I Think I Pushed a Good Guy Away by Being Too Intense

I Think I Pushed a Good Guy Away by Being Too Intense
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I was dating a guy for two and a half months. We never had the discussion about becoming exclusive, and I never pushed it for several reasons, one of them being that he travelled quite a bit and so we did not get to see each other that often, and I was allowing us to build more of an in person connection before considering bringing up the topic. We had an instant connection, and it was undeniable every time we were together. We also shared a large amount of interests and goals, which is important to me, as my last relationship was with someone who had few interests in common with me. However, he started to become a little more distant at times, and I think I became a little too invested for it being so early on, which obviously he could have felt energy-wise. We had also become physically intimate, and I’m sure that contributed to things in my end.

I had stopped going on dates with other men after several dates with him, which I realize was an error on my end. Eventually, he attempted to end things with me, saying that he liked me and had been enjoying spending time with me and getting to know me, but that he did not think he had the time to give me what I needed at the moment, since he was overwhelmed with his new job position, and not being able to see each other often made it difficult.

However, he couldn’t bring himself to completely do that in the midst of our conversation, and then said he wanted to see me. We got together, and things were unexpectedly really good, and we once again felt that undeniable connection. After that, things improved a little, but I got somewhat ahead of myself when he didn’t make plans with me one weekend, and decided to call it off, as I was tired of feeling like he wasn’t putting in enough effort.

The conversation that we had that day lasted for about an hour, and he was so kind, and in some ways, it didn’t seem like he wanted to get off the phone. It has been almost a week, and I feel like I might have made a huge mistake. I certainly saw potential with him, which I can’t tell if that is idiotic or not considering I hadn’t known him for that long. I feel like I should have given things a chance, while dating around, and I am wondering if there is anything I can do at this point in order to potentially make things work between us, or if he just wasn’t that into me, or if it is just too late to reconcile? Thank you.

Marissa

You wrote: “He did not think he had the time to give me what I needed at the moment, since he was overwhelmed with his new job position, and not being able to see each other often made it difficult.”

Didja read the last blog post, Marissa?!

I’m not omniscient but I do feel clever when two blog posts coincide so neatly.

Once again, we are given damning evidence that:

  1. A man you like doesn’t want a relationship with you.
  2. A man you like doesn’t want a relationship with you because he’s unsettled at work.

And yet your first reaction isn’t to accept his explanation; it’s to suggest that you’ve made a mistake – as if things would be smooth sailing if only you played your cards right.

Sigh.

You didn’t make a mistake.

You need to find another guy who DOES see a future with you.

You dated a guy who decided – after much interaction, intercourse and deliberation – that he did NOT want to be with you.

Whether that was because of his job, his lack of attraction to you, his feeling that you were not “the one” or a hundred other reasons doesn’t really matter.

The story is written. The tribe has spoken.

You need to find another guy who DOES see a future with you instead of trying to breathe life into a relationship that HE killed voluntarily.

And in case you find any ambiguity in the above and are still obsessed with understanding why he disappeared, click here and I’ll explain it to you in much greater detail.

I promise you one thing, Marissa: the ending will be the same no matter what you do.

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Malika with an L

    One of the great discoveries you make when you start racking up dating experiences is just how little control you have over how another person feels about you or whether they will commit to you. This sounds depressing but is hugely liberating. Sure you can read Why He Disappeared and get great tips on how to put your best foot forward and enjoy the dating process more. Yet other than becoming more attuned and showing your best self, it is all out of our hands. It frees you up to realize this person is not for you, that he has his own reasons for that and that there is now room for someone who would be enthusiastic about dating you. It can all sound very Pollyanna-ish, but it is a liberation from the second-guessing and self-inflicted putdowns that can haunt you when a dating situation doesn’t pan out.
    Before I met my partner i was dating a man who was always very happy to see me and gave off every vibe you would need to think he’s all in. Two months in, he stated he didn’t think it was going to work (he wanted an open and more casual relationship than would have been comfortable for me). While i was very disappointed at the time, we moved on. I met my wonderful partner, he dated around and got that itch scratched. The result is two happy people rather than an unhappy couple that oozes dissatisfaction. We have seen those couples, we would rather not become one of them. In the long-term i hope you can see a bullet dodged, rather than an imaginary failure on your part.

