My Boyfriend of 7 Years Doesn’t Want to Move In or Get Married. What Should I Do?

My Boyfriend of 7 Years Doesn’t Want to Move In or Get Married. What Should I Do?

I am 40 and my boyfriend is 36. I have been previously married and have three kids 17, 15, and 10. He has none. We have been together for 7 years now. I have wanted to move in and get married since year two. He always says he “isn’t ready.”  

A year ago he started living with me, kind of. He keeps all of his clothes at my house sleeps there every night and spends his down time there even when I am not home. I recently said I want him to fully move in because I think it would be financially better. He still keeps his apartment with his things in it. He calls it his “studio” (he is an artist) and he, after a huge disagreement, finally agreed it was the right thing to do.  

Well, the day before the big move he backed out. He said he wasn’t ready and that he didn’t want to promise me anything in the future for fear of hurting me. He wants to keep it the way it is. I am so confused. We are really happy as long as we don’t talk about this kind of commitment. I believe he is in love with me but what do I do? Wait? I am confused what is going to change in his mind. He keeps saying he will lose himself and everything he loves to do if he moves in and gets married. He just sounds like a child to me. I appreciate your advice. Thank you. 

Sincerely,

Cahnie

This is going to be really hard for you to accept, Cahnie, but there’s no other way to say it:

Your boyfriend doesn’t want to marry you.

He’s never going to want to marry you.

If he actually DID marry you, it would be largely against his will and he’d end up resenting you for it.

And if you twisted his arm to get married and he resented you for it, it would probably not be a very happy marriage.

If he actually DID marry you, it would be largely against his will and he’d end up resenting you for it.

I know you just wrote me a three-paragraph email and I’m telling you to completely erase the past seven years, but, well, what were you expecting?

In fact, I’m going to guess that what I’ve just written only goes to confirm what you already know deep in your heart.

“I have wanted to move in and get married since year two.” 

“He always says he isn’t ready.”

“The day before the big move, he backed out.” 

“He didn’t want to promise me anything in the future for fear of hurting me.” 

“He keeps saying he will lose himself and everything he loves to do if he moves in and gets married.”

Honestly, sweetheart, the writing is on the wall in ten-foot fluorescent orange letters. GET OUT!

The fact is that he doesn’t want to move in with you or marry you – if he did, he’d have done it years ago. He has a relationship completely on his terms, and you didn’t have the guts to walk away in Year 3.

Now’s your chance.

Honestly, sweetheart, the writing is on the wall in ten-foot fluorescent orange letters. GET OUT!

Unless you want to write me this same exact email in one year, which is exactly what I predict if you don’t break up with him NOW.

P.S. If you NEVER want to get married and are content with this arrangement, you can keep seeing him, but you know what? He’s STILL going to break up with you eventually, so you might as well begin the healing process now.

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Comments:

  1. 181
    josavant

    Kiki- love everything you have said. Haven’t some male commenters said in Evan’s blog that it’s through sex that men become emotionally close to women? In fact didn’t Evan say that himself? gasp – maybe it means that men bond more from sex than women? We have to at least consider that possibility. Like I said earlier, both men and women produce oxytocin. Women produce it more than men only at certain times- when in labor and delivery and breastfeeding. But we don’t spend most of our time in labor and delivery and breastfeeding, and anyway, that is about bonding to the child and not to the man.
     
    Goldie, I laughed at your comment, good reply. You’re right that women sometimes choose not to have NSA sex for reasons not having to do with that they would bond with the guy, but they don’t want the guy to bond to them. Between your comment and kiki’s comment, you gotta wonder how much of our behavior around sex is about protecting the guy’s ego.
     
    TheThinker, you know, there is more to this world than what men want, and some of us women are not interested in acting in ways that please you. What women want out of life and men matters too. Some women want NSA sex, if this bothers you, you might want to ask yourself why. Those African women who are “man-savvy”- many African women are pretty much entirely repressed by the men in their cultures. To the point that even if they think their men are infected with HIV, they feel like they can’t say no when the man wants to have sex with them. Much good it does them to be “man-savvy” like you describe. You know, women and our health and our preferences do matter too. I guess some men don’t like to acknowledge this.

