Why Did He Act Excited About Me If He Didn’t Want to Be My Boyfriend?

I am a 44-year old, highly educated woman who can say that throughout my life I have been able to quasi-understand and respect men and their behaviors. However, I started seeing someone most recently, and I am baffled by the development. Usually, I would just move on and try not psychoanalyzing what happened. However, in this case, may be because I liked the guy very much and thought that the feelings were mutual, I wish that I could have a crystal ball (YOU :)) to just answer one question: Do guys say “you take my breath away”, “I want to see you”, “I want to hold you”, but cannot commit to a relationship (all this was in his last text), just because they do not want to hurt your feelings? Some background info: We have worked together for a year but started seeing each other last month. I can say with full certainty that I felt very quickly emotionally, psychologically, intellectually, and physically connected with him. (My evaluation – too fast and too strong – I get it!!!). I have a very strong degree of self-control and all my life I have never let myself really “go for it” without having some degree of inhibition. I never felt the need to inhibit myself with him, and I think that’s what made it important to me. I believe the connection was mutual because of what he said, what he did, his behavior, and the way he looked at me (As I said above – I am highly educated and very cortical, thus not someone who would act based on some rudimentary emotional reaction). Since we started seeing each other, we would text every morning to say good morning, every 3-4 hours to say “miss you” or “thinking of you”, or send an emoji to convey that same message, and every night before going to bed to wish each other good night. Communication was smart, with very fine sense of humor, and right dose of playfulness and sexual innuendos. Communication was mostly via text because we did not want to draw attention at work. We never slept together because we wanted to make sure it would last. His own words, “we should be each other’s icing on the cake of a great life.” We kissed however, and no doubt, the chemistry was amazing. One day, four weeks in, he texted me at 7:30 am saying: “Morning, can hardly wait for lunch”, followed by another one two hours later asking me where I wanted to go for lunch. I was very surprised when, what I thought would be just a lunch, turned out to be “let’s stop this.” His reason was the fact that we are both in senior management at the organization and he did not want to jeopardize that. As an executive, I can appreciate that. I also want to say that whatever this was, it’s over, and I am not trying to find reasons to go back. Nevertheless, since I really cared about this guy, I wish I could somehow know if I read his involvement the wrong way. 

Thank you and best regards, 

Francesca

Sorry about your disappointment, Francesca.

You do sound like a bright woman and I know, rationally, it’s hard to take this at face value.

But as I wrote in Why He Disappeared, it doesn’t actually MATTER why he disappeared.

If everything is exactly as you describe it, then he didn’t want to sleep with another employee, which may be disappointing, but prudent.

My guess – for what it’s worth – is that if I asked him to describe this unusual four-week courtship, he’d probably tell a similar story with a few different details.

Listen, it’s possible that he’s just that cautious, but, in my opinion:

-a man who is truly interested in you will do more than text during the work day.

-a man who is truly interested in you rarely holds back from pushing forward sexually.

-a man who is truly interested in you does not let work get in the way – if anything, he is more likely to discuss your relationship with you to figure out how to pull it off while minimizing risk.

A man who is truly interested in you does not let work get in the way.

But the one paragraph that really suggested to me that you don’t have a clear grasp on the situation (or men) was this one:Which would lead me to believe, in doing the post-mortem on your non-relationship, that your chemistry wasn’t as strong as you believed and the feelings he expressed by text were impulsive trial balloons that didn’t actually fly.

Do guys say “you take my breath away”, “I want to see you”, “I want to hold you”, but cannot commit to a relationship, just because they do not want to hurt your feelings? 

No.

They say those things in the moment because that’s what they feel in the moment.

What they say when they don’t want to hurt your feelings is “Let’s stop this because we work together in the same office.”

It’s a lie, but it does down easier than the truth, which is that he just isn’t that into you.

When men are into you, they’ll move heaven and earth to make it happen.

When men are into you, they’ll move heaven and earth to make it happen.

Next time, pay attention to his effort to escalate things, make plans with you, and ask you to be his girlfriend. All are better reflections of a man’s feelings than a series of one-liners and emojis.

And if you’re still curious why men do not stick around after the first few weeks of dating, click here and I’ll explain it all.

 

 

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Comments:

  1. 1
    Michelle

    Agree with Evan on this one.  You sound like a smart, attractive woman who is clearly a catch.  However,  I might add your “radar” is way off.  This long, detailed email looks very much like a lot of intellectual rationalizing which can get in the way of seeing things as they are.  He’s not that interested, for whatever reason.  That doesn’t mean you aren’t a catch or a dozen other men wouldn’t jump at the chance.  Or that you did something “wrong.” Women do this all the time, myself included. we over think, justify and rationalize to prolong the inevitable when looking the truth squarely in the eye is the way to go. My guess is you sensed on some level this wasn’t going anywhere long before that text; and you ignored and rationalized it away because of your feelings for this guy.

    A month ago you weren’t even thinking about this guy.  Get back to that place again.  Go out with other guys…in time this guy will barely cross your mind.  Trust me…

     

     

  2. 2
    Theodora

    These people are in their 40s, but they sound and behave like teenagers. Texting all day long without an actual date? Emojies? “You take my breath away”? That’s what my 16 years old nephew does with his girlfriend. What’s next, sexting and “thirst traps” on Instagram?

    1. 2.1
      Clare

      Theodora,

      I agree with you. I feel sorry for Francesca, but when she got to the part in her email about sending a “miss you” or “thinking of you” or emoji text every 3-4 hours, and “the right dose of playfulness and sexual innuendos,” I burst out laughing.
      I’m not trying to be unkind. It’s just that this is not an adult relationship. In fact, this is not any kind of relationship. A stolen kiss here and there? Texting without actually talking or making plans during the day? This is an office flirtation, nothing more. And I’m kind of surprised that a 44 year old woman fell for it.
      I feel for Francesca, because it’s obvious that she read more into it than was actually there. However, for me, the lesson would be: don’t engage in long texting marathons with in the early stages of dating (unless one of you is out of town and you physically can’t see each other). The early stages should be about getting to know each other face to face, and dates should be set up swiftly and enthusiastically. If that’s not happening, Bye Felicia.

      1. 2.1.1
        Emily, the original

        Clare,

        Texting without actually talking or making plans during the day? 

        Maybe I misunderstood her letter. Did they never actually go on a date outside of the office? (Outside of workday lunches, I mean.) I thought they had. If not, then, yes, nothing was really happening. I thought they were dating but he never called (only texted) and never tried to escalate the amount of time spent together/asked to be her boyfriend. If a guy is just texting for a month and hasn’t made any effort to see you, something is wrong.

        1. Clare

          Emily,

          Yes, that’s how I understood her letter as well.

          There were dates/some time spent together, although she never actually says how many or how much time they spent together. The way she describes the texting though is excessive… I have heard it from so many relationship coaches, and have experienced it in my own life, that texting should be used to complement time spent together, rather than as the primary means of communication.

          She describes how they were afraid to talk to each other at the office and so would text “every 3-4 hours”… this is flirtation stuff… in my experience, this is not how a real relationship goes. In my experience, two busy people who are genuinely interested in each other set up time to spend together and may text a little in-between to touch sides, but it’s not this furious back and forth. That, to me, smacks of emotional unavailability.

        2. Emily, the original

          Clare,

          In my experience, two busy people who are genuinely interested in each other set up time to spend together and may text a little in-between to touch sides, but it’s not this furious back and forth. That, to me, smacks of emotional unavailability.

          Or not having enough to do! A text here and there is fine, but not all day. It’s irritating because you’re usually in the middle of something (or driving somewhere!), and people often expect an immediate response. I get annoyed by excessive texting. Plus, if someone is texting all day long, it may not be that he/she wants almost constant attention.

        3. Clare

          Emily,

          “It’s irritating because you’re usually in the middle of something (or driving somewhere!), and people often expect an immediate response. I get annoyed by excessive texting.”

          Me too. Excessive texting annoys me enormously. I have had a number of texting experiences with people which seemed stalkerish to me. I just can’t tolerate it, and I stick by my assertion that it usually signals some form of emotional unavailability or emotional issues. I see excessive texting as a distraction, rather than real connection.

          I really don’t like it when people make assumptions about you based on your responses to their excessive texting. My feeling is that if we are not actually spending time together in real life, then that person doesn’t really know me.

        4. Nissa

          Brilliant Clare, Do you think that this could be a case of “I know what she wants to hear?” I’ve had several men ask (in person or by email) “what do you want?” And while I believe some of it is a response to my not opening up much (that part’s on me), I tend to think that it’s a gambit to get the woman to write him a road map to her bed.I’ve experienced this myself, where it seems like no matter what I say, the man likes or wants that too – amazing coincidence! *sarcasm font here* But if I don’t ante up the sexual content, suddenly he’s gone with the wind.I really feel for Francesca, here, because I also am a person who says what I mean and mean what I say. If I don’t mean it, I don’t say it – and it’s super hard to understand when others act differently.This post brings us back to the ‘how much sex is appropriate’ question. I personally am not interested in sex with a person I barely know, yet how am I supposed to get to know this man without dating him, talking to him, experiencing him? Evan has promoted indicating sexual desire, and I very much agree with that, even though my idea of showing someone is quite different (ie keeping it to light sexual innuendo, non sexual touches on the hand, foot or shoulder).It still sounds to me like he was interested in sex, but not her as an individual.

        5. Emily, the original

          Clare, 

          Excessive texting annoys me enormously.

          I have a friend who will get very angry if she texts her boyfriend and he doesn’t text back immediately. If she’s in what she considers a “serious conversation,” she assumes he is blowing her off. I always say, “Maybe he fell asleep! Maybe his phone went dead! Maybe he didn’t get one of the texts!” And she’ll always say, “He wouldn’t abruptly stop communication in the middle of this serious conversation.” It’s ridiculous. I always say, “Pick up the phone and call him.” She is in her 40s!

        6. Clare

          Nissa,

          “Do you think that this could be a case of ‘I know what she wants to hear?'”

          Oh absolutely. Avoidant men (I can’t speak so much for avoidant women, but I imagine it’s a similar thing) and emotionally unavailable men are often very charming and skilled at telling you what you want to hear. I think it’s partly that they want to get into your pants, but I think it’s also partly that they want the words to be true, which is why it’s so easy to get taken in by them. Avoidant and emotionally unavailable people want and need connection just as much as anyone else. They are just unable to sustain it. The words can feel sincere.

