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. 241
    Karmic Equation

    @Tom10 151

    So did you stay and cuddle with that woman or take off? Ever see her again? Prurient curiosity.
    @marymary 136

    That is the most awesome compliment. That is what I mean about a woman becoming the kind that men can’t walk away from. No man walks away from a personality they find addictive (unless that addiction is toxic, which I’m sure you’re not!).

    @marymary 189

    “Life is a journey, not a destination.”

    I believe that of relationships as well, because as you’re developing a relationship, you’re actually IN a relationship to develop that relationship.

    Too many women focus so hard on the destination (some form of committed relationship) that they forget to enjoy the journey (have fun with guy while getting to know him, I don’t mean just sexual fun, but just fun-fun). Men don’t forget that. They want to enjoy the journey before they get to the “relationship destination.”

    If most women do look at relationships as investments, then that must be extraordinarily stressful, imo. You have to almost constantly worry about what you’re putting into it and if there’s any ROI. This makes sense if you’re a woman with a deadline (having babies) for maximzing the ROI.

    But most women here are already financially successful, have been married, and have had children, and have already taken out their relationship-investement ROI (your children).

    Now’s the time to just enjoy the journey.

    Kathleen,

    Don’t let social constructs and social programming tell you what you can or cannot do. As long as what you’re doing isn’t criminal, go ahead and do it. Women have the power. Don’t abdicate it for hypocritical men who believe in the double standard.

    BTW, I’ve NEVER met one those. And perhaps if I had, I had the good sense not to want a relationship with him.

    If you’re finding that men you’re attracted to have a double standard, then you’re choosing the wrong kind of man to have a relationship with. Choose differently!

  2. 242
    Kathleen

    Karmic 
    Thanks 
    Im not that influenced by social constructs I married a black man when it wasnt so hip as it is now . ( No hardship for me… he was strikingly handsome and charismatic.) 
    I havent found NSA sex to be worth it for the hurt it eventually causes , and better quality sex is with a guy who is enthralled with me not leaving his options open. 
    I believe the double standard may be hard wired, not a social construct, so if I really like a guy Im going to avoid sex until we have a friendship and trust is built. ( I believe with great chemistry there are exceptions afterall I had sex with my ex husband within hours of first meeting him LOL)
    Ive talked with a few guys about the double standard. With many I think it is unconscious that they may not value or trust a woman when theres no chase. In my area of CA i hear from men that women aggressively pursue men and sleep with them very quickly. Id rather stand out as someone different from the norm.   

  3. 243
    Karmic Equation

    Kathleen,

    Then you weren’t having NSA sex, which is why you were hurt. Sounds like you had sex with the same guy frequently, that truly isn’t how NSA sex works. And if you had expectations, even if you didn’t voice them, then the sex wasn’t NSA.

    Women who chase men fall into the slut category in most men’s minds, unfortunately, so don’t chase. Easy solution. Don’t be slutty, be sexy. Tougher to do. That’s the art of being a woman.

    Here’s a blog post that touches upon the double standard. Point #2 talks about what men consider slutty attitudes, which is the real turn off.

    http://www.therulesrevisited.com/2011/12/what-men-think-about-your-sexual.html

    This post is also very interesting as well:

    http://www.therulesrevisited.com/2013/02/the-analogy-between-sex-and-commitment.html

  4. 244
    Karmic Equation

    P.S. to 243
     
    I didn’t mean to imply you were slutty, or anything like that! I don’t think that at all. Didn’t realize how it sounded until I re-read it again. Sorry!

  5. 245
    Tom10

    @Karmic Equation # 241
    “So did you stay and cuddle with that woman or take off?”
     
    Well I’ve been in that situation countless times – mainly when I was a bit younger; I would meet a woman, go back to hers and then for one reason or another she didn’t want to go through with sex. I always stayed and cuddled for three reasons: 1) I like cuddling too, 2) it’s probably a bit rude to take off just because she wouldn’t have sex, and 3) there was still a 50% chance she’d change her mind at some point and have sex.
     
    It doesn’t happen as much anymore as at my grand old age women tend to either go back for sex, or else not go back at all.
     
    “Ever see her again?”
     
    I know this is shallow but it would depend on hot she was. If she was very hot I would, if she was ‘meh’ I wouldn’t. Interestingly the decision was made irrespective of whether she had sex or not, so if she went through with or not didn’t even matter.
     
    ———————-
     
    Regarding the double standard I’ve discussed this a lot with my friends and the results are mixed. On balance the vast majority of guys I know wouldn’t hold it against a woman if she has sex straightaway, but a few do. I personally think it’s a huge compliment. My mind says something like: “She’s so attracted to me that she just couldn’t hold herself back” ha.
     
    “I believe the double standard may be hard wired, not a social construct,”
     
    I’ve read that too, but from a young age I wanted lots of sex with lots of women so I realized that for women to have sex (with me!) freely they’d have to feel comfortable to do it without any shame or regrets. Therefore I made a conscious decision never to slut-shame and to vociferously support women to express their sexuality as they see fit.
     
    “Women who chase men fall into the slut category in most men’s minds, unfortunately, so don’t chase.”
     