  2. 182
    Karmic Equation

    @Fusee 172

    Thanks for the clarification. I understand what you’re trying to say. However, I still don’t agree. But we can agree to disagree. I don’t think you’re wrong or I’m right, but we simply operate with different belief systems. As long as it works and we’re happy, that’s all that matters!

    FTR, I don’t believe that women open up (or not open up) phyisically or emotionally first because of vulnerabilities, but rather for filtering purposes. If a man we desire is willing to wait to have sex on our schedule, we know (or we think we know) that we have value to him, so we filter him to the next level.

    Like Goldie 178, I believe “falling in love” is a conscious decision. I can recall the exact moment that I chose to fall in love with my exhusband and my ex-6yr LTR. I can also recall the moment(s) when I chose NOT to fall in love with my ex-player-bf when the opportunities arose. I won’t give my “in-love-ness” (that special love we have for a partner, for lack of better word) away to a man simply because I’ve been physical with him. The “standard” love that I have for friends, colleagues, stangers, was freely given by the time we had sex. But my in-love-ness has to be earned and not given until he’s proved himself worthy.

    @Kiki 179

    “Defining women who can have nsa sex as abnormal/unnatural and shaming women for such behaviors are mechanis to hold women in submission and prevent them from feeling equally free to explore their sexuality.”

    YES!

    This is what I mean by social programming. Most women have internalized the “women can’t have nsa sex” propaganda (from when religions were born, so this propanda is centuries in the making) — to the point where they don’t want to believe otherwise.

    @Goldie 178

    Yes, I’m Asian in ethnicity, but culturally western, though, as I grew up in America and my family didn’t adhere to Chinese cultural norms.

  3. 183
    TheThinker

    #144
    The more kids a woman has the less she will be attached to any of them??? Give me a break.
    Well, a mother with many kids loves all her kids no doubt, but she is often fond of one particular kid out of the lot. Many times, the favorite one is often the youngest.
    It is also a scientific fact that women with multiple lovers tend to lose the ability to bond with any man. As a matter of fact, multiple, short-term, intensely personal dating experiences prepare anyone, men or women, for breakups/divorces later in life, than for learning how to maintain long-standing relationships.
     
    #145
    Dads go bonkers over their kids too
    What does this prove other than that men have oxytocin too? As earlier stated, men have less need for bonding than women are, either because they have less amounts of the hormone in their system, or they have other hormones (e.g. testosterone) which counteract the effects of the hormone. And that is not merely a social contruct; it’s a fact of biology.
     
    We women don’t get attached to everyone. Maybe some people would like to think we do, but we don’t.
    Nobody said women did. The factors which determine bonding go beyond oxytocin intoxication. A woman is unlikely to bond with her rapist after experiencing forcible rape, for instance, because the experience is forever associated with pain and fear.
     

    Kiki 176
    @The Thinker
     I am neither western nor single but I find your opinions and attitude insulting. Women here and all around the world have the same amount of confusion about men as men have to women.
    Well, how you see my responses have little to do with the truth of my statements. I tried to relate my experiences, not someone else’s. I have dated women from different parts of the world, but my experiences with US women generally indicate that most don’ have a clue about how men even think. Also, you don’t generally find any businesses in other parts of the world where grown women have to be coached on how to relate to men, and be in long term relationships with them. Except in America. A fully grown woman who is man-savvy knows how to have a meaningful, long-term, mutually satisfying relationship with a man without the need for any outside coaching, particularly after dating men for decades.
     
    Julia 142
    @TheThinker 
     The only two men I ever loved, I loved before I had sex with. I never felt a surge of love after intercourse. We are much more complex beings than those of you who believe in evolutionary biology can imagine.
     
    Julia, I totally agree with you that we cannot be reduced to mere oxytocin receptors. My piece was primarily to debunk the idea that female bonding after intensely close relationship with another is a mere social construct. It is not. Relationships mean much more to a woman than they mean to a man.
     

    Kiki 143
    @TheThinker.
     NSA without being hurt is possible if you have no moral objection to it, and the oxytocin has nothing to do with it.
    True. However, despite oxytocin, some women abuse and even murder their kids. The hormone explains behavior, but we are not helpless against it. Again, my intention was not to write a thesis on oxytocin, but simply to argue the point that it exists, is real, and is more than a social construct.

  4. 184
    Fusee

    Looks like there might be a misunderstanding between TheThinker versus Goldie and Kiki. The Thinker simply said that NSA sex was not a good strategy for marriage, while others with no goals of marriage felt shamed for enjoying casual sex.
     
