Ask a Guy: I’m Afraid the Guys I Like Will Never Want Me Back post image

Ask a Guy: I’m Afraid the Guys I Like Will Never Want Me Back


When I meet a guy I like, all I can think about is when he will walk away/get tired of me/declare he doesn’t give a hoot about me. I also keep thinking: How soon before he sees I am not that great a catch?

But with the guys I totally don’t want, I am subconsciously aware this person would be in it for the long haul without me constantly having to prove my worth. Perhaps in those situations, I totally relax and give off a different vibe.

Basically, once I like a man, all I can think about is how much time do I have before everything shatters? A day, a week, a month? I immediately start waiting for the end. Maybe some part of me is tensed up the whole time waiting for him to leave. When I meet a guy I like,

How can I fix this? How can I change my vibe so the guys I like will like me back?

What you’re describing is actually the root cause of what happens for 99% of women who experience this (that is, attracting the ones they don’t want, repelling the ones they do want…)

It’s time to realize that those thoughts themselves are the poison that is repelling the guys you want.

MORE: Why Do I Attract the Guys I Don’t Want and Never the Ones I Do?
Your mind has the subconscious belief that your worrying will somehow get you what you want.  It might feel like if you just think about it enough, you’ll figure out the answer and will solve the problem.

However, the “problem” is the traveling down this negative line of thought… in the words of Eckhart Tolle, it would be like the chief of the police is desperately investigating clues to catch an arsonist… but doesn’t realize he himself is the arsonist…

You need a new perspective on relationships… because what you’re doing right now isn’t serving you to bring about what you really want.

You need to let go and drop your old way of thinking about relationships forever, and adopt this line of thinking instead: Relationships are about discovering the truth about how compatible you are with another person.  That’s all. They are not about proving you are worthy to the other person. They are not about trying to mold yourself into what you think the other person needs or wants. It’s about you being yourself, and him being himself, and discovering if your true selves worth well as a unit.

That “compatibility” is already set before you and he meet.  It’s predetermined… the relationship itself is the unfolding of events that occur naturally, like two chemicals combining and producing a reaction.  It just happens naturally and you watch, observe, and enjoy.

You don’t attach to it.  You don’t force it.  You don’t fight with it.  You just enjoy watching the process naturally unfold as it’s going to.

MORE: 4 Rules to Live by to Get the Relationship You Want

When you’re happy, enjoying the moment, and feel at ease, you are allowing the process to just flow naturally.  When you start thinking in a way that feels negative, you destroy your vibe and you block the process from unfolding.

In essence, all you’re doing in a relationship is enjoying being around the other person. Nothing to think about. Nothing to plan. Nothing to “make happen.” This happens much more easily with people who aren’t super interested in because you don’t stress over it, you take an attitude of “what will be will be” because you genuinely aren’t invested in the outcome of the situation. If he likes you, great. If not, whatever, you were never all that invested.

When two people are incredibly compatible, they instinctively want to get closer and be with each other more.  It’s a natural urge. The more positive the interactions are, the more drawn to one another they become.

However, nature has also programmed humans (men and women) to want to get away from someone who has a negative vibe.  Even if they’re compatible – having a bad vibe is the most repulsive, most unattractive condition on the planet… even if you’re a young, fit supermodel with fame and fortune.

A bad vibe (created by a negative mood, which is created by continually participating in negative thoughts) repels everyone.

Most people don’t realize this, so when they meet someone, they think, “This is great!  I really like this guy!  Maybe this will be the relationship that makes me happy!”

What they don’t realize is that this thinking is fundamentally flawed and guarantees they will end up pushing the guy away.

Why is this?