          As you were talking about the guys who “coincidentally” seemed to like exactly the same things as you and want exactly the same things as you, I thought about a very brief (only two dates) experience I had at the beginning of the year. For our second date, he took me out for an expensive dinner. The date didn’t go so well, I was getting very mixed messages with the things he was saying, but I decided to invite him in for coffee afterwards to see if the evening could be salvaged. It was very strained and awkward. Anyway, I’ll never forget when I asked him what he wanted, he said “To see you naked.” When I assured him that wasn’t going to happen, he said “Just kidding. I’m looking for the mother of my children.”

          Later on, this made me laugh. It’s why it’s so important to hold onto your standards of what you want because those who cannot meet them will simply fall by the wayside.

        7. Emily, the original

          Clare,

          Anyway, I’ll never forget when I asked him what he wanted, he said “To see you naked.”

          Gag. What idiot says that? Even if he thinks there’s a very, very slim chance of that happening, surely he must know that by saying that, he has not only completely killed any opportunity that night but any opportunity in the future. Or is he that tone deaf?

        8. Clare

          Emily,

          This was a guy that was very tone deaf.

          He also thought it appropriate, on our second date, to take me on a tour down memory lane of all the illegal activities he used to participate in when he was in school. And to tell me about the “dares” he used to engage in for cash with his best friend. To say they were not dinner conversation would be an understatement.

          The baffling part (for me) about this is that he had seemed so charming and interesting and intelligent on our first date. But our second date felt like I had wandered into the twilight zone.

        9. Emily, the original

          Clare,
          .” But our second date felt like I had wandered into the twilight zone.”
          I might not have been able to help myself if the date had gotten that strange and he had said something like “to see you naked.” I may have started laughing very loudly and very obnoxiously and said, “Did you really think that was going to happen?” (Actually, I probably wouldn’t have done that, but once he started on the trip down memory lane, I may have just said we needed to call it a night and end the date.)

        10. Tom10

          @ Clare
          “I asked him what he wanted, he said “To see you naked.” When I assured him that wasn’t going to happen, he said “Just kidding. I’m looking for the mother of my children.”

          Hahaha; that’s actually hilarious. He sounds like a hoot! Talk about a backtrack. Although, to be fair, was it necessary to ask a guy – whilst having coffee after a second date – what he wanted? Wasn’t it obvious?

          Although, that said, I’m not 100% this guy was just about the sex: there are cheaper and quicker ways to obtain it. Some guys date not knowing what they really want.

        11. Jeremy

          Clare and Nissa, I actually LOL’d at the comment about the guy who wanted to see you naked, especially in light of the conversation we had a few weeks ago about honesty.  As I recall, you two were the most vocal about wanting it and letting the chips fall where they may.  I found that fascinating in light of this situation, given that pretty much every man on earth who is attracted to a woman will give the same answer this man did if he is being HONEST.  Did you actually want honesty?  Emily gagged on it, as I recall 🙂  Or did you want him to do a dance for you to make you comfortable – the dance called courtship?

           

          I think (though please correct me if I’m wrong) that the issue was not what he said, but rather how you felt about him.  And I think that there are 2 possible ways he could have reacted to your question of what he wanted right now that most women would have responded to better:

          1) He could have simply lied to tell you what he wanted to hear, thereby increasing his chances of getting what he wanted.

          2) He could have been attractive enough and/or suave enough to say what he said and get away with it, because you’d have been more likely to want the same thing.

           

          But given what he wanted, given his motivation, what should he learn from his experience on that date with you?  To only date the small dating pool of women interested in casual sex, or to lie?  When you asked the question, did you want the truth?

        12. Emily, the original

          Jeremy,

          Clare and Nissa, I actually LOL’d at the comment about the guy who wanted to see you naked, especially in light of the conversation we had a few weeks ago about honesty.  As I recall, you two were the most vocal about wanting it and letting the chips fall where they may.  I found that fascinating in light of this situation, given that pretty much every man on earth who is attracted to a woman will give the same answer this man did if he is being HONEST.  Did you actually want honesty?  Emily gagged on it, as I recall 🙂  Or did you want him to do a dance for you to make you comfortable – the dance called courtship?

          I meant after you’ve dated a bit and are breaking up, and pushed not being wimpy and giving someone flim-flam reasons. No one is completely honest in the very beginning. C’mon Jeremy. You’re going black and white again. And dating, in the beginning, is showing little things and hiding little things. It’s a dance, as you say. You don’t put ALL YOUR CARDS on the table at once. Plus, Clare and this guy had had talked about how he was looking for a relationship, so the naked comment was completely out of left field. Any one with half a brain wouldn’t have said that if he had any hope of that happening at some point down the road. Or if he just wanted sex, he should never have gone through the song and dance of talking about relationships and a big, extravagant, expensive dinner for a second date. He should have been clear up front that he was looking for “something casual.” Can’t you put that in a dating profile? Isn’t that a euphemism for casual hookups?

        13. Emily, the original

          Jeremy,

          Plus it’s all context. You can say “to see you naked” on a second date if there’s been heavy sexual innuendo and with someone who’s made it clear she’s into casual or as a friend of mine used to say  “dtf.” Only a tone deaf motherforker says that to a woman who’s made it clear she doesn’t do casual AND one with whom the date has gone badly. “Oh yes, there’s no connection here and I don’t do casual, but since you said that let’s head on over to the Motel 6.”

        14. Clare

          Emily,

          “once he started on the trip down memory lane, I may have just said we needed to call it a night and end the date.”

          I was in stunned disbelief. You know that trainwreck scenario, where you can’t look away? I felt as if I was having an out-of-body experience, eating expensive seafood, listening to this guy talking about shoplifting and hotwiring cars.

        15. Clare

          Tom,

          “Although, to be fair, was it necessary to ask a guy – whilst having coffee after a second date – what he wanted? Wasn’t it obvious?”

          Perhaps it should have been obvious, but I was still willing to give him the benefit of the doubt up until this point. After all, we had talked about wanting to meet someone special and looking for something serious. Up until he said the “naked” comment, I had not put 2 and 2 together about the awkward turn the evening had taken. By asking him what he wanted, I was trying to reassure myself that we were on the same page… but no, I really don’t think we were at all.

        16. Clare

          Jeremy,

          To be clear, I thought his “naked” comment was an extremely ungentlemanly and tone-deaf thing to say, but I didn’t berate him for it. I simply answered with equal frankness that it was not going to happen. So I’m not sure how this instance is an example of me wanting to be lied to.

          I did not want him to lie. I simply wanted him to wait for sex. I mean, had we continued dating, and had things gone well, sex was going to happen sooner or later, and he would have seen me naked. But it just was not going to happen that night. He could think that he wanted it all he liked. He could even have expressed it with Shakespearean elegance how much he wanted to see me naked, but it just was not going to happen. I think the fact that I had already, in prior conversations, made that clear made *him* the dishonest one in our dealings.

          I welcome honesty in men. I really do. In this scenario, I didn’t want him to be dishonest – just realistic.

        17. Nissa

           Jeremy, When I read Clare’s post, I did think to myself: at least he was honest. That would have mitigated the impact of the words, for sure. And if I was down for that, why not? How hot would it be to have a guy overtly tell you how much he wants you? The reason it is eliciting a ‘gag’ response from Emily the Original is that this man is 1) apparently a stranger with whom she is having a second date, 2) Clare mentions that she had already mentioned to this man about “meeting someone special and looking for something serious” – this means that his words were VERY far out of context and in direct opposition to what she had expressed; 3) I’m guessing that the conversation was also missing heavy sexual innuendo, which might have led him to make that kind of comment; so again, the reaction is to his words being out of context, rather than their honesty

        18. Emily, the original

          YAG,

          But given what he wanted, given his motivation, what should he learn from his experience on that date with you?  To only date the small dating pool of women interested in casual sex, or to lie?  

          According to YAG, there are plenty of women interested in casual sex. YES. Date those women. Don’t go on and on (before both dates) about how you want a relationship with a woman who has made it clear she isn’t into casual and then proposition her. Seems like a lot of wasted energy and not an effective strategy, which is what this site is all about.

        19. Emily, the original

          Nissa,this means that his words were VERY far out of context and in direct opposition to what she had expressed;  Yes, that’s why I gagged. You know, this could be a guy who wants casual sex and doesn’t know how to get it and so thinks he has to do this elaborate dinner/dating thing. Who knows? He also could be the kind of man who never illicits that feeling of wanting casual sex in woman and it annoys him.

           

        20. Emily, the original

          Sorry. Meant that for Jeremy.

      2. 2.1.2
        Nissa

        Clare, I can’t imagine why you didn’t immediately fall into this guy’s arms, declaring your undying love, lol. It sounds like you get the same thing I do – men that start giving what they think you want – expensive dinners, talking about kids – in hopes that you will have sex with them. I really think that when I go back to online dating, I will be writing my profile in a way that is a lot more blunt about ‘I am interested in getting married – I’m ready for something serious and special’. Even so, it’s like when I was shopping for a house. I told the realtor, “I don’t want stairs”. He then proceeded to tell me: a lot of the places around here have stairs, you’ll be reducing the number of places that come on the market that you can bid on, you can add one of those electronic chairs, etc. He sent me an Excel document with several listings. After I marked several of them “Stairs = no”, he sent me an email back saying, “Since you don’t seem to want stairs…”. Oh, you mean exactly what I’ve been saying from the start that you ignored? Yeah, that. I just tend to think that giving sex is giving the lowest item on the Maslow scale. Meaning, I think men want sex AND intimacy, friendship, comfort, fun and appreciation. And that if those things don’t have meaning for the guy in the absence of sex, that’s a guy that was very likely never going to like me anyway. Apologies for the weird spacing, my posts are not picking up the blank line when I hit enter after a paragraph.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

        1. Clare

          Nissa,

          Yeah, I know. I feel as if I had been very clear with this guy about what I was and was not looking for. We had chatted a lot by text and he certainly gave me the impression that he was looking for something serious. He also seemed really mature and intelligent. The first hint that I got that something was amiss when he told me he had never had “intimate encounters” with a Sagittarian (I am a Sagittarian). I brushed it off because it was such an odd thing to say in our conversation.