    To TheThinker: Well, duh! Women who have NSA are usually looking for the very opposite of marriage (read Karmic Equation‘s comments), hence the N in NSA : ) If you are looking for a wife, and prefer women who kept sex within the confine of loving relationships, that’s fine. There is a lid to every pot. To Goldie and Kiki: Good points! At least, in this day and age we have a choice, and I appreciate that freedom. The most important to me is to educate our daughters, sisters, friends on the ramification of each sexual behavior, so that they are fully aware of the pros and cons of their choices. I also agree that the reasons a woman could have for abstaning from casual sex are not necessarily related to bonding. I’d also be concerned about other factors than falling helplessly in love with a man. Like Karmic Equation and Goldie, I do not “fall in love” any more. Love is a choice, and that’s actually what makes true love really solid.
     
    @Henriette #175: I do not believe in arbitrary timelines because the time it’s going to take to get there is going to depend on the man and the relationship. It’s not about control but about being ready. The question I asked myself is “What do I need to feel comfortable to have sex with this man, and keep good chances of remaining happy after the fact?”. For me it’s trust, emotional closeness, feeling appreciated for something else than my body, having a good communication even when things are a bit awkward/difficult, knowing that he is open to the possibility of a serious relationship with me, and having good insights on his values and not having found any obvious deal-breaker. The process involved observing behaviors and listening to my intuition, but it also involved conversations and asking questions. It could take a few weeks or a few months, but I believe that it should not take that long if the dating time is used purposefully. Most men want to have sex asap, so it’s in the best interest of both parties to get what we need sooner rather than later : )
     
    Most people just “have fun” when going on dates, which is obviously essential (it’s not a job interview), but there is data to collect as well, and dating artfully is combining fun, seducation, and data collection. With my husband it took six weeks, 15 dates, around 100 hours of good times, sweet kisses, and deeper conversations. We had an incentive to get to know each other as much as possible because he was going to leave my state six weeks after our first date. Going long-distance was a serious decision to make. We were only going to go for it if we had good chances for the future.
     
    A friend of mine abstained until marriage because she had made religious vows. Her husband who is not religious waited for three years well into his mid-thirties. He wanted her, he knew what it involved, and he decided to be patient. But she also made sure they were perfectly compatible early in the relationship, to make sure it was worth it for the both of them. It’s another extreme, but it’s more frequent than one could imagine.

  5. 185
    Mallarde

    161, 164, 166, the reason is that after a certain age every woman out there has been sleeping with lots of men who never had any intentions on doing anything other than sleeping with them.  If I could date women that were youthful enough not to have slept with all these men, I would.
    Perhaps there are 1-percent or so of single women over 30 that were chaste or had just a few genuine boyfriends, but this is not very helpful.

  6. 186
    Rose

    Mallarde.
    I have yet to meet a woman who has forced a grown up man to marry her.
    How does a woman force a man to marry her? Is she there with a gun against his head or beating her?
    In my experience men do what they want, they have free will and choice.
     
     

  7. 187
    Kathleen

    The thinker 183 
    Thank you for an intelligent post.
    I think the reason why we have women looking for dating coaching in America is because of a changed economic dynamic. I am not from America but from one of the first countries in the world to give women the vote. Women in America probably have the highest economic power compared to other countries. The effect of more economic power for women is that sex become freely available. As a result of this men may loose the ability to commit and some of the “good ” guys become players. Women can start adopting a male model of sexuality and in addition try to hold out for the CEO or equal status or higher guy. This creates some challenges but its not because American women are clueless. Ive only been dating in the last 4 years after a long marriage and have been shocked at the dating dynamic now.
    I agree with your point that if you are constantly changing sexual partners you reinforce more of the same not the ability to be in a long term relationship. I heard of a study that men with high numbers of sexual partners find a partner unattractive after having intercourse with them the first time. 
    For the women that are advocates of NSA sex that great. But I would find it hard to be sleeping with a guy and then see him out on a romantic dinner with someone else the next night and not feel bad . Ive also heard from a psychologist that women come to her heartbroken cause they got involved with a guy when they had no intention of being attached but their feelings changed
    At 54 Ive learnt finally that for me, to have the best quality and most frequent sex, that a guy needs to show me care and commitment first. I understand now the biology of why hook ups in my early 20s would leave me feeling empty and disappointed.  