The reason is ... (continued - Click to keep reading Ask a Guy: I’m Afraid the Guys I Like Will Never Want Me Back)

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Amy

I need advice… The guy I am liking is married with 3 kids… He and the wife are together for the family unit… The 2 of them don’t have a relationship and not even a physical / intimate relationship…

He is a responsible dad and doesn’t want to put his kids through any emotional trauma and doesn’t want them to hate him cos he left their mother and he is worried that his wife will make the kids hate him…

The relationship is new – it’s about 5 months… We been out about 6-7 times and recently I asked him a few times for more time with him and not only once a week for a few hours… He was a bit flustered as he is unable to give time on weekend cos that is time with the kids / family… I accused him of his intentions being just friends with benefits and I didn’t do it in a nice way. He was horrified and has distanced himself from me saying it’s best we be friends as he values our friendship… I apologised profusely for the way I reacted and he seems to have accepted my apology but has told me that he is afraid of me cos it was not nice to see the other side of me…

I can’t go back to being just friends when our relationship has been affectionate and loving… I told him so and we are not in contact at the moment…

Can you tell me what has happened here? Did what he see when I was upset put him off me completely? Or has he realised that he can’t give me what I need and has backed off?

I am feeling very hurt at the moment…

Reply September 19, 2014, 4:35 am

sapphire

I NEED ADVICE, me and my partner have been together for 7 years coming up this October.. most of our relationship he use to be quite clingy but recently hes been very distant.
Ive tried asking him whats going on and hes said hes trying to better him self for me which is sooo nice but ive explained he doesnt have to i love him as he is (most of my family do not think he is good enough) and as much as i dont like cling behavour i really miss him and that its really hard not hearing from him as much
He tells me he feels the same but he has to do what he needs to do before coming back , i feel like im losing him but when i see him which is once a week now he reassures me i totally feel like im a clingy girlfriend now.

And i know where hes coming from i just feel so insecure cos it was a sudden thing and nothing was discussed about not seeing each other or calling/txting etc as much.

I havent been hassling him through txts etc its only when i see him i ask have you done what u needed to do yet etc .. it turns into an argument then just repeats the cycle ..if i make any sense

Am i being fair? or am i now a clingy nagging girlfriend? Do i need to be worried?

Reply August 18, 2014, 1:00 am

Jessica

my ex and I broke up in feb.2014 because he got an offer to go to the army full time and he had to move to a different province and he said it wouldn’t be fair that I waited around for him and he told me that if when he comes back and we still have feelings for each other, he’d love for us to get back together (and no there was no cheating or fighting). I did the typical broken hearted girl thing and messaged him asking him for another chance and that we could work thing’s out which pushed him away then I stopped but then I did it again a week before he had to leave and thing’s kinda got sour before he had to leave (beginning of July) and I stopped talking to him a few day’s before he left to cool thing’s off and I sent him an apology telling him that I was sorry for the way I acted and that it was unattractive of me and he forgave me …. I cut off all ties with him for bit to give him his space and after about 2 week’s he messaged me on facebook telling me that I would love where he was and we had a conversation but then he ended it … but we talked again the next day and I ended the conversation and we haven’t talked since yesterday morning (I wished him happy birthday). Something tells me that he still does but i’m worried that I pushed him away too much when he was around … I know that giving his space will help a lot because it will show him that i’m not needy and I am independent.

What do you think? do you think he still likes me? and could I make him miss me?