    1. 1.1
      Yet Another Guy

      @Malika

      “he dated around and got that itch scratched”

      I think that what you have written is a big part of knowing when a guy is truly ready to find the woman with whom he can opt out of the dating pool. That is not possible when a guy is still in “kid in a candy store” or “bigger, better deal” mode. Whereas a lot of women take a few years to emotionally heal and rediscover themselves after a long marriage or relationship ends, a lot of age forty-plus men spend that period of time having as much as sex with as many women as they can before they can begin to think about settling into a monogamous relationship (many can never see themselves in another monogamous relationship). The difference between how the average woman and the average man deals with the emotional upheaval divorce and long-term relationship breakups create is striking. A lot of that is due to the fact that men enjoy almost zero post-breakup emotional support whereas most women have a network of girlfriends to lean on. It seems counterproductive that a man would not want to be in a long-term relationship at this point in his life, but he wants the emotional support without sacrificing his freedom. Some guys will attempt to befriend a woman in order to obtain emotional support, but that approach is like playing Russian roulette because he can find himself with a female friend who wants more than he is willing to give.

      1. 1.1.1
        Emily to

        YAG,
        “Whereas a lot of women take a few years to emotionally heal and rediscover themselves after a long marriage or relationship ends, a lot of age forty-plus men spend that period of time having as much as sex with as many women as they can before they can begin to think about settling into a monogamous relationship”
        You always write a variation of this and while this may be true for some men, I’ve seen guys get divorced and almost immediatley dive into another monogamous relationship. I saw one in which the woman the divorced guy ended up marrying was one of his ex-wife’s friends! Maybe the only single woman he knew ? You’ve got to stop making sweeping statements about the entire male population.

        1. Yet Another Guy

          @ETO

          Maybe that is what occurs in small town/small city America where there are relatively equal age 40+ single male-to-single female ratios. However, I Iive in a major metropolitan area where age 40+ college-educated women outnumber age 40+ college-educated men in ratios from 1.5 to over 3.0 to 1 (no, I do not live in New York). As most college-educated women will not consider dating non-college-educated men and college-educated men have no problem dating non-college-educated women (especially if is only for emotional support and sex), those ratios under report the options available to college-educated men. There is very little incentive for a college-educated man to settle into a monogamous relationship just to get emotional support and sex. I have yet to see an age 40+ man leave his wife and immediately enter into a monogamous relationship unless the woman was his paramour (i.e., he was cheating on his wife with said woman). Have you ever questioned why the man who married one of his ex-wife’s friends did so? Guys usually do not get involved with friends of ex-wive. In fact, most sane men want nothing to do with an ex-wife’s female social circle. That is like stepping into a minefield.

          Let me ask your a question; namely, if guys are so quick to get into monogamous relationships, how come almost every woman I met while dating complained about guys either being players or that they were inflicted with bigger, better deal syndrome? Women do not come out of the womb with these assumptions. It is because it is difficult to get guys who have figured out how the game is played off of the dating merry-go-round until they are ready to exit it. Only desperate men, sick men, and men who had paramours settle into monogamy quickly after splitting from their ex-wives. For most healthy men, it is an exploratory time to see where they stand in the male social hierarchy with respect to desirability (i.e., most guys who have been off of the market for a long time usually do not have a clue as to their ranking). Why settle into monogamy until one is ready when finding emotional support and sex is like shooting fish in a barrel at this age? While there are women who play around immediately after splitting from their ex-husbands, most of the women I met did not re-enter the dating pool until after they went through a period of self-discovery and were ready for a long-term relationship. The difference between how men and women process things after divorce is very clear to those who paying attention. To deny that men and women approach dating differently is to deny that the planet is round.

