Wednesday, May 26, 2010

What to Do When He Says He Doesn't Want a Relationship

Thanks to the women who've brought the following subject to my attention, and thanks to Jeff Mac and Adam for inspiring this article.

At least three men have told me exactly what you must do when a guy
tells you he doesn't want (or isn't ready) for a relationship:

Believe him.

Here's the thing: A certain type of guy will tell a woman he doesn't
want a relationship. Then, instead of doing the honorable thing and
making himself scarce, he'll continue to hang around and take
what he can get.

The woman, in the meantime, tells herself a) he must care for her
more than he's willing to admit because he's hanging around, and
b) he'll change his mind and commit to her.

The thing is, he wasn't kidding. He doesn't want a relationship,
and when he finally decides he does, it's usually with someone
else.

The men I talked to said they all had friends who've pulled this stunt
and didn't feel guilty about it. They felt they'd been honest when
they announced they didn't want a relationship. The fact that
the woman continued to go along with things was her choice.

If you're in this situation, please get out. Please. Please. Get
out before you get hurt.

Make yourself busy. Make yourself scarce. Go out with old friends.
Make new friends. Start writing the novel, knitting the sweater,
planting the garden you've been putting off.

Also, it's much easier to forget a guy when you have others to
choose from (it's really hard to move on when you think the guy
you were with was THE only one for you. Get out and meet new
men.

Seriously, hold out for a better man. He's out there, and you deserve him.

Monday, May 24, 2010

He's Single, Celibate, and Loving It

Dear Terry,

I think I used the Law of Attraction to attract this man in my life, but I may not have been specific enough! Met a guy a year ago on a photo shoot, I was shooting his friend. He was friendly said he would contact me about pictures shortly.

Contacted me about 9 months later for pics. He said he was a personal trainer, and he could train me for free if I wanted because he enjoyed it.

So he emailed me like every morning what I needed to get done for the day, we met up several weeks later to discuss everything. I tell him I need to get in shape for sister's wedding, and he says I'll be ready. Then later that night he emails me and asks me if he could escort me to the wedding. I say yes. He has also told me that he is so happy that I am in his life, and I am a joy in his life, and he has met a lot of women, and I have a special gift.

He continues to invite me places with his friends, and to group activities, but has never asked me out on a one-on-one. He is very spiritual and into church and God. He has said that he doesn't want me to hook him up with anybody because he enjoys just being single and hanging with his friends. He is currently celibate and waiting for marriage, but he has had sex before.

I invited him to group activity with my friends and he said, if I want him there he will be there, so he is willing to be on my turf.

I have heard his best friend say that I'm a keeper, but the guy has never actually professed to want to be with me.

I am totally falling for this man, and I am unsure if he is just making me a really good friend, or if he has an interest in dating me and may be just moving really slow because he doesn't date frivolously. I am afraid to ask if this is going anywhere because if I don't know I can still dream, and also, if he is just going to be a friend then that's great because he's a wonderful person. Also, the wedding has been pushed back two seasons, and he still says he will take me, which means he expects to be around then. Mixed signals?

Please Help!

-What's the Deal With This Guy?


Dear What's the Deal:

You write:

"I am unsure if he is just making me a really good friend, or if he has an interest in dating me and may be just moving really slow because he doesn't date frivolously."

You're unsure, but it's not your job to sit around doing mental gymnastics to figure out what this guy wants to do. It's his job to open his mouth and be absolutely clear about it. "You have a special gift" and "You are a joy in my life" are lovely statements, but they pale in comparison to, "I'm crazy about you, and I can't imagine life without you" or even "How about you and I try that new restaurant on Saturday?"

Right now, he's having fun being single and hanging with his friends. He's in no rush to do anything else. He likes you, obviously, but he's going to live according to his timetable and nobody else's. That's his prerogative, but are you going to put your life on hold so he can escort you to a wedding? Think of all the other (possibly more suitable) men you might miss out on by fixating on this one individual.

You say you're falling for him, but I recommend you take very good care of yourself and slowly back away. Seriously, what are you supposed to do? Wait around to find out if he's ever going to date you properly?

I don't suggest you back away out of spite or a desire to "make him miss me." Your goal is to protect yourself and perhaps make yourself available to meet someone even better. Right now, you are so caught up in this guy's "greatness" that you couldn't recognize a better man if he bit you on the leg.

Back away. Be less available to accept this fellow's invitations (you don't have to cut him off completely, but say yes less often). If you have other friends, go out with them. If you don't, make new friends. By all means, widen your social circle and take advantage of all the fun opportunities that come your way.

In the meantime, look at this as a chance to clarify what you want: To fall in love with a man who loves you and is clear about it. If it's not this guy, it will surely be someone else.