Reply July 23, 2014, 10:43 pm

Kari

I really would like to thank you Eric because everyone of your articles that I have read haven’t been a waste of time like other sites. I know you have a lot on your plate, and you’re a very busy man but I was just wanted to ask your advice on a situation I’ve been going through for about almost a year now. I really like this guy and I’ve known him for as long as I’ve liked him pretty much, he’s only about a year older than me and he’s a really great guy, and we’ve spent countless hours together just being crazy and funny together. For example, he took me on two “fake dates” that he pretended to take me to the movies, bowling, and a picnic, where at the end of the dates he gave a straw and said it was a rose and when i poked him with it on accident he said that was our goodnight kiss.
Another time after we had the “fake dates” we were hanging out with a friend of ours and she brought up a issue of hers about needing to buy something for an event that we were holding, and (I’ll call him K) K offered putting picnic supplies into the basket, which was a good idea but the weird thing was the whole time he was starring at me, and I guess he was remembering the “fake” picnic we had a few days ago.
Then one day I was hanging out with some of my guy friends and he was there and I was the only one standing, so he offered the seat by him. But real quickly I have never really like people touching me which I know is weird, but K knows that I have that issue and he is always trying to help me get outside my shell and get comfortable with other people, him mainly it seemed sometimes. So i took the seat and everyone was talking to someone so it was just me and him and so he touched my leg, but not in a sexual way, he just touched my knee and I flinched because I don’t why of course, but he saw that and then said it’s ok and saw that i was uncomfortable so he moved his hand to my ankle. After that happened one of the guys decided to look up my name on Urban Dictionary for some reason and so the guy began to read it out loud, and it said some kind stuff about how good a “kari” is and then it got to how they looked and then all of a sudden I see and feel K starring at me it got so intense that i had to look away.
I could go on and on and I’m probably already boring you but at the end of the year i confessed my feelings to him and he said he and i quote “I think i like you and think you’re beautiful”. Why did he say I think? I found out after forcing one of my guy friends that K told him that he liked me and was going to ask me out, but that never happened.
But the I know it seems like he has played me and I think about that all the time but the way he looked at me and smiled at me and laughed, I’ve never felt that way with a guy before but it’s been almost two months since we lasted talked due to forced circumstances but he’s never called or texted me. I just don”t know what to do, and i feel really stupid for liking him but i can’t stop thinking about him from everything we’ve done together every little things reminds me of him and the feelings I have for him.

Reply July 22, 2014, 11:52 am

sapphire

hey i had a similar sitch happen to me a couple of years ago where i hang out with my guy mates and one of them likes me but didnt tell me he told our friends who then told me the news.. then one night we were all hanging out together and playing stupid party games , we played truth or dare so it was my turn to spin the bottle and it landed on the guy who likes me so i ask “truth or dare?” he says truth . i ask him if he likes me more than a friend and he totally closes up! the whole circle (of friends) start nudging at him to just tell me and ask me out after 5 mins of that we move on to the next game ..

We still remained friends but we never talked about what happened ever again which made me think was it all me? Because i was interested i totally doubted if he liked me in the end
But that wasnt downfall you see if i just told him how i felt maybe/most likely i think:) we couldve dated and who else knows!

I regret not saying anything , dont make the same mistake

I wouldve rather told him how i felt and risk being rejected then always wondering what couldve been! now its too late hes happy and so am i but now and then i always think back ..

Try not to read to much into what he says just be upfront and honest with him you may be surprised

good luck :)

Reply August 18, 2014, 1:24 am

patricia

i have a guy who when i was in first year first semester he told me that he loves me and wants to be with me…since i have never dated before i told him that i have to think about it first before i start dating him……so later i agreed to date him….i was very happy because i liked him…we started watching movies together the first day..it was very interesting …..later on we started kissing each other since that was my first kiss i enjoyed it very much…..it came to a time that i started texting him some flirts but he told me that i should stop those nonsense….so i stop i taught maybe someone could see it because we didnt want anybody to know in our hostel….so got his whatsap line so that i can whatsapp him through that..but still when i whatsapp he said i should stop those nonsense…..when we vacated and came to the house when i call him he reply it anytime he wants even whatsapping too ……so i decided to ask him whats wrong and he said that…do i know that he loves God more than anything else and he also said that the best that i know the better for me…..pls i want to know wheather he loves me or i should forget about him too… course since he told me that he has not call me again…

Reply July 10, 2014, 4:59 am

diana

Everyone’s got issues, including me LOL! Well, let me pour it on thick, and see if I can’t get a response from Eric (or anyone out there):

A little background about me: I am a 32-year-old woman whose first seemingly-healthy relationship has been this year. I tend to over-give of myself in relationships, and eventually, both myself and my partners are sucked dry by the end. I also tend to stay for years in unhealthy situations.

Background on my boyfriend and me: OVERALL,my boyfriend and I have what I consider to be a healthy relationship. We’ve been dating almost six months, and we have met most of one another’s friends and families. We see each other several times a week (most of the time), and though we don’t talk as much anymore in-between our interactions, we have a very positive vibe going, for the most part. We tend to have quality interactions – he picks me up, and takes me on dates, and I do the same. He usually acknowledges how much he enjoys me and appreciates me, and gives me his undivided attention when around me. I feel great around him, and he expresses how great he feels around me. We directly and immediately communicate about any issues we are having, so for the most part, we have open, honest, and healthy communication. So what’s the issue, right?

