        1. Tom10

          Okay, Evan 1, Tom 0.
           
          I have a feeling I’m going to lose this one 🙁

        2. Evan Marc Katz

          Again, it doesn’t matter what other people say. It’s what works. I think that cutting off someone because he chose someone else after a handful of emails is shortsighted and petty. Most people actually operate that way. Whatever floats your boat, man.

        3. Joe

          Just remember: it’s not personal.  The guy who wants to see how things work out with another woman?  He doesn’t really know you yet, so how can it be personal?  Not everyone has the time and energy to seriously date several people at the same time.

           

          Think: would you rather be the middle (or possibly even the end) of a string of women, or one of a bunch of women being strung along?

    2. 4.2
      Christine

      Tom, your take on that email has convinced me that Karen shouldn’t give this particular guy a second chance.  In general, I agree with Evan about giving second chances.  However, in this specific situation, I don’t think it would be worth it.

       

    3. 4.3
      Kyra

      I tend to agree with you as well, Tom10. I can certainly understand Evan’s point that cutting someone off harshly after they have met someone can be caused by insecurity and pettiness, but on the flip side there is such a thing as “e-tethering,” when a person keeps you on a hanger or on “their list” as they hedge other bets.

      When this guy said to her, “Damint, Karen!  wish we had met eight weeks ago!”  Well, that’s just a mental manipulation of her feelings toward him to keep her interested and pining for “If only…” or “Maybe on day…”. You are so perfect for me! After this one lady I’m seeing now. We’d be perfect together! If I wasn’t placing someone in a higher place in my attention span than you at the moment. 

      That’s a big manipulative NOPE for me.  He’s playing her like a fiddle and she’s becoming addicted to his music.

      He’s clearly keeping her chatting “as long as she would like” (come on, now. We see through that) in order to keep HER interested in HIM so he can keep her as an option if he decides he no longer wants to see the other woman. He’s not giving the woman he is dating his full and undivided attention and affection because he continues to speak with a woman he met online about their chemistry (even if he’s mentioning it in a “Golly gee, it sure woulda been great if we’d had a chance to explore that great chemistry we have!” sort of way). That’s unfair to both women.

      He has one foot out the door with the other woman and he’s only standing in the doorway peering in sheepishly with Karen.

      Isn’t this a prime example of what is called a “distancing strategy” of a typical love Avoidant man? There’s always someone (or something) else that has their attention or focus. And, for both of these ladies, he’s immediately exhibiting signs that show he keeps himself distracted from one woman with another (or others).

      If I were Karen (not in a “this is what she need to do” sort of way, but in a “if I really was this woman” way) I’d wish his burgeoning relationship well, tell him I really enjoy our talks and found him quite interesting and intriguing and immediately end communication with him politely. I would not have a talk about how I’m feeling or how sad/disappointed I am we never got to explore anything, I’d simply and quietly go focus on conversations with available men who seemed prepared to ask me for a face to face meeting. Doing so, I think, would elevate Karen’s value to this man. Right now, she’s just showing herself to be the woman who will accept random emails here and there while he dates other women. That’s the last precedent she needs to be setting with anyone because it may shape the future of any relationship she attempts to begin.

      Absolutely leave the door open for him if the relationship he is working on now doesn’t work out, but wish him well and go silent. Perhaps with some silence he’ll realize, “Wow. I really do enjoy chatting with Karen more than the woman I’m seeing and miss her a lot. Maybe I need to reconsider which woman I’ve chosen to pursue.”

      That’s just how I feel about it. I give my very precious and enjoyable conversation to men who are interested in dating me. No others. Petty and insensitive, maybe, but I’m 100% aware of my worth and aware that men string women via email/text/kik/whatsapp/phone and lots of other communication applications in an effort to stroke their own ego at times. These are men I hope women learn, sooner rather than later, to move on from and communicate only with men who are serious about meeting/dating them. This guy doesn’t seem that he is, ever was or has an inclination he could be in the future at all.

      1. 4.3.1
        Evan Marc Katz

        Yeah, his behavior is pretty normal. Exactly what I’d do in the exact same situation. Nothing nefarious about it.

      2. 4.3.2
        Adrian

        Krya,

        The only part of your comment I would “slightly” disagree with is when you say that it is unfair to both women.

         

        “If” this is a women whom this guy just met, then as Tom10 advocated in another post, this guy owes neither women anything.

         

        We know she is NOT his girlfriend. So then how is he being unfair to her and to Karen?

        1. Caroline

          Actually Adrian- the mere fact that e is taking his profile down is a true first step in commitment. He is pretty much saying  I’m taking my profile down because I only want to see you. I think most women would feel this way. But obviously women must think differently than men by observing Tom and Adrians comments. Best to flat out ask does this mean we are just dating each other? Stuff like this makes dating incredibly frustrating.

        2. Adrian

          Caroline,

          What are you talking about?

           

          What did you “observe in my or Tom’s comments” to make you assume men think differently about commitment?

