2 Tests to Determine if He’s Worthy Of Being Your Boyfriend

Closeup of beautiful woman reading text message with team in background

Paulina is in her early 50’s — thin, blond, whip-smart, and sophisticated. She worked with me last year and came back once she found a promising relationship.

She lives in Boston. Matthew lives in Atlanta. They met online and emailed regularly. Emails turned into phone conversations. Phone conversations turned into flirtation.

A few months later, they got together for a romantic weekend.

And ever since — surprise, surprise – he’s been a little bit emotionally distant.

Oh, he still calls and texts every day — little things like “how was your day?” or “I’m really tired” — but the spark is long gone.

Matthew no longer compliments Paulina. He no longer flirts with her. He mostly talks to her on the phone and complains about his life.

Most importantly, Matthew hasn’t made any overtures to see Paulina since their first meeting.

Distraught, Paulina is desperately trying to figure out how to rekindle their relationship.

Wait. Hold your thoughts.

When we talked about things, I learned that Matthew is a kind, attentive man, but he’s a bit socially awkward. He says things without thinking. Mostly clueless, selfish things, somewhat like a 12-year-old boy.

As a result, Paulina spends most of her relationship wondering why things can’t be better, easier, more fun, more supportive. Why can’t they be the way they were in the first couple of months, she asks?

My answer: Who F-ing Cares?!

As Paulina tells me her story, I get mad myself. Mad because of the way she’s being treated. Mad because she is perfectly willing to ignore it. Mad because she’s not mad at all. She’s just sad. Lonely. Confused.

In short order, I asked Paulina to do three things:

o Tell me what she likes about Matthew. All I heard was negative stuff so far. I wanted to know what I was missing. Paulina thought for a second and said, “He’s simple. He can be sweet. And he does call or text me multiple times a day.”

o Tell me what she loses if she cuts Matthew out of her life immediately. After a bit of deliberation, she concluded that she loses two things:

a. His daily calls and texts, mostly boring chatter about his life.

Don’t mistake phone calls for dates. A man who wants to be your boyfriend MAKES PLANS to see you IMMEDIATELY.

b. The fantasy that this once-promising relationship would work out.

Not surprisingly, Paulina was having far more trouble losing her fantasy than the texts.

The third thing I asked Paulina to do when we got off the phone?

Dump him. Because Matthew was failing not one, but BOTH long-term boyfriend tests.

Test 1: Is this fun? Is this easy? Do I enjoy the relationship? Am I happy?

Big fat NO. It doesn’t matter if there was attraction and flirtation three months ago; right now, Paulina is Matthew’s emotional booty call. He keeps in touch with her regularly to have a female presence in his life, but conversations aren’t fun, lively, playful, or even interesting. What is SHE getting out of this relationship? Nothing.

Test 2: Is he making an effort?

Big fat NO. Don’t mistake phone calls for dates. Paulina is Matthew’s pen pal. A man who wants to be your boyfriend  makes to see you IMMEDIATELY. “What are you doing tomorrow? The next day? The following weekend? For Thanksgiving?”

That’s what we do when we want a relationship. Anything less, you’re settling for crumbs.

So if you look at your current relationship and find yourself in inner turmoil, chances are there are one of two things wrong:

1) You really don’t like the guy that much. You like the  idea of the guy, but you don’t actually have a fun, supportive, easygoing partner in life.

2) He’s making no effort to see you, commit to you, or grow your relationship.

Either one is grounds for dumping. If this applies to you, get started now.

Join our conversation (168 Comments).
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  1. 1

    Agreed – if it’s not easy it’s not working.   I was seeing a guy for a few months and in the beginning, it was easy.   At that time, I wasn’t sure how much I liked him.   When I finally decided he was worth spending some time with after a few dates, suddenly things became work.   I don’t know if he sensed a change – I didn’t feel I had changed my communications with him.   After communication seemed like work I simply said he didn’t seem interested.   He claimed differently so I gave him more chances.   But it still seemed like work on my part and I would be upset when he didn’t communicate so I said his lack of communication made me feel like I didn’t matter to him.   My instincts were right – he said he guessed things weren’t working then (all by texts/emails, not even phone calls) and we should be friends.   I wasn’t surprised by his response and certainly if it upset me so that he didn’t communicate (I was looking for every other day at least, instead of once a week or so) then it certainly wasn’t working.   He was not worth the effort!