The possible red flags: Off the bat, he started demonstrating tons of insecurities – has expressed that he has commitment phobias (for fear of getting heart-broken – he has been hurt BADLY in the past), and he has a fear that I will ask him to let go of his lifestyle (which I do not expect him to do). He OFTEN asks if I want to break up, even if I haven’t said one word about doing so. He didn’t initially want a relationship, but over time, without my pressuring him, he began to initiate the relationship on his own. Yet, with each “milestone” in the relationship, he tends to put up walls, and send what I consider to be mixed signals.

He’s also a bit of a hot head. When I am unavailable to him when he wants to see me, he becomes withdrawn. Sometimes he tells me he’s upset about not seeing me, and other times, he won’t tell me why he’s withdrawn, and I feel like I’m being ignored. This “silent treatment” has lasted as long as two full days before he contacts me. I won’t mind-read as to why, but I don’t like the feeling of not knowing why he isn’t speaking to me AFTER he doesn’t get his way.

He rarely initiates contact anymore (as opposed to the beginning of getting to know him), and sometimes we go two or three days without contact, unless I say something. This may or may not occur after a situation where he is seemingly upset with me. Sometimes we see each other for several days in a row, and have a great time, then for another few days, I don’t hear from him or see him at all.

There was a time when he expressed how sad he felt if we didn’t talk throughout the day. There was a time when he would express how much he missed me if we didn’t see one another throughout a given week. Now, I feel he is comfortable (already) with the relationship, or perhaps, he is too “busy” to reach out to me. Even though we do see each other when we aren’t “busy,” I sense that in the interim, he is withdrawn.

I should also mention, he truly is a busy guy. He is very giving of himself to others, and he also has tons of other commitments. But, of course he was just this busy when we first met. And, the gradual shift from talking all the time to talking none of the time (except when we see each other), coupled with his projected insecurities/fear of abandonment onto me (and mine onto him), is allowing me think we are not built to last.

Now, I’ve read a ton from Eric Charles regarding how society perceives relationships, as well as why men don’t text back or become withdrawn after committing. I’ve taken all the quizzes, and while they are all extremely informative, I still feel insecure. I have taken a lot advice to make sure I’m busy with my own life as often as I can be, so that I am not clingy or needy for him to respond to me, but I have found that now I have an unhealthy view of our relationship.

Sometimes I think it’s mostly in my own head, because I might be doing the self-fulfilling prophecy thing, just expecting things not to work out, as they haven’t in the past. Maybe he’s just a busy guy…he shows me he cares in person, whenever that is. Other times, I think it’s him, because he still projects his insecurities about his past hurts onto me as well. Either way, I don’t particularly like going without seeing him for business’ sake, and then, after we do see each other, not hearing from him in the interim. I especially don’t like the silent treatment phases, when they do occur, and though I am patient and communicative about my distaste, I am not certain I need to be.

I feel like I entered this relationship very securely, but now, I feel clingy, over-analytic, and insecure. I don’t know if I am fitting a square peg into a round hole, if I need to leave him, or if we have something good, and I need to just focus more on myself and let things flow. Yes, I am psychologically doing all the things one does not need to do to try and preserve a relationship, but I just need some ADVICE that can help me make an informed decision (one that includes a guy’s perspective).

Thanks!

Reply July 2, 2014, 11:13 am

diana

Sorry! I didn’t realize there was a forum to post topics like the novel I wrote above. Eric, yes, great article as usual. You give the best advice…and I’ve read a ton of self-help/relationship books in my 32 years!

Reply July 2, 2014, 11:37 am

maria

Very interesting article Eric :-D

It really is true that being happy is always about the here and the now and the present, since it’s about BEING and no one can BE in the future or in the passed…

And happiest of all are the ones that are themselves, drop all fears and expectations and let things (life) just naturally happen…

I could not agree more with what you said.

Reply June 28, 2014, 4:45 am

nycgirl

Maria, thank you so much for your beautiful comment here and below. I truly agree with what you’ve said and I appreciate it so much.