  8. 188
    Karmic Equation

    @Kathleen 180

    “I believe its difficult for most women to have NSA over an extended time with a partner, and not get attached.”

    Most *people* can’t spend extended time with someone (in-laws excepted ;)) and not get attached. We get attached to our coworkers, our SO’s kids, our friends, etc. Attachment over time isn’t simply from NSA sex. If you don’t want to attach to someone, just don’t spend any time with them. If you’re dating and just talking over an extended period of time, you’re going to get attached, whether or not you have sex. So why even date if you’re afraid you’re going to get attached?

    That’s only half the story…the other half is in your following sentence…

    “So you risk being hurt by someone that has little invested in you.”

    This is the main difference between men and women…women feel they “invest” in a relationship. Men are just either in one or not in one. They don’t consider relationships an investment but rather a state of being.

    If you’re trying to get a man to feel more “invested” in you by spending more time with you before sex, you’re doing the right thing for the wrong reason. I forget where I read this, but men bond with activities unrelated to sex. In other words women bond to men during sex, but men bond to women outside of sex. So yes, you should delay sex if you want him to bond to you, but you need to spend time with him doing activities that are bonding for him.

    Some men do bond through talking (that’s how most women bond to other women) — but most men bond by DOING. You’re better off going skiing with him or some other non-sex activity that you both enjoy (cooking, golfing, hiking, walking your dogs, going to sporting events, or even just simply watching movies and shows he likes on TV/DVD, etc) — The key is that it has to be an activity HE also enjoys. If you both go to the opera and he hates the opera, that will not be a bonding activity. OTOH if he’s a huge football fan (and you don’t know the first thing about football) but you gamely watch a game with him — that WILL help bond him to you (as long as you don’t keep interrupting the game with questions). In other words, if you can are happy spending time with him doing what HE enjoys, he bonds to you.

    Once he does bond to you, THEN he is usually more willing to spend time doing what YOU enjoy…as long as he’s not embarrassed being seen doing it…But if he REALLY loves you, he’ll do it even then ;)

  9. 189
    marymary

    Karmic
    “you’re going to get attached whether or not you have sex”
    I’m one of the few taking this no nsa sex to it’s extreme and waiting until marriage.  We are very bonded without sex. I’ll admit that the kissing and cuddling is bonding and some would  advocate not even doing even that.  
    I’ve also heard a number of men – friends and relatives – say that relationships can still be valuable when they don’t last, and that it’s absolutely fine if they have a sell by date. Logically, I can see it but I think I’m with the majority of women who struggle with “loss of investment” when a relationship ends. 
     

  10. 190
    Kathleen

    Karmic 
    #188
    Dunno about you Karmic, but having orgasmic sex with a guy over, over  and over again has a distinctly different quality vs bonding with my neighbor, buddies or co workers. Thats what I was talking about.
    Yes, and if I want to bond with a guy by doing stuff before sex, Ill chose risk taking activities that drive up dopamine. 

  11. 191
    Rose

    Bonding like a buddy is not the same as romantic pair bonding.
    Romantic love is different to the love we have for our friends and certain family members.
    Bonding as buddies gets you a friend/buddy.
    Romantic pair bonding gets you something different.
    What do you want?
     

  12. 192
    J

    Kathleen- a person having orgasmic sex with someone on a near constant basis is not casual NSA sex in my view. I don’t know people who do f-buddies that way- it’s an occasional thing. Maybe that where some folks are going wrong.

  13. 193
    TheThinker

    …Haven’t some male commenters said in Evan’s blog that it’s through sex that men become emotionally close to women? In fact didn’t Evan say that himself?…
     
    Actually, men don’t necessarily bond through sex. They need sex to express love and closeness to a woman they already bonded with, and care for. They also often have sex just to relieve a biological urge, even if the woman is not someone they care about. This explains why some men sleep with women that are not even attractive to them, if she is the only one available at the moment. Men are far more able to have sex without bonding, and they have sex with women they never bonded with, or have no intention of bonding with, all the time.
    However, not all men are like this. There are male versions of marymary #189 who would wait till marriage to have sex, for religious or other reasons, especially in this day and age where STDs are rampant (at least 110 million people have STDs in the US alone).