           

          All I said was that he is NOT her boyfriend, which means that he can’t be displaying unfair monogamous actions toward a woman who is not his girlfriend.

           

          When people online date, they talk to 3 or 4 people at the same time until they enter into a monogamous relationship. The only difference here is that Karen knows that this guy is talking to another girl (notice that he didn’t ask Karen to keep talking to him, he said “if” she wants to continue to talk, he left it in Karen’s hands).

           

          It is obvious that he wants to move faster than the other women or he would be her boyfriend, so her “let’s move slow” actions are causing him to feel insecure, which is why he is leaving the door open for Karen.

           

          Caroline you are basically advising Karen to punish this guy for being honest. He could have just disappeared, but he gave her an explanation.

           

          He could have been a player and not told Karen about the other woman or said lets keep talking, but he was honest and “suggested” to Karen that they “could” keep chatting, he left it up to her.

           

          Caroline by making such statements as “best to flat out ask does this mean we are just dating each other” YOU make it seem like this guy or men in general are out to manipulate women, even though the other woman doesn’t want to be CALLED his GIRLFRIEND yet.

           

          Has it occurred to you that the other woman is talking to other guys as well? Maybe he is taking his profile down to show her he wants to commit, but that does not mean that she took hers down. Maybe he is doing that to convince her to date him, men do things like that when they like someone.

           

        3. Kyra

          @Adrian

          The only  way I can put it is a way another dating blogger describes it “future faking.”  This dude is “future faking” on the girl he is dating. He’s definitely not “future faking” on Karen, because he has been honest about seeing another woman he likes enough to takes his profile down for.

          However, he’s giving the impression to this woman he’s dating that he’s removed his profile and not corresponding with other women. If I was her, I’d be thinking, “Ok, cool. You’ve removed your profile and I’m the woman you’re focusing on and speaking with regularly about compatibiity/connection/etc.”

          Except, um… he’s not. He’s got some chitty chat chat going on behind the scenes with some lady… Karen.  Future faking.

          “Look at me. I’m in this and really giving you my attention to see if a future can work.”  No. No he’s not. But, that’s just my take. What do I know?

          Evan says he’d do the same and nothing nefarious about it and he’s the dating coach so I’ll listen to him and hope, one day, Karen writes in with an update.

        4. Kyra

          I also agree with Caroline, if this guy is ready to take down his profile for a woman why isn’t he asking “Would you like to be exclusive?”

          I realize this is much deeper into the letter than we should even go, because we’re supposed to be focusing on Karen and her needs, not this dude.  I’ve also never reached a third date, let alone a man taking down a profile for me.  So, I don’t know how the “I like her, I’m going to take down my profile and either wait for her to say she likes me enough to get the courage or step up and ask her to be my girlfriend/be exclusive” step goes.  So, I eye his conversations with Karen questionably, but it also may be out of my sheer ignorance of this step in a relationship.

        5. Adrian

          Krya,

          Fair enough, I honestly do understand where you are coming from, but

           

          let me ask you this.

           

          If you and I just met online and had a few dates, you asked me to be your boyfriend, but I am still not even sure if I can see us together.

           

          Seeing my uncertainty about committing, you impulsively say that you will take down your profile because you only want to focus on me. Yes this does impress me, but not enough to get me to accept your offer of dating. Now you can’t take back your words because since my profile is still up, I can check to see if you were lying (though I still don’t want to commit to you).

          Now, you have nothing but hope… and Karen.

           

          Kyra, I agree with you that if he told this woman he is talking to no one else, he was lying, but I’m asking you; would YOU be wrong in that situation to hold on to someone? Or should you just throw all your eggs away, hoping that this one will hatch into a golden goose?

           

          I don’t agree with this guy’s methods, but I understand them. Maybe because as a woman, you don’t chase, you can’t see any other reason for doing what this guy did, except a manipulative one.

           

          However, as a guy who has gone on dates with women who couldn’t make up their minds to not be my girlfriend until after 3 or 4 dates, hours of talking on the phone, and emailing, causing me to become attached and emotionally invested in her; I surely can understand this guy holding on to Karen.

           

          That is all I’m saying. I would have never taken my profile down for a woman who is not my girlfriend, nor would I stop talking to other women until the woman is my girlfriend, because until we are a actual couple, nothing is REAL!

           

          Banking everything on hope only works in the movies 100% of the time.

           

  5. 5
    Michelle H.

    Golden advice, Evan.  Excellent post!!!

    (I’m personally sick & tired of getting caught up in “Crazytown”.  It sucks!  Thank goodness for your helpful logic & reasoning to keep me on track.  Thank you.)

  6. 6
    Lisa

    I actually feel bad for this woman, because she’s delusional and she’s getting in her own way. I have my own unique ways of getting in my own way, so I can relate.

    The only response to this guy in my opinion is – ok great, thanks for letting me know! And good luck!  And then you say “Next!” And you move on. If the guy comes back, evaluate the situation and his actions anew.