          By the time we got to our dinner date (which cost him a fortune and which he insisted on paying for), I think he just didn’t care any more and was just barreling ahead. He kissed me in the most awkward manner you can imagine and then said that “naked” comment. He didn’t look as though he was paying the slightest bit of attention to what I was saying. So yes, like you, I later came to believe that the charming breakfast date, the intelligent conversation, the talk of marriage and kids, the expensive dinner was to warm me up to see if he could have sex with me. It seems like an awful lot of effort to go to when I had said clearly upfront that I was not interested in casual sex. Your “stairs” comment made me laugh. Sometimes I think real estate agents are as bad as guys on Tinder.

          Like you, I have also come to the conclusion that I will be a lot more obvious about what I want. And also a lot more sensitive to the signs when a guy mentions sex. Like you, I have zero interest in guys who don’t want to make building an emotional connection and relationship based on shared values their first priority. I agree that building a deeper connection will make us both happy so I would need a man to get on board with that before I could be with him.

  3. 3
    Dana

    I’m so sorry. That just sucks. I think Evan is spot on, and I’d add this: Sometimes you get stuck with a fuckwit. There are people who feel comfortable with that level of demi-intimacy when they’re really only putting out feelers (and then act surprised when you’re surprised). Shake it off and move on – no one needs a fuckwit.

  4. 4
    Emily, the original

    One day, four weeks in, he texted me at 7:30 am saying: “Morning, can hardly wait for lunch”, followed by another one two hours later asking me where I wanted to go for lunch. I was very surprised when, what I thought would be just a lunch, turned out to be “let’s stop this.”

    Something is wrong with this guy. At some point over the course of 4 weeks, if the theory that he wasn’t really that into the OP is correct, why did he continue to text all this romantic gobbledygook? At some point he must have known he was vacillating. It’s irresponsible to continue to lead someone on. But I think the lesson here is to pay almost NO attention to what someone says and ALL attention to what he does. People say a lot of things.

    1. 4.1
      Clare

      Emily,

      When I got to that part in her email, I was smiling with recognition, because that has happened to me before in the early stages of dating someone. They literally set up plans and sounded very enthusiastic, only to cancel hours before. This may sound weird, but I could actually feel that that was going to happen. There’s a difference between the way someone talks when they are all in versus when they are just daydreaming. It was clear to me as the OP was describing her “relationship” with this guy that he was just daydreaming. It’s a bit like the way someone talks about wanting a piece of chocolate cake all day and then when it finally comes, he doesn’t want it any more. That’s the best way I can think of to describe the vibe I got from these guys the couple of times I encountered them.

      I agree that the message is to pay attention ONLY to what someone does and not what he says. But I would also say – pay attention to your intuition and the vibe you are getting from someone; it’s never wrong. As I say, for my part, when I have experienced guys who did this, I always got the feeling that their words were ahead of what they were actually feeling inside. There was a disconnect, and it didn’t feel quite sincere. I also think guys like this want to want to, if that makes sense, but they are just not able to follow through when it comes to it.

      Side note: plenty of people here (including Evan) say that this guy just wasn’t that into Francesca. I disagree. I think he probably is just not emotionally available. Simply because this is how emotionally unavailable men act, typically. Sure he may go on to date someone he may seem to be more into, but it will almost certainly not be an emotionally fulfilling relationship.

      1. 4.1.1
        Emily, the original

        Clare,

        There’s a difference between the way someone talks when they are all in versus when they are just daydreaming.

        Maybe you can elaborate on this. What does a man say when he’s serious versus only validation-seeking? Maybe the “v.s. ers” could wear a warning button! (“I am only using you to prove I still have it.”) I have certainly been taken in by romantic blather. I think you’re right about intuition in that part of me knew, deep down, it was BLAH, blah, blah, but I was hoping, hoping, hoping I was wrong, and hope can be a dangerous thing.

        1. Clare

          Emily,

          It’s really difficult to say. I’d say my intuition is my most reliable tool. To the point that I try to trust it above what the person is saying. I must say, every time I’ve dated one of these flaky guys who come on hot and heavy and then flake out suddenly, I’ve had a sinking feeling inside. This intuition is finely tuned enough that I’ve become pretty reliable at seeing when my friends are in one of these scenarios too.

          However, if I had to give hard substantiation for this spotting one of these guys, I’d put it down to a couple of things:

          * Overly romantic, poetic, intense words. Too much emotion too soon.

          * The thing with this emotion though is that it is expressed in very low risk ways – texts and emails, rather than phone calls. Mostly virtual communication with not enough in-person dates planned.

          * The pretty words are not backed up by action.

          * Guys like this (you call them validation seekers, I think that’s a great name for them) are primarily concerned with their own feelings and comfort. They are less worried about your desires and feelings.

          * Finally, and for me this is the really big clue, they don’t ever actually put themselves out there and make themselves vulnerable. They never put themselves in a position where they can be rejected. They hold all the cards in these “relationships” and everything is always on their terms.

          These are the clues which tell me that a guy is not really serious but is just splashing his toes in the water. In the beginning stages of dating, the signs are subtle, but they are there.

        2. Emily, the original

          Clare,

          Overly romantic, poetic, intense words. Too much emotion too soon.

          I usually don’t fall for this. In fact, that repels me. It feels … here’s Jeremy’s word … inauthentic.  But if I like someone and he’s doing just the right amount of escalation over time … until he doesn’t, and things never really get off the ground. In that limbo period, if I’m really interested, I have in the past let the “validation seekers” mess with me too long and made too many excuses.

        3. Clare

          Emily,

          “But if I like someone and he’s doing just the right amount of escalation over time … until he doesn’t, and things never really get off the ground. In that limbo period, if I’m really interested, I have in the past let the “validation seekers” mess with me too long and made too many excuses.”

          We’ve all done it. Or at least, I certainly have. When you like someone, your desire to attach to someone gets activated, and you see what you want to see. You want to connect to them, you want it to be real. There’s nothing wrong with this, but I think you need to be aware of it and force yourself to be more objective about what the person is actually doing and if they are meeting your needs. I am naturally a very open and warm person and I attach very easily, but over the years, I have had to force myself to be more guarded and look for the signs at the beginning of a relationship. Any sign of anxiety and insecurity or making excuses is a bad sign. I feel like you almost have to adopt the perspective not of “How much do I like this man?” but “How capable is he of meeting my needs?”

      2. 4.1.2
        Nissa

        I’m so glad you brought this up! I know someone like this, and we have argued substantially because she says “I’m going to do this” and argues that unless she says the words “right away” or “now”, that it basically means “when I get to it” or “when it feels right”. I told her that this meant she was daydreaming out loud, and that it was confusing to others; she told me I was wrong for asking her to back up her words with action, and that I was being demanding for doing so.Yeah, I’m not really talking to her anymore. But when I do, I have to keep telling myself not to depend on her just because she says she’s going to do something.

        1. Clare

          Nissa,

          Unfortunately, there are armies of people like this out there. I feel that, unless you have a very high tolerance for them or are equally uninvested so that their actions don’t really matter to you, it’s worthwhile to see the signs with such people and make it clear that you won’t be playing along.

          I tend to think of people like this as a different brand of avoidant, and I think saying the words and then claiming they “didn’t really mean it” is a way for them to have a superficial connection with others without opening up or putting themselves out there. Pretty classic avoidant behaviour, really.

    2. 4.2
      Nissa

      I always tend to think, “he’s not excited about me, he’s excited about the possibility of getting laid by someone new”.

    3. 4.3
      Jasmina Loulova

      I agree 100% with you. This guy is brain damaged. He is not even a

      player or a jerk. Why waste his time with mind fucking. The woman

      should be happy to be rid of her. I am generally against texting, go

      straight to the phone call and make things happen. Actions speak louder than words.

       

       

       

  5. 5
    Kath

    @Emily, agree 100%! Talk can be cheap. Actions speak so much louder. I’d like to add there are so many bored and unfulfilled corporate types; I have been one of them. Some workplace guys (and gals too) just want some diversion from the litany of Excel and endless meetings. And they may intentionally/unintentionally lead the OP on, while thinking it’s harmless flirtation or a even a fantasy relationship. When I was younger, I had a few instances like Francesca myself. But I’ve since kept my romantic life out of the office. @Francesca, you did nothing wrong here. No matter where you meet the next guy, pay attention to what he DOES and whether he follows through on what he says he’ll do. And if he flakes out and makes a fast exit, NEXT. You deserve better.

    1. 5.1
      Emily, the original

      Kath,
      “I’d like to add there are so many bored and unfulfilled corporate types; I have been one of them. Some workplace guys (and gals too) just want some diversion from the litany of Excel and endless meetings. And they may intentionally/unintentionally lead the OP on, while thinking it’s harmless flirtation or a even a fantasy relationship.”

      I once took one of these types of situations very seriously, like an idiot. I think people who do this are very aware of what they are doing and never stop for a minute to think that some of what they are saying/doing actually lands. They just want the attention/ding in the whoha from the validation.

  6. 6
    Eve

    Emily, the original.. I agree 100%. Seems to me like this guy was just blowing smoke but was never serious about ever being fully IN with her.

    Maybe he enjoyed the affection and flirtation but never felt strongly enough to take it any further. I just stopped communicating with a guy similar to this. Two months of texting and occasional phone calls with “I miss you” “I want to see you” with ZERO follow through. He did her a favor. He’s ambivalent. Boy, BYE!

    1. 6.1
      Emily, the original

      Eve,

      Maybe he enjoyed the affection and flirtation but never felt strongly enough to take it any further. 

      Then he should have left her alone.

      I just stopped communicating with a guy similar to this. Two months of texting and occasional phone calls with “I miss you” “I want to see you” with ZERO follow through. 

      To a person like that you want to say, “Thank you. Drive through.”

  7. 7
    Yet Another Guy

    @Emily, the original

    Something is wrong with this guy. At some point over the course of 4 weeks, if the theory that he wasn’t really that into the OP is correct, why did he continue to text all this romantic gobbledygook?