  2. 2

    I love this post because it makes everything just that simple.  
    I was hung up on someone a couple of years ago who definitely did not meet Test #2.   Looking back, I know that I was guilty of Wrong thing#1.  
    I liked the idea of him, but he’d done nothing to see me regularly, commit to me or move things forward.   Sure, he wanted to call every day and talk to me about his life, but when it came to making plans, it was more for him to handle.   Mistook chemistry for more.
    Fast-forward to now.   I met a guy in November whom I wasn’t sure about.   There wasn’t instant chemistry, but I liked him.   Since then he has done everything right and nearly according to Evan’s script.   I was ready to bolt a few times early on but hung in there because I kept hearing Evan’s advice about watching what he does, choosing the guy who WANTS to be with me.
    Now, I find myself in a relationship with a guy who, so far, is still doing everything right, making an effort, wants to see me, and genuinely makes me feel that he cares about me and what is going on in my life.  
    Thanks Evan for this post.   It’s great advice for someone in a bad relationship, and a great affirmation for those of us on the right track but feeling a little unsure.   Cheers!

    1. 2.1

      To the senior dater. I have dated older myself. I think we have dated the same guy. Lol. You are his “Florida girl” or his” sunset girl…. trust me. He has more.

      He has $$$ and he lavished you with attention to BAIT you. Then, he caught you. It’s like the outer banks fishing tournament. It’s all about the game.

      He has you. Now, he is bored.

      He has a kid or kids. The ex and lots of associates he has that will lie as you wait for him. RUN! Take your parting gifts like you just won price is right.

      He is bored. On to the next flavor-of-the month. It’s a terrible feeling to be the chum bag.

      You deserve better. And if you settle for that and accept it. That’s what you get.

      Watch the “secret” it’s true. We give off what we want. If you are willing to let go. You will be better off.

      Been there, done that. Feel your pain!



      1. 2.1.1

        Floridagil you hit the nail on the head, this has literally just happened to me!!! Yeowch x

    2. 2.2

      This post was really good and helped me.   Thanks.

    3. 2.3

      I needed to see this…thank you Greta!


  3. 3

    Thank you for putting it in perspective for me. My situation is out of the norm, I am in a May-December relationship, with a man who is 27 years my senior, I am 31 (I’ve read your other articles on this topic as well). He just retired from work. He was married once before about 20 years ago, but divorced after 5 tumultous years, ever since then he has just dated women, some have taken advantage of him, even stolen from him, some have just been casual flings, the relationship before me was something he thought was it for him, it lasted a couple years ad was with a woman his age, but she ended up kicking him to the curb as well. Then I come along, we start spending time together, I fall in love with him and he says he is in love with me, but I see no effort on his part, at least not as much as I am puttig in on my part. I spend the weekend with him and we do things together then, but then I leave Wednesday morning, go to work and if I didn’t make the effort to call or text him throughout the week, I really don’t think I would hear from him at all. He tells me he does think about me when I am not with him, he just doesn’t take the extra step to call me ust to talk to me. Am I asking too much to want to hear from him during the week as well? Or even see him? Why am I just relegated to only the weekends? If you love me, or better yet are in love with me, don’t you want to see me always, as I do with you? I don’t know if I attribute it to him just being single for so long that he just doesn’t know how to keep in touch with someone or if it’s because he doesn’t know how to have a relationship, or if his heart just isn’t in it. I’ve asked him if he wants this relationship and he is adamant that he does, but I require a lot more love, affection and attention than just a weekends worth. A friend told me to not contact him, let him come to me, that absence makes the heart grow fonder. Another friend has told me we have to “teach” them (men) on what we want. I hate having to play games like that to make someone “see” something though, it should be innate, natural within them.

    1. 3.1

      Your story sounds so parallel to my story. I was just wondering what his ethnicity is and type of work.