    The hardest thing is when the biggest problem you have is your own perception.  Or maybe that’s the best thing, because it is certainly the simplest (although not the easiest) thing to change.  In any case she definitely needs to reread Evans books several times.

  7. 7
    Butterduck

    I don’t know what I’d do in Karen’s case. Hopefully not burn any bridges, just in case there was a possibility later on, and he seemed willing enough to continue talking with her for the time being. But timing is not something one can do anything about.

  8. 8
    Lily

    Who has time to communicate with 7-10 men at the same time?? That’s like a having a 2nd job!

      1. 8.1.1
        L

        As a single mom with a full time job, I don’t have the time and energy to do that.  Maybe people with nothing else to do but work and date, but not me!  Truth be told, I can’t really handle more than a date a week anyway.

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          Perfect. I only want you to go on one date a week. But you may need to put in a half hour a day to get it.

        2. L

          It takes way more time.  There are hardly 7-10 guys worth corresponding to at once.  I think it is a lot harder when you are a mother pushing 40 than a single person with no strings attached.  Not to mention, it is hard to keep people straight or have time to organize dates.

          I get what you are saying but for my age/life experience bracket, there really aren’t very many fish in the sea unless you are willing to settle.  I’ve met lots of guys and a lot of them, well, there’s a reason they are divorced!

        3. Evan Marc Katz

          Okay, then stay single. Enjoy. My 40 year old single mom clients would tell a different story.

        4. L

          Wow, Evan, that was really rude of you.  We don’t agree, but no need to shut me down like that.  I was polite to you

          I have no trouble finding boyfriends but I also am not able to spend an excessive amount of time online dating.  My point is that 7-10 guys is a lot of guys to email at once, and not really a realistic number for many women.  I suppose I could email that many men at once but I would be wasting my time and theirs.  When I am truly single, I email maybe 3 at once, selected among the guys that reach out because I think we have something in common and from what I can tell, their divorced are final.  Even coming up with 3 normal, seemingly emotionally available men over 40 who understand children, who have jobs, and who seem to be intelligent and attractive is not that easy.

          I usually only do that for about a few weeks and then narrow down to one guy if, after 2 dates or so, I feel there is potential.  With only one possible date night a week – remember, these guys are also divorced, so it can take weeks just to have a free evening align – then it doesn’t make sense to waste time on more than one guy.

          Also, one last comment, but Karen is a single mom.  Maybe her desire to latch and her crazy feeling that this guy is the one for her might be because the divorced pool is so full of men with baggage, this guy felt like an unusual bright spot.  Believe me, it ain’t easy to remake your life after divorce while parenting and managing a household by yourself.

        5. Evan Marc Katz

          There was nothing rude about my statement. It was purely factual. I told you that I have many 40 year old single women who have adopted my way of dating – a half hour a day, 7-10 men in the inbox, 1 date a week – who found love. You told me that this is too much work for you and that there are no good guys out there. I told you that – given your stance – you should enjoy being single, since you don’t seem willing to overcome your judgment of divorced men your own age or your belief about how to make online dating work for you. Not a single statement above is untrue or even rude.

        6. Adrian

          L,

          You seem to look down on so many of those men in your age group.

           

          There was a old post about a single mom stating how hard it was for her to find someone. Most men lied to her just for the sex, but they didn’t want something long-term with an older woman with children when they could have someone younger, without kids.

           

          I bring this up because YOU sound like some of those mean commenters on that post! Many men would consider dating you “settling” as well!

           

          Is that true! I’m sure it is not! You can probably make many men happier than a lot of younger and childless women. I am sure there are men in your age group who are divorced that are great catches as well.

          Also, when you mention putting in the work, to get the good results. I am curious, if your child was applying to a good college and needed to do a lot of work, writing dozens of different colleges at a time, writing dozens of applications, dozens of letters, conducting dozens of interviews, and THEN! Doing lots more work, writing dozens of different scholarships,

           

          Would you seriously tell them that it okay to forgo the extra work, because the outcome is not worth it?

           

          If love is important to you, work for it, if not, then YES! What Evan is saying is too much. If a good man is hard to find, look HARDER! Work more, not less.

        7. L

          I never said that I haven’t had success.  Simply that EMK’s formula doesn’t really make sense for women with limited time due to significant childcare and work obligations.  I really don’t have time and energy to devote to emailing 7-10 men, so it makes sense to make the best use of my time and weed out guys I’m not interested in.  Given simple demographics, the pool of men available to me is smaller compared to younger women, or even women my age that do not have children.  However, even if that is true, I would personally rather be single than settle for a guy that isn’t good enough for me.

          I have had plenty of dates and several relationships since my divorce – the two longest lasted 2 years and then 9 months.  I ended both relationships because ultimately, neither guy felt right for me in the long term.

          My last relationship ended in the fall.  Since then I have gone out on dates with 5 different men.  I dated one guy for about 6 weeks and I am now on my 5th date with another guy.