    I don’t think it’s so much we think they’re slutty as beneath our league. I.e. if a woman of such a calibre is chasing me, then surely I could get a higher quality woman if I bothered to do the chasing myself.

  6. 246
    Sparkling Emerald

    Tom10  @ 151 Either way something is preventing them from having NSA sex, even though they’d really like to.
    My guess is that they DON’T want NSA sex.  They want a relationship.  Perhaps their body wants sex, but their heart wants more.  It’s called temptation, they come very close, then realize that the sex will give them only a temporary buzz, but going to bed with a man who only wants NSA sex will not help them obtain what they ultimately want.
    It’s similar to me  deciding to NOT eat a big double fudge brownie, just because it makes my mouth water.  I KNOW it will satisfy my immediate hunger or sweet craving &  it will be delicious, but it will derail my main goal to maintain a slim & healthy body.
    Tom10 -But if you’re telling me that women attaching due to sex isn’t true, or just a social construct, then we’ve been worrying about nothing really.
    I suppose my desire to have a nice slim figure is a social construct also, reinforced by fashion magazines, the weight loss industry (and mens general tendency to prefer women who, if not stick figure thin, are at least not very overweight) So really, if my desire for a slim figure is just a social construct, I guess I’m working out and eating healthy for nothing. 
     

  7. 248
    Rose

    Tom I agree with SE that those women want an emootional heart attachment along with the physical arousal They feel physically aroused. There are a few women who are able to have dissconnected sex and just have sex with a man because they want to have intsant physical gratifaction, NSA sex. And there are women who before having sex although thay feel physically aroused want and need to feel a heart connection aswell be in love with you. Now that’s great if it’s a two way street, welcome to love making. So a woman is happy to have a cuddle and yes feels physically aroused and says yes my body feels like it wants sex. Her heart doesn’t though. And if she gives in and is not able to do NSA and not get hormonally attached it’s a recipe for disaster.
    I don’t believe attachment is a social construct. Women produce oxytocin when they orgasm. That’s not love. That’s hormonal bonding and again a recipe for disaster if you bond with someone who isn’t in love with you, just wants you for sex or fwb or is a bad match for you and will not treat you how you want to be treated. Recipe for abusive and dysfucntional relationship or heartbreak ahead.
    Love comes from a deep place within and takes time to develop. If you want a loving realtionship and get hormonally bonded the best way to get what you want is don’t have sex until you have spent a lot of time with a person to see if this develops.
    If you don’t get hormonally bonded NSA sex will work for you.
    I personally would not want to get involved with any man who dissconnected during sex as even if he loved me I would know that he may have NSA sex with another woman even though he was in love or bonded to me. So we wouldn’t be a match. I only want connected love making with someone who cares about me as a person and not just my physical body.And only want to have sex with someone I care and love as a person.

  8. 249
    Sparkling Emerald

    Tom10@245Thanks for this post, it’s helpful information, I hope you don’t mind if I go through a couple of points  and interrogate you/comment upon your post. :)
    I would meet a woman, go back to hers and then for one reason or another she didn’t want to go through with sex.
    You say “she didn’t want to go through with sex”.  Was there an explicit promise of sex, or did you just assume ?
    ***********************
      I like to spend time in each other’s home as part of the exploration process.  This is part of my information gathering that happens BEFORE sex, and helps me decide if we have enough compatibility to even consider a relationship, and at any point when I have concluded that there is no relationship potential, then I won’t have sex, and I will no longer see that person. 
    (KE asked) “Ever see her again?” and you replied  . . .
    I know this is shallow but it would depend on hot she was. If she was very hot I would, if she was ‘meh’ I wouldn’t. Interestingly the decision was made irrespective of whether she had sex or not, so if she went through with or not didn’t even matter.
    I have always suspected something like this in the minds of many men.  I am shy about the first time letting someone see me naked.  That is a bigger issue than the sex itself.  (which is one of the reasons why I keep hitting the gym and eating salads :)  )   At least now I know that if I don’t have sex with a guy early on, that’s not likely the reason he’ll stop seeing me.  He wouldn’t have seen me again either way.  Anyway, I’d rather be dumped because I didn’t hump, then humped & dumped.  Also, if the guy really thinks I’m hot, he won’t dump me for not having sex.  I assume the same is also true if he sees me as an LTR.  (up to a certain point, I realize a guy won’t wait 3 years for sex no matter how hot he thinks I am, or how much GF potential he sees)
    I made a conscious decision never to slut-shame and to vociferously support women to express their sexuality as they see fit.
    Thank you, Thank you, THANK YOU !!!!!    Sometimes I think men are the source of many of their own frustrations.  They bitch when they don’t get laid, then when they DO get laid, they thank the girl by dumping her and calling her a slut.  (usually not to her face, but to their friends or on an internet blog)
    Regarding the double standard I’ve discussed this a lot with my friends and the results are mixed. On balance the vast majority of guys I know wouldn’t hold it against a woman if she has sex straightaway, but a few do. I personally think it’s a huge compliment. My mind says something like: “She’s so attracted to me that she just couldn’t hold herself back” ha.
    She could also be hoping for a relationship.  Do you tell the women straight up that you aren’t looking for a relationship, and/or that you just want to have sex with as many women as you can ?   Or do you not state your intentions at all, and let her guess ?
    Final question.
    If you were making out with a woman and as your hand was burrowing under her shirt and she moved your hand elsewhere and said “I really like you and want to get to know you better, I’m not ready for this”  how would you respond ?
    I hope you don’t mind the interrogation, and if you do choose to answer my questions,  thanks in advance !
     

