I got an email yesterday from a woman in Texas that was wrestling with her relationship. She has been dating a guy for about six months and is becoming increasingly frustrated about where the relationship is going. Here is a exert from her email:
“I can’t figure him out. He tells me that he is not ready for a serious relationship. He tells me that he needs his space, but at the same time he calls me throughout the week and we often spend at least one night together on the weekends. I can’t tell if he is scared of getting hurt, or if he has commitment issues. What he says and what he does are so conflicting that it’s driving me mad. I don’t know what to do and talking to him about this only confuses me more.”
Question. How many women do you know that go on dates just for fun? How many women do you know that continue to see a man that they don’t really like? Probably not many. If you are like most women, chances are the moment a guy asks for your phone number you start wondering, could this guy be the one? We date with a purpose. Or at least most of us do. We date to find that partner for life, that husband to love us, that father for our children. Rarely do we date just to date. Guys on the other hand…
True, there are those men out there that are solely interested in long term commitment right off the bat. There are always exceptions to every rule, so please hear me when I caveat what I’m about to say. Most guys do not go out on a first date and think, could she be the one? More often than not they are thinking about what it would be like to kiss you. They wonder what you are all about and if your personalities will click. They are thinking about what comes next. They don’t daydream ten years down the line. They don’t fantasize about what your children will look like. At least not on a first date.
This is important to keep in mind because going one step further, most women think, “if he’s not interested in marrying me, he’d break it off with me,” and that is just not always the case. Men, as I outlined above, don’t always think the way we do. I’ve known men that have kept women around for years with no intention of marrying them. I’ve had guy friends tell me, “I like her, but she’s not the one.” I can name a hundred different scenarios where men will keep dating someone that they don’t see themselves committing to. I call these women the “good-for-now” girlfriends.
G-F-N girlfriends are just that – good for right now. Maybe the guy is traveling a lot and needs someone to hang out with when he comes back to town. He’s too busy to put too much thought into dating, so he sticks with who’s he’s comfortable with. It’s easy, he likes her, but will he marry her? No. Eventually when she pressures him enough, he’ll crack and break it off. Is this fair? He thinks so. After all, he did tell her upfront he wasn’t ready for a serious relationship.
It would be great if all men and women were honest with their feelings. We’d all probably find our happily ever after a lot faster that way. But the truth is we aren’t always truthful and forthcoming. The truth is we sometimes put our own feelings ahead of the other persons. I experienced this first hand with a relative of mine that was dating a woman he didn’t see a future with. He dated her for three years! Three years with no intention of marrying her or even fully committing to her. How could he do this? How could he waste her time? Very easily, I would say. He told her all along that he was commitment-phobic and unsure about marriage. He told her he liked her very much and wanted to spend time with her, but needed his space. In his eyes he was honest and upfront with her, even though he was seeing her twice a week and spending the holidays with her, he didn’t feel guilty because he told her what to expect.
Scary if you are a woman. Scary to think you could be in a relationship with someone at this very moment and not know what’s going on in your man’s head. Scary to think maybe you are a good-for-now-girlfriend. But just knowing that this is possible, should make you all the more wiser. Just knowing that a man can date you without real purpose, should give you the gumption to walk away if you’re feeling frustrated. You want and deserve to be more than a good-for-nower. You deserve forever.
If you are worried about where your relationship is going, Continue reading
My husband and I were out to dinner with some friends the other night and one of them started talking about her relationship with her boyfriend. She had been frustrated over the last several weeks because of his inflexible attitude. We all listened and gave her the usual, polite excuses for his behavior (after all you can’t tell someone the harsh truth with seven other people sitting there.) But after dinner my husband shook his head and said to me, “I feel really bad for her. It’s obvious that he’s only with her out of convenience.”I thought it was interesting to have the male perspective on this. So I asked him. What’s the number one sign that a guy is only with a girl because it’s convenient? His answer? I’m going to paraphrase because it was late and I was full of spicy tuna rolls, but it went something like, “when a guy gets annoyed at the drop of a hat by anything his girlfriend says or does, that’s a big sign of a relationship of convenience.” So for example, you are running late from work and you call your boyfriend to ask him to take the chicken out of the fridge and pre-heat the oven for you, and he gets annoyed and tells you that he’s about to go to the gym and can’t be bothered. Or, you have told him that your cousin wants to have you two over one night, and when you bring it up for the third time he says something like, “I don’t know when I can do it! Why do you have to keep asking me every five minutes??”
If your boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse or partner has a very short fuse and you hesitate to ask them for anything, you may be in a relationship of convenience. If it’s not convenient for them to get off their butt and pre-heat the oven, or it’s not convenient for them to sacrifice a night at your cousins, how can you argue his intentions? My husband spoke from his own experience and said, “I’ve been there. When I’m mentally done with a relationship, but haven’t told the girl yet, it’s exactly the way I act. It’s not cool, but sometimes the guy doesn’t even realize the reason why he’s doing it. Often in these situations, the guy ends up pushing the girl to end the relationship. He’s such an inflexible jerk, she has no choice.” Continue reading