You are right, it would be ridiculous to want anything just because others do. I suppose my issue has been that I really do want to LEARN from other people though, as much as I can, and while I have learned an enormous amount about staying present and releasing expectations, I have never quite figured out what “commitment” means exactly, or why so many people want it. And I’m curious …. I don’t want to be close-minded and assume that just because I can’t immediately perceive the value of something that it’s not worth learning about and exploring.

My basic philosophy of relationships would be everything you’ve said above – being present, releasing all fears and expectations, and simply being open to whatever comes our way. (And I believe this is just as true with someone we’ve known for years as it is with someone we’ve just met)

Whereas “commitment” so often seems to confuse the desire for a deep feeling of connection in the now with an attempt to control or predict the future (either in terms of the other person’s feelings and actions or one’s own). And ultimately this just seems like an illusion, because as much as we might want to give permanence of fixity to human connection (or attempt to control or possess it) it is always in the present, always in flux.

I suppose I’m looking for a language or a way of speaking about connection in a way that honors its depth and transformative possibilities without giving us the illusion that we can or should try to possess it. I think often when people say they don’t believe in commitment, it’s taken to mean that they aren’t interested in anything but shallow or ego-driven connections. Whereas my skepticism of commitment comes from the fact that it seems to be driven BY ego and fear of loss, and to get in the way of our ability to connect fully and authentically with another person in the moment.

I guess I’m just curious if anyone would be willing to articulate the meaning of commitment in a way that is different from an ego-driven desire to possess another person, fear of loss, or desire to control another person or the future. I don’t want to write it off just because I don’t understand it, and I would love to learn more.

On the other hand, if anyone has experience articulating their desire to be present for authentic, profound connection without the use of the word commitment, I would love to hear that too. I’ve learned so much from these articles and this community and would love to hear thoughts from anyone who has been thinking about these particular questions too.

(and thank you again maria!!!! you are wise and wonderful xoxo)

Reply June 28, 2014, 9:48 am

maria

What commitment means – it means that you’re bound to something, usually by duty. Why people want it – cause it gives them the illusion of being safe. Is there another better word for it – no, not with the same meaning (that I know of).

Connection means the fact or state of having something in common. It also means bond.

There’s no need to call a steady relationship committed. Why not just call it “a relationship”, and then fill it with connections and bonds and anything else that has nothing to do with duty or false safety!?

Again, it’s your life and your choice. If you don’t like the word commitment then simply don’t use it.

Reply June 28, 2014, 2:33 pm

nycgirl

Thanks Maria. This is incredibly helpful. Exactly the clarity and support for trusting my own instincts I needed. I really appreciate it. Thank you so much for taking the time to write xo

Reply June 28, 2014, 3:04 pm

maria

PS. I guess you could call it devoted instead of committed. Devoted is by choice and not by duty IMO. I still think it’s better to just call it “in a relationship” though… or “in love”, cause that’s what it should be about.

Oh, and I answered your “bond through sex”-question in the forum… cause… she wasn’t gonna.

Thanks for your kind words x

June 29, 2014, 12:11 am

nycgirl

thank you maria!!! i really loved your comments on the other post too…..it made a LOT of sense to me and was very in tune with my personal experience. maybe not everyone is capable of bonding through sex & communication, but i know i definitely appreciate those who do!!! so it was great to hear that perspective. thank you so much xoxo

Reply June 29, 2014, 12:28 pm

maria

Hey nycgirl… I’m curious… why did you change your name?

Reply July 10, 2014, 9:00 am

Selin Ozcelik

cool stuff, friends!

Reply July 6, 2014, 7:49 pm

Lulu

Hi Eric,

I have a relationship (I don’t know if you could call it that) problem that I can’t figure out and I really need a man’s opinion on the situation!!

My male best friend and I met in Uni and have been really close every since. We have known each other for seven years. While in Uni we never hooked up but we were still very close. I would often end up staying at his house and he would sometimes stay at mine. We can talk about anything and we both know everything about each others families.