    2. 3.2

      You are 31 years old!!! He is a senior citizen compared to you. You didn’t like him to begin with.   He is not on your level. Don’t force yourself to settle for this man. There’s a reason he was put to the curb. All you are doing is feeding his waning ego. He is insecure and probably playing the ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ game on you! Because that’a all he thinks he can do to attract women. Nobody wants a burden. Move on. You will regret it later when he’s having you as his house maid.   You are teaching him that if he keeps ignoring you, he can get more and more out of you. One day you will wake up and resent him. By that time he’ll be a geriatric patient. And you may be a childless middle age woman. If you want marriage and a family. RUN! These type of men are very selfish.  

      1. 3.2.1
        Kay dee

        Very well said.   Take heed young lady.   He’s giving you a chance to leave him.   He will steal your youth and frwedom otherwise.   He is best suited to someone his life experience.   Don’t be cheated from the centre piece of life.   You will hate him later for hurting you,

    3. 3.3

      Cagoldngirl I absolutely agree with you, It should be innate in that  
      Person to want to see you always even if it’s 2 or 3 tines out the week for 1hour grabbing lunch or 30mins spent together sipping coffee. When you’re speaking of being In Love of course and both person  
      Are. If the other person isn’t then it doesn’t come natural for them to want to be together often.     

    4. 3.4

      Sorry to tell you, but we’re dating the same guy!!! Good luck.   I think you can have him   .. I agree it’s a one way relationship, and so unfair

    5. 3.5

      Stop!   27 years your senior? Listen…I’m just coming out of a marriage of 30 years been together 32+ years.   He is 10 years my senior.   The only reason I stayed was for the kids.   But most men near 50 and older tend to slow down sexually quite a bit. Out of the past 32 years the last 12 years has been sexless!! It was great in the beginning but as he became older everything halted down there.   He’s going to be 60 years old.   And when I was 18 I wasn’t thinking that far into the future about the age difference.   Trust me age does matter and I’m positive your man is set in his ways.   You won’t change him and if you are already asking those questions about not seeing you during the week it’s because you’ve probably worn him out and he’s recouping his energy.   Seriously, he won’t tell you that, but it only gets worse as they get older.   27 years? You have nothing in common to talk about? Run as fast as you can now before it’s too late!! You will just be taking care of an old man and not getting your physical, sexual or emotional needs met the longer it goes on.   If your frustrated now just imagine how frustrated you will be 5 years from now? Good luck!!

      1. 3.5.1
        say that again

        The only reason I stayed was for the kids…..

        this is always a bad excuse. You give a message to your kids you deserve all manner of unhapiness which is really a bad messege.

        1. Yet Another Guy

          That is complete nonsense.   Having personally lived through this experience, I could not disagree with you more strenuously.     Please point to one study that irrefutably demonstrates that children are better off growing up in a broken home than growing up in a home where their parents no longer have sex.

      2. 3.5.2
        say that again

        These 2 great tests should be pplied to all relationships not just dating.

        At least i hope to do that.

      3. 3.5.3

        OMG …Joy you’re so right, honey run as fast as you can and don’t look back!

      4. 3.5.4

        Not sure if sex is that big a issue to everyone. I am 49 and would prefer a male that is not that interested in sex. Last two relationships the men had too high a sex drive and I really don’t feel like like wasting very much time on it.

        1. Yet Another Guy

          You do know that the desire to have sex is the reason why men pursue you?   It is known as the primal urge to pursue, and it is as old as mankind.   Men look for sex and find love.

    6. 3.6

      you sound needy, cut that out and yeah dont play games but get activities in your life so your life doesn’y revolve around that old dude because it looks like it does since you want him all up into you even during the week. He should be lucky to have a young chick, don’t forget that and live your life with things you want to do and   itdoesnt always has to have him involved in it. once you become busy i guarantee you he will be more active like you want. so go get busy with your life.

    7. 3.7
      Karmic Equation

      Men who are into you WANT to spend time with you, if for no other reason than to ensure you’re not seeing anyone else. Other reasons are that he really enjoys your company. Another reason is that he enjoys sex with you.