  14. 194
    Kiki

    TheThinker,
    For someone who claims that American women are clueless, you carry way too many unfounded beliefs.
    The examples you give re. women loving some of their children more than others (may be vis-a-vis men who love each child equally???) and mothers killing their children inspite of oxytocin (now where the hell did that come from?) are totally irrelevant to the topic of whether women feel bad after NSA sex becasue they are hard-wired to bond through sex, or because they have been shamed for being loose for ages.
    You take bits and pieces of random observations about human behavior and your own imagination and come to the following conclusion:
    “It is also a scientific fact that women with multiple lovers tend to lose the ability to bond with any man. As a matter of fact, multiple, short-term, intensely personal dating experiences prepare anyone, men or women, for breakups/divorces later in life, than for learning how to maintain long-standing relationships”.
    What is this science that measures the ability of a woman to bond to any man depending on the number of lovers she has had? Or for any man for that matter? 
    Statistical surveys confirm that the major predictor of divorce (as Evan has pointed out several times), is the age of the woman at the time of marriage. People who married before 25 have a 75% divorce rate, compared to 50% for the general population. People marryng later in life are likely to have had more sexual partners, all other things equal.  Life shows exactly the opposite of what your theory would predict.
    Also, since you are on this blog, you may ask our host, Evan, whether because he himself has been on 300 (if I remember correct) dates before he met his wife, he is more prone to divorce/break up as a consequence of that.
    Among educated women my generation (early 40s) the ones who started having relationships with men at an earlier age, and had more intensive dating experiences prior to marriage, have happier and longer marriages. I am not sure whether this is universally true, but seems to be valid in my circle of friends.  So, I would say, a woman who is educated (meaning she has good understanding to practice safe sex and thus avoid unwanted pregnancies and STDs), can have a very intensive dating experience, with or without sex, depending on her preference, chooose a husband wisely, and enjoy a a long and happy marriage. Actually, the women in my cirle who are still single, are the ones who were still virgins at age 23, but there are probably more complex reasons for that.
    The part from your post which is valid is that prior attraction plays a lesser role for men than for women as a requirement to have sex. But the conclusion is different, not the one you are making. If a woman (who likes a guy) and a guy (who is not particularly attracted to the woman but is horny) have sex,  without any further knowledge of bonding you can safely predict that she is likely to continue to be attracted to him just as before, and he will continue to be indifferent.  She would then quickly find out that they had unequal attaction to begin with, and that is reason enough for her to be upset. No need to have bonded through sex.
    If you, as a man, want to be fair, and do women a favor, you may wish to abstain from misleading women with regards to the level of attraction and your “bonding intentions” prior to sex rather than to preach them to not give it away too easily. How about that?
     

  15. 195
    Karmic Equation

    @Kathleen,

    I don’t have sex with my neighbors, but I do bond with them. Sex is sex. Bonding is bonding.

    You say you no longer have NSA sex, but you just did. Sure technically you wrested a pseudo, for-the-night, sexclusivity with Mr. Non-committal. But the next morning you nexted him in favor of your NBA coach in the wings.

    I can hardly believe your non-committal guy wasn’t showing signs of non-commitalness while you were dating. You ignored that because of your attraction to him. You got him to say something that made you feel like you were a “good girl who doesn’t have NSA sex” (“I’ll take my profile down”) and then went on to have “bonding” sex with him. The next day you unbonded as soon as he didn’t give you the answer you wanted. And I suspect if you were truly honest with yourself, you would have nexted him for some other pretext because the sex wasn’t that good and so you found yourself more interested in Mr NBA. This is ok. You could STILL have nexted him for Mr. NBA, without the pseudo-sexclusivity. That’s what I would have done. But yes, you can can kinda/sorta claim you don’t do NSA sex, but you’re lying to yourself. You can. You did. You just won’t admit it.

    You had a one night stand, a form of NSA sex, but on your terms. So you were ok with it.

    What I’m getting at is that MOST women are ok with NSA sex as long as it’s on HER terms. What “hurts” her is when she has NSA sex on a MAN’s terms. And that happens when she has sex ahead of her own schedule.

    I have NSA sex, but always on MY schedule, and always on MY terms. No man can pressure me into sex before I’m ready. That is where most women who “bond” go wrong. They think sex will magically start or cement an iffy relationship and hence they get hurt when the men don’t follow that plan.