    I agree with Evan on this one.  The guy was caught up in the moment.  This kind of behavior often occurs when a man encounters a woman who is perfect on paper, but romantic/sexual desire is either non-existent or very close to it.  If a guy is saying all of the right things, but not pushing for sex, then something is wrong because sex is what drives men to couple.  In my humble opinion, the romantic texts were an effort by this guy to convince himself that he wanted to take things to the next level.  The LW is clearly a catch, and he knows it.

    1. 7.1
      Adrian

      I agree with this 100% word-for-word. So I am curious as to how Emily will interpret it since this is something she and I have often talked about but she can’t understand why someone tries to force themselves to feel something for someone who is perfect on paper.

      Emily don’t women do this also?

      I can’t speak for the guy the letter writer is talking about but for me looks are always part of the package when describing perfect on paper. So being perfect on paper means that they are not just accomplish but it also means that they are attractive how ever no matter how hard I try I just can’t feel anything…

      I think men like the letter writer’s guy and myself try even if we feel nothing because we hope something will develop-I mean how often do we run into women that . Also Yet Another Guy great point about the texts being the guy forcing himself, I never thought of that but it makes perfect sense. If your hypothesis is correct then he is probably thinking “If she is such a great catch then why am I not attracted to her?”

      I also think his words could have been partly as bait to elicit more attention from her as well as it could have been a way to test her attraction level for him with her responses. “Yup! She is a great catch. Yup! She clearly desires me… So why don’t I feel anything? Oh she is starting to fall for me I had better break it off before she gets too serious and gets hurt.”

      1. 7.1.1
        Emily, the original

        Hi Adrian,

        I think men like the letter writer’s guy and myself try even if we feel nothing because we hope something will develop-I mean how often do we run into women that . Also Yet Another Guy great point about the texts being the guy forcing himself, I never thought of that but it makes perfect sense. If your hypothesis is correct then he is probably thinking “If she is such a great catch then why am I not attracted to her?”

        I’m just not understanding that, Adrian. From what I’ve read on here and other sites, men can tell within seconds of meeting a woman if they are attracted. If you’re not, why force yourself to be? I would think most women wouldn’t want to date a man who had to force himself to find her appealing. Plus, she was communicating/dating ? this guy for a month. Does it take a month to figure out you’re attracted? And he already knew her from work. He’d already interacted with her. She wasn’t a stranger, so there wasn’t a need to go on a date or two “to see if something developed.” Wouldn’t he have already known if she was dinging his bell physically?

        1. Adrian

          Hi Emily,

          It goes back to the conversation you and Yet Another Guy had about “his” definition of chemistry. Logically recognizing that someone is attractive verses emotionally desiring that person, which he saw as two separate things.

          And again do women do the same thing? A guy who is great to her and great on paper and he is good looking plus successful but he doesn’t excite her. Her cheating or financially unstable ex did so she wonders what is wrong with her and therefore tries to or does force herself to continue to date him.

          I thought that from the last few major conversations we have all had on this blog everyone was starting to realize that on most things men and women thought and acted the same. Women were not more emotional and men were not more logical, so if you know of any women who do this what are the reasons they give?

          Of course guys know immediately if we are attracted to a woman just like women know about a man. Karl R and Jeremy have both written books on this blog about how courting is a way for men to possibly positively sway women who are on the fence about their attraction to him.

          Again that is why I am not talking about attractiveness lacking when I mention perfect on paper, I am talking about the feeling of desire.

          …   …   …

          Though being completely honest with you Emily at 44 this guy isn’t young enough to be still waiting for his princess charming to come along… So I personally think it may have had more to do with her personality (something he was too nice to tell her) than it had to do with him forcing himself to date someone he wasn’t attracted to.

          His excitement may have been genuine but he just couldn’t deal with her… whatever when the thought about them together long-term. I believe Jeremy, Yet Another Guy, and Tom10 just talked about this in the last blog post. How some guys when dating will be choose based on emotion but when it comes to serious dating and marriage they will be really logical.

        2. Emily, the original

          Adrian,

          Logically recognizing that someone is attractive verses emotionally desiring that person, which he saw as two separate things.

          Oh, ok. I understand.

          And again do women do the same thing? A guy who is great to her and great on paper and he is good looking plus successful but he doesn’t excite her.

          I have done something similar in the past but with a couple of male friends. I thought they were cute and I enjoyed talking to them. At some point in the friendship I suggested a sexual encounter because I thought: why not? It’d been forever and it could be fun. But there’s something missing, and boy do you feel it once you get in the room. You don’t really want to be there and hope the whole thing moves along quickly. But dating them would have been different … that’s showing interest for more than an hour or two. 🙂 Hard to do if you’re not really into it.

          I thought that from the last few major conversations we have all had on this blog everyone was starting to realize that on most things men and women thought and acted the same

          About some things, yes, but there are still vast VAST (:)) differences!

        3. Adrian

          Hi Emily,

          You said, “It’s been forever…But there’s something missing, and boy do you feel it.

          Yes that is why we force ourselves to give such great on paper people a chance we know something is missing but it’s been so long since we met a person having everything we are constantly taught is a catch why throw away the chance when something could develop.

          I once had a friend who’s cousin was almost a musical celebrity (he was signed to a major record label, had very big artist (of that time) sing on his album and everything). He once told me a story about how he walked past Jennifer Lopez twice without even knowing who she was, he said that without makeup he barely noticed her and the only reason he suspected she was someone famous was because of all the people constantly around her.

          My point is that we men are always being told that J-Lo is a top tier women that any man should feel lucky to date but as his story showed me, someone can be promoted as a great catch on paper-or film- and you still feel nothing for them. But how many men would “immediately” turn down a chance to go out with a celebrity just because they don’t find them attractive in person? How many women would do it?

          You said, “But dating them would have been different … that’s showing interest for more than an hour or two. 🙂 Hard to do if you’re not really into it

          Yes of course! This is the point! This is why these type of relationships never workout because a person can only force themselves so long with someone they have no interest in emotionally.

        4. Emily, the original

          Adrian,

          This is why these type of relationships never workout because a person can only force themselves so long with someone they have no interest in emotionally.

          Then please don’t do it. I’m making a sweeping generalization, but I think most women would be horrified to know their date was forcing himself to find her appealing. Flip the situation. Would you want a woman to accept a date with you if she was forcing the attraction? Who thought, “He’s really cute, but …”  ?

    2. 7.2
      Chris

      I thought women appreciated it when men didn’t push for sex? Although that would be an oversimplification, I suppose most women do prefer men to cultivate some sexual tension, without being outright pushy.

      Anyhow I do agree with your analysis. 40s is when libido does tend to diminish too. Ultimately though he did the right thing by breaking it off before sex became involved. That really complicates things from what I’ve read here.

      1. 7.2.1
        Yet Another Guy

        @Chris

        I thought women appreciated it when men didn’t push for sex?

        I believe that we are looking at one of those gray areas where what women say they want and what they really want are two different things.  The average woman usually knows if she is open to having sex with a man within a short period of meeting him, as he gives her in Emily, the original’s terminology the “gina tingles.”  From my personal experience, the rule book disappears when a woman encounters such a man.

        As far as to the drop in libido, I concur with your assessment.  Forty is the approximate age at which most men start to be able to override their desire to conquer any woman who is willing to get naked as a sexual partner.  The change in desire is definitely due to declining testosterone levels.  At that point, most men have experienced at least a 10% drop in total testosterone from where they were at age 30.  A ten percent drop in total testosterone may not seem like much, but the majority of testosterone is bound to sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and albumin, leaving only a small amount of testosterone available as free testosterone. SHBG also rises with age, which further reduces free testosterone. That is why men start to get the middle-age spread in big way after age 40 unless they take steps to increase testosterone by engaging in progressive resistance training and other forms of rigorous exercise.  A man also needs to watch his weight because visceral fat harbors aromatase, and aromatase converts testosterone to estradiol (E2). E2 is a form is estrogen.  That is why men who have “beer bellies” tend to get man boobs (a.k.a. gynecomastia).  Man boobs are usually a sign that a man has a high E2 level.

      2. 7.2.2
        Emily, the original

        YAG,
        I believe that we are looking at one of those gray areas where what women say they want and what they really want are two different things.The average woman usually knows if she is open to having sex with a man within a short period of meeting him, as he gives her in Emily, the original’s terminology the “gina tingles.”  From my personal experience, the rule book disappears when a woman encounters such a man.
        I agree with you, YAG. If a woman is really into a man, she wants him to be very interested in sex (and make that clear). She may not be ready to do it that day or even that week, but if he’s not demonstrating interest and attempting to make a sexual (not just kissing) pass pretty early on, she wonders if he’s not that into her or … if he won’t be able to deliver.

      3. 7.2.3
        Nissa

        It may really depend on the individual. I prefer it greatly. However, there’s a difference between a man who feels a lot of sexual attraction for me, but puts it on hold to act respectfully vs a man who is not that sexually excited by me but who is seeing something else there that he wants (companionship, company, a mom for his kids).Between those two, I definitely prefer the man who has a lot of sexual desire for me but is choosing to put it on hold. If there’s little sexual desire to start, since it declines over time, there’s too great of a chance that he will have a too-low sex drive or not want sex at all. I know that sounds surprising coming from me, the woman who holds off on sex for months, but it’s true even for me. That’s why, even when I put sex on hold, I make it clear that it’s a function of my respect for the power of oxytocin vs not having desire for the man in question. 

        1. Adrian

          Hi Nissa,

          You said, “coming from me, the woman who holds off on sex for months

          If I may ask how do the men react to going months without any sex but still choosing to pursue you and remain faithful?

          And if it’s not too person do you cut off all forms of sex for months or do you met the guys halfway with perhaps oral as Evan suggested in a previous post?

          Or is it some form of “if he respects me he’ll be okay with waiting?”

          Or “if he thinks I’m worth it he’ll be okay with waiting?”

        2. Chris

          I wonder how you do it too Nissa! It’s one thing if the guy has a low libido, or no other options, or is seeing someone else. But how do you get a guy with a healthy libido, has other options and is exclusive to wait indefinitely for sex? (since you probably can’t give a strict timetable for when you will be ready, the wait is technically indefinite).

          Of course the main obstacle would be finding a man who has strong enough feelings for you, but at your end you would also have to be really flirty, feminine and fun to be around.

        3. Nissa

          Ok, it’s pretty embarrassing to admit this, but I’m not talking about tons of guys here. Most of the time, I have a first date, the guy asks for a second date, and I turn him down. For the men who make it past that, they generally react by asking me for more dates. Maybe it’s just because they’ve never had this happen before and are confused about what to do *laugh*.JK. I think it’s because 1) I am quite clear that I am only interested in a serious relationship and 2) the ones that like me, really like me, as in a Duckie loves Andie kind of way. They tend to be a bit nerdy (I love ideas & men who can express them) so historically they probably don’t have a lot of options anyway. I’ve never asked them if they are faithful, because IMO it’s not relevant until we are exclusive. If he has needs, well, he has hands, doesn’t he? He’s a free agent until otherwise expressed. In the past, I did kiss, but no clothing removed and no oral – if I’m going that far, there’s no point in stopping anyway.What I am doing is providing all of the things that are above sex on the hierarchy – fun (or at least trying to provide it), appreciation, comfort, emotional intimacy, friendship, interest (in him, in whatever interests him), lightheartedness, and a genuine interest in him as a person. Doesn’t everyone like that? I’m a flirt in general, so I’m flirting with cashiers (male or female, young or old), gas attendants, waiters, etc. So I’m pretty good at making people feel good. It’s fairly easy to do, especially in the short term. My go-to phrase is “tell me more”. As Evan says, all the things he’s not getting from his male friends.IMO it’s not about respect or if I’m worth it per se. It’s more, I just assume he wants to have sex with me. That’s a given. If he didn’t, why would he be dating me? And because I’m extremely intuitive, I almost always know within 5 minutes of meeting someone, if I have enough sexual interest to bed them. So that’s a known for me. What neither of us knows, is do we like each other, enjoy each other, wants the same kind of life, if we can tolerate each other’s flaws? That’s what dating is for, it’s a courtship to find out if that person is marriage material, if this is the person I want to spend my life with.Once the man in question feels he has enough information on me, he generally proposes marriage or disappears. After 3 proposals, I learned enough to figure out how to discourage them earlier in the process. And I’ve had a number that simply stop calling. But that’s a blessing, because that just tells me that they were not that into me, without my having the soul-crushing result I would have had, if I had had sex with them.

    3. 7.3
      Emily, the original

      YAG,

      In my humble opinion, the romantic texts were an effort by this guy to convince himself that he wanted to take things to the next level.  The LW is clearly a catch, and he knows it.

      So it’s just what I wrote. At some point, he KNEW he was ambivalent and yet he keep sending all these romantic texts. I’m tired of the “being caught up in the moment” excuse. Or he was just keeping her on the hook while putting out the feelers for people he liked better.

  8. 8
    Malika

    Agree with Emily, the original. He sounds as if he was caught in the fantasy of exciting flirtation, but didn’t want to get caught up in office shenanigans and he’s just not that into you. I’ve learnt the hard way that it’s best to keep romance out of the office. It’s important not to ruin a place that provides your bread and butter plus career opportunities, and a romance that might last a hot five minutes is not worth risking it. 

  9. 9
    Gala

    I dunno here guys. In the days of #meetoo i have clients who are now afraid to go to lunch 1×1. This sucks for me, I wish this whole BS would stay in Hollywood, with that said I get it, seeing people’s careers destroyed is hardly and aphrodisiac for office romance. May be the guy just decided the risk wasn’t worth the reward

    1. 9.1
      Adrian

      Hello Gala,

      Interesting comment because I actually find myself in a similar situation. Back before my promotion I would not have thought twice about going to lunch with a female co-worker but now that I am at an executive level I think twice about it. When women come to my office needing to talk about personal things I always feel bad but I dare not stay behind closed doors with them.

      Though with all that being said I would not call the movement BS, I would call the witch hunting that happens sometime because of it BS but not the women speaking up.

      Plus from what the letter writer describes I just don’t see that being his fear, like everyone else I just simply see it as a case of him not really being into her.

      1. 9.1.1
        Tom10

        “I would not have thought twice about going to lunch with a female co-worker but now that I am at an executive level I think twice about”
         
        Ditto. No romances, flirtations, dinners or alcohol with people from work. Not worth the risk.

        1. Adrian

          Hi Tom10,

          Did you read Evan’s post on why men don’t speak out? I think that it is now to the point where a lot of guys do fear anything that can be misinterpreted. I had a young girl who is around 23 ask me to for advice about her boyfriend problems a few weeks ago, okay no problem.

          However lately she’s been trying to cross the line, getting more intimate with touching, flirty conversation, and constant invites to “hang out” with her since I am new to the city. And while I know some guys would be happy that a young attractive women desires them, all I can think about is if for whatever reason she decides to say I tried something I would be guilty until proven guilty.

          I know it’s not politically correct to say this but I think most people would believe a woman over a guy if she said he tried to flirt, touch, go out with, ask for sex, or rape her.

          …   …   …

          Oh and what is this bet you have with Emily?

        2. Emily, the original

          Adrian,

          Oh and what is this bet you have with Emily?

          It’s none of your business. 🙂

        3. Mrs Happy

          All this not lunching with the opposite sex at work is really going to cramp long term romance style, as lots of people meet their eventual spouse at work.  Gosh half my past boyfriends were from different work environments of mine, and I’ve worked in places where that’s the main entertainment (not specifically me getting it on, but almost everyone getting it on or flirting with various colleagues), though of course we all did some work too.  Somehow.

          Adrian, I don’t know whether Tom10 mentioning the details of his bet with Emily, the Original (great name) will result in a forfeit so I’ll try to help.  I think the bet is something like, Emily can’t mention sexual attraction or hot manly good looks or something, and I can’t recall what Tom10 cannot mention but it may be something along the lines of primarily physical attraction in women?  Hopefully someone can clarify.  I would love to know what the loser has to do – it sounded like slave time or something – and how they’ll enforce it from different states.

        4. Jeremy

          @Mrs Happy regarding work romances – I agree with you.  While I think that the MeToo stuff is necessary and that harassment needs to end, my problem with the way it’s being done is that there is a natural conclusion people are missing.  It’s what I tried to express on Evan’s MeToo post.

           

          We live in a world where male desire for women is stronger than female desire for men, and in a world where men are expected to initiate.  If we slap down male initiation too much (as we have done), men will simply stop initiating.  It’s the logical thing to do, and I’m seeing it already.  They don’t want to risk everything to pursue a woman, so they watch porn and play video games.  Porn is the cheapest sex – it might not be as good as the real thing, but it won’t accuse you of harassment or lead you to lose your job.  And this will leave women with a choice – to either initiate on their own, or to go without relationships.  I’m watching this with fascination!  Because women generally HATE initiating and will do so far less than men, being far less addicted to sex than men are, and far more picky than men.  And when women do initiate they tend (IME) to be less satisfied with the whole relationship dynamic because they don’t perceive the men feeling like they (the women) are worth pursuing.  No validation.  Too much work for too little return.

           

          I hate to quote the manosphere, but in this case I think we’re going to see some serious hamster-style rationalization happening soon, where women will tell men that it’s ok to initiate…..as long as the women want them to and give them signals.  And men will, of course, ignore this meaningless rationalization because, of course, they are not mind-readers.  And we will either see a serious decline in relationships, or we will see a flip in gender roles which, I think, will make no one happy.

           

        5. Tom10

          @ Adrian
          “Did you read Evan’s post on why men don’t speak out? I think that it is now to the point where a lot of guys do fear anything that can be misinterpreted.” 
           
          Exactly.
           
          In fairness every guy knows the difference between normal friendly banter and being an annoying sleazy pest. But to be the safe side it’s best to keep all professional environments strictly, um, professional.
           
          “while I know some guys would be happy that a young attractive women desires them, all I can think about is if for whatever reason she decides to say I tried something I would be guilty until proven guilty.”
           
          It’s terrifying isn’t it? Our societies have built a judicial system over hundreds of years centred around the principle that one is innocent until proven guilty; now it’s trial by media/social media and, if named, one is presumed guilty either way.
           
          “Oh and what is this bet you have with Emily?”
           
          Lol; Emily seems to be of the opinion that I’m a teeny-tiny bit overly focussed on looks (I don’t know where she got the idea from) and challenged me as to whether I could write comments without referring to them. I agreed with the quid pro quo that she stop referring to the big C (chemistry) in her comments.
           
          @ Mrs. Happy
          “I would love to know what the loser has to do – it sounded like slave time or something – “

          Right, she has a servant bell and Diet Cokes ready to be re-iced.
           
          “and how they’ll enforce it from different states.”
           
          Haha. Different countries. Different continents even! Although I’m planning a trip state-side later this year so hopefully we’ll meet so I can collect my winnings. 😉

        6. Adrian

          Hi Mrs Happy and Emily,

          Sorry Emily (^_^) and thanks Mrs Happy.

          Tom’s “a women who is a 7.329 out of 10 in looks” and Emily’s “a man who has a magic wand that could make a woman do more than pull rabbits out of a hat in bed” type analogies were very scientific. Much better than any of my parents old birds and bees metaphor type explanations (^_^).

          …   …   …

          On another note just out of curiosity Mrs. Happy how do you as a woman deal with attractive junior employees who “may” have a crush on you?

          How do you draw the line and differentiate between really friendly and flirty? Most studies prove that we men can’t tell the difference.

          Would you ever go to lunch or have “friendly” conversations behind closed doors with that person?

          My-and i think Tom10’s-fear is the chance that one wrong word from that person and it could mean your job and reputation even if you did nothing wrong. I am not sure about Australia or in the UK where Tom10 is (Scotland or Ireland Tom?) but here in the states it’s almost to the point where if a woman accuses a man he is assumed guilty until prove guilty. And even if he is proven innocent his reputation will be ruined. Of course like you said when it’s between two lower level employee no one cares who they date.

        7. Emily, the original

          Tom10,

          I’m planning a trip state-side later this year so hopefully we’ll meet so I can collect my winnings. 

          You keep dreaming. I can keep up the bet until the end of time.

        8. Adrian

          Hi Jeremy,

          You said, “We live in a world where… men are expected to initiate… Because women generally HATE initiating… And this will leave women with a choice – to either initiate on their own, or to go without relationships.

          This is just my personal opinion based off of my limited sample sizes but I think that there is a 3rd choice. And of course this is the option that most women choose and that is to condemn men who they are NOT attracted to for initiating while: accepting initiation from, encouraging initiation from, or questioning the masculinity of the men who “they desire” but he doesn’t try to initiate with her.

          I rarely if ever see a women initiate with a guy unless they are both young or unless there is a very clear SMV gap (his being bigger). Your second choice I see more often. I have seen many women choose to remain single rather than approach a guy. The main excuse is generally “I looked at him so if he is too scared to approach then he must not have thought I was worth it.”

          So I think in their minds Jeremy they don’t see it as choosing to be single they see it as qualifying a guy or they see it as gauging his interest in her…

          By the way the parameters of my sample size is the 25-30 year old crowd so this may not apply to older and more emotionally mature women.

        9. Jeremy

          Oh, I definitely agree with you, Adrian, about what women will do.  My comment was about what men will do.  The tragedy IMHO is that women won’t see where this is leading.  They will simply say, “All men have to do is be respectful and everything will be ok.”  They won’t understand that “respectful” is all in the eye of the beholder, and that if an accusation can lead to total ruination, men will simply not feel it’s worth the risk.  In fact, that’s the expression I hear over and over from young men, both at work and on campus.  “It’s not worth it.”

           

          My hope is that the witch hunt mentality ends soon, and that some semblance of sanity is restored.  I’m not optimistic.

        10. Tron Swanson

          I’ve been cautious with women–both in terms of legal/financial risk and wasted time and effort–for a long, long time. It’s nice to see other men catching on. Unless you’re either above-average in certain areas or someone who thrives on challenge, there’s just no point in trying that hard.

        11. Evan Marc Katz

          You’re still here? I’m sure the Reddit/Incel group is bustling right about now.

        12. Adrian

          Hi Jeremy,

          You said, “My comment was about what men will do.  The tragedy IMHO is that women won’t see where this is leading.

          This is probably the first time I have disagreed with you and your big juicy brain Jeremy. But everytime I hear a man say something like how women’s behavior will stop men from courting: pursuing, initiating, offering to pay for dates, or generally take the lead, etc… I completely disagree because I just don’t see the evidence of it.

          Additionally when I went back to college to get my Master’s I was allowed to view the college experience from an adult’s perspective; and trust me young men have not stopped doing any of the things that Evan suggest a man do to get a woman.

          Men my age, your age, and older still initiate, still pursue, still court and that will not change. Even the few foreign countries I’ve visited like Europe and Australia where everyone swears dating is more egalitarian than here in the U.S, I have only observed men and ONLY men doing all the initiating. I don’t see that ever changing.

           

        13. Tron Swanson

          Yes, Evan, I’m still here. I’m not a big fan of hiveminds; I prefer to take in a variety of viewpoints.

          This is basically my way of staying “in shape,” as well. A few quick comments every week or month…when and if I decide to pursue women, again, that’s about how much effort I’ll put into it. This will keep my communication skills from deteriorating too much.

        14. Evan Marc Katz

          I do appreciate your mindset, Tron, and hope you come around to a more moderate take on the value of women and long-term relationships. If not, enjoy the entertainment.

        15. Mrs Happy

          Dear Adrian,

          to answer your question about me + junior colleagues, I steer very clear.  I don’t date people below me at work.  This has been hard only twice in my whole life, when 2 juniors were quite attractive and asking me out (clearly or almost), but not that hard as I work in an environment with lots of males my level or above, so I always had many alternative pickings!

          Also, re your later post above, I’m one of those women who would never ask a man out.  Why bother – I like manly decisive men, and a very easy cull is, if he can’t even have the gumption to ask me out, he’s not going to be go-getting enough for me.

        16. Yet Another Guy

          @Adrian

          I rarely if ever see a women initiate with a guy unless they are both young or unless there is a very clear SMV gap (his being bigger)

          There is a third case that usually occurs after age fifty; namely, the guy is younger.  Women over age fifty will aggressively pursue if they find a guy attractive and he is their junior.  I was curious as to why women in their late fifties through mid-sixties where hitting on me while I was not receiving the same attention from women my own chronological age and a few years younger (these women would respond, but not initiate).  This phenomenon had me wondering.  I have always thought that I was younger looking model for my age, so I decided to run an experiment.  I shaved six years off of my chronological age.  After doing so, women my chronological age and a few years younger started to contact me.  I shaved another three years off of my age, and the pattern continued.  Apparently, a man a woman’s junior is worth the effort.  A peer-age or slightly older man is not worth the effort. Women are as guilty of age bias/trophy hunting as men.  Granted, it is probably not to same extreme as men, but it appears that a lot of women over age fifty prefer men more than a year or two their junior.

        17. Angie

          Thankyou Tom..strange my husband would tweet daily to a woman he worked with for 3 years every night and I’d never heard of her..she knew more about him than I did .went to her leaving party telling me it was a man’s do..I wouldn’t have been bothered but I found out he had visited her twice at home when she had a broken foot..but I was in hospital with pneumonia and he couldn’t visit me..if he’d told me I’d have said have you got a card or flowers he told me he went once then it was twice but both times with other male workmates..it was the lies and deceit I found out much later  from her that he went alone twice..he was a closed book after talking I gave him the benefit of the doubt that she was just a workmate but it bugged me about the visiting..it’s 3 years now since I found out and he’s just told me he worked night shift she txt him her home details and he downloaded films to take and went on the bus ..I still don’t trust him as far as I can throw him he’s being great but each day I’m ready to ask for the car and house keys the next I want him to stay he thinks it’s all hunky dory..I’m not needy I can easily move on without him but can’t get closure and funnily enough he’s never come near me intimately since he started his tweeting ..always an excuse..she’s moved jobs and got a boyfriend now and I don’t think they tweet anymore but he stopped because he got caught we put it down to naivety and he didn’t realize he’d over stepped the mark..and has a password on his phone which is never ever left attended..till last week I had a gut feeling and checked his phone ..first time in 20 years and yes there again but with some silly girl with a bad life and kids to a loser..he doesn’t know it yet but it’s D.I.V.O.R.C.E.. fool me once shame on you..fool me twice shame on me !

      2. 9.1.2
        kenley

        A number of people have described the #metoo movement as a witch hunt and I truly don’t understand that sentiment.  From what I have read or seen on tv, the men who have lost their jobs — and so far that is all that has happened (except for Bill Cosby)…not one has lost their freedom — had three things in common…

        1.  Engaged in the behavior with TONS of women

        2.  Did not deny the behavior (the ones who denied the behavior haven’t lost their jobs)

        3.  Tons of other people actually knew about the behavior and helped cover it up.

        Are there examples of men who asked a woman out for lunch and because she didn’t like him, he lost his job?  Are there examples of men who have been accused and lost their jobs without any investigation being done?  The woman’s word was all that was necessary?  I am truly asking for support of the claim that #metoo is a witch hunt that has resulted in many innocent men being ruined…not that innocent men could be ruined but that they actually have been ruined.

        As a woman who unfortunately has a lot of #metoo stories to tell, I believe the goal of the movement is not just to punish men but to educate men and start a conversation about the behavior women find hurtful and harmful.  And for the people who have been suggesting that #metoo is treating all behavior the same — ie the rapist is the same as the man who pinches a woman’s butt at the Christmas party, that’s just not true. No woman has said those behaviors are the same or that they deserve the same consequences.  The suggestion that they do just seems to be another way to try to say that women are irrational and therefore should be silenced.  I think some men simply don’t want to hear women’s stories because those stories might make them question the image they have of themselves as being good guys who have never done anything to hurt women.

        Finally, if #metoo encourages or forces men at the workplace to view women as colleagues instead of sex objects, I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

         

        1. Jeremy

          Well, just here in Ontario the leader of a major political party lost his candidacy due to an accusation that turned out to be inaccurate.  A host of a major media show was accused of sexual impropriety and was eventually exonerated, though his reputation will now be forever tarnished.  The host of a baseball broadcasting show was accused of speaking inappropriately to women and lost his job and had his reputation dragged through the mud.  Those are just the high-profile cases locally.  It is one thing to go after men who meet the 3 criteria you gave, Kenley.  But that isn’t all that is happening.

           

          The metoo movement is not leading men to view women as colleagues instead of sex objects.  It is leading them to want to avoid them entirely.  The problem is not that it goes after harassers – it is that it does so without any semblance of due process or balance.

        2. Gala

          One the best and brightest portfolio managers at the largest US asset manager lost his job because of some vague accusations of office impropriety… but hey he’s not in Hollywood so nobody is paying attention. He’s not the only one, the media hardly ever pays attention to anybody who’s not a celebrity.

        3. Kenley

          Jeremy and Gala

          Thank you for the examples.  I am curious as to why you have come to the conclusion that these men unfairly  lost theirs jobs.  First of all none of the examples indicate what the men did.  Your examples seem to suggest that whatever they did really wasn’t all that bad.  You could be right, but how do we know?  Second, many big companies have a zero sexual harassment policy and typically require employees to watch a video that details exactly what sexual harassment  is.  So, if these guys were accused and HR did an investigation and concluded that they did indeed violate the policy, then being fired is a reasonable consequence.  Unless you know for a fact that there was no investigation and these men were fired without any type of confirmation, or that what the men did really wasn’t sexual harassment but they just got fired any way, then I don’t see how they are truly examples of a witch hunt.  

           
          I have worked in corporate America for over 30 years and what I know for sure is that companies do not fire powerful men who make the company a lot of money unless they have done something really really bad and are therefore a huge liability or they have done something to the wrong person.   Gala you mentioned that there was no press so I am assuming the company got no pressure from social media or the social justice warriors.  So, what’s in it for the company to fire a man who hasn’t done anything wrong?  Also, if this is truly what the movement wants, why wouldn’t they be highlighting and celebrating these “victories”?    Metoo is not out to persecute innocent men.  It is out the end sexual harassment and assault.   If companies are foregoing due process and firing men unfairly, metoo can’t be blamed for that counter productive behavior.   There are a lot of smart people in this world.  It seems to me that we can figure out a way to make the workplace safe and productive for both men and women. 

        4. Jeremy

          Kenley, regarding your question of whether the men in my example were treated unfairly, the first man is suing the TV station that reported the false news for many millions of dollars.  The station seems to think he has a case, especially since the news they floated about him (that cost him his candidacy) was FALSE.  The second man did not lose his job, as he was exonorated.  Therefore the accusations were baseless.  Therefore what happened to him and to his reputation was unjust.  The third man admitted to making inappropirate jokes – he was HIRED to make inappropriate jokes.  That was his draw to the news station he worked for.  He did not force women to have sex, a la Harvey Weinstein, nor drug women and have sex with them while asleep a la Bill Cosby.  He told insensitive jokes.  Should that have cost him his job, or should he have perhaps received a warning that what he was hired to do was no longer appropriate?

           

          A while back, a group of male dental students got in trouble at the University of Dalhousie.  Apparently, on their closed facebook group, they told some off-colour jokes about several of their female classmates and referenced whom they might consider “hate-F-ing”.  Were their jokes inappropriate?  YES.  Should these young men have been disciplined?  YES.  But the outcry against them – demanding their expulsion from their program, their names being published for them to forever be un-employable, for justice for the “survivors” of their jokes – was entirely disproportionate to their actions.  It was a result of a backlash – an over-swing of the corrective pendulum.  A witch hunt.

           

          You wrote, “There are a lot of smart people in this world.  It seems to me that we can figure out a way to make the workplace safe and productive for both men and women.”  I agree with that.  We just haven’t done it.  Because while I admire what MeToo is trying to accomplish, we must be really careful about over-swinging the pendulum and turning women into perpetual children from their own perspective, and land-mines from men’s.

        5. Tom10

          @ Jeremy
          “It was a result of a backlash – an over-swing of the corrective pendulum. A witch hunt.”

          Right.

          The problem with an over-swing of the corrective pendulum is that the entire movement loses all credibility as a result; and we’ll end up worse off than if it never happened in the first place.

          Fair process, presumed innocence and ability to respond must be included as central tenets of any justice system. Otherwise the system is flawed and unsustainable.

          I fully agree with stamping out inappropriate sexual behavior in all environments; especially the workplace; however, due process must be observed to retain credibility. Trial by media is the antithesis of fair process and the epitome of a witch-hunt.

        6. Clare

          Kenley,

          “Unless you know for a fact that there was no investigation and these men were fired without any type of confirmation, or that what the men did really wasn’t sexual harassment but they just got fired any way, then I don’t see how they are truly examples of a witch hunt.”

          This sounds very much like a “guilty until proven innocent” mentality.

        7. Jeremy

          @Tom, when I was a university student, I worked part-time for the police department as a forensic toxicologist to earn some money. It was interesting work.  One of the things I most vividly remember was a discussion with the head of the forensic dept about the standards we were using to ascertain guilt.  They were really, really high.  In other words, for us to say that a person had illegal levels of a certain drug in their body, the levels had to be WAY higher than what would normally be considered legal.  I recall questioning my supervisor as to why the standards were so high, and I’ll never forget his response:  “Because we, as a society, would rather let 9 criminals go free than incarcerate 1 innocent person.” He was right.  The human race tried the alternative throughout its history and thankfully learned its lesson…..hopefully.

        8. GoWiththeFlow

          Jeremy,

          The metoo movement is not leading men to view women as colleagues instead of sex objects.  It is leading them to want to avoid them entirely.  The problem is not that it goes after harassers – it is that it does so without any semblance of due process or balance.”

          While people bemoan due process and “witch hunts” harming men, keep in mind that many MeToo stories are of how “due process” failed women.  Women took their complaints to the proper people in their workplace, and instead of getting relief from harassment they were ostracized and demonized, or the corporate response was to cover it up.  Women lost promotions, were demoted, or forced out of jobs.

          Please re-read what you wrote.  Because men not being able to view their female co-workers as colleague instead of sex objects, and instead feeling that they are victims is a sad commentary on the internal thought processes of men who believe this.

        9. Jeremy

          I re-read it, GWTF, but I stand by it.  I am extremely sympathetic to what you wrote, and to the plight of the women who have experienced harassment.  I am extremely interested in finding solutions that will make women, including my wife and daughters, safe in the workplace (and everywhere else).  But we can not substitute one injustice with another.  We can not transform women’s fear of men into men’s fear of women.  Giving women the power to essentially nuke a man’s career without any due process based on an accusation is a mistake – it’s not a power anyone should have.  As Christina Hoff-Summers so elegantly put it, “We can not transform the myth of the lying woman into the myth of the woman who never lies.”

           

          Due process. Taking claims seriously, but maintaining the burden of proof.  Keeping the name of the accuser anonymous, and ALSO keeping the name of the accused anonymous until found guilty!  No summary expulsions or firings without recourse.  This is just common sense.

        10. Kenley

          @Gowiththeflow

          Thank you for your comment.  I appreciated hearing that someone else does see the benefit of the movement.

           

          @Jeremy

          It’s pretty clear that we are just going to have to agree to disagree.  But, I still want to address the points you made and ask again how is #metoo movement in the wrong.

          1.  TV reported false accusations.  Are you suggesting that #metoo is to be blamed for the current state of journalism in which speed to air and  getting views is more important than truth and accuracy?  Sadly, this lack of integrity in journalism happened long before #metoo.  Moreover, news entities are always looking for something salacious and sex is that in spades.  Don’t blame #metoo for a station that wants ratings.

          2.  The one guy was cleared.  Mmmm if this guy was cleared doesn’t that in fact mean that he was afforded due process and the process worked?  I believe you then argued that this man’s name was dragged through the mud and he will never recover.  Really?  Maybe there was a time when a man who was simply accused of sexual misconduct might be ruined, but that just is not true today and I am tired of people saying that.

          3.  The guy was hired to make inappropriate comments so he was fired for just doing his job.  He was hired to make inappropriate comments ON AIR.   I read several articles about the guy and he had a history of inappropriate behavior OFF AIR.  He was not hired to harass the women in his office.  I have to say it’s that kind of rationalizing crappy behavior that just drives me bonkers!

          4.  Finally, the dental students.  Should they have been expelled?  Based on the limited information you shared, I don’t think so.

          I still do wonder why some people feel that woman having a voice and the courage to speak up means that innocent men will suffer.

           

        11. Jeremy

          Kenley, you keep asking how any injustice that results toward men is the fault of the MeToo movement. I find the question interesting, because to me the answer is obvious, but that’s because I’m on the other side of the divide. The movement is asking men to listen to women’s stories, to be empathetic – thus far I’m totally with it. But then it’s asking men to not respond. To not have an opinion unless that opinion is total capitulation. To STFU about it, because if you have a perspective that differs, you are a mansplainer and a misogynist. It is MeToo’s fault, Kenley, because you can’t have a movement that demands to be heard while simultaneously refusing to listen.

          It reminds me of Evan’s post about 35% of men being emotionally intelligent – where men were accused of sabotaging relationships because most were not open to the opinions of their wives. And I asked, on that thread, whether women were any more open than men. Whether the problem was that men don’t take the perspective of their wives, or whether women don’t take the perspective of their husbands – perhaps BOTH?

          Perspective. I’ll admit that when I read the Aziz Ansari story months ago, my initial reaction was that the woman did some pretty stupid things and was writing a piece of gratuitous revenge porn. That her internet connection and enforced anonymity gave her a tremendous power advantage over Ansari – the power to level an accusation and ruin his career because she was too immature to actually say no or to leave. But after my initial reaction I caught myself and tried to re-balance. Ok, maybe she did some stupid things. But what could HE have done differently? What SHOULD he have done differently? He should have been more sensitive. He should have stopped when he saw her uncertainty. BALANCE. That is the value of the MeToo movement. Its asking of men to stop and take perspective, even when that perspective does not come naturally to them because of their myopic world-view.

          I would ask women to try to do the same. And to remember that compromising and being emotionally intelligent does not mean listening politely and offering platitudes. It means actually trying to take perspective.

        12. Clare

          Jeremy,

          “But the outcry against them – demanding their expulsion from their program, their names being published for them to forever be un-employable, for justice for the “survivors” of their jokes – was entirely disproportionate to their actions.  It was a result of a backlash – an over-swing of the corrective pendulum.  A witch hunt.”

          I think this is the modern day version of the “games” in the Roman Colosseum in the days when the emperors would bring out slaves and prisoners to be torn to pieces by wild animals for the enjoyment of the crowd. People would actually cheer and bay for blood.

          I have a theory that this kind of public, ritual humiliation and punishment is so that people can temporarily feel morally superior. Kind of like “Well, I may be sleeping with my secretary/the pool boy and be snaffling money from the office petty cash fund, but at least I didn’t make those jokes.” A lot of people like others to be publicly shamed because it makes them feel better about themselves. At the moment, the “crime” of the day is sexual harassment and sexualising women. Now, I don’t dispute that these are real issues. I, like the majority of reasonable looking women on the planet, have experienced uncomfortable, disturbing, and distressing harassment before. But it’s no worse than many of the other terrible things that go on in the world. I think people demand public retribution for men like these dental students because it makes them feel better and because they can get away with demanding disproportionate punishment because the public has been whipped into a frenzy over it.

  10. 10
    Marika

    Emily

    I think you’re being a bit hard on the guys…I’m certainly guilty of seeing a guy more than once to see if something could develop when I definitely didn’t want to immediately rip their clothes off (but they seemed like a great guy). Recall that Evan wasn’t even 100% sure about his wife until 6 months after they married..Karl S recently said he forwent his usual type (which ended up in toxic relationships) to give a different kind of woman a chance, and ended up the happier for it.

    Those of us who tend to get caught up in chemistry realise we need to do something different and so do try to be with people we don’t feel that great “pull” towards from the outset. To see what can develop.

    In the best marriages I know the couple will often both say they weren’t that fussed with each other at first – which meant they didn’t go all crazy and overthink things and rush things and were just themselves..and it worked out.

    I’m a ruminator myself, but this worrying about what’s in a person’s head..you’ll drive yourself crazy! If you’re both happy and it’s working out, who cares if at first they weren’t that keen? Have you had any correlation between the amazing chemistry and a great relationship? I certainly haven’t.