        2. Emily, to

          YAG,
          “Have you ever questioned why the man who married one of his ex-wife’s friends did so?”
          She was breathign and amenable. ? Idk
          “To deny that men and women approach dating differently is to deny that the planet is round.”
          I have never denied that. So … you and your “high status,” educated friends, blow through all the women you want to after divorce … Get all the support and sex you need. Don’t worry about what they women want.

        3. ezamuzed

          YAG,

          I’ve seen plenty of 40+ men immediately get back into a LTR with the first women they date post divorce and I’m in a big city. I’m sure some of them are desperate or emotionally sick but I doubt all of them all. I can think of plenty of reasons why a healthy man would choose to go back to monogamy quickly.

        4. Emily, to

          “I’ve seen plenty of 40+ men immediately get back into a LTR with the first women they date post divorce and I’m in a big city. I’m sure some of them are desperate or emotionally sick but I doubt all of them all. I can think of plenty of reasons why a healthy man would choose to go back to monogamy quickly.”
          Ezamused: I’ve seen it, too.
          YAG: Some men just … wait for it … process it … take it in you before you immediately counter the message … like to be in a relationship.

        5. Yet Another Guy

          @ezamuzed

          I seem to recall your mentioning that you are in one of the West Coast’s tech centers. The West Coast tech centers have the highest single college-educated male to single college-educated female ratios in the country. In fact, a single college-educated man in one of these areas is at a severe disadvantage compared to his East Coast brethren.

          I also seem to recall that you dated and slept around before deciding to settle into a relationship. Given options, most divorced men will follow this route (a lot of recently divorced women do it as well). Sure, there are healthy, non-desperate men with options who are exceptions. For example, it can be difficult for men who get primary custody of their children to do the playing around thing.

        6. Yet Another Guy

          @ETO

          “Don’t worry about what they women want.”

          At any point, a woman can choose not to play the game, but many do not for some odd reason. How many posts have you read that were made by women complaining about players? I bet that that number is fairly high, especially in the age 40+ crowd. Did those women truly get played or did they roll the dice and lose? Guys roll the dice when they invest time and resources into a woman hoping that she will want to be more than friends. The reality is that the greater the time and resource investment, the higher the probability that a man land in the friend zone. In this situation, a man can feel like he was played, but the reality is that he was stupid to believe that a greater investment would yield his desired result. Women who sleep with men quickly assuming it will yield a relationship that is based on anything but sex are equally clueless. Guys are willing to enter into a relationship when they meet a woman who makes them desire a relationship, especially guys with options. Women are the same way with sex. It does not matter how good a man is on paper or how well he treats the women he dates. If sexual desire is not there, there is nothing he can do other than to move move on. Women have the same option with men who are not looking for a relationship.

        7. ezamuzed

          @YAG

          I agree with your sentiment, I just don’t believe it applies to all men 40+ in a blanket fashion. I believe it is more of a numbers game than anything else. For men the dating numbers improve with age and for woman it gets worse. As many studies show, when there is a dating pool imbalance with less men and more women there is less monogamy. When there are more men than women there is more monogamy.

        8. jo

          Emily and ezamused, I’m inclined to agree with you. Men are not ’emotionally sick’ if they want to be in a LTR or marriage. Rather, they are emotionally intelligent. Overwhelmingly, studies show that men are healthier, and live longer, if they are married or in a LTR than if they are single. So the men who want relationships are rationally acting in their best interest.

          Without wanting to cast any aspersions, I would be more inclined to believe that older men who want to keep playing around are emotionally wanting. It doesn’t do to never mature. The world changes, people around us change, our life circumstances change. To stay stuck forever in a young man’s mindset / behavior seems folly.

        9. Emily, to

          Ezamused,
          “When there are more men than women there is more monogamy.
          Men don’t have any choice with those odds if they want sex, and we KNOW how important that is. 🙂

      2. 1.1.2
        In Hiding

        Thanks for reminding me why I’ve opted out, YAG.