  16. 196
    Kathleen

    Karmic 
    J made a good point My idea of NSA sex is not a single event or one night stand or  a few events . To me it is an extended sexual relationship.
    So my goal now is to avoid an on going sexual relationship with a guy who doesnt care that much about me. Because for me, if Im in  a sexual relationship with a guy over time it takes on an addictive quality  Helen Fisher PHD researcher and anthropologist ,said romantic love is one of the most addictive things on the earth. (Remember the jilted astronaut who put on diapers to drive across country to go after her ex lover . People can loose their objectivity when in romantic love)   
    I think I ,like many women, cant be detached in a sexual relationship over time. If you can be detached or it works for you I dont judge you for it. Good for you! 
    So I learnt that the guy I was dating for 5 weeks wasnt looking for a GF. I didnt articluate clearly that I was looking for sexual exclusivity .My mistake . So once he was clear with me he wasnt looking for that I let him go. Funny thing though. Hes now pursuing me harder saying he does want to be exclusive. 
    I could care less about appearing a “good girl”   My intention is to be with a guy who cares about me and is committed to me , because if Im going to loose my mind in crazy sex, at least Ill be in safe hands LOL
     
     

  17. 197
    Karmic Equation

    @Kathleen 196

    I think people construe NSA sex as whatever sex they don’t do. Those who don’t have ONS, think NSA = ONS; those who can have ONS, like you, think NSA = FWB. And the people who do have NSA sex also doesn’t mean, as Fusee believes, they aren’t open to relationships. Having NSA sex doesn’t preclude you from having a relationship with that guy. When I first had sex with my ex husband, on our 7th date, it was NSA sex. He was not my boyfriend nor had I ever even broached sexclusivity with him.

    All NSA sex means is that when you have sex, there are no strings, real or imagined. There was no sexclusivity agreement; he was not your bf. After sex, you are both free to date each other and/or other people. That’s all it means.

    But having NSA sex doesn’t mean one doesn’t attach. I still love my ex-player-bf. We’ll continue to have NSA sex every now and then until one of us enters a relationship with someone else. Both of us are dating other people, though we don’t talk about that openly. Do I feel jealous? Sometimes. Does it bother me that he’s not exclusive with me? Sometimes. But the reality is that I’m not exclusive with him either (I know with online dating I’ve met more men than he has women). We get along and as along as we do and continue to behave like adults, this FWB relationship works. It’s an undemanding, easy-going non-relationship.

  18. 198
    josavant

    194 Kiki yup. That’s why you always have to be careful when someone pretends to be authoritative with “Science says this” or “it is a scientific fact that.” For two reasons. The first you nailed it, who is going to do a scientific study on whether women bond differently after having had NSA, and supposing they did, what would that study look like and who would have confidence in the results? Also gimme a break, science is so broad. It’s physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, medicine, yada yada. People who say “Science says this” probably don’t know science themselves, otherwise they could name an exact discipline or study instead of hiding behind a nebulous authority of “Science”.
     
    TheThinker, wanna show us a study that supports what you claim as fact?- “It is also a scientific fact that women with multiple lovers tend to lose the ability to bond with any man.”

  19. 199
    Kiki

    @Kathleen 196,
    Remember when I asked you, on the other thread whether you have heard back from the non-committal guy after you broke up with him? I expected that he would trace you back and try to reconnect. This is what men do very often when you show some back-bone.
    But I suspect you do not want him for reasons more complex that just the misunderstanding about exclusivity and profiles. He was not your good match to begin with, and, with or without having a clarifying discussion before the sex, it would not have worked long term.
    How do I know? You keep asking the question when is it a good time to have sex, what did I do wrong to get myself in such a disappointong situation. You are not asking the question “how to get him back” or “how to make him like me”.
    I want to tell you, that, being a grown-up woman, who has already been through marriage and all, there are no “deadly mistakes” as dating coaches may say (;-)) when it comes to sex. Honestly, you know more about sex and attachment and how it works for you than anybody else ever will. The choices you make are the result of your up-bringing, your values, your circumstances, your friends, possibly even what you read on this blog (:-)). You decide what to do based on being you, and, as being you, you can not make a TERRIBLE mistake, you can only do thinks that you have the experience and mindset to do, and learning to do new things takes time and several trials. 
    It seems to me that you overestimate the danger of falling into a protracted NSA relationship, it is all in your hands whether you would have that or nor. A good dating strategy (in my humble opinion) would be not to worry where things will go, see several man, have fun, don’t beat yourself over the ones who are not dying to become your boyfriend. Allow youself to be naughty once in a while, with protection!
    At this point, I would like to make a joke; but last time I tried on this blog it did not go down too well (Cheers David T!). So, I am making the disclaimer that the comment that will follow is for entertainment pusposes only and not to be construed as a scientific fact (haha) or advice:
    If you are really skillful, you will manage to be dating several men, without anyone of them realizing that he is not the only one.  That will greatly increase your chances with thinkers who see sexually active women as emotionally handicapped.
    Best of luck!