  9. 250
    Kathleen

    Rose 248 
    Agreed!!!  With my life experience Im in your camp at this point. I also believe in the influence of oxytocin but I work in neuroscience so thats not a far fetch concept for me.
    I like SE question of Tom.. was he completely upfront and honest with women he had no interest in a relationship with .  This is where the issue is . Its my experience that guys looking for as much sex with anybody dont disclose this and that is what is hurtful to women.  
     
     

  10. 251
    josavant

    Tom wrote ““Women who chase men fall into the slut category in most men’s minds, unfortunately, so don’t chase.”
     
    I don’t think it’s so much we think they’re slutty as beneath our league. I.e. if a woman of such a calibre is chasing me, then surely I could get a higher quality woman if I bothered to do the chasing myself.”
     
    Tom, why do you think a woman who chases you is beneath your league? When men chase me, that isn’t the reason I think they are below my league. I have been chased by men who I think of high caliber. If a man chases me that I think is below my league, it is usually because of reupulsive behavior, not that he chased me.

  11. 252
    Chance

    Sparkling Emerald @249
     
    I don’t believe that you come from a place of hating men, so I’m going to take off my blunt and confrontational hat and put on my regular hat.  I know your questions were directed at Tom10, but I hope you don’t mind if I answer some of them.
     
     
    “You say “she didn’t want to go through with sex”.  Was there an explicit promise of sex, or did you just assume ?”
    I my experience, it was neither.  I didn’t feel like I was entitled to it, it was more like I was just hoping for it.  Us guys are usually just trying to find our way through the dark in this process, and in the dating process in general.  We usually fumble through it.  We initiate, and hope she is receptive.
     
    “They bitch when they don’t get laid, then when they DO get laid, they thank the girl by dumping her and calling her a slut.  (usually not to her face, but to their friends or on an internet blog)”
     
    Guys will probably be frustrated when they don’t get laid until the end of time haha.  As for the dumping her and calling her a slut, that sounds like a really awful thing to do.  I really hope you’ve never had to experience this.  If so, please don’t think everyone is like that Grade “A” jerk
     
    “She could also be hoping for a relationship.  Do you tell the women straight up that you aren’t looking for a relationship, and/or that you just want to have sex with as many women as you can ? 
     
    I’m always honest with what my intent is.  However, sometimes we don’t know exactly what it is we’re looking for.  It’s like Evan says over and over:  “men look for sex and find love”.
     
     
    “If you were making out with a woman and as your hand was burrowing under her shirt and she moved your hand elsewhere and said “I really like you and want to get to know you better, I’m not ready for this”  how would you respond ?”
     
    When this has happened, I didn’t mind and I respected her decision.  My girlfriend did this a few times at first, and I’m still with her:).  By the way, I think the way you put this: “I really like you and want to get to know you better, I’m not ready for this” - is the perrrrrfect way to put it!  It doesn’t put the guy on the defensive, and it also let’s him know that you are still interested in him.  If he gets mad after you say that, then he most certainly is a jerk.  One time when in my early 20’s, a girl acted really strange after I did that, and I just figured she didn’t like me or I had bad breath or something hehe.  She ended up continuing to contact me the following day so I was really confused!  I know now that she just wasn’t ready at the time.
     

  12. 253
    Tom10

    @ Rose #248
    “I personally would not want to get involved with any man who disconnected during sex as even if he loved me I would know that he may have NSA with another woman even though he was in love or bonded to me.”
     
    Fair enough. Like attracts like I suppose.
     
    @ Sparkling Emerald
    Of course I don’t mind – it’s a pleasure to answer such polite and reasonable queries :) Although I pretty much echo what Chance wrote #252
     
    #246
    “My guess is that they DON’T want NSA sex. They want a relationship.”
     
    That’s my guess too – which proves some of the commenters here wrong, when they said that all women can have NSA sex.
     
    #249
    “Was there an explicit promise of sex, or did you just assume?”
     
    As Chance said it’s more a case of hope than assumption.  In fairness to the women they often told me in advance that there would be no sex, but I know from experience that no matter what they say there is always at least a 50% chance of sex. I suppose I wondered why would she bother bringing me back if not for sex – what was the point exactly? Surely she’d have a better night’s sleep on her own than with me beside her.
     
    I didn’t realize she was doing a research mission, scoping me out before sex. Interesting.
     
    “At least now I know that if I don’t have sex with a guy early on, that’s not likely the reason he’ll stop seeing me. He wouldn’t have seen me again either way.”
     
    Right.
     
    “Sometimes I think men are the source of many of their own frustrations”
     
    I do too. I’ve often thought that if there was no such thing as rape, violence or stigma (often perpetrated by men) that women would have a lot more sex with a lot more men, thus benefiting men.
     