          My point is simply that different approaches may work and in my view, EMK unfairly attacked me and said I will end up alone because the approach that has worked for me differs from his approach.   This assumption that I am going to die alone is pretty unfair.  There is more than one way to do something, no one size fits all approach.  EMK cannot possibly know or understand the time constraints single parents with primary custody have OR fully appreciate the differences in terms of the quality of men that are available to us.  Pickiness makes sense with limited time.

  9. 9
    Caroline

    @KK-you’re right. I didn’t even catch that. The guy wants Karen to email him offline while he is wanting to appear like he’s putting himself all in on this relationship by taking his profile down. Or so she will take herself off the market while he corresponds with Karen. Not a good sign. I agree with Evan about remaining open to him. I’d just say “you’ve got my email and I’m still online-contact me if things don’t work out. Good luck to you both”. But I certainly wouldn’t correspond with him while he’s wanting to appear off the market.

     

    1. 9.1
      Emily

      I going to agree with you on this one. It kind of sounds like he is hedging his bets. Doing the dating hokey pokey with both Karen and this other woman. It’s kind of selfish.

      1. 9.1.1
        L

        I think he is being honest.  Mid he wants to focus on one woman, it makes sense to be up front rather than just disappear!

        1. Emily

           

          He should tell Karen he is focusing on someone else he met earlier and be done with it. But he told Karen they could “continue the conversation.” Seems shady. If, at some point, it doesn’t work out with the first woman, then he can reopen the lines of communication with Karen.

    2. 9.2
      Karl S

      It could be worse. By telling her the truth at least he’s allowing her the choice to continue or not with full info on the situation. They could be penpals, with a possibility of more if things don’t work out.

      They could also be penpals while she dates other guys. Nobody is cheating or being dishonest here as long as expectations are clear.

      1. 9.2.1
        Emily

        Yeah, but does the woman he is dating know he is penpals with Karen, who is kind of on standby? I guess if he has been honest with this woman about that and this potential girlfriend is allowed to correspond with other men, it’s fine. But I would think a man who was taking down his dating profile to see where things go with someone probably wouldn’t be corresponding with other potential dates, just in case things don’t work out. Why bother taking the profile down if you still want to schmooze other women? Is focusing on one woman so difficult?

    3. 9.3
      Buck25

      @ Caroline,

      I noticed that “staying in touch” part as well. That was the the one thing I saw he did that looked questionable (ethically) to me. The rest of it seems to be honest, and more about timing than anything else. I think if I were dealing with a woman who did something similar,  I’d remain open in case things changed, but, like you, I don’t think I’d continue to correspond while the other situation was still active.

    4. 9.4
      Kyra

      I didn’t even think about this, but you are absolutly, 100% correct! He wants to look like he’s “offline” and “not communicating with any other women” when, indeed, he’s doing just that, but underneath the shadows where the woman he is dating cant’ see.

      NOPE! Shut it down, Karen. Shut it on down.

      1. 9.4.1
        Christine

        The more I read these comments and think about it, the more I find that “staying in touch” with Karen very questionable as well!  Karen, move on and find someone else who isn’t so dishonest.

  10. 10
    Tracy

    Evan,

    I’ve purchased all of your products, including Finding the One Online. I’m truly struggling with how to devote 30 minutes a day to online dating. I feel it generally takes much longer. How can you be corresponding with 7-10 men at once, and be able to compose witty, unique, and funny emails, all in thirty minutes a day? Lets say I write to 7 men per day for 5 minutes each, that’s 35 minutes right there. Plus I need to conduct a search every day, and add two new men per day to add my Favorites. Sometimes I spend 10-15 minutes on just one email, as I need to put thought and care into what I am writing.

    Any advice?

    1. 10.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      I don’t take questions here, but I’ll make an exception.

      1. You don’t do a search every day. You sign up, you search through 500 guys who have logged in within 24 hours and open to dating a woman your age, you add 50 to your favorites list. There. There’s your search. No need to do this every day.

      2. You are communicating, in total, with 7-10 men. That doesn’t mean you’re writing 7 five-minute emails a day. It means that you prioritize. Some guys sit for a day or two while you figure things out with others. Each day, you log in, you see who wrote to you, you reply and delete accordingly, and if you’re not happy with the incoming, you initiate with one new guy on your favorites list a day. That’s the only email that takes any time/creativity. So yes, a half hour a day should do the trick.

  11. 11
    A

    Hi L

    As a single mum working full time as well, I can certainly relate to you !!! I have found that internet dating DOES take a LOT of time. Many younger, single and childless women also complain of the same, so you can imagine what it is like for US ! It has everything to do with our “desirability” and hence comments that we have to work “harder” for a less certain payoff. I have “chatted” endlessly with men, only to find that they really aren’t at all that interested and only have you only as backup or in the “break in case of emergency” category. And I am not bad looking either – only older with kids. And the guys we are talking here about are not that much “desirable” themselves – older with kids too.  I guess, you approach this like a man and conduct a cost benefit analysis and work out if the effort you have to put in is really worth the payoff. I don’t think any of the commenters here who have walked in your shoes truly understand. Of course, you rub people up the wrong way when you say that you want an attractive, emotionally available man with a job and who understands children. Sure you are entitled to what you want, just know that you then can’t complain about the work you have to put in.

     

    1. 11.1
      Caroline

      Actually A and L-I’ve walked in your shoes. Of course my kids may have been older than yours (my youngest was 11 when I divorced)-I can’t imagine trying to date with a very young child. I actually worked my full time job and supplemented it with long evening hours at a 2nd job  (I had to pay for my sons back surgery)-I seemed to manage dating pretty well. I just didn’t comment earlier because I guess I never looked at it as a chore. I was excited to meet new people and to get on with my life after a miserable 23 year marriage. Of course, I had my share of awful meetings, disastrous dates and offensive men too. What have you ever cherished that came easily?

    2. 11.2
      L

      Why would it rub anyone the wrong way to want a guy who is attractive, emotionally available, has a job and likes children???  In what universe is that demanding?

      1. 11.2.1
        Caroline

        @L-online dating is kinda like driving. Pretty much anyone of age who’s got access to a vehicle can drive. Anyone with access to a computer can date online. Would you think every person in the line at the DMV would be someone you’d like to date? Why are you assuming there are gonna be endless amounts of men online you’re gonna want to date.? But instead, you jump to the conclusion that most men online are losers. And quite frankly with how you described your dating life-you’re doing well for the amount of effort you put in-so why the complaining? Do you think you would be able to meet the number of men you have organically? Especially when all you need to do is put in 30 minutes a day after the kids go to sleep?
        I think Evan was just pointing out that his system/way of doing it has been the most effective that he has found in the least amôunt of time.  You most likely watch tv or play on your phone for longer than 30 minutes a day.

        Good luck with the dating. Sounds like you’re doing pretty well.

        1. L

          I have not complained!  EMK criticized Karen for “only” emailing 3 people at once.  He said she should be emailing 7-10.  I said that for divorced women with kids, 7-10 seems like a lot and the time commitment would be pretty significant.  Finding 3 men to email at a time takes 30 minutes easily.

           

          The string went as follows:

           

          8
          Lily
          Who has time to communicate with 7-10 men at the same time?? That’s like a having a 2nd job!

          Reply

          8.1
          Evan Marc Katz
          Not really. But keep doing things your way. You sound happy.

          Reply

          8.1.1
          L
          As a single mom with a full time job, I don’t have the time and energy to do that.  Maybe people with nothing else to do but work and date, but not me!  Truth be told, I can’t really handle more than a date a week anyway.

          Reply

          I NEVER said that I had an issue with dating.    I said that his expectations may be unrealistic for some people.  As I’ve said repeatedly, my current strategy is working.  I only correspond with people I could see myself wanting to actually have a relationship with.  For me, the magic number is 3 or 4 at once.  And, even if I wanted to correspond with 7-10, odds are, there aren’t 7-10 guys worth my time that I would want to correspond with at a given time anyway.

        2. Caroline

          @L-you complained about

          1) there aren’t 7-10 worth emailing

          2) it’s harder for a mother pushing 40

          3) it’s hard to keep people straight

          4)there aren’t any fish in the sea unless you settle

          Those were in just one if your posts

          Sorry- sounds like complaining to me. Like other people don’t have challenges?

        3. L

          I fail to see where I complained.  I said that emailing 7-10 guys would be a big time commitment, particularly for single moms for a few reasons:

          (1) There are simply less men available.  That is a fact.  Most men and women are married in their late 30s and 40s.

          (2) The men who are available in their 40s are more likely than younger men to be emotionally unavailable.  Most of the men I see on Match in my age range are either separated or just out of a divorce.  I will no longer go out with separated men (too much trouble, highly unlikely to be emotionally ready for a relationship) and I proceed with caution with newly divorced men.  This actually is a huge weed-out for me.  There are tons of separated men on dating sites.

          (3) There are challenges to dating men without kids because they either want kids of their own (a problem if you don’t want any more kids) or they have no idea what it is like to be a parent.  For me, no kids = proceed with caution.  I also am very hesitant to date men in their 30s (because they are much more likely to want kids).  Luckily, you can usually tell from profiles whether someone wants kids.

          On top of that, we have our personal preferences.  I prefer to date men that are financially stable, attractive, good with kids, and ideally the same religion as me.  I will weed out based on those attributes as much as possible.  I check job and guesstimate possible income.  He doesn’t have to be rich, but I have no desire to support someone financially.  I have kids to support, a mortgage to pay, and eventually will have to put the kids through college.

          You are right, I do play on the phone for 30 minutes a day (while doing other things), but I also don’t really feel the need to dig around for an hour or more to find 7 suitable men to email.     For me to hit the number 7-10, given scarcity, I would have to lower my standards and waste time emailing unsuitable men.  I have no desire to settle, which is why I keep the number of men I communicate with low, only to men that I could feasibly see myself dating.