Which means, when the time comes, you may not be around to take Mr. Single and Hanging With His Friends to your sister's wedding, after all.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Why Didn't Her Boyfriend Invite Her to His Party?

Hi Terry,

I've been an avid reader of yours. I've never come across this situation and wanted to contact you before ruining anything!

What do you do when your boyfriend ignores you? I've never had this issue before!

Some background information: We've only been dating a month but have known each other for about 10 years (we went to high school together). Well, usually I get a text midday saying "hi beautiful" from him. Yesterday, no text. I figured I'd say hi to him since he was always pursuer he probably wanted to see that I could do the same for him. I had just finished getting my hair done and texted, "Wait til you see my hair!" And he wrote back "Oh really," and I wrote back "Really!" keeping it short and sweet.

Well, I got home an hour later and saw that on Facebook he had a status post that said "Bags, beer, and bbq, come one come all byob - call if you need directions," so I texted him, "Having a party and didn't invite me? thanks..." His best friend chatted me up at this time, and I mentioned to his friend how I was disappointed he didn't invite his own girlfriend to his party. Best friend was very casual about it and goes, "He didn't invite me personally either, you're his gf just assume you're invited and show up."

During this time I got a text back from my boyfriend who said, "Everyones invited thats why I put it on fb" I'm like "What if i didnt check fb," and he's like "I was gonna call when we finished setting shit up." I respond "Weak," to which he didn't respond.

This was last night around 6 or so. He still never said anything about asking me to come, so I figured it didn't mean that much to him that I wasn't there and didn't go. I made plans with coworkers instead. Well it's 7pm now and no word from him.... I know hes ok based on facebook status updates and such, but I'm kind of weirded out. Is he doing this to test me? Is he angry I didn't show last night? I was going to just brush it off and see what happened. I figured I'd eventually get a text asking me how my day's going. And if he asked why I didn't show I'd just say, "Well it didn't mean much to you for me to be there so I made other plans."

Would you say to let him have his tantrum (so to speak) and just wait for a text? And how long would you say to wait before taking action? I know it's best to let the man be pursuer, and I really don't want to become pursuer by sending out the first text. What would you do in my situation? I'm so confused!

Any help would be GREATLY appreciated!

-Waiting


Hello, Waiting-

It is a bit unusual that a guy who you consider a boyfriend wouldn't personally (I mean eye-to-eye) invite you to a party. Which brings me to vital question: In the month you've been a couple, how much face time have you two actually had? Too many of us confuse a series of texts with a relationship. Let's face it, it takes virtually no effort to text.

Consider this scenario: You are somewhat interested in three different guys. You need somebody to come over and caulk your windows. You send a text (unbenownst to the others) to all three guys that goes like this, "Hey, Handsome. In a pickle and could use your big, strong arms to get me out of it. ;-) "

Then you sit back and see who replies. If you get a taker, great. If you get more than one taker, you find a project for each of them -- on different days.

Do you see where I'm going with this?

It's possible this guy likes you and is just utterly and completely stupid about keeping a woman in his life, but I fear this is more a case of "He's not that into you." (Seriously, you are thinking way too much about this person. And you are thinking too much about his motivations. Do you really think God put you on the planet to read men's minds? Hint: No, he did not. He gave men their very own mouths to express thoughts and feelings.)

I would not waste my time talking to his friends to extract their genius insights. I would certainly not text this guy or try to engage him in conversations about why he didn't personally ask you to his party. You're way too good for that, are you not?

Also, this business of checking his status updates on Facebook is death. Stop checking, wondering, planning. Forget it!

Bottom line: If I were having a party and wanted to be damn sure a special someone showed up, I wouldn't rely on them catching a blanket invitation on Facebook. Would you?

Stop settling for so very little.

Get busy and stay busy. Go out and have some serious fun. If he texts you again, I wouldn't respond. If he can't figure out how to step up his game, he's strictly minor league.

And you're ready for a major leaguer, right? (A guy who loves you, makes your happiness a priority, and never lets you forget it?)

Well, come on then. Hold out for a major leaguer.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Once She Returned His Interest, He Lost It

Hi, Terry:

This guy chased me for seven months, and then he lost interest after I started showing him that I was interested in him. We work together, and he is my boss. What should I do?

We only went to the gun range together and nothing happened. Should I give up on him or wait to see what happens next?

-Bullseye


Hello, Bullseye-

Your boss sounds like one of those guys who gets off on the chase, who wants what he can't have. Once you returned his interest, he got bored and moved on.

This is his problem and definitely not yours. Forget about him. At work, do your job and treat him only as you would a colleague. Hold out for a genuine adult male who wants a relationship instead of a hunting expedition.