After Uni both of us along with some friends moved in together. At the beginning in was normal but after a while we started getting even closer, cuddling and kissing. This continued for about 9 months until one night we ended up sleeping together. Surprisingly it wasn’t awkward after but it was never discussed properly. At the time I never thought to much of it as we were both single and having fun with other people when we were out. We ended up having to move home, but the few nights we went out we ended kissing nothing more. After a few months we decided we wanted to move out of home again but no one else wanted to, so we moved in together. After a couple of weeks into moving into our new house we started hooking up again but each time we were sleeping together not just a few innocent kisses. This has continued for months and now I find myself wondering will he ever want something more serious? None of our friends know so its like a big secret. I don’t know whether to talk to him about it because I don’t want to ruin things. We are so close, even before all this started and we never fight. Purely as a friend he is so good to me. Always buying me little presents and just generally looking out for me. I know I could trust him with anything and visa versa. Since things have become more regular between us I have only been with one other guy and he’s been with two girls. I now have started getting jealous if I see another girl trying him and I know he knows this bothers me. We have discussed our situation drunk. He says he really likes me, often says he loves me, he doesnt want to hurt me and he knows hes being an idiot. I confronted him about a girl he was with and he said please dont back me into a corner and he looked really embarrassed. He always says Im the type of girl he needs but hes not ready for commitment. On nights out he holds my hand, kisses me in public but then he seems to freeze when we bring it up like he is afraid of our situation. I know if I be honest with myself he probably wants to enjoy himself while he is young. Do you think he afraid of commitment?

We are moving to a different place in September but this time we will be in separate houses but only 5 minutes apart. Should I wait and see how things play out or talk to him?? I know if its meant to be it will be but I don’t think I can keep seeing him casually if other girls are after him.But I do not want to loose him as a friend!!! All our friends suspect something is going on and always say you two will end up married so maybe all that **** is putting him off??

I would really appreciate any advice as my head and heart are fried over this!!!

Thank you, Lulu :)

Reply June 27, 2014, 7:47 am

nycgirl

FANTASTIC article as always, Eric!!! Please keep them coming!!! You are so straightforward, eloquent, and precise in the way that you describe such seemingly insoluble problems and how to solve them. I cannot express enough how much I respect and value your advice.

I’m curious if you have any thoughts on how a girl should handle a guy who wants more than “just ***” with her, when she would prefer to keep it light and casual.

I LOVE ***, have lots of it, with lots of great people, and am extremely expressive about my enjoyment of it in the moment. I also really enjoy connecting emotionally with these same guys afterward….listening to their stories, sharing myself, being completely open and accepting of whoever they are, and simply enjoying being an appreciative, responsive, happy girl with whomever I happen to be with. BUT …. this is all very in-the-moment for me. I’ll tend to forget about the whole thing pretty quickly afterward (like, I appreciate it, but I don’t necessarily feel the need to see or contact them again, although I’m usually up for meeting again if they suggest it). I’m alway***tremely upfront about the fact that I’m completely single and not looking for a relationship (at least not with them).

Meanwhile, I’ve had a lot of guys say we have an “amazing connection” and start pursuing me and trying to be my boyfriend. With a lot of these guys I do have a great connection – I enjoy being with them, I think I’ve learned to be a pretty present and engaged person, and I always like to connect with whoever I’m with in the moment – but that’s kind of just who I am with people, and I feel like they mistake that feeling of connection for love (OR I’m a coldhearted **** as I’ve been told??) I don’t actually think that’s true, but I do care about these guys as people and I care about their feelings – I’m just not able to reciprocate them fully, because I know that while I thoroughly enjoy their company, it’s simply not unique enough to make me want to stop seeing the other guys in my life, nor is it the depth and profundity of true, soul connection that I’ve experienced with the deepest relationships in my life.

Maybe as a guy you have some advice as to how best to express to a guy in a way that expresses both my appreciation of them and sets clear boundaries? Am I wrong for enjoying *** and enjoying emotional connection, even when it’s momentary and fleeting? Would love your thoughts on this if you get a chance.