    “If you were making out with a woman and as your hand was burrowing under her shirt and she moved your hand elsewhere and said “I really like you and want to get to know you better, I’m not ready for this” how would you respond?”
     
    Ha, all of us pull the same moves do we? “Turning the taps” before “testing the water”. Chuckle.
     
    I always keep the mood as light as possible so I normally try and turn it around into a joke. Kind of like: “don’t worry it’s ok, it’s probably better that you don’t see me as a sexual object anyway, and realize that I’ve got feelings and emotions. It’s better you get to appreciate my personality first“ etc. I might try again later, because again I know that the odds are always at least 50% she’ll change her mind at some point.
     
    “Do you tell the women straight up that you aren’t looking for a relationship, and/or that you just want to have sex with as many women as you can?”
     
    I’ve discussed this at length before so don’t want to repeat myself too much but it’s tricky balance between not hurting someone and not shooting myself in the foot to such an extent that I never get sex. I’ve concluded that the fairest and most practical solution is to tell them upfront if it’s an on-going situation, but not say anything if it’s just an ons.
     
    I would never tell a woman I want to have sex with as many women as I can because 1) it’s not true (anymore) and 2) I can’t imagine any woman would react positively to that. As many as possible is a bit strong. Just lots of sex with lots of women. Surprisingly I’ve turned down lots of opportunities for sex.
     
    Josavant # 251
    Tom, why do you think a woman who chases you is beneath your league?”
     
    Because men will ‘date down’ (for sex / casual) whereas women won’t.
     
    So when a woman asks a guy out she is operating at or above her league. But the guy in the equation might be operating below his league (in his mind of course). If a guy asks a woman out the odds are much higher that he deems her within his league – she would have to be, for it to be worth the effort of overcoming the inertia and possible rejection. When she asks him out she removes the possible rejection and overcomes his inertia, therefore he’s much more likely to take the easy option and ‘date down’ for x amount of time.
     
    Case in point. I was dating two women the summer before last, one a doctor and one a teacher. Both of them were fairly attractive and very much into me, but I was ambivalent about both of them. So in their efforts to ‘woo me’ they would invite me over for dinner and sex – and of course being polite, I availed of their hospitality. It took them two to three months to establish that I was ambivalent. If they had waited for me to ask them out they would have worked it out in a few days. I.e.I would have asked them out pronto if I was actually interested.

  13. 254
    Sparkling Emerald

    Chance@252 – Glad you realize that I’m not coming from a place of “hating” men,  I don’t.  Just haven’t really decided if I’m going back to the dating jungle when my D becomes final (in the next 75-90 days ! )
    Thanks for your answers. I enjoy everyone’s feed back.
    My “I really like you, etc. speech” seems to be mostly well rec’d. (on this board at least)  However, it hasn’t been necessary this time around, maybe because MOST of my dates were from online, and I only would  communicate and meet with men who stated they were relationship oriented in their profile.  (Yes, I realize men COULD lie, but it’s not really necessary, since they could state that they were only looking for casual, and find plenty of women to take them up on that) 
    I never  had to give the “I really like you” speech to any of my ex hubbies, nor LTR’s for that matter, they all expressed a desire for couple-dom, early on.  My second hubby, I can’t remember the precise time line of when he asked for an exclusive relationship specifically in words, and when we first slept together, but I do believe we slept together before the words came, and  sometime after he had built me a hope chest, done auto repairs for me (wouldn’t even let me pay him for the parts), introduced me to his mother, taken me to friends wedding as his plus one, planted some plants in my condo front yard, etc.  So he may not have expressed in words that we were in a relationship when we first slept together, but his actions gave me so much hope, (and he was so darn cute !!) that I slept with him anyway BEFORE he explicitly stated his intentions.  Which he obviously did eventually . . . 
    My “I really like you speech” never got an on the fencer to commit, or resulted in a relationship, but it did work like truth serum.  Once it was out in the open that this was strictly NSA, I could state that we weren’t on the same page, and end it.  I had seen so many girlfriends spend YEARS in “string a long” relationships, that technically weren’t string alongs, because he had said UP FRONT,  “I don’t want to get serious” or “Let’s not label this” or “Let’s just go with the flow” or my personal favorite  “I can’t predict where this is headed”.  (to wish I think the right reply inside one’s  own mind but not out loud is, “Well no one is asking you to PREDICT anything, it’s in your power to MAKE A DECISION, which requires no psychic powers.  Since I like DECISIVE men, good-bye ! ”
    If I go back to the dating jungle again, I might handle the “burrowing hand” by moving it, and continuing to make out.  Just keep moving it until he either stops, or asks why I keep moving it.  Then just tell him “I’m not ready for that, but I’m enjoying this” or whatever.  Just drop the “I really like you” jazz, because he should be able to figure that out from the heavy making out going on.  If he presses on for an answer, perhaps then tell him “I need more time”.  Only say that I really like him, if he says that he really likes me.  If he just acts all bitter and frustrated that he’s not getting his way YET, (like he’s ENTITLED to it RIGHT NOW)  I won’t need his moment of truth speech, I can figure it out by his reaction.  If he volunteers that he really like me, and is willing to to wait until I’m ready, and stops pawing at me, then we can continue on seeing each other.
    From your post  
    (me)“You say “she didn’t want to go through with sex”.  Was there an explicit promise of sex, or did you just assume ?”
    (you) I my experience, it was neither.  I didn’t feel like I was entitled to it, it was more like I was just hoping for it.  Us guys are usually just trying to find our way through the dark in this process, and in the dating process in general.  We usually fumble through it.  We initiate, and hope she is receptive.”
    Sounds very similar to many women’s experience.  Not feeling “entitled” to a relationship, but just hoping for one.  No explicit promise of a relationship, but enough going on with the actions to give hope.  Trying to suss out the relationship potential without taking the lead, and staying in our feminine energy is the tough part.  It really is just a waiting (and observing)  game.  
    Any way, all of this is WHY there is even a date coaching industry to begin with :)
     