    @Karmic 197.
    Loved your comment that NSA sex is what other people do!!!
    But I got a bit upset when I read that you still love your former bf and you still have occasional sex with him. The problem I have with NSA is not bonding but the fact that when you are very clear with each other that this is only sex, and you are also (implicitly or overtly) also sleeping with other people, your rob each other of the hope/potential to experience growing love with each other, to enjoy the passion of being fully devoted to each other, and to look forward to sharing a future.
    My best wish are for you to meet someone who rocks your world and gets you out of your non-relationships!

  20. 200
    marymary

    And you can have sex with someone who DOES care about you AND is monogamous but is NOT committed.  Is that NSA sex?

  21. 201
    Julia

    @marymary
     
    No, its called dating. Most women don’t ask for sexclusvity and they will eventually end up with a man they slept with before there was a stated commitment. Those who can’t deal with that idea should not but I can guarantee you, non-jerks don’t have rules for the women they commit to based on when she sleeps with him, just the MRA types and no one wants to date them.

  22. 202
    Karmic Equation

    @Kiki 199

    Awww. Thanks. Don’t be upset for me. I’m not upset. I love my ex-bf, but not in the in-love way. I’m the one who folded on the the relationship, because as much as I love him, he’s not a good relationship bet. I’m the sanest woman I know and he could drive ME crazy, in the bad way. lol. I’m more relaxed being his occasional date/booty call than I was being his gf. I get all the good behaviors without having to deal with his bad ones, and he had those to spare.

    @marymary 200

    LOL. Not sure. Maybe you can tell me if this couple is committed:

    Married but keep separate homes, neither one a rental. Both folks sometimes go on separate vacations. Live together more often than not, but the wife sometimes goes off and spends time her own place for days. They’re happy and not resentful.

    Are they really married? Committed? Weird, but it works for them.

    The husband is a good looking lawyer in his early 40′s, who owns his own firm. Not sure what she does. The husband is a good friend of my best friend (male, also a lawyer). Per my bff, he never thought his friend would marry. They eloped and my friend found out after the fact.

  23. 203
    Selena

    julia,
    Very much agree with #210. Curious though what does MRA stand for?

  24. 204
    Chance

    @Julia
     
    Funny, I just wish women didn’t have rules tied to sex. My experience has been that they are the only ones that attach any kind of rules to sex and commitment.  

  25. 205
    Julia

    @Chance 
     
    There are some men who attach rules to sex, some men will stop dating any woman who doesn’t sleep with him on date #3. Some men don’t want to commit to a woman he thinks of as “loose” I would say this is the minority though, definitely the MRA types which is why I said “non-jerks don’t have rules for the women they commit to based on when she sleeps with him, just the MRA types and no one wants to date them.” but you know, reading comprehension.

  26. 206
    Zaria

     jlhsr in post 56 said:
    *****i cant believe how this has turned into a discussion on dating women with children and all of the negative opinions about that. It makes us single moms feel like there is no hope…..*****
     
    ________________________________
    Awwww don’t mind the posters’ projections. Stay focused on your own track.
     
    What others want for themselves is irrelevant to the quality of your own romantic life.
     
    It is what you want, what you don’t tolerate, what you do accept, what you feel grateful for, and how you feel that shapes your romantic life. Focus on that.
     
    Age and the number of children and the number of divorces and her finances do not define a woman’s romantic future. Everything is possible under this sun.
     
    The future is just that: the future. The unknown. Might even not exist. The beauty of it is that I can imagine anything in the unknown. I might as well imagine something for myself that feels good.
     
