Hi Jess. I definitely think I have a problem with being bored too easily with guys. Even the ones who look amazing on paper and are really nice looking! Guys with great jobs, similar interests, good sense of humor, and good looks…I find myself losing interest with them after only a few dates. I just feel like “something’s missing.” The guys always seem to be very interested in me and want to keep going out, but I find myself pulling away. What is wrong with me?? I’ve only had two serious relationships in my life and it took me years to get over both of them. Could I have commitment issues or just a love of the chase? Please help! Thank you.
- Bored Betty
Hi Betty. Before I start doling out advice, I want to say bravo to you for even realizing you have a problem! A lot of women turn down guys over and over again without really thinking through what it is that turns them on or off about someone. In many cases, what a woman finds attractive in guy may not necessarily be a quality that is right for her in the long run, but without awareness of this, many females continue to chase the bad boy, or the guy that is good on paper, all the while alluding real love.
Now…On to what you really came here looking for…
Based on the information you gave me in your email, here is what I think is going on. I do think you have a fear of commitment as you suspected, and yes, with that comes a love of the chase. It’s not that you have an aversion to good, decent, guys. It’s that you have an aversion to anyone that shows you a real ability to commit. Guys who show interest, and express an eagerness to know you more seem boring to you because you know where they stand and there is no mystery, no thrill, and no excitement in that. Those three things are present, however, when you are pining after an ex-boyfriend year after year; a man whose interest in you changes as frequently as the weather. I suspect your break-ups took a very long time to stick, with many late night texts, and even a bit of hooking up? The uncertainty that comes with an ex who still communicates with you is what fuels the “wanting” to be with him. And that is what you are attracted to. You don’t know if and when you will see your ex again, and that causes anxiety and wanting which we often confuse for those amorous little butterflies. Basically, anyone who doesn’t give you anxiety, who doesn’t cause you to “want”, you don’t find exciting and therefore you think something is wrong, or missing.
But heed my warning, if you marry the man who gives you anxiety, you will spend the majority of your marriage repenting your decision. To not know when your husband will call or come home is torture to a wife and mother. And make no mistake about it, the man who’s love runs hot and cold will continue to do so whether you take his last name or not.
So, how do you make the change? How do you stop running from the good guys that truly want to be with you? The first step is to simply be aware of this pattern in yourself and when you feel that “wanting” inside you occur, don’t follow it blindly. Know what is happening. Recognize the pattern you have of finding thrills in your dating life and understand the consequences. Second, on a deeper level, the addiction you have to wanting men is an unconscious need within yourself to prove your own worthiness. Meaning, you unknowingly feel incomplete and subconsciously worry that you are not enough, but by winning over an unattainable, or uninterested guy, you satisfy that doubt (although just temporarily). Simply put, the love of the chase points more to how you feel about yourself, than about the guy.
For more advice on how to break this habit of constantly getting bored and chasing guys, be on the look out for my next book, The Curse : Why you can’t find or keep the love you want, coming out later this year!
I read your post about “The Chase” (and being dissatisfied when it’s over once the guy you’ve been pursuing shows genuine interest- like I thought I wanted!) That’s my issue. I want to know where you think this stems from and how I can correct that mindset (if I should) so that I can be in a happy, healthy, lasting relationship (not just with men, but with people in general). I didn’t always have this subconscious mindset, and I can’t remember when it changed, or if it was there all along and only in recent years I’ve become aware of it.
Thanks so much for your time.
I’ll start by answering your questions in reverse order. First off, no you didn’t always have this mindset. It is not something any of us are born with, but it is something that frequently develops overtime. You asked if you should break it? Well, let’s put it this way, if you don’t stop being dissatisfied with men who are interested in you, that means you either won’t ever get married or you will marry someone that does not genuinely like you. Both sound like unfavorable outcomes, don’t you think? If you want a happy, healthy, relationship then as obvious as this sounds, you need to be happy and healthy yourself. This mentality, which I call The Curse, and is the subject of my third book, causes you to only look for what is not right or what is not happening in your life. This mindset keeps you focused on that which is lacking, completely disregarding what you already have or what is easy to come by. Why? One, because we live in an instantly gratifying world and especially if we’ve had parents that contribute to this mentality by either giving us whatever we want, or the opposite, making us always want from them. We have trained our minds to be this way for so long that by the time we are adults it is just automatic. The minute we obtain something we spend little time in a state of gratitude for it, and instead, immediately jump to, “what else?” or “what’s next?”. This is what leads us to chasing men. Once a guy likes you, you don’t spend any time appreciating him because you have not learned to be grateful in your own life. The second reason is that this Cursed mindset doesn’t really seek love. It only seeks validation of self. Meaning, you think you are looking for love, but what you are really looking for is a boost in self-esteem. And men who lavish you with interest are nice for a day, but after just a short time, you get restless with them because you know they like you and that boost they initially gave you has waned. So you go looking for someone else. Someone who won’t let that feeling fade for you. A guy that keeps stringing you along for instance. One who’s interest ebbs and flows. This kind of man will constantly keep you chasing him and therefore, every time you have a small win with him (like he calls after so many days of not calling), your self-esteem gets another boost.
How do you break this mindset so that you can get married, have babies, and ride off happily into the sunset? I won’t lie to you. It is a process that takes time. There are many ways to break the Curse. The first way is just to simply be aware of it. Next time a man disappears on you, or lets you down, instead of thinking, “what can I do to get him re-interested?” (which is you looking for validation of yourself and your worth), think, “this guy is obviously flaky and I’m seeing a flaw in his character.” Likewise, the next time a guy shows you he likes you, instead of thinking “ugh, he’s too into me”, think, “I’m so grateful that he appreciates me and that someone really likes me!”
Be aware in other aspects of your life were your thoughts gravitate to what you don’t have. With your job. Your friends. Your wardrobe. Your body. If you are the type that is always shopping because you never have enough, always gossiping because you thrive on drama, or always pursuing the next job, promotion, award, or accolaide, it it very possibly that you are also only attracted to men (or women) who aren’t available and really don’t care about you. Being cogniscient of your thought patterns will help you slowly change them and begin to break the horrible mindset of the Curse.
For more on The Curse, check my website or amazon periodically. It is scheduled to be released later this year.