  14. 255
    Sparkling Emerald

    Tom10@ 253 Thanks for your response  “As Chance said it’s more a case of hope than assumption.  In fairness to the women they often told me in advance that there would be no sex, but I know from experience that no matter what they say there is always at least a 50% chance of sex. I suppose I wondered why would she bother bringing me back if not for sex – what was the point exactly? Surely she’d have a better night’s sleep on her own than with me beside her.
     
    I didn’t realize she was doing a research mission, scoping me out before sex. Interesting.”
    Tom – Here are MY reason for wanting to go to your place or mine in the getting to know each other phase.  (yours and mine in the generic sense, not literally you an me).  Yes, I am on a “research mission” regarding the potential for a  relationship.  If I invite someone in to my home for a snack before we head off to our hike, bike ride, art walk or whatever, it’s NOT for pre date sex.  Offering some food and beverage PRIOR to the date, at least shows some hospitality to a guy who’s has presumably paid for a couple of dates.  Also, by offering it PRIOR to the date, I (at least hope) that it lessens any perception that he is being invited in for sex.  Unless some guy thinks, “How about I make us some chocolate cherry smoothies for energy, before the bike ride” is a sexual come on.  This gives him a little bit of a chance to see me in my home environment, I get to find out if he HATES healthy food or not (wouldn’t be a deal breaker, just something to file under, good to know)  (My smoothies are extremely healthy, I don’t use refined sugar to sweeten, use raw cacao, and hide some greens in the mix)  He can decide if he can live with someone who is fairly neat inside her house, but her yard is a disaster !  Does he like or hate my decor ?  If he gets a peek in my fridge or pantry will he think “Crap, are you vegan or something and what the HELL is Quinoa?” or think, “Oh, that’s nice her fridge is stocked with good stuff”.  Of course, it gets trickier when the guy invites me to HIS place, because generally, they aren’t trying to just get to know my PRE-SEX (or even to see if a romantic/sexual relationship is possible)  They are trying to get me over for SEX, maybe NSA SEX , maybe sex to see if he’d like a relationship etc. But yeah,”how about BBQ some steaks, drink some wine and watch netflix on the couch,” well we ALL know what THAT means.  But I do like to hang out at his place as part of the exploratory process of a relationship.  I like to see how he lives.  Is he sloppy or neat ?  (probably cleaned up for company, but I HAVE been to a guys’ house, who place was a DISASTER !!!!)  Does he have lots of family pictures out.  (Kids, grandkids, old time photos of ancestors, etc)  Does he have a frat boy fridge with nothing but beer and catsup (wouldn’t be a deal breaker)  I also want to see if I would be comfy hanging out at his place.  After all, once a relationship gets started, it will less with the formal dates, and more with the hanging out together.  (which I prefer that phase of a relationship anyway).  I’d like to know if I can feel comfy at his house.  What kind of neighborhood ?  How many pets?  How are his pets with me ?  Etc.  Of course, I have navigated a dinner at his place without it becoming sexual (ok just heavy making out which is always fun), and gotten follow up dates.  And I’ve also gotten some hostile “So why did you come here then !!!!” responses too.  (and that’s the end of that)  So if I go over to some guys place to make dinner together, yes, I see a possible relationship, and sex EVENTUALLY, but I want to gauge compatibility and emotional availability FIRST, and that just doesn’t happen for me by date #3 or sooner. And if all he wants is NSA sex with me, then it won’t happen at all. 
    You indicated that the women invited you for a sleep over.  Well, I wouldn’t invite a man over for a pajama party and then just cuddle all night.  HOWEVER, if he invited ME for a sleep over and said, “Listen, if you’re not ready, we can just cuddle, I promise”, I MIGHT just take him up on that, because 1.) I LOVE to cuddle, and 2.)  He PROMISED ! 
    The first time I spent the night with my first hubby, he had already asked me to “be mine (his)”.  He asked me to spend the night and said we could just cuddle. I held him to that; we did “just cuddle” all night.  But in the  MORNING . . . I put a smile on his face before breakfast.  Afterwards, he held me in his arms and said, “I guess this means you’re going to be mine ?”   and we spent every day and night together after that, until we married, then divorced a few years later . . .