You're a woman, not an elk.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Is It Time to Drop the Rock?

Has this ever happened to you?

You fell for a guy. You thought he fell for you. You never felt so strongly about any man before. You were meant to be with him. The signs were all over the place.

And then he broke up with you.

Maybe it happened two months ago. Maybe it happened two years ago. It doesn't matter. You were -- you're still -- devastated.

To this day, you carry this man and your former relationship around with you. You ask yourself where you went wrong, how you could have done things better. You fantasize about running into him, showing him that you are the woman he just can't live without.

You're in pain. He's still the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning. You tell yourself you'll never get over him.

And, guess what? You're right.

Because as long as you keep telling yourself you can't get over him, you can't get over him. And, for as long as you carry him around with you, the pain of losing him will weigh on you.

Think about it: You're carrying around a burden. You might as well be walking around with a heavy rock in your breast pocket. There are days you can barely stand up straight.

Isn't it time to drop the rock?

Put the man out of your mind. Banish the memories. Stop mentally staring into his eyes.

Tell yourself that if this relationship were meant to be, it would be. Be open to the very real possibility that you'll run into the man who hurt you five years from now, and you won't be able to fathom what you ever saw in him.

(This happens all the time.)

So, please do drop the rock. Set yourself free.

Ask yourself, how am I ever going to meet the right man when I'm hung up on the wrong man, a person who hurt me, shows no interest, and has moved on with his life? Ask yourself, why am I putting myself through this?

When you're free -- and only when you're free -- can you open yourself to attracting a man who'll love you and never let you forget it.

Go for it.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bear With Me, People (Please)

I'm in the process of moving Dating Advice (Almost) Daily to Wordpress. I've yet to transfer my blog roll, upload a photo and so on.

If you'd like a peek at the work in progress, go to Dating Advice (Almost) Daily.

I hope to get back to answering your questions soon.

In the meantime, I found this informative video featuring Tara Parker-Pope, author of For Better: The Science of a Happy Marriage. It runs about five minutes, and it's worth it. Also, check out Parker-Pope's article for the New York Times here.

Bottom line: You get what you ask for.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Friday, May 07, 2010

To Attract Men, Try This...

The other day, I wrote to my newsletter subscribers about a woman who refused to believe she's too old for love. Sure enough, she found it.

Whatever your age, you can benefit from her winning philosophy:

"Put a smile on your face. Make someone else smile.Do what you love to do. Have fun."

This prompted a response from a reader who has a similar mindset. I've edited her wonderful letter for length, but here's the gist of it:

"You mentioned smiling, and I can't agree with you more. I have just
gotten out into the fishbowl so to speak after 33 years of marriage.
What I noticed in most of the bars/pubs/dance halls right away is
that many of the women had cat faces of jealousy or envy or
something on their expressions. It was as if they were on a mission,
and I had just entered their turf. Wow. I was not quite prepared for
that. They looked evil or almost vengeful, and I noticed that about
several women in several places.

Well, I just thought - I am going to enjoy myself for sure. I have been shocked by the wonderful compliments too as the men noticed. One said to me 'You put the icing on the cake in here tonight.'

A 25-year-old female told me, 'You are so hot,' not as a come-on but a statement of real honesty. Another gentleman called me a 'stellar woman' compared to the others in hereand thanked me for being there.

I was not at all flirtatious or dressed provocatively but just smiled, laughed and was very relaxed. They notice! Many women have come through some very hurtful situations, but if you let that keep you down, the situation is still controlling you.

Be a victor and rise above the ashes and love will find you. So get smiling and be happy, Women. It works!"

--A Reader


Thanks a million, Reader, for the illuminating letter.

It may sound too good to be true, but just by looking happy and being relaxed, this woman set herself apart from so many others who hope to meet the right man.

She hit the nail on the head when she mentioned the creepy looks she got from other females when she "invaded their turf."

The sad thing, for those women, is that it's not just the "invader" who notices the evil looks -- every man in three-mile radius notices, too.

And guess what? Jealousy and sour looks are not attractive. Insecurity is not attractive.

What's attractive?

Confidence. Feeling good about yourself. Knowing what you have to offer. A sense of humor. The ability to laugh and smile easily.

Happiness is attractive. Decide to be happy.

The prettiest girl in the world has nothing on the woman who feels good about herself and can make others feel good about themselves.

It's Friday! What are you going to do with your weekend?

Here's an idea:

Put a smile on your face. Make someone else smile. Do what you love to do. Have fun!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Dating Advice For the Smart Lady

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Cathy J. Ellis, who runs Dating Advice For the Smart Lady.

If you'd like, you can read the interview here.

In addition to dating tips, visitors to the site can download a free ebook with instructions on how to find true love.