In the meantime, thank you SO much for all of your incredible insights. It has changed my life and renewed my relationship to myself more than I can say.

xoxo

Reply June 24, 2014, 8:06 pm

nycgirl

hah sorry the ***’s were not my doing. hopefully you can guess what they mean :-)

Reply June 24, 2014, 8:10 pm

Jiu

It’s very easy… Just start being clingy and try to win them over. They will feel smothered pretty soon.
BTW, I used to be like you. Well, not with many guys but with one at a time. Guess what, for me it was all about ***, but they always wanted something more. Since I decided I want a committed relationship (as much as a new mode has helped me, it also made me want love and I’ve become a bit needy emotionally, before I only cared about ***, but I’ve started to feel guilty about it), I’ve experienced all that the other girls come here to complain about and had my heart broken into pieces. So I’m back to my initial only caring about the *** state. You might be disappointing these guys but, harsh as it may sound, it’s still better than having your heart torn into pieces. Just be respectful towards them, be honest about your feelings and don’t let them guilt trip you. *** is awesome and far too many girls don’t care so much about it, be happy with who you are.

Reply June 24, 2014, 11:09 pm

nycgirl

Thanks for the awesome advice Jiu. Your first line really made me laugh :-)

I do care about these guys – i even have a certain kind of love for them , just naturally out of *** and emotional bonding, and I’m interested in their lives and really care about them as people – but it’s a different feeling than wanting them to be my bf. I’ve experienced deep love and am open to finding it again, even in a committed relationship, but I also have enough of a sense of what that feels like to not want to force the fantasy of love onto someone I’m not profoundly compatible with (even if they think we are). At the same time, I don’t want to give up enjoying people’s company just because I’m not going to marry them.

I guess I feel like I’m behaving like the guy in question in most of these articles and comments. I’m always really upfront when guys ask me “where is this going?” or express their feelings, but they tend to disregard this and assume they will win me over anyway. Which is sweet but a little frustrating – I’d rather just enjoy our time together than try to force the relationship to be something it’s not .

The word “committed” always leaves a funny feeling in my stomach that I can’t quite get over. Commitment to what? It seems like relationships are going to play themselves out regardless of the titles we give them or the promises and predictions we try to make about the future. I want deep connection, of course – whatever that looks like with whoever I’m with – but the idea of commitment just seems a little weird to me, like it’s an attempt to control life in a way that we can’t. The weddings I’ve been happiest at are those where it was a celebration of connection, not commitment – a celebration of what is rather than a declaration about what the future of the relationship will be.

I guess I’m curious about the value that people see in commitments as opposed to just experiencing love as it comes and goes. To me commitment always seems like an attempt to control love in a way that just isn’t possible, at least for me.

Reply June 25, 2014, 3:07 am

nycgirl

Eric, you talk a lot about “walking power” and prize mentality in a way that is really powerful. I’m curious about how you see this playing out in the context of committed relationships. If we can ALWAYS walk away if something isn’t working for us (which we can, and should, I totally agree), then what does commitment even mean, exactly? How would being “committed” look, or feel different than just showing up present, open, and self-fulfilled every day?

The best relationships I’ve been in have been those that have challenged me to face my deepest fears and insecurities, and transform myself into a higher version of myself in order to be more open to life and capable of loving and understanding another person. But these didn’t happen because I decided it, or because I “committed” – those relationships just emerged naturally and sort of took on a life of their own.

I guess I’m curious …….being a girl who guys want to commit to seems pretty straightforward (especially if you don’t need anything from them in particular, but just want to enjoy them for who they are and what your time feels like together). But what value do we get out of commitment, as opposed to connection, or as opposed to the mutual experience of love however it happens to play out? A committed relationship seems to be the goal for most people here – and it makes me feel like maybe that should be my goal too…..but I’m still trying to figure out WHY.

Maybe I’m totally clueless? I feel like I’m missing something super obvious here but I can’t quite figure out what it is.

Reply June 25, 2014, 3:31 am

Jiu

For some reason, women are obsessed with things like weddings, promises to be together forever, etc. I could never relate to romantic movies because they just seem so stupid. You are not missing anything, you do what Eric advises women to do naturally.

June 25, 2014, 11:22 am

maria

Hi nycgirl !

Why would your goal be your goal because “it seems to be the goal for most people”? Makes ZERO sense to me. You should live your life YOUR way. Screw all norms, musts and fears of being different.