      If he’s not wanting to spend as much time with you as you want to with him, it could be any of the reasons above. Take your pick.


      But ultimately, “why” doesn’t matter. You two speak different love languages. You need “quality time” and he doesn’t. That’s a really BIG incompatibility.


      Love isn’t enough. Find the courage and strength to end the relationship and find a man whose love language is also quality time, so that you are he are COMPATIBLE in a way that ensures your happiness.

      1. 3.7.1

        “But ultimately, “why” doesn’t matter. You two speak different love languages. You need “quality time” and he doesn’t. That’s a really BIG incompatibility.
          Love isn’t enough. Find the courage and strength to end the relationship and find a man whose love language is also quality time, so that you are he are COMPATIBLE in a way that ensures your happiness.”

        This hit me like a ton of bricks.   Ugh.

  4. 4

    Great article!!!!   Ive posted the 2 test questions on my wall   Very clear and concise.  
    Intuitively when a guy doesn’t attempt to see me very quickly Ive sensed that wasn’t right Glad to see that so concisely here!  
    Love the articles!!

  5. 5

    With all of the situations described here I’d say that it’s OK to accept the man on his terms. As in, being phone buddies, the sometime girlfriend, the stopgap in his life. As long as you recognize that that’s what it is and continue to pursue what you want, being open to other guys who might be a better fit. Because it doesn’t seem to me like there’s anything to dump here. You don’t have to pick up the phone when he calls if you don’t like listening to him go on and on about himself–you’re choosing to do that. And it’s not necessarily a bad thing to have male friends who aren’t into being lovers with you. Unless you don’t like him on any level, in which case you wouldn’t want him even if he were really into it, right?

  6. 6

    @JD your story certainly resonates with me.   I was in the exact situation a few months ago except he didn’t even bother to tell me we were done in any form.   I too was unsure for a few months and he put a lot of effort in and I grew to like him.   Then it all stopped.   Eventually when I brought it up suggesting that if it didn’t feel easy/natural anymore we could certainly stop trying or be friends.   He insisted he still wanted to get to know me better and spend time with me and we both agreed that as adults we could be honest with each other and not play games. And then poof.   I should have realized in the last month he wasn’t making any effort to spend time with me and it didn’t matter how it all started.   Definitely bookmarking this one.

  7. 7

    Wow, Evan… you keep surprising me. Nice article. 🙂
    This can happen with someone, who lives next door. Wants to see you every day. Calls you every day. Claims he needs you. When you meet, he dumps his daily crap on you and really doesn’t ask , how your day has been…
    God Bless you.

  8. 8

    to CAgoldngirl, as a 64 year old lady speaking from my age compared to yours,  please be aware of some health issues he may have at his age. I met the most wonderful man several years ago, we were just perfect for each other but … he has a serious  medical condition and normal sex relations are not possible for him without causing some fairly nasty side effects, as I found out. It wasn’t a good experience for either of us, in fact it was quite upsetting all round as we liked each other very much.

    I met a nice guy my own age several months ago who  IS interested in a relationship. He is doing all the work, asking me out again  before  our date is over and has also asked me  if I will go with him to 2 family weddings coming up in the next 2 months. I’m following Evan’s good advice and it’s working. There doesn’t seem to be  lots of chemistry but I’m looking at him with a different attitude, he’s a real nice guy and he’s interested in me.    
    I’m not saying your guy is in the same boat but 27 is a big age gap and 10 years down the track he is going to be a lot older (and a pensioner)  and you’re still going to be a young, sexy, energetic woman of 41.
    Sometimes these May/December relationships work out but think again of the long run. Do you want to have kids with a partner who wants the same, be able to do things together with a partner for the rest of your lives?
    From what you have said your guy just doesn’t seem too keen in escalating the relationship, that should tell you something.
    Only you know what is really going on with your guy  but I think you would be better moving on and finding a guy who wants a relationship, kids and a life  with you.