        1. MilkyMae

          I have a friend who had a side gig setting up speed dating events. This was about 15 years ago in the Washington DC area. She told me she had to deal with a shortage of men. When the number of men was low compared to women, the women would become more fussy. They were less willing to choose someone. It could be that women tend to speed date in groups and they didn’t want to choose the same man as a friend. However, I think some opted out.

        2. Emily, to

          MilkyMae,
          “When the number of men was low compared to women, the women would become more fussy. They were less willing to choose someone.”
          That’s interesting. I’m guessing, but if situation is reversed and the number of women is low compared to men, the men are fighting over the most attractive women ? And then if they strike out with them, they start competeing over the rest ? Do as many men opt out if the odds aren’t in their favor as many woman opt out if the odds aren’t in their favor?

    2. 1.2
      Noquay

      Malika
      You stated this very well; the writer was her authentic self and there’s nothing wrong with that. We can only proceed in rships with the information we have at the time. Others have hidden agendas, hidden problems, or just don’t like us. Remember when I was a part of a trail running group and the unattached, attractive, close to same age coach jseemed to dislike me which was new since he’d divorced. I’d volunteer, run longer than anyone, train harder, take down/put up course markers, have some post run gatherings at mi casa. Didn’t matter. I may have reminded him of someone, maybe he hated Brown women, educated women, dunno. In the end, one must let it go.

  2. 2
    Claudia

    Couldn’t have said it better myself. This is where I feel communication problems often start. A person says one thing and the other isn’t listening or simply doesn’t want to hear it,

    Time goes by and there is no escalation of the commitment and the person who didn’t listen/want to hear what was being said is left thinking.,, “Oh my goodness, but I invested so much time in this. We would be perfect together. How can he/she not see that?!”.

    Before you know it, they are so emotionally invested that when the other party officially breaks things off or doesn’t want to commit when “the talk” happens, it comes as a “shock”. Really though, the person is simply being true to what they said in the first place.

    It sucks, I’ve been there, but once you are aware of it it gets a lot easier to avoid these kind of situations.

    I can’t count the amount of times a guy has told me they don’t want anything serious or just want to have “fun” in recent times. Now my standard comeback is:

    “That’s great, I’m super happy for you. Unfortunately, that’s not really what I’m looking for right now, but I do wish you all the best in finding it. With that handsome face, I’m sure if you swipe right a few more times you will find exactly what you want! ”

    The amount of times they come back after that to try and convince me otherwise… ah yes. Priceless.

  3. 3
    Cassie

    Evan , you are spot on ! (As usual) Thanks again for your great blog/articles. They’ve definitely helped me.

  4. 4
    Michelle

    Evan nailed it. It’s a cliche but spot on; Men speak with their actions not their words, women second guess all of it because we want to believe something else. We listen to the words and ignore the actions. It has nothing to do with “ratios” or men having the upper hand as “just another guy” pointed out (who I have a sneaking suspicion doesn’t date much and rarely has the upper hand in any romantic sitch). You didn’t do anything wrong, he just wasn’t feeling it. Not the way you were. A man who is feeling it will move mountains. If you can do the sex buddy thing, that’s ok too, but I think you want more. You can be the juiciest peach in the world and some men just don’t like peaches. Find a guy who loves peaches.

  5. 5
    Emma Ritter

    Nice post. Thanks for sharing tips about dating that really useful for singles and personals. Good job & keep up the great work!

  6. 6
    MilkyMae

    ETO,
    This is anecdotal but I got the impression that men at speed dating events did not pull back when there were less of women. It seemed like the women had a lower threshold in which they started to feel the odds and/or competition made choosing someone less appealing. It’s a little ironic because many of women were participating in the dating events because of they believed there is paucity of eligible single men.

    1. 6.1
      Noquay

      Milky Mae
      Part of this is that when the numbers of available men are low, there’s often a reason the guys left are still “out there”.

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