    Before a dream becomes reality, it’s got to be a dream. ;)
     
    Statistics and generalisations are irrelevant; it takes only one man.The one man right for ME.
    The real ME, the ME I focus on, the ME I get to know for real.
    When I get in touch with ME, the right man for ME will catch my vibe and won’t want to let go.
     
    xxx

  27. 207
    Chance

    Actually, Julia, I perfectly understood every word you wrote.  However, the comment doesn’t make much sense because MRAs are generally not the type of guys that would be in a position to leave a girl that didn’t have sex with him after three dates and simply move on to the next one.  They are more likely to be frustrated with, and struggle with, dating in general.  As such, they are more likely to happily take whatever they can get, and are more than willing to have sex with a woman on her terms.  Same thing things goes for women who’ve had a lot of sexual partners, an MRA probably isn’t going to care.  A lot of them are actually weak and needy underneath.  It appears that you were really trying to reach for an opportunity to just use that term because I’m sure that you can’t stand them.  Funny thing is that they are exactly the same as feminists.  The only difference is that they’re men.
     
    As it relates to men who move on from women who won’t have sex with them quickly being “jerks”…… Newsflash:  a lot of men want to get laid quickly, and the ones who can 1.) will, or 2.) move on to another woman who will be happy to accommodate.  As long as they are honest about what they are doing, and they aren’t intentionally lying or leading a woman on, they certainly aren’t jerks.  I think your comment actually – what’s that cooked-up word you use- “infantilizes” women much more than Tom10′s comment did because it implies that women are too helpless to be held responsible for the negative consequences of NSA sex.  It implies that if a woman wants to have NSA sex, then it’s no problem, but that we should all be cognizant of the fact women are emotional midgets who can’t handle it when a guy is going to have NSA sex on his terms.  Therefore, if he has any rules about moving on after a certain amount of time, he has to be a jerk.
     
    I personally think that women are much smarter and independent than you seem to think they are.

  28. 208
    Tom10

    @ Julia
    Kiki said “I am of the opinion that all women can have NSA sex” and in #138 you replied “YES!!!!”
     
    And in #153 you said:
    “its that they [women] like the guy BEFORE they have sex with him and want to make sure he is not just using them. I can have sex without bonding; this doesn’t mean I want to be used by a man I am interested in.”
     
    Ok I’m confused – my definition of NSA sex means one can have sex without any expectations; therefore one can have sex and move on without any psychological effects – the motives of the other party being totally irrelevant.
     
    I don’t understand how you can say that you can have NSA sex, but also need to ensure that you weren’t used. If there were no strings/expectations how could you feel used? Would you not be using him, as much as he’s using you?
     
    Ensuring that you aren’t being used seems like a condition/string to me thus, as marymary said #200, is it really NSA sex?
     
    I can truly have NSA sex because I don’t care if a woman is simply using me to satisfy her sexual needs, or if she gives me the cold shoulder after sex.

  29. 209
    Kiki

    @Chance 204
    Re: Rules on sex.
    We women try to make sense of the world, and we seek to find ways to minimize pain and disappointment. Hence the rules, some of them valid, some helpful, and some not.
    Having NSA sex is reputationally costly for women. At least some women, and the majority of men think that good girls are virtuous (as in not having sex with a man who is not their boyfriend/husband). Whether this is biologically reasoned, fair,is it hypoctritical or not, is a different matter; either way society has a double standard when it comes to sex.
    We women struggle to find ways to be desirable, sexual, and still chaste at the same time. We think men have it easier when it comes to sex. To hyperbolize a bit: a desire for sex is considered a sign of good health in a man and a sigh of poor moral in a woman :-).
    What are you angry about?

  30. 210
    Kathleen

    Kiki 
    Thanks 
    i dont think I overestimate the down side of getting into an NSA relationship. After my divorce I didnt want to be close to anyone. One guy who I was involved with over time contacted my best friend online. The other one I saw out on a romantic date with someone else after I had just been with him. Those situations dont feel good to me.
    The problem with me with NSA sex is that if Im bonking Mr Wrong, in addition to the time in my job, my sport, going to the gym , going out with my female friends … I loose motivation to look for Mr Right. Even though intellectually I say Im still available, I can go out on other dates but always find something wrong with them
    So for me it makes sense to keep dating without NSA , so that I have room for a quality whole relationship.
     
    What on earth is MRA? 
     
     

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