  15. 256
    Karmic Equation

    @Tom10

    Thanks answering. Your reply about leagues when women chase makes a lot of sense. Women don’t chase men in their league or below, only those they believe are above them. As well, chasing makes the woman appear desperate or lacking in options. Men probably subconsciously note this.

    The once or twice I’ve been tempted to chase (e.g., initiate contact), I had to stop myself short because I wanted to preserve the mystery of whether or not I like him. If he likes me, he’ll contact me and/or continue to contact me after a date. If not, I’ll read it as a lack of interest and move on. If this means I bypass beta men, oh well, they don’t intrigue me as much as the alpha, so I’m fine with that.

    @Goldie

    You’re welcome. I love that blog. I’ve read every article. The demographic that reads that trend younger than this blog, but I think his posts are applicable to women of all ages who are dating, particularly, this one, which I’ve taken to heart: http://www.therulesrevisited.com/2011/09/wrong-kind-of-attention_11.html

    This made me more open to dressing sexy on a more regular basis (or rather makes more more conscious about how I’m dressing).

    Good men and bad men are attracted to sexy. One just needs to have a great filter to filter out the bad and the filter in the good when they both come hither.

    @Ladies who are able to have NSA sex

    This book is a most interesting read: “Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships” — I’ve only just learned of it and have read about 17%. But it supports some of the more non-conformist ideas that I’ve espoused about religion, politics, and science trying to control female sexuality. Kathleen, the book specifically counters some of Fisher’s and Walsh’s writings about female sexuality.

  16. 257
    faded jade

    Lots of back & forth about weather or not women can have this, that or the other kind of sex, and weather it is because she is biologically hardwired this, that or the other way, or if she has been brainwashed by the jack boot of an oppressive patriarchal society hell bent on controlling female sexuality. 
    I say who gives a rip ?  If an individual woman does not want NSA sex, or she doesn’t want to be married, or a mom, of if she DOES want casual sex, she should just go with what works for HER, without all the mental masturbation and the “why” of it all.
    The older (and I mean WWII) generation is dying off and is being replaced by baby boomers (the sexual revolutionaries), and the current hook up culture.  A woman could find social validation for just about any sexual life style she chooses, and she could find social ostracization for just about any of her sexual choices. (In fact, no matter WHAT path she chooses, someone, somewhere, will call her a prude, bitch, tease or a slut )
    Geez, I speak English, shave my legs, finished high school and don’t wear a bozo nose in public either, due to society.  We LIVE in a society, most people DON’T want to be a complete social outcast, most people want to fit in somewhere and have a sense of belonging. 
    It’s only a social construct that boys don’t wear pink dresses and bows in their hair.  Or have names like Suzie.  So country song aside, if I had sons, I would not put pink bows in their hair or name them little Suzie Sweet Muffin.  So what if that is due to social conditioning??!!!  The sons are going to grow up in society.  Why purposefully make them outcasts ?  Why should a woman worry if her desire for marriage, motherhood, and a heart connection with whom she shares her body with is a “social construct”, if she is content with that choice ? (so long as she isn’t trying to shame women who make other choices)

  17. 258
    Kiki

    @Karmic Equation 256,
    I loved that blog too. Probably because it confirms a lot of my observations, as we like to see opinions that validate our own :-). The author of the blog wrote that women are ignorant of the male mind and he wants to educate them; however it is very likely that his faithful audience is more likely to be women like you and me and Goldie who already think as he thinks so are not so ignorant :-).
    I also think  the “dress sexy” thing works wonders. My mother and grandmother never cared about that, and did not educate me how important looks are, so I had to figure it out the hard way. I have a 10 year old daughter, and I intend to install in her early on, that she needs to be healthy, in great shape and pretty, and maximize whatever assets nature gave her, and there is no shame to being able to attract attention.
     
     

  18. 259
    Sparkling Emerald

    Kiki @ 258 – I also think  the “dress sexy” thing works wonders. My mother and grandmother never cared about that, and did not educate me how important looks are, so I had to figure it out the hard way. I have a 10 year old daughter, and I intend to install in her early on, that she needs to be healthy, in great shape and pretty, and maximize whatever assets nature gave her, and there is no shame to being able to attract attention.
     
    I HATE that aspect of so called feminism (and I realize that “feminism” is hardly monolithic and not all women subscribe to this aspect) but I can’t stand the aspect of feminism that derided feminine dressing and grooming.  In fact, I think that the 80’s BS of career women wearing butch pin-striped power suits with shoulder pads, flat shoes, little to no make up and a stern pickle puss was extremely ANTI-WOMAN.  Never could understand how styling my hair and wearing lip gloss and heels should make me less effective at my job or why I should be taken less seriously.  (unless I’m a firefighter or police officer, the heels would be a problem :) ) The whole notion that women can only be successful in their work as long as they act, think and look like men seems very ANTI-FEMINIST to me.  Darn it !  I don’t hold a fancy-schmancy power job, but I AM very good at what I do, I took classes in my field, studied hard, work hard &  my co-workers and management comes to me for advice, feed back & problem solving.  And I look pretty darn good when I do what I do !