          I only responded here to point out that the 7-10 number isn’t really a realistic number for many women.  I will say that I haven’t read EMK’s online dating advice.  I haven’t really had an issue getting dates online.  My “issue,” if you can call it that, has been effectively spotting emotionally unavailable men.  Men will always assure you that they are ready, so it is good to know the signs to look for.  Thus,  I visit this site more for the relationship stuff, not for online dating stuff.

        4. Evan Marc Katz

          I was going to stay away, but I can’t help myself. L, I’m sure you’re a nice woman, but I hope you can concede that you’re better at your job than I am, and I’m better at my job than you are. Which means that PERHAPS I know a little more about online dating (and its associated blind spots) than you do.

          1. It does not take more than 30 minutes a day to keep 7 guys alive in your inbox. You don’t have to write long emails to seven men each day. You don’t have to do a new search each day. You have to just keep the ball rolling. You spend more time writing long responses on here to defend your position than to have a successful love life. Stop fighting with me about the thirty minutes thing. It can be done. You just don’t want to do it.

          2. You have a narrow idea of “suitable” men. That’s fine. Most people do. I did. I wouldn’t have looked for a woman three years older. My wife wouldn’t have looked for a Jewish guy. And that’s the point: your “standards” are not really standards. They’re tiny boxes that restrict your dating pool unnecessarily. Put it this way: have you ever met a man in real life that you wouldn’t have chosen online because of your criteria? Most women have. That’s my point. You’re missing out on a ton of great guys because you think there’s a difference in your happiness if you date a 5’8″ man who makes $75K when you make $100K or something like that. You call these “unsuitable” men. They are not, no more than my wife is unsuitable for me because she’s older and Catholic.

          3. You’re not the catch you think you are. That’s the hardest to hear. I’ve written entire blogs about this, so I’m not going to repeat the whole thing, but: “40ish, kids, make a lot of money, demand a guy who makes a lot of money, religious filters, too busy to make an effort, negative about dating and men, too high on herself, argumentative, and critical” doesn’t make a great catch for most men. I know that’s not how YOU see yourself, but in dating, it’s about how others see you.

          Successful online dating requires emailing 7 guys because, as you said, MOST won’t pan out. You may get only one date a week that way. Email 3 that you think are “suitable” and you’ll end up on a date a month. Now you have 12 chances a year to find love instead of 52. So stop defending yourself and LISTEN. If you want to fall in love, buy Finding the One Online and take notes. Otherwise stop complaining that online dating sucks and men are awful, since you’re not actually doing anything different to get a different result.

        5. Joe

          L, your point #1 is specious.  You claim there are fewer men in their late 30s and 40s, because they get married.  Well, who do you think they’re getting married to?  Women!  So if those men are off the market, so are those women.  If there are fewer men of that age, so are there also fewer women of that age, which means that even even though there are fewer men, there’s less competition for those men.

        6. Karl R

          Joe,

          While your point is accurate, I believe you misunderstand the point that L was making.

          You’re looking at the ratio/competition.  She’s looking at the total size of the dating pool.

           

           

          To give a really simple example, let’s say you get stranded on a deserted island with a single woman.  If the two of you like each other, it’s great.  You have no competition.  If the two of you don’t like each other, you’re both screwed.  You have completely exhausted your dating pool.

          That’s the difference between your point and L’s point.

      2. 11.2.2
        A

        L, I am really confused now. You say you don’t have time to email 7-10 men, yet you have time to go on dates and have relationships ? Sure whatever strategy you use is working for you so good for you. But time is not really the issue here. It is how effective the strategy is for any given quantity of time you spend pursuing it. I think with internet dating there is the quantity not quality factor so you think you are not spending your time effectively pursuing that option.

        I did say that it would rub people up the wrong way if you expected such a high value, relationship worthy guy to appear magically in your lap without some serious effort on your part. Also, I think it rubs people up the wrong way when you  state what you want, but then neglect to say how or why you are worth of such a guy. Taking risks and risking emotional heartbreak and embarassment is par for course here. Yet it seems you want a strategy that will deliver him to you without clarifying what you are doing on your part, or what you are bringing to the table.

        1. L

          Since when is a great guy a “reward” for hard work?  You either meet one or you don’t.  Some people meet that guy at 22 by showing up at a party.  Others have to date for years and years to meet the right guy.  Some never do.  Love isn’t a meritocracy.  Some perfectly wonderful people who do all of the “right things” will end up alone while others will literally have love fall in their laps.

          Personally, I think I am a great catch and maybe that helps me stand out.  I am more attractive than average and financially secure.  I won’t deny that that gives me the ability to be pickier than one might otherwise be.  However, I also don’t expect to run into the love of my life on the sidewalk.  I have a match.com account, although I prefer tinder these days.  Much simpler, less wasted time.

          I don’t really enjoy emailing a bunch of random guys and trolling through meaningless bios. It is too time consuming.  All I want to know at first is what he looks like, how old he is, and what he does for a living.  If he has kids, it is a big plus for me.  he also can’t live more than 45 minutes away. After messaging, if he seems nice, I like to meet him for coffee or something and if I like him and he wants a second date (usually I am the one that doesn’t want a second date), I will spend my a free evening on a date with him to see where it goes.  If I am not feeling it, no second date.  Life is too short.

