Thursday, September 15, 2005

He Won't Commit

Hi, Terry-

I've been dating a guy for almost five months now. We knew each other before we started dating - while we were both dating other people. A couple of weeks after I broke up with my ex he broke up with his ex. He then asked me out only about a week later. Before we ever started dating, I always talked to my neighbors, including him, about my guy troubles. We had many conversations about why I was gonna break up with my ex and what I wanted from a guy. He would then point to himself and say that he was all of those things that I wanted.

I've been dating him since May. He is the most considerate, attentive, thoughtful guy I've ever dated. My question is at what point should I expect to call each other boyfriend/girlfriend? He asked me to be patient with him because as he says, "I'm not ready to admit it, but I really like you A LOT." I'm not dating anyone else, and he knows it, and I don't believe he's dating anyone else either.

It makes me feel very insecure. In my experience, I would wait for what I wanted and would never get it. I was way too patient. I'd stay in long-term relationships forever. I'm 34 and am not willing to do that anymore. (He's 31.) I just don't want to jump the gun now and do the opposite of what I've always done for no good reason.

We've touched on the subject a couple of times, and he's just admitted that he's basically afraid of a commitment so soon after leaving his ex.

Any opinions?

-Gotta Have Him

Dear Gotta-

I'm full of opinions.

You like him, he likes you, but he's afraid to define it. I can't say I blame him since he's just broken up with his ex, and you just broke up with yours. Getting involved with a new person is scary for so many different reasons. Hey, we've all been there.

I'm not going to tell you to wait around forever, but I don't think you should push the issue, either. He's not ready to commit. Accept that. See him when you see him, but don't be available all the time. If he calls you, call him back, but I wouldn't call him too often. (I know this is easier said than done, but it must be done.)

It helps (and it's attractive) to give him a little space (and I would suggest he give you space if it were he who wrote to me about you), so that he can better define his feelings. Don't play games with him, but he doesn't need to know your every move. Give him a chance to miss you.

Go out with your friends (if you don't have any, make some), and don't always include him in your plans. People with full, happy lives are a turn-on. In the end, if it's meant to be with this particular guy, it'll be, but if you push him to hard, you'll turn him off. That'll end it.

Put yourself in his place: Imagine dating a guy you really like but aren't sure of yet. He calls you 3 times a day, gives you a hard time when you go out with your friends (I'm not suggesting you do any of these things, but you get the picture), and so on. It's a turn off.

Go about your life, and please stop talking to your neighbors about your man problems. They only make you look like a sad sack, most importantly to yourself. Change your self-image. Tell yourself you're young, attractive, and desirable. Repeat. Repeat again.

Act accordingly.

To your happily ever after,