  19. 260
    Julia

    @Sparkling Emerald
     
    That’s 2nd way feminism you are talking about. 3rd wave feminism (I’m 3rd wave btw probably because of my age) believes in the power of femininity in however you define it. Its about respect for all decision. So I can dress super feminine, never leave the house without at least 2 coats of mascara and my best friend can have short hair and wear khakis and it doesn’t matter. We are both human and deserve to be respected for just that reason. So that business woman thing you are talking about, that was out of style before I turned 10 and is long relevant.
     
    About the blog you are all talking about. I think he gives OK advice but he comes off as very immature and advises women to get married and pregnant before they are 30 because once we hit 30 we are all haggered or something. That’s objectively bad advice. I’m sure as he nears 30s and realizes his peers haven’t shrilled up into prunes he will understand how silly his beliefs were before though. But I agree that everyone should show up to a date with their best fave forward and didn’t really need to read  his blog to understand that.

  20. 261
    Kiki

    @SE,
    To be perfectly honest, I am ok with wearing trousers and no make-up. I have the same education, value system, hopes, ambitions, and, by the way, even the same body and face (:-)), whicheverway I am dressed.
    But I figured that the world around me (especially men) see me differently depending on the package. I choose not to think whether it is fair or not (my gut feeling is that it is unfair). This is one of the areas where the effort on my part to comply is much less than the effort to change the world :-).
    By the way, I do have a fancy-schmancy power job :-) For very important meetings actually, I feel safer to dress unsexy… may be I should reconsider further.
     

  21. 262
    Goldie

    @ Julia 260
     
    “I think he gives OK advice but he comes off as very immature and advises women to get married and pregnant before they are 30 because once we hit 30 we are all haggered or something.”
     
    Ha, true, I met my future husband at 20, married at 24, and had both kids before 30… A lot of good it did me. On the bright side, my children and I can now come to each other for dating advice, lol
     
    I agree that some of his advice has to be taken with a grain of salt. “Every woman should wear heels” is downright unhealthy, imo (though he said in the same post that tall women like me can be exempted from wearing heels, so yay!)
     
    Last 5-7 years, I’ve started feeling that I just can’t be bothered to dress up or wear makeup for work. That said, I still feel like wearing something semi-nice that makes me look attractive. But again, I agree with Julia that it should be a matter of personal preference and our assessment of a woman shouldn’t be based on what she’s wearing. Kind of like our assessment of men isn’t based on how they dress for work, unless their clothes smell and have holes in them.
     
    Then again, I have blonde hair. At every new job, I am weighed, measured, and found wanting the minute I walk into the office, no matter what I’m wearing, just based on my hair color. I figure that by age 50-55 I shouldn’t have this problem anymore, though.

  22. 263
    Karmic Equation

    @Julia 259

    I’ve rescanned The Rules Revisited blog titles. I think there are close to 200 (if not more, I didn’t actually count them) — I even SEARCHED for the word marriage…That didn’t appear in any of the titles and only about 6 posts mentioned marriage at all.

    Are you confusing his blog with someone else’s?

    I don’t believe he’s at all talking about marriage, but helping women become more datable and understanding the typical male mind. Many women could use that help, especially women who’re just divorced and 40+. The dating world is not the same as the one they left.

    @Kiki

    “By the way, I do have a fancy-schmancy power job :-) For very important meetings actually, I feel safer to dress unsexy… may be I should reconsider further.”

    Dress like the women dress in “Suits” and “Fairly Legal” ;)

    JK.

    I’m not sure it helps or hurts to dress sexy for work, unless you’re in sales, selling to men (e.g., pharmaceutical saleswoman who meet mostly male doctors).

    I dress sexier for pool tournaments, hoping to be distracting. It actually worked. lmao

  23. 264
    J

    Julie #260- i agree, I find that his blog doesn’t do much for me at all

  24. 265
    Sparkling Emerald

    Kiki@261 By the way, I do have a fancy-schmancy power job For very important meetings actually, I feel safer to dress unsexy… may be I should reconsider further.
     
    Well, what I meant is that I dress feminine for work.  Not low cut, high hemlined, skin tight sexy, but classy feminine,(as opposed to power suited pickle-puss) with the ability to go from classy to sassy if I am going out afterwards.  Wearing a softly tailored jacket or sweater over a spagetti-strap top, or wearing an appropriate dress for the office, but adding a sparkly jacket come evening, and of course a tad more make-up, fluff up my hair a bit more and add some bling.   Even on casual Friday when I ride my bike to work, I change out of my sneakers into ballet flats, even tho’ sneakers are fine on Cas. Fri.
    I have no issue with how other women dress, I respect their choice.  However, I did have one close friend, who enjoyed dressing like a girly-girl, but she was a programmer analyst, and felt that she wouldn’t be taken seriously unless she dressed more “business like” and less flowy, flowery & feminine, which was her natural style sense. I thought it was rather sad, she was brilliant in her field, but she had to put on this quasi-masculine act to be taken seriously. So she only wore dark colors (no pastels, no patterns & stiff straight styles)   So women who dress in business slacks and tailored jackets because that is their style, I’m fine with, but I think it’s rather ANTI-FEMNIST thinking, to NOT take a smart & talented woman seriously because her skirt is a soft pastel color and flows, instead of being a stiff A-line navy blue skirt.  Luckily, that sort of thinking is falling by the wayside.  Men don’t have to wear a jacket & a tie, (at least not in my part of the country) to advance, and women can ditch the power suit look if they wish.
    I think dress codes and expectations are relaxing for both men and women in the business world, which is a good thing, and everyone gets to dress to their own personal sense of style (within reason). 