  9. 9

    Betsey I don’t think this article was designed to say its a bad thing to maintain male friendships   Its about qualifying a guy to see if he’s worth the emotional investment if your goal is to have a boyfriend . What I like about the simple test questions are if you answer honestly it will save you heartache,   angst and time. So dump him if he fails and if you were wrong he would come back after you anyway.  

  10. 10

    I ´ve been into that situation so many times, but I think I finally learned the lesson for the way I got over my last “attempt”:  
    I met this guy online, he was divorced for 1.5 years and he insisted he was ready for a new and stable relationship.  
    I wasn ´t sure he was my “type” physically, but his way to reach me out (many texts every day, one daily phone call and 2 hours of MSN conversations), was convincing me the guy was really into me.  
    We met, I didn ´t feel a strong physical attraction (I was expecting that, because by the pictures I wasn ´t sure he was the kind of man I like ) but I was comfortable enough with him for wanting to see him again and to see where things could go.   
    The guy was all over me for around 3 weeks, the same level of contact, and plans to see me at least twice a week (I was still a bit worried on the physical part, because I ´m a very sensual   person, and after 5 dates, I still wasn ´t too motivated to spontaneously kiss him or touch him).    One night I invited him to have dinner   at home, I made an incredible recipe,   I dressed myself as if we were to go out, we danced and had wine.    There was no sex that night, but enough intimacy to made me feel things could be on the right direction after that.  
    Guess what?… After that date, the guy vanished the whole next day, to the point I was getting   really worried, I waited patiently (not really) for his call but at 8pm I was concerned enough to call him, when we talked, he said he thought he was getting a cold and had spent the whole day in bed.   I gave him the benefit of the doubt although he was perfectly fine the night before.     
    The next day after that? the fluent contact was over.   One daily call, no more text and MSN conversations.. after a few days like that, and a very cold date in the middle of the week, I told him I thought things were going nowhere and his answer was:   “I don ´t want to hurt you, because I feel I ´m not really ready for the kind of relationship you want”… WTH?… I even wasn ´t into him at the beginning.. and “he didn ´t want to hurt me?” … give me a break!!.      After that comment I stopped taking the iniciative for any kind of contact, and one day he just didn ´t appear anymore.  
    Do you know what?… I ´m better without him, because I ´m sure that if I had accepted his “new” way to reach me out, or just had had sex with him, today I would had feel like crap.  
    Thanks Evan, your advices regarding relationships are finally getting imprinted in my brain, and I ´m taking the right decisions and not wasting my time anymore.   

  11. 11

    Haha…seems so very simple. If we aren’t having fun, what’s the point? So why do we make things so complicated. With all the single people out there…odds are in our favor that something better will come along.

    1. 11.1

      Say it again!   I need to keep hearing  this!

  12. 12

    Wise and succinct, as always, Evan. I wish you were my big brother.   🙂

  13. 13
    Ronnie Ann Ryan - The Dating Coach for Women Over 40

    Evan – you are so awesome! You have such a way of making things simple – and they really are, once you step back and look as an uninvolved observer. I talk about this with my clients all the time. Your questions where truly masterful!

  14. 14

    I think sometimes women get too emotionally vested and focus on the destination rather then the journey.      If you meet someone kick back and just see if you can have fun initially.   Don’t stop living you life just make   room to see how it goes.   If it’s no fun don’t bother.   I think mentally women are saying well he seems like he fits my type to be marry. Without really seeing if there is a real connection.   If not, NEXT!!!!   Don’t waste time. If it don’t fit don’t force it!

    1. 14.1

      Not to put you on the defensive. I feel that sentences starting with “women get too…..” are not all that helpful for this mainly female readership.

      How about this? We ladies are more disposed towards long-term and permanent relationships. It’s part of our biology and nesting instincts.

      This fact doesn’t mean that we can’t “play” our relationships wisely. If we see signs that the guy is backing off, then we can act strategically.

  15. 15

    Wow! I had to read this twice because it’s soo true and everything you’ve said is exactly the guy I’m seeing. I have been seeing him for 3months, in the start things were great and effortless to make plans, communicate and it was fun spending time with him.

    In the past month I have only seen him twice, so pathetic, he hardly makes effort to see me, but he still keeps in contact thru txt. Ive realized
    now that I’m wasting my time with someone that’s keeping me at arms length when I want
    something more and a relationship. I’ve now decided to not see him anymore. I want to say to anyone reading this- if your in a position like this then leave!

  16. 16

    LOL YOU ARE SO AWESOME!!   This is a perfect test and I really needed to hear this.   

    I wish we could clone you.

  17. 17

    Done and done.

  18. 18

    Kathleen 9: My point is that men aren’t just “boyfriends” or  “potential boyfriends,”  good or bad. They’re people–more than just the role we want to cast them in. So if she likes him and has an emotional connection with him, does she have to  dump him  completely just because  he isn’t boyfriend material for her and her “relationship goal” is to have a boyfriend?  

    I would put it this way: So he failed the boyfriend test. No surprise there–he never was her boyfriend and never said that he wanted to fill that role in her life. Maybe he likes making friends with people and has fleeting flirtations and casual sexual relationships. She’s not into that. OK, we get it. But if she likes him and  gets something out of their ongoing communications, she can take it for what it offers, even if it isn’t a boyfriend relationship.  

    If you’re only open to men who will be your “boyfriend” then you aren’t open to men. So you can’t complain if, true to their gender stereotype, men are only open to you if you have sex with them.   

    1. 18.1

      Betsey, wonderful, humanistic approach to this “problem.” Thank you for injecting a valuable different opinion. I sat reading the rest of the posts with cartoonish slack jaw. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to date anyone who held the prevalent opinions I’ve been reading here. I know we all have our opinions, and often people who hold the same opinions clan together such that when they start echoing one another it can seem as if one has come upon a rally, but really…
      Anyhow, thanks for giving a reasonable post to leave on.

      1. 18.1.1

        OTOH, I wouldn’t recommend being Florence Nightingale either — that’s just another trap women fall into.

        If I meet someone online, and made it clear that I am looking for a partner, then if it doesn’t work out, I move on. I don’t feel a need to continue being a friend to someone who is obviously using me as female support while he seeks out someone else.

        It just doesn’t work for me.

    2. 18.2

      This is almost my way of thinking.   Men are people.   Women put all these terms on them.   Some men have past baggage they carry around.   Some get stuck in a rut.   Men of retirement age may become couch potatoes.   Men handle life different, but they are people, too.   My favorite saying in regards to relationships is love is when two imperfect people care enough for each other to work through their imperfections and accept each other or love each other unconditionally.   I am 66.   My boyfriend is 67.   We dated in the early 70’s and we reconnected 40 years later.   It has been so nice for both of us.   Accepting and laughing about each other is a top priority because we both had a lifetime between us when we weren’t together.     At the same time, there has to be a lot of acceptance with a 10 year difference in age.


    3. 18.3

      totally agree….men are human beings filled with lots of emotions…..if he cant be your partner and you like him..that doesnt mean you should dump him…if he is a nice guy and you like him than i dont think its easy for you to stop talking to him…keep in touch and get what is possible…true love is unconditional… and i dont think people are always looking for dating n all coz there are lots of other imp things in life to do if you are a mature and responsible person…just dont expect anything from him and dont be needy….love him unconditionally and who knows tomorrow you too will find a true love..

      hoping for the best

  19. 19

    [email protected]: At work we call what you’re talking about ‘managing expectations.’ Sometimes we have to tell our clients that what they’re asking for isn’t feasible and we have to tell them what is feasible. When we explain they’re usually OK with it because most  people are satisfied  with getting what they expect, even if it isn’t everything they want. True, people still want everything they want, but if you tell them truthfully  ‘not here, not today’ and explain why, they aren’t going to be upset.  If they want to move on, they are free to do so.  