           

        2. Caroline

          Hi L- I think maybe I should take a different approach.

          EMK ( in my opinion) is only saying:

          1) get a GREAT profile. Great pics, lengthy enough to convey the real you and make a man feel like he knows you. (This is from the well written profile post)

          2) spend about 5 minutes in your emails and try to get 7-10 going at one time. Don’t write a damn novella to the point that you get all caught in a man. Have multiple options so you don’t feel desperate and create a fantasy like the op. keep them light and airy and let the great profile do the work. Nobody wants to have an eternal pen pal.

          3) meet the guy!

          L-I think he’s saying dont waste so much time in emails-great news!

          and as far as EMK’s style:

          it’s kinda like when a swimming pool gets all green. They give it a “shock”. They don’t put a little bit of chemicals in one week then a little more the next. They shock it so you can use it again quickly! In other words, he’s not holding the op’s hand going “there there”- he’s trying to get you back on the road quickly so you can have success. I’d rather be shocked than to be let to swim endlessly in a green swimming pool of online dating.

          Best of luck!

        3. A

          Since when is a great guy a reward for hard work ? You either get one or you don’t ? Errr No.

          You are right that love is not a meritocracy but not in the way you intended. If by meritocracy you mean looks, income, education and all the trappings of success.

          A great guy comes with work :

          Work on yourself to understand yourself and improve yourself

          Work to meet him and to keep him interested by being the best you can be, and following Evan’s advice on men and dating

          Work to keep communication with him open and to understand him and make time for him

          Work to get through difficult issues and tough times together

          Nothing good comes from doing little to no work. Sure with your looks and all that you can attract great guys, keeping them is another thing. I think I should re-define the term working for a great guy to working for a great relationship with a great guy

           

  12. 12
    Sandra

    I met a guy from online dating and for 2 months he was attentive, responsive, we regularly saw each other until  he flaked all the sudden.  I found out about a week later, he met a woman only twice to claim he was head over heels in love with her.  I warned him it was only infatuation and he couldn’t see her for who she was.  But Evan is right.  He got a certain feeling from her he wasn’t getting from me.  After only 3 weeks he claimed that was his girlfriend and he wanted to be exclusive with her.  I have kept in some contact and I found out after only a month the love daze has worn off and he realized she is negative and angry.  But that’s for him to find out and for me to not wait around for him to realize I’m the right one.  He’s too proud to admit its over and he was wrong.  What we had was good for 2 months but we barely had time to get to know each other, but even after its over with the other woman he’s not running back to me.  Maybe in time he will but he’ll have to start all over from the beginning proving he’s good enough.

    1. 12.2
      A

      Sandra, you said …. not wait around for him to realize I’m the right one….

       

      Look, no one has a right to decide or determine who is right for another person. If the shoe was on the other foot, I think you would be offended that anyone would have the temerity to suggest that they or someone they know is “right” for you.

      I’ve found that when I got on really really really well with guys who would then go off with someone they did not click as well with, it always had to do with those guys preferring the looks of those other women – that not I was bad looking – just not physically what they were looking for. They will then have to suffer the consequences of having a difficult relationship with someone whom they really liked physically. It is on them really.

      This has happened to me too. Guys that I really really liked and clicked with, but just couldn’t get past certain things about them. One memorable one had really bad BO and I hadn’t known him long or well enough to broach such a sensitive topic.

      Sandra you also said …..even after it’s over with the other woman he’s not running back to me……

      This is the clearest indication that you thought his relationship with you was more valuable to him that what he thought.

      Was it pride ? If pride got in the way of his true feelings for you, then his feelings wasn’t very much or deep to begin with.

       

       

       

  13. 13
    kim

    I have been in this guys shoes. When I met my husband, I was dating several other guys – one who definitely had romantic potential and a few others I went sailing with and hoped something might develop (my gosh, they had lovely boats). But my husband was truly different. The night we met at a party (set up by a mutual friend) we talked non stop about music, travel, languages, books and our own parallel histories. I was not smitten, but I did see a future with this brilliant and interesting man. I knew I would never be bored and our life would be an adventure – and it has been. But the other guys, well, I had to tell them. 2 were very sad. Both of them asked what was wrong with them, what did this new guy have to offer me that they didn’t? But both told me how much they appreciated my honesty in telling them the truth instead of giving them the brush off. I felt terrible. I truly had not led them on and with one I had really been able to see a future. We had already been talking about a sailing vacation, meeting his parents in another state and him teaching me to ski. I certainly didn’t see it coming – meeting my husband and feeling so strongly, so soon, so sure that this was the guy for me.