    1. 10.1
      Emily, the original

      Hi Marika,

      Recall that Evan wasn’t even 100% sure about his wife until 6 months after they married..

      Yeah, but he wrote he was attracted to her from the beginning. There’s a difference between saying yes to a few dates with someone you are attracted to at a medium level and want to see if it grows and you are compatible and someone you are trying to convince yourself you are attracted to because they are good on paper.

      1. 10.1.1
        Marika

        Yes, but Emily, the secret is…none of us know what the hell we are doing out there! I’ve been online dating for a few years and learned a lot, but I still can’t tell if someone’s a good match / bad match, good match/good chemistry without at least a few dates. Then you’ll have a few bad experiences with high attraction guys, so you give a chance to the low attraction guys. It’s all just trial and error.

        Obviously we have a secret weapon (Evan), but even with his help you still make mistakes. And don’t know what works until you try it.

        1. Emily, the original

          Marika, 

          I’ve been online dating for a few years and learned a lot, but I still can’t tell if someone’s a good match / bad match, good match/good chemistry without at least a few dates. Then you’ll have a few bad experiences with high attraction guys, so you give a chance to the low attraction guys. It’s all just trial and error.

          I understand what you are saying. I’m just speaking for myself, but when I meet a man I can usually tell if it’s a yes, maybe or no in terms of: would I ever sleep with him? For me, it has to be at least a maybe. (That’s actually progress for me in that, in the past, if the answer was even a maybe, I didn’t want to bother.) But I have on occasion gone out with guys where I was pretty sure the answer was no, and by the day of the date, I had to drag myself to meet him. I didn’t even want to take a shower! I thought: Maybe I’ll just douse myself in perfume. That should be enough effort.

    2. 10.2
      Adrian

      Thank You Marika.

      I have been having this conversation with Emily for months and I am not saying I am right and I am not saying she is wrong, but I am saying that she hasn’t been able to understand my and I dare risk saying Evan’s point.

      Yes we all want the person who we can be excited about without the toxic character but if you find someone who has all the great qualities you are looking for in a long term partner in addition to attractiveness and the relationship is really smooth, what harm is there in going on 2-3 extra dates to see if a spark develops. I”m certainly not advocating marrying someone you feel nothing for.

      Also what people who chase those strong feelings of desire in a partner don’t realize is that after a few years of dating that person those strong feelings fade, so there had better be something more to your relationship than just the fact that you find them super attractive.

      1. 10.2.1
        Emily, the original

        Adrian,

        I suggested you not date women you aren’t immediately attracted to because you write often about going out with women you aren’t excited about. In addition, you write that you don’t like that these women see you as the nice guy (husband type versus boyfriend type). So maybe going out with someone who really turns you on may bypass that. It’s just a suggestion. Also, be a little meaner.   🙂

  11. 11
    Shaukat

    Ha Ha, Tom, you should just terminate this bet you have with Emily. You’re actually right–looks account for about 80% of dating success. It’s a necessary, though not sufficient, condition. Also, interested to hear your opinion on the misc piece I sent you.

    1. 11.1
      Emily, the original

      Shaukat,

      You’re actually right–looks account for about 80% of dating success. 

      The bet isn’t about which is more important in dating — the “l word” or the “c word.” It’s that he and I overly focus on our respective topics. But I’m disappointed. You were one of the few male commenters — well, the only male commenter — who seemed to understand that the c word is not entirely based on someone’s l. (And this is as much as I can write lest I forfeit to Tom.)

  12. 12
    shaukat

    Ha ha, Emily I still believe that and you’re absolutely right–chemistry cannot simply be reduced to physical attraction. I have enough experience to know that there’s a substantial component to attraction that’s based on an emotional connection and feeling that goes beyond looks. However, physical appearance is still a necessary, though not sufficient, condition-it gets your foot in the door, without meeting that initial looks threshold someone has you won’t get to develop that emotional connection, despite what some say about people ‘growing’ on you over time. That’s all I meant.

    1. 12.1
      Emily, the original

      Shaukat,

      Emily I still believe that and you’re absolutely right–chemistry cannot simply be reduced to physical attraction. 

      To me, the “c word” is the same as physical attraction.  I suppose we all have a physical type that dings our bells, which is where the “l word” comes in, but not in the way most people think because our type is not always the most attractive person in the room. Psychologists actually believe our type is based on our early caregivers. Bad news if you had bad caregivers! Emotional connection is something else entirely, which you can have with no “c.”

      1. 12.1.1
        Mrs Happy

        Dear Emily, the original,
        IMHO Tom10 is currently being a gentleman not calling a win on this – you’re talking about chemistry, you’re just not typing the whole word.
        The bet is such a good idea though. I just listed the topics regular commentators could be bet not to mention, but for fear of hurting feelings and curtailing free speech, deleted it. Time to look inwards now I think!

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          I feel that any regular reader here could pose responses as another regular reader, and because everyone’s POV is so clear, be able to readily impersonate him/her. Reminds me of when I was a screenwriter – you hear a character talk in your mind and then just type out whatever you hear her say.

        2. Emily, the original

          Mrs. Happy,

          The bet is such a good idea though. I just listed the topics regular commentators could be bet not to mention, but for fear of hurting feelings and curtailing free speech, deleted it. Time to look inwards now I think!

          Yes, true. When I typed out that response to Shaukat, I realized I was skating on very thin ice. I just enjoyed the interchange with Shaukat because he is the only man on here who doesn’t equate physical attraction solely with physical attractiveness, a topic I have tried repeatedly (to no avail) to explain.

          And so, Mr. Tom, I declare you the winner. I am ready for my punishment.

        3. S.

          It’s actually a heartening thought. 🙂 I like the idea that people read my thoughts enough to see a pattern!  I only see that they are long thoughts. 🙂

      2. 12.1.2
        Tom10

        Dear Emily, the original
        That’s very gracious of you; I actually didn’t pay too much notice to the comment originally. We were always going to require an independent arbiter to make the call; so kudos and thanks to Mrs. Happy for stepping up and doing just that.
         
        As for your punishment? Nah; I wouldn’t do that to you Emily.
         
        But I feel the exercise has served its point and delivered for both of us.
         
        Now; indulge yourself with some chemistry comments! 😉
         
        @ Shaukat 
        “interested to hear your opinion on the misc piece I sent you.
         
        And…finally I’m free to macro and micro analyze looks to the nth degree.
         
        “have you ever read the Misc dating forum (bodybuilding.com)? I recently read a thread there where the members posted a photo of a 4/10 guy who was dating a 8.5/10 girl, and the participants were all debating whether it was legit or she was after money/status. I bring it up because it reminded me of your and Emily’s debates on here about looks.
        The thread is hilarious, so I’ll leave it here for you or anyone who wants the lols. Warning though, not for the faint of heart:)
        https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=165955461
         
        So with regards to ratings; firstly the guy:
         
        He seems tallish, has a full head of hair, good teeth, full frame and no discernable disfigurements or disabilities.
         
        He has a smiley, friendly grin and seems non-threatening with a cheeky disposition.
         
        He carries a few pounds although nothing excessive; my experience is that women prefer men with a few pounds more, rather than a few pounds less.
         
        His sartorial and hair styling is non-descript.
         
        Overall I think 4/10 is harsh and I’d class him in the 6.1-6.3 range; i.e. just above average. It wouldn’t take much for him to improve a lot.
         
        Secondly, the girl:
         
        Yes she’s very attractive: she has her hair/clothes/ camera poses/ figure/teeth/boobs/makeup/eyebrow/ etc. just right.
         
        8.5 as you suggest is fair.
         
        So there’s probably a discrepancy of 2 – 2.5 levels or so in difference; although not unheard of this dynamic is rare.
         
        The most pertinent piece of information is the picture caption “#highschoolsweethearts”: I always put an asterisk beside high school sweetheart couplings as both parties are dating novices and have no awareness of the big bad world of adult dating with its leagues/options/goals/power/SMV blah blah blah.
         
        So it could well be legit in this instance; but it will be extremely difficult for that guy to land another girl remotely as attractive as her again.

  13. 13
    D_M

    Come on YAG!

    Where is the rest of the story? Did one of those sliver foxes flip you wig?

  14. 14
    mucha

    Its very painful though I would sag its good riddance to bad rubbish. He was never yours from the beginning. If someone truly loves you they will fight for you against all odds

  15. 15
    L

    Every dating relationship is an “experiment” in compatibility, love, connection, friendship, relationship goal compatibility, etc. But … in today’s world, there is NO woman (at least in the NYC area and likely in the US) who will allow a dating relationship to develop and continue without a feeling that there is some chemistry, flirting, repartee, etc. There SHOULD be women who allow this, because in most situations, to find a sincere, standup guy with staying power … chances are he may NOT be someone who has the charisma and ability to “put on” that personnae at the beginning when he is first getting to know a complete stranger.

    But … I digress. The bottom line is men know this. Men know that they won’t be given the time of day or the chance to continue. The chance to see if there is compatibility, the chance to get laid, the chance to continue to develop that relationship … unless they flirt and “act excited” about you. Even if they are not sure it is going to work out, even if they are not sure if you are compatible, even if they perhaps are not looking for something long-term. You will consider them boring, you will consider the “relationship” missing something. So in essennce, men HAVE to act excited even if they may not necessarily be so.

    What is the answer? Don’t be so insistent on someone who “acts excited” especially in the first say … 3-6 dates. Give guys who seem like stand-up guys a shot … in situations where one or both of you may have a sense that you don’t know how “excited” you both may be about each other … YET. Men who find it SO easy to be excited about someone that they don’t know are the ones who often can feign it very easily. Sometimes … or often … this level of excitement takes time to develop in a relationship with REAL potential. And lastly, if you insist on that level of excitement right away, be wary. It may be real, but it may not be.

    1. 15.1
      No Name To Give

      I live by the motto, “beware the charmer”.

      I have also not gotten seconds dates, because although I was engaging, polite, and attentive, the guy didn’t think I was interested enough. Go figure.

  16. 16
    L

    So men do the same thing then. It’s a shame. But in the case of women, I truly believe it’s more of a subliminal thing that may not be entirely conscious. They are just “not feeling it” (the excitement on the part of the man even in situations where it is a completely blind date) and presume that they never will. No one has patience anymore it seems.

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