    I  do think that women’s expectations of men are usually pretty unrealistic.  The reality is that most men out there aren’t interested in our emotional lives (the reason we seek them out, though god knows why), and most men don’t want to be our boyfriends or  to marry us.  A lot of guys will seek us out for all sorts of other reasons, though, and one of the main ones is to have sex. But we get it backwards–we always think that a man is interested in us for emotional/relationship reasons when chances are pretty high that he’s interested in us for some other reason (and no, not nec sex). If we change our expectations and get real, understanding that most guys are interested in us for something other than emotional bonding in an exclusive relationship, we’ll be much better off, I think. And then we can take or leave what they are really offering instead of what we wish they  were offering. And then we don’t have to always  cast them in the role of emotionally stunted opportunistic a-holes out for what they can get.  

    In short, we need to manage our own expectations and read men more accurately.           

      1. 19.1.1

        I couldn’t agree more with this reply post. I make it a point to always keep my emotions in check. I will ask a friend sometimes to review my texts, emails, etc., and have them give their opinion. After all, my friend has no emotional attachment to this person. I get the truth all along. Lol, maybe Evan you can have woman pair up with other woman for proof reading, objective support with sharing text. I know for me sometimes a second opinion helps. If we pay monthly fees for internet dating, I’d pay for objective criticism.

    1. 19.2

      Thank you.

    2. 19.3

      Hi Lara I get what you are saying and you make great points.   However, the issue is that most women ARE looking for a boyfriend, or marriage, not just to have a good time.   When we are younger its not big deal to wait and see what comes of it.   But as we age particularly if we want children, I don’t see the point in wasting time in a relationship with a guy who does not want the same thing.   Does managing my expectations mean that I should be okay with a guy that wants something more than an emotional bond?       I would long since be gone from the relationship of the original writer.   I do think the problem is that we as women tend to read mens signals as mixed, and while some do actually send mixed signals, many are telling us quite clearly what they want, we are just trying to interpret it to mean something else.      

    3. 19.4

      So why are there thousands / millions?/ of men claiming on the online dating sites they are seeking a relationship and define that within their profile as emotional bonding? apart from the guys who get women to write their profiles there are millions who use their own words to describe the kind of relationship they are seeking and the descriptions are clearly wrapped around the search for emotional bonding. millions of men out there doing this surely can’t be a bunch of deluded, misguided humans. I would hope that men writing their search for emotional connection on their online profiles are being honest because the other half of the human species don’t seem to be seeking emotional bonding via online dating sites but secretly seeking sex and deluding themselves (ie women)

      1. 19.4.1

        There are many men that I have spoken with or messaged with, that are honest that they only note their profiles as seeking a relationship, as they find women are less responsive if they reference casual. I was a business coach and ask some honest and direct questions sometimes lol..surprisingly, my.non judgemental stance results in some very raw honesty from.some.. for this reason, it is important to ask good questions in person and if having sex and not getting a call the next day is going to bother the woman, better to hold off on that until she has a commitment. The reality is online profiles may not be truthful and what is presented in the infancy of a dating experience with someone may also be masking what they really are wanting.

  20. 20

    [email protected]: Laugh! You might not like the conclusion that this leads me, too, though, which is that a lot of women will likely prefer to stay single and give up dating altogether if they get realistic about dating and marriage. If you take away the fantasy about the perfect guy who’s going to offer understanding, acceptance, sensitivity, etc., and get realistic about what men really offer, what motivates women to seek out exclusive romantic relationships with men (i.e., marriage)?  I have all different sorts of respectful relationships with men, but I can’t imagine marrying one of them. And it’s because I have all sorts of different respectful relationships with men that I can’t imagine it. I don’t have just one girlfriend and expect her to fill all of my social/emotional needs; why would I expect that of a guy, who is even less encultured to provide that than a girlfriend?

    1. 20.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      Aha, Lara…you don’t need a man to fill ALL of your social/emotional needs; just the ones that can’t be filled elsewhere. Which is why it’s okay if you like yoga and he doesn’t. Or you read fiction for pleasure or he doesn’t. Or you’re ambitious and he’s not. You need the guy to be your rock – your loyal best friend who makes you laugh, sticks by you when the going gets tough, and wants the same things out of life that you do. There’s plenty of good men around – they’re just being dismissed because women still feel that a man has to be EVERYTHING in order to be a husband. He does not.

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