NEVER even think you should do a certain thing to fit in or because “when many people do something it must be the right thing to do”. Listen ONLY to your heart and soul and do what it tells you to do.

Life is about being happy being you, NOT someone else…

June 28, 2014, 4:18 am

Jiu

Well, it’s not like guys just give up when you reject them. I have one suitor, he’s been after me for months, I don’t even like him, I’ve told him I don’t want to be his girlfriend now or ever, later I told him I don’t even want us to be friends and let’s just say hi to each other when we meet in school. Well, guess what, he’s still trying to find excuses to talk to me. I have had other guys pursuing me for years. And these are guys I haven’t even held hands with! So I don’t think your guys will just give up unless they see you getting married to someone else. Some don’t give up even after that. However, that is their problem and letting go is their responsibility. As long as you don’t lie to them and don’t hurt them deliberately, just go on with your life. I am yet to see guys thinking how not to hurt the girls they are sleeping with (maybe they exist… somewhere). Trust me, this way of life is much preferable to being the one that cares more and wants a relationship. I used to feel tremendous guilt whenever I reject a guy who has feelings for me but if I’m an attractive woman, I will attract all kinds of guys, including those I don’t like. Eric says that men want to beat other men, to be the winner, to get the woman other men are trying to get. If you are such a woman, you have greater chances of having a good relationship but inevitably the ‘losing’ guys will not be jumping with joy. I don’t like rejecting people but if I have to choose between rejecting and potentially hurting some men and me being broken hearted and miserable, guess what I’ll choose. It’s not fair, but life is not fair, so…
I used to feel the same about commitment. I didn’t get what the fuss is all about as long as I have enough ***. But reading about how girls want commitment (because that’s what most dating advice for women consists of), I started to want commitment myself or at least thought I wanted it. Now I know I want love but meanwhile flirting and *** is good enough. No hurry. I’d rather be single than paired up with the wrong guy. So enjoy life and be safe! Don’t become a needy girl desperate for a committed relationship like I did. Committed relationships are overrated.
BTW, dating American guys with all these weird relationship stages is just crazy. No wonder why so many women go crazy and obsess about the the relationship and the title. I have a friend who has known this girl for several months, did his best for her to leave her long term boyfriend for him, says he has deep feelings for her, and a few days ago referred to her as ‘the girl I’ve been seeing’! ***? Sooo disrespectful.

Reply June 25, 2014, 11:16 am

nycgirl

Great perspective Jiu. You really made me feel so much better about my own experience of ***, connection, and love. I always have such mixed feelings when reading articles like “get a guy to commit” …. on the one hand, the advice about loving yourself and giving love freely, without expectation, is really fantastic. on the other hand, it seems to be responding to a fear-based, illusory belief that we NEED a guy to “commit” to us (whatever that means) in order to be (and feel) loved. but life and love are such fluid and unpredictable things. i feel like the times in my life when i got caught up in wanting a “committed relationship” were those when i was feeling empty and wanted someone else to take over the responsibility of loving me for life. whereas when i’m in a good, open place, i don’t really feel the need for it. i feel like commitment (it’s meaning, it’s purpose?) is worth figuring out because so many people DO believe in it, and want it so badly. but your perspective made me feel like maybe it’s not so bad to not get caught up in it after all. thank you dear wise one xoxo

June 25, 2014, 4:07 pm

Jiu

Great article! One very good way to stop worrying and live in the moment is REBT (rational emotive behavioural therapy). It has helped me a lot. It is extremely simple and easy and soo effective. Check out Albert Ellis for instance.

Reply June 20, 2014, 12:11 am

Eric Charles

Thanks Jiu. :)

Reply June 22, 2014, 12:31 pm

Stacey

I could have written that question myself. I bombarded my ex with my fear of losing him, and now he’s gone and I’m so sad!! I will not let this happen if I’m lucky enough to meet another man as awesome as he was.

Reply June 19, 2014, 10:52 pm

laura

What about him losing you?What about him being lucky enough to meet a woman like you?Maybe you should ponder if he deserves you.

Reply June 21, 2014, 1:08 pm

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