  25. 266
    Kiki

    @J 264
    Like I said, you will like the blog if you already think like that, if you do not – it will not change your mind. :) It is just a blog, and this genre is suited best for entertainment, especially if you have a self-depreciating sense of humor.
    @Karmic 263
    I am in finance/investment. Most of my colleagues are male, over-middle aged and extremely boring. I am weird enough being female, but when I put on my extra with high heels (and I am 5.10 without barefoot:-) they are seriously disturbed. Yes, distraction works :-). I try to use it with moderation.
     
     
     
     

  26. 267
    Kiki

    @SE 265
    You sound like you have a great sense of fashion, which I am probably lacking. The women in my family used to dress rather modestly, wore no heels and no make-up and honestly just did not have much style. Up into my late 20s it did not occur to me at all that you might enhance your looks and the impression you make on others with your clothes, accesoried, make up etc.  The older I get, the more appreciative I am of the power of presentation.

  27. 268
    judy

    This is a bit off-topic really but fashionwise, at work, where I’m surrounded by men, I’ve noticed that a skirt to just above the knee and well covered cleavage, soft make-up and cleanliness is far better tolerated IN THE WORK ENVIRONMENT, including by the way, with the women who will visit as well!
    After hours, I’ll wear my mini and more pronounced make-up, pretty stockings and maybe do the long glossy hair thing!!! (I wish – I had it cut and really regret that!!!)
     

  28. 269
    JoeK

    @Ren #31

    “This…[single parenthood]…isn’t a choice for divorced people.”

    Yes, it completely *is* a choice. They *chose* to have children, and they *chose* (in some way) to have a relationship that didn’t last – either by being a poor partner, or not choosing a partner well (yes, and sometimes they’re innocent, but not the majority of the time).

    Additionally, the odds are that the single mother (from divorce) *chose* to be divorced (women initiate more than 80% of divorces according ot the CDC). Is it *always* true that the individual in question made these choices? No – but they certainly made some of them, and they hold accountability for their part.

    As a man dating women, that 80% stat says that most likely the woman with children initiated the divorce…so yes, she most likely *chose* that route (whatever the history/reasoning is, which is a completely different discussion).

    Odds are, the divorce of the single woman with children across the dinner table from me was initiated *by her*. So yes, *she* chose it (regardless of her reasons).

    “People who have children are no less deserving of marriage and committed relationships.”
    It isn’t a question of what they *deserve*. You only deserve what you *earn*.

    “So-called eligible bachelors think it can never happen to them–that they aren’t faced with the possibility of marriage, children, then divorce and single-parenthood.”
    So what?
    These bachelors are making a decision NOW, not in some hypothetical future. They are under no obligation to treat a woman with children as an equal option as a woman without children…because it *isn’t* equal.

    “Divorcees didn’t plan or choose single parenthood.”
    Yes, they did. That’s EXACTLY what they chose, over their current marriage. They simply thought being a single parent was a better option than staying married to their current spouse. This may or may not be true, each case is unique. But it is CERTAINLY the *choice* that was made. Don’t paint them as martyrs or victims. Am I empathetic to their situation? Sure. But again, in the case of the 80% stat, most likely the WOMAN chose that path (for whatever reason).

    “I’ve known many men to date and marry women with children.” As Evan has always said, your anecdotes do not disprove the general rule. All else being equal most men would chose to marry women *without* children, than with. Why wouldn’t they? Choosing a woman with children is automatically a more difficult and challenging option. There’s the ex to deal with. Visitation. Acceptance by the children. Legal issues. And depending on the state, marrying her may mean accepting financial responsibility for those children, permanently. There’s a lot of risk for a man to marry a woman with children. You act as if this doesn’t exist.

    “And men need to get rid of this idea that it’s ok for them to be single parents but it’s not ok for women.”
    First, who are *you* to dictate how men “should” feel about something? Second, back up your claim that men in general think that it’s ok for them to be single parents but it’s not ok for women. I think you’ll be hard-pressed to find supporting evidence. At best you’ll find that most men likely think being a single parent of ANY gender is a less-than-ideal arrangement.

    In the end, the simple reality is that being a single parent is a negative in the dating world. Most men will consider women with children as a lesser option, all else being equal. My advice to young men is to NEVER date a woman with children. Sounds harsh, I realize, and Evan may take me to task for it (which I accept-he’s trying to help people find good relationships, and my advice reduces their options and unfairly lumps ALL single mothers into the same basket). But from my perspective (in my 40’s), I just don’t see it being worth the risk for young men today to date women with children. There are plenty of available young women for them to chose from.

    P.S. Evan – the new site design has some performance issues. I haven’t identified what, but clearly some script is REALLY slowing down page loads in Firefox, to the point where it hangs for several seconds. Also, where did the formatting controls go? i.e. Bold, italics, etc?

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