  14. 14
    Jenn

    Hi L – no offense, but you seem extremely stuck up and conceited. I don’t doubt that you’re good-looking and financially stable, but you seem like a terrible catch because you seem unnecessarily rude and judgmental. I think this is the reason you struggle with men, and why the men you like don’t like you back (I know, I know, you say you have no trouble with dating, and that it is usually you who doesn’t like the men, but looking at the evidence – you are still single – shows that there are many men who also don’t like you). As you have said multiple times, it is difficult to date as a single 40-year-old woman, and you are making it much harder for yourself by having such a negative attitude. Men like happy, positive women, and mostly men like women WHO LIKE THEM. Men don’t like women who look for reasons to eliminate them in the dating game. You should really try doing some self evaluating, or, as EMK said, have fun being single.

    Also, EMK mentioned this in one of his posts to you, but you seem to be spending a ton of time reading and commenting on this thread. I’d estimate you’re spending at least 30 minutes a day doing that.

  15. 15
    Erin

    Am I the only one who feels empathy for L? Please stop kicking her while she’s down. She is attempting to understand a few things. Re-read her responses without negative emotions. She’s like many of us – divorced, late 30s, kids, successful career, confident, established life and friends/family.

    Carving out 30 min each day to log in and keep the ball rolling with 7-10 men can be a challenge. Some men write very lengthy emails, including points about my profile. I can’t simply respond with 3 cutesy lines and an emoji. But, I don’t need to War & Peace it each time either.  I’m communicating with 3 men at the moment. I have dates with two of them tonight and tomorrow night. I’m looking forward to meeting both of them.

    L, my heart goes out to you. I have some of the same challenges you have. I also don’t date separated men or recently divorced men. I’ve been through a nasty divorce, and I know it takes time to let the wounds heal before entering into anything serious/committed, which is what I am looking for.

    For what it’s worth, I feel like being a single parent in the late 30s and beyond makes you a more attractive woman to be with. I’ve dated several single dads who don’t think I can relate to their challenges as a single parent because I am not a parent. Maybe I can’t totally relate, but I can be empathetic and supportive.

    Best of luck to you. Stay positive…I know it is really, reeeaaallllly hard.

  16. 16
    Sarah Lund

    Stop trying to make him see. He doesn’t really seem to show any indication that he would like you as a lover. I know some men, who are very good at, giving women high hopes. I think that’s quite damaging. What made you feel so certain about him? I could never guarantee to myself that any man in particular will be mine. You can’t know for certain, unless he ends up telling you. He keeps his options open. Would you want a man who does that? Why shouldn’t you date other men? As the one you’ve got your eye in, clearly doesn’t care that much, if he has choices. I bet there’s some really respectful men out there. You just haven’t met any yet. Fingers crossed that you and me both find a decent man 😉

  17. 17
    Christine

    As someone who has been there and done that, I can tell Karen that months from now (oh heck, maybe even just weeks from now)–she’ll barely remember this one guy, if at all.

    Like Karen, I went through my fair share of disappointment with men I encountered online, who didn’t pan out for one reason or another.  However, I got over it and moved on.  Eventually, I came across my boyfriend’s profile–and the rest is history.

    Wouldn’t you know, now one of those other online guys has tried to reach me again via email–and I seriously don’t even remember who he is, although the address looked vaguely familiar.  I’m sure it was someone I corresponded with, but never actually met (I do remember the guys I met and dated, but not so much the ones I just chatted with online).  This person gave me a generic “how have you been” message that doesn’t give me much clues to his identity.

    He must have seemed like a promising prospect at the time, for me to have given him my email address.  But now, after so much time has passed, it’s water under the bridge.

    Karen, it might be disappointing now but take my word for it that over time, as you fill your life with other people and experiences–it really will fade.  In hindsight, I wish I hadn’t spent so much time and angst moping over some random disappearing guys here and there who aren’t a part of my life now (and who I apparently don’t even remember very clearly).  So I hope Karen doesn’t make the same mistake I did and moves on.

  18. 18
    Kay

    Karen is in love with the idea of this man and not the reality. Many a time I have connected with a man online and when I have met them in person there is nothing there. Some people are excellent communicators online and that is it. She hasn’t had the opportunity to find out what this guy is really like and he has not found the opportunity to find out what she is like.

    If he contacts her months later then maybe see what happens. But usually time gives us perspective and we realise that actually this person is not what we want because we have met better people in the interim.

    1. 18.1
      Christine

      That’s very well put, being in love with the “idea” of the man more than the reality.  I have done that a couple of times.  I’ve also had the exact opposite experience too, where the online communication was pretty flat–but then, when we meet (and where it really counts!), there is a lot more of a spark and we really click.  I learned that you can’t always tell what a person is like just from their online communication, and you really need to meet them before judging.

       

  19. 19
    Juliec

    Ha! “Crazytown.” So classic. I only stumbled across your blog the other day, and this is the second one I’ve read, although I’ve scoped out your site. It’s true. Chicks get crazy sometimes and need our village to reel us in. I duuno why it happens, phases of the moon mingled with our jerk of a uterus and her evil voodoo hormonal magic? Hehe. Great blog. Great advice.

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