Ask a Guy: He Wants to Take It Slow… Now? post image

Ask a Guy: He Wants to Take It Slow… Now?


I have a question about a confusing situation. Here are some stats. I’m 38, my guy is 42. Both of us have never been married and have no kids. I met this guy online almost two months ago. We live about 50 miles away but decided that is no issue. He’s great! He is always telling me how much he likes me, I’m a sweetheart, how much fun he has with me, he feels so comfortable with me and how our sexual chemistry is just awesome. (We had sex on the first date, BTW, don’t know if that would make a huge difference.)  We spend every weekend together and usually one night during the week and he calls or texts me everyday just to say hi.

One month in, I asked him what he thought about being exclusive. He said he wants to take it slow and really get to know me and- much to my dismay- he has gone on dates with other women. I told him fine but I didn’t want to be casual forever and that I hadn’t been dating but will start if we’re not serious. I also told him if he didn’t see things going anywhere, he needed to let me know and I would do the same for him.

Well, almost a month later, he makes sure to lock in the weekend plans with me early in the week and always has something fun and exciting planned. He continues to come over during the week and still contacts me daily.

Do you think we have a chance at becoming serious? What’s with the taking it slow and the dates with other women? Should I ask him about being exclusive again and if so, when?

See our guy’s response after the jump!


Do I think you have a chance at becoming serious?

Yes, you have a chance. I have known people who started out dating casually and ended up as a committed, exclusive couple.  In fact, one couple comes to mind that had similar stats as you described, though they did not live far apart – probably only a 10 mile drive from one another.

They were honest with each other about where their heads were and what they were looking for.  In the end, the guy realized that he was far more fulfilled with this woman than any other woman he had been seeing.  The woman was seeing another man as well at that time, but that guy couldn’t handle the idea of her being casually in a relationship with him so he broke it off.  They ended up dating for several years until she died of a medical complication.  My friend would have married her if their time wasn’t cut short by misfortune.

Sorry to be a downer, but I do think it is worth noting that the relationship they had together was incredibly strong even when times were tough.  And again, it started casually.

I think the question worth asking yourself here is what you are OK with accepting as a relationship.  I want to be clear that I am not trying to steer you in one direction or another – I am just inviting you to think about it because clarity on what you really want usually ends up solving the problem in the end.

Are you OK with him casually seeing women at this stage or is it a deal breaker?  I know you mentioned that you eventually want it to be “serious” so how long are you willing to wait if you do want to stick around?  Do you want to date casually during the time that he’s dating casually or did you say that to establish a fair playing field without intending to act on it?

I would say get clear on those questions before making a decision.  With that said, I am going to answer your next question…

In terms of him wanting to “take it slow” and dating other women, my comment is that he is doing what he wants to be doing at the moment. I am not trying to brush off your comment.  What I am saying here is that his life’s been going on for 42 years before meeting you and it seems like he’s decided that this is how he wants to have his relationships at this point in his life.  There could be countless reasons why he feels this way, but frankly it’s not worth your time and energy trying to psychoanalyze him.

It sounds like you like him a lot on many levels and over time you’ll start to learn more about where he’s at.  In the cases of the people that I have known who started off casually and ended up in relationships, they wanted to be sure and they felt that the only way they could be was if they had total freedom and choice when they were deciding on who they wanted to be with.  In other words, they felt that if they jumped into being monogamous they would have felt “trapped” into having to choose the other person since they had no freedom to choose them over other people at that time.  You might not agree with their logic, but I have met men and women who have stated this rationale.

At the same time, who knows, maybe he’s a womanizer/serial dater.  If you like him, your best bet is to stick around and really get to know him.  Pursue getting to know him in depth, not just the charm.  If he’s bad for you, you will be able to see it if you make an effort to get to know who he is on a deeper level and that can take time.

As for asking him about being exclusive at some point down the line, you should hold off unless you are at a breaking point.  Exclusivity isn’t something you want to pester him about.  Believe me, once a guy has heard it once from a woman he’s seeing, he knows that there’s no turning back – he knows that as long as they keep seeing each other  she will want to be exclusive.

If you reach a point where you can’t live with the relationship in its current state, then you should definitely bring it up.  At the same time, if you would be willing to go on accepting the situation even if he says no, you are better off not saying it since:

a) He already knows you want to be exclusive and you still aren’t.

b) He would make the move to be exclusive if that’s what he wanted at that moment anyway, given that he already knows you want it.

c) He’ll know that you’re telling him you need one thing, but you actually are willing to accept not having it.

Rather than thinking about when and how to have conversations about what you want, I would recommend that you focus on really having a great time when you’re together. Have a clear idea of what you want and what your “bottom line” is in terms of what you’ll accept in the relationship and have an “exit strategy” if he just doesn’t come around in time.  Basically, look out for yourself, be a totally positive presence in the guy’s life and know what you need to be happy.

Hope that helps.

-eric charles

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pat

I met this guy through my aunt who introduced us to each other. I like him and he said he likes me too.we started texting daily even when he went abroad for 2weeks.he was always texting daily. When he came back, he came straight to my house and stayed overnight. We had sex.i later asked him if he wants a relationship with me or we are bed mates.he replied that we are friends and he will like a relationship but we should take things that we should take things as they come. ..my concern is he doesn’t call but only text.also, he never invite me to his house and when I told him I wanna come, he gave excuse for me not to come. We met last month. Is he into me? ? Thanks

Reply June 29, 2014, 12:47 pm

pat

I met this guy through my aunt who introduced us to each other. I like him and he said he likes me too.we started texting daily even when he went abroad for 2weeks.he was always texting daily. When he came back, he came straight to my house and stayed overnight. We had sex.i later asked him if he wants a relationship with me or we are bed mates.he replied that we are friends and he will like a relationship but we should take things that we should take things as they come. ..my concern is he doesn’t call but only text.also, he never invite me to his house and when I told him I wanna come, he gave excuse for me not to come. We met last month. Is he into me? ? Thanks

Reply June 29, 2014, 4:00 pm

Sue

I have been dating a guy for 6 weeks, we have only hugged. Im 8 years older then him. I ask why he hasn’t kissed me he said he has been sick and don’t want torush into things. HE also knows my past about being abused, he said he wants to take it slow and me be comfy. I told I was comfy we see each other three times a week, and talk everyday. im 44 he is 36 I know im to old for all this. I told him I will be patient I am just wondering if I am wasting my time or still be patient with him.. as far as I know it is just me he is dating and he tells me he likes me a lot. when we not together we are talking online. What should I do?

Reply January 13, 2014, 2:10 am

Christina

Thank you for your post and yes I know I’m 2 years behind ;)

As most have said I’m in a similar situation. Literally just started dating someone who hasn’t been in a realtionship for two years…says he really likes me and feels totally comfortable with me. He says he wants to take it slow but only see each other. Okay, fine. But I’m honestly not used to taking things slow when I really like someone and they really like me. Normally I move at a fast pace. Anyway….I really don’t know how to take it slow. Does it mean not texting everday? Seeing each other once a week? I don’t know but its super confusing. He says he likes me but doesn’t give me attention. Is this me being needy? Ugh, this is super new to me and I get relationship anxeity for the first six months in any relationship so this ‘taking it slow’ is suuuper tough. I feel like I’m walking on eggshells and on HIS time. I hate it and its not fun.

Reply September 1, 2013, 12:50 pm

Lynda Doberman

All of this is similar to what I just went through with a guy. We been going out for 1 month, we got close . II thought we were on the same page. I do not like to date more than 1 guy a time after going out awhile. I found out that he had 2 women friends he still wanted to see. One of them, he wasn’t sure if she was interested in him. Then the other, he had gone out with and had a great time. He said he would not stop seeing them. So I found out my answer. Then he said, he was did not want to be in a serious relationship – I said me either. I said, then that is it for me. Please go out with whoever you want. At the same time, I had to have an operation. He took me to the hospital. I was there for 11 days. He only saw me twice. Towards the end of my stay, he saw me on a Thursday nite because he was going out of town for the weekend (he didn’t tell me what he was doing – a flag went up). He said he’d call me that weekend. Right, he didn’t. I called him on Monday and said I hoped to see him soon. But he had plans until Wednesday. I thought about it, then broke up with him at the hospital on Wednesday. I had enough, it wasn’t going anywhere. Then something wonderful happened. My ex husband had driven 8 hours to see me the day of my operation. I was asleep when he was coming down the hall of the hospital. Something woke me up. I saw him walking towards me with a huge grin on his face. I know I was smiling up a storm. We were very glad to see each other. I could not believe he had done that for me. He stayed 2 nites at a hotel so he could be there for me. The boyfriend was there at my hospital room at the same time. He asked me, I thought he wasn’t coming. I told my boyfriend, the EX was coming because he had changed his mind at the last minute. He felt he had to be there. My EGO felt fine. My ex-ie had brought me Starbuck’s & a muffin. He continued getting Starbucks even the day he left. He also saw me 2 times – but in a row. Then he had to drive 8 hours again to go back home. The boyfriend asked me, when did he leave? The visit with my ex and I had a huge effect on us. When I broke up with the boyfriend, we talked about how good we felt being with each other – even when I was flat on my back. We decided, dam, we wanted to get back together. Now. If someone walks back in your life and you feel wonderful, that is the one for you. In other words, be with the guy who really wants to be with you. They will gladly show how the feel, with text and phone calls. You are better off alone than to be with a guy who doesn’t respect you. I never expected to get back with my ex – we went our own ways. I grew and he did also. We became friends again, emailing and talking to each other. I’d tell him my guy problems and he told me his women problems. Little did we know what would happen when he got to the hospital. So close the door, and another one opens.

Reply June 9, 2013, 4:29 pm

Louise

I’m really hoping you can help me understand the true meaning behind my boyfriends comment:

“I don’t know if I’m ready.”

Just to clarify, we have only been seeing each other seriously for 4 months.

He says he really enjoys the time we spend together, and I reassure him I’m in no rush to commit.

Yet a few days ago, he admitted that he’s “really, really nervous” being in a relationship.

I’m the first girlfriend he’s ever had, and he describes himself as feeling “petrified.”

And I’m really not sure why . . . which is where my confusion lays.

We’ve never fallen out, we laugh, tease and flirt with each other, yet it takes me aback to hear him say that if his fears don’t settle down in the next few weeks, he’s going to have to break up with me.

What is he so afraid of?

And is there anything I can do to help settle those fears?

I’ve always tried to be the patient, listening ear, hearing him out, and responding in an understanding, supportive way, yet I’m struggling to understand the issue.

Can you shed any light on this? Or is the relationship doomed to end?
Thank you for any help!!!

Reply November 13, 2012, 12:20 pm

Susan Jones

Good Question: Here are the details. I am in college I have been spending time with my cute (few years older) surfer neighbor for the past month or so. I really value his friendship and we are both very attracted to each other in more than one way. We go to parties together, have fun romantic adventures together, he took me out surfing (a sport I am trying to pick up), and we both invite each other to events that are important to us. We don’t text all the time and usually only hang out when there is something fun to do. I am pretty old fashioned when it comes to sex and he knows this and respects it. I am also friends with his housemates and they invite me to do things sometimes. Recently he wanted to know if I was going to our other neighbors party I told him that I was on my way to a birthday thing for a friend and that maybe I would stop by later and that I would text him what I was doing. I had too much to drink and when I got home he said he decided to stay in.. I kinda dragged him and his housemates out to a party (in a nice way) and I did a few stupid drunk things (spilled alcohol, and kissed him in front of our friends which I don’t know if that was okay) Its not like it was a shocker to anyone but we are not exclusive by any means. He was really nice to me the whole time, but he is the kind of person that would never be mean to me. I also don’t remember bits and pieces of the night so I am sure I was annoying or something. Anyways I texted him that I was sorry the next morning and he said “apology accepted” I said thanks.. Question is do you think I royally screwed up? I am really sad if I lost him as a friend or if he thinks badly of me now but I can’t ask him or he would think I was needy. I don’t want to make it a bigger deal than it is but I am honestly mad at myself and I am worried. From a guy’s point of view would you forgive and forget or would you distance yourself? If it’s the latter is there anything I can do to make it better?

Reply October 14, 2012, 5:25 pm

Jessleyn

I don’t want to give up!
by Jessleyn » Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:23 pm
I met this guy in November and we really didn’t pay that much attention to each other, we were cordial and chit-chatted after the event. We communicated through e-mail (business only) and he came up to a couple of meetings. It is now February and he speaks to me by phone and inquires about V-day (I make up something). We go into March and at a meeting we high -5 each other over an assignment, but his hand interlocks with mine. So when I talk to him again- its April- he kisses me, UNEXPECTEDLY! We begin to communicate more and more text and phone. So he makes more trips and we kiss every time. We talk on the phone and he admits that he doesn’t know how to express his feelings but does admit that he has feelings for me.
He comes to visit in May and I knew he was coming but he was very intense and I told him that he was playing- he makes the following statement twice to me: “if I didn’t like you, I wouldn’t be up here!” So we don’t see each other for awhile because he travels for one of his jobs and of course I have my tedious work schedule but we do communicate. We have missed two opportunities to meet up, recently he asked me several questions on two occasions- the first occasion he asked me three questions: a. Will you be my girl? , b.Will you love me? c. don’t care about anyone else?
The second conversation, he asked if I was his baby;he asked if I wanted to leave. I told him that I was his baby, I wouldnt leave him. I told him that I would go through good, bad or whatever. That I didn’t want anything superficial but that I just wanted him. I told him that I wouldn’t give up on him. He responded and I said to him you are playin he gets a little terse in tone and he says, “I’m not playin!” he says I love you baby- I respond by saying I love you too. We have yet to consumate the relationship or make anything “official” I don’t understand- what are we doing ? Am I being played?

Reply July 5, 2012, 11:30 pm

Olivia

I was dating a man I liked for two months when I hit some emotional roller coasters. Work was overflowing with deadlines approaching far too quickly, my daughter discovered tumors in her lymph nodes that, if cancerous, would have been terminal, and the anniversary of my mother’s death was just around the corner. He broke off the relationship nicely . . . but firmly . . . stating I didn’t have enough time for him between work and family issues. He was concerned about my daughter and did ask that I inform him post-surgery of the results. Three weeks later (which was two weeks ago) I wrote him and said the tumors were not cancerous (thank God), work was finished and I was sorry our timing had been so “off”. He wrote back and asked, “Would you like to try again? It’s up to you.” I said I would love to and we’ve gone out three times in the past two weeks. There haven’t been any awkward moments. We seemed to have picked up right where we left off. Except for one thing. After our first date, he wrote and “admitted” he had started seeing someone else after we broke up. He wasn’t sure where things would go with her since it had been such a short time but wanted to take things slow. I understand that. After our third date, he indicated he was also having sex with her (we have not had sexual relations). I know he really liked me prior to the emotional storm that hit my life but now I’m not sure what to do. Should I ride it out and see what happens? How long is too long to be seeing two women? Help!!!

Reply June 1, 2012, 10:15 am

Meagan

Olivia, I have never replied to comment like this, but reading your story really upset me. I know I’m hearing just a small part of the story, but this man sounds self-centered and insensitive to me. I get the impression that he’s doing a number on your self-esteem. I’m sure that he’s a fantastic person in lots of ways and that he believes what he is doing is acceptable because he is being honest. To my mind, though, that’s not enough. If you’re like me, you ultimately want to find somebody with integrity, kindness, and empathy, and I don’t get the sense that those are his strongest qualities.

Reply June 24, 2012, 12:30 pm

Ms. M

Hello I have been seeing this guy for the past three months. The conversation and intimacy is great, but I am feeling a bit insecure and i bring it to the for front often. He goes to my daughter’s soccer games with me, he makes purchases for me, we spend a lot of time together, but he told me recently that he is not ready for a relationship. All he does is work, sleep, and spend time with me. We see each other almost everyday, but now he says that he is not comfortable being in a relationship, i adore this guy and i don’t want it to end, but obviously he is having issues. I think my insecurities has pushed him away. What do i do?

Reply March 15, 2012, 10:04 am

vero

this guy i used to like stop talking to me i dont know why but when i talked to his sister she told me that he told her ‘that he seen a clash of culters” what does that mean

Reply January 31, 2012, 3:16 am

Mz. Johnson

I’ve been dating this guy for little over a year, who is btw 55y/o I’m 42. Of course for the 1st 3months(honeymoon stage) was GREAT!, even with a few hiccupes alone the way. Long story short, he now says he doesn’t know if is ready for a committed relationship, or even if he is suppose to be married, even though in the begininng, he was all for it. He knows how I feel, and that I want to get married, we have been exclusively dating he has and still does tell me he loves me, and that he not trying to be with noone else, nor does he has a desire to be with anyone else. But now he says we are friend that loves each other and help each other out(WTF). We’ve had our share of ups and downs, now I feel like he’s sending me mix messages, and playing head games. Almost like, he don’t really want to be with me but he doesn’t really want me to be with anybody else. So I have decided to pull away and just see what happens. After about 2days of not hearing from me(txt/call) he called me only to say he was just checking on me. We are both too old for these games, but I’m not at that fork in the road with him. We both agreed not to have sex anymore for religious purposes. So now what? Any suggestions?? I can go either way, with or without him.(HELP)!!!

Reply January 11, 2012, 1:45 am

Mz. Johnson

Mz. Johnson-TYPO… It was suppose to read that I am NOW at that fork in the road with him.

Reply January 11, 2012, 1:51 am

lovethetruth4ever!

leave him! if the guy is not sure about you than let him go! douchebags like to have options and so he most likely using you to in order to keep you around!! a relationship is dependent on each other’s moods, actions, and care. if he’s not willing to be by you and share great and shaky moments then it is obvious he is not in to you and you have to get the point and leave, honestly, at this point it is better to be alone than to stand for some old idiot who doesnt know what he wants. he’s not your father to be checking on you – he is using that old tale to see if he still has you on his string! – it’s all about control!! please understand this, i know it hurts but the sooner you know and react the better, DONT let him have total control of your feelings, and DO NOT take his rotten crumbs as a way of excusing him for his lack of care or indifference! he knows exactly what he is doing! the man is extremely SELFISH!!! usually guys like him are liars so i dont by the whole religious purposes.

a healthy relationship should be sweet, peaceful, wise, complete, fun, a blessing to each of you – filled with new dreams while getting stronger each day, life’s already hard so why make something that should be meaningful harder?!!! it’s either yes or no, all or nothing in a relationship not half or grey!!

in my opinion, people who play games are mentally disable for they rather play than be upfront. my advice to you is LEAVE him, dont contact him at all and heal from this unhealthy relationship!! seriously, do yourself a favor and heal, new year and new adventures!

blessings to you!
nataly!

Reply January 11, 2012, 5:29 pm

Josie

I really enjoyed this post Eric; from a male point-of-view it is very interesting to hear your take on “taking it slow”. That’s what my guy said — four years ago!! Baby steps. At the time it didn’t sound good . But by slowing down to his pace, I realize I’m not in a hurry — what am I rushing to? Certainly not to tie any kind of knot with someone you don’t know well enough. Yes, I do get confused by him sometimes – I don’t always understand his need to take time for himself, without me. But it’s been MY choice to follow this road, not pelt him with my insecurities. He’s taught me a lot without knowing it and forced me to review issues of my own that don’t do any relationship well. Thank you for inspiring me on to (continue) having a great time with him and to take the high road. I do so with eyes wide open, risks and all. He’s been worth it. Thanks for letting us have a glimpse into the male mind and doing foreign translation… it helps a lot!

Reply November 16, 2011, 11:13 pm

a.g.

P.S. I think I will be a virgin for years to come because clearly the majority of men are not interested in commitment or I’m just never the “right” girl. I just decided to pour my heart and soul into a career. HELLOOOOOO GRADUATE SCHOOL! :)

Reply October 25, 2011, 11:35 pm

A.g.

This is such a common dating scenario . I have casually dated 4 men. The last guy I dated ended about a month ago. Same old story. I’m turning 25 this year, was ready to have a my first serious relationship with a guy I’ve been speaking with and dating for months. He acted like he wanted the same thing, then disappears for 3 weeks to think about it(acting as if I was giving him a ultimatum. Although, it was just something I brought up because HE was hinting at me coming over to his apartment and wanting oral. Well, he decided he didn’t want to take on the responsibilty, but he still enjoys my company as a friend because he feels so comfortable around me. SO, looking back he was willing to take on the responsibility of sex but not the relationship aspect of it. Ha!
I found out later (after talking to him a bit more) he felt inexperienced and wanted to continue to date other women. He continued to answer messages on his dating profile, while dating me. I also learned of his fear of commitment. When he asked to be friends, I told him I would think about it but clearly he knew what I meant. I felt like I was doing alot more giving than he was. I’m sure no other young lady was cooking meals for him! UGH.

Reply October 25, 2011, 11:31 pm

natalie

Hello…

I just wanted to thank you for giving us ladies a positive way of looking on relationship, althought they are signs it is frustrating to understand them if one is not wired to do the same or obtain much experienced. Moreover, I strongly believe if you (man or woman) are confident, loyal, fun, true, kind yet strong, loving, successful and ambitious, hard working, have and practice great morals, spritiual beliefs and family values ect will attract the same, thankfully because I am seen as someone with these qualities I have never experienced a”bad” relationship, actually all my past boyfriends (which arent many) ended up being my good friends afterwards, the break ups were caused due to our different views in the relationship and/or learned that our personalities werent compatible as in the beginning. I am a firm believer in speaking and accepting the truth even when it isnt pleasant to hear at times – that is the only for us (humanity) to grow in all good things. Additionally, that is why I believe my relationships havent last for more than 8 months because I was true to myself and to the guy.

Furthermore, I just recently got into a relationship and this one is a little different than my others, for instance our personalities (he’s quiet and I am outgoing), generational age (hes 13 years older me) background (he grew up in a quiet, reserve home while I grew up in Spanish, European strong Christian home – big family, yes big culture clash) so you can imagine the misunderstandings we have gone through. To give you a broad picture – remember the movie “Fools Rush In” with Matthew Perry – yes this is us, except the age gap is much wider. Even though we are so different, our spirit – what we hold dear is smilar. When we are together we have such an amazing time, we enjoy doing simple things, we mostly just han gout with each other. I do most of the talking while he listens when I am done with my subject he either disagrees or agrees and gives me his conclusion. He likes it that I am passionate about different topics.

Meanwhile, we have experienced bumps on the road almost from the very beginning, and because of these bumps I have actually wanted to throw in the towel and let it go, but no matter what happened we end up being together again… I understood that the more I stressed communication the more he repelled, so when I gave him his time he would always come back days later; although this strategy worked it was becoming annoying and frustrating since my view of relationship was the total opposite,and I was unsure to what was going on and where this was headed; to make matters worse when we did see each other he would do everything to avoid talking about it. Finally, because this wasnt going anywhere I decided to asked advice from my family and friends (my support team) who are happy people told me to just leave him since we was showing signs of indifference, but in my heart I knew and know my boyfriend truly loves me. I went online to look for answers and lo and behold I came across this site a couple of days ago, and I am so glad I did, when I did since it assured me that he is just wired differently, and his distant signs are normal…

We hung out together last night after not speaking to each other for almost a week, and because I was aware of his actions (thanks Eric!) my reaction towards him wasnt defensive or resentful instead it was even more understanding and calm. He confessed (after a couple of drinks) that I was being clingy and it freaked him out since he just got off a serious relationship, and I responded that it wasnt my intention to do be clingy I just didnt know how to comprehend his actions, and his needs, he also understood and at the same time I informed him of my needs and how he wasnt fulfilling them, he apologized and we ended up having a great time. :)

Honestly, I dont know what will happen to us in the near future since we are taking it slow (whatever that means). But I learned that although we dont agree to see or do things at times it doesnt mean they are wrong they are just different. And the more we know and accept the truth the more we are able to easily move forward with or without the guy. Thankfully, because we live in the information age there’s a great relationship advice out there, (for instance this site) yet we are responsible for choosing the guy we are wanting to spend our time with, so in order for us to grow with the best guy for us we must first become that person in order to attract him, otherwise as previously stated you will see relationships as a bitter, ugly and sad experience and spread poison; and honestly with all the trials we are forced to go through in life we can control and minimize the spread.

Again, thanks Eric for your time and sound advice, I will surely send my friends to you!

God bless you and may you continue to share the truth to many more!

Natalie

Reply September 23, 2011, 9:28 pm

Dawn

I loved your post Natalie. Just what I was looking for!

Reply September 25, 2012, 1:57 pm

Kat

Sorry for stepping on your chauvinistic shoes, Eric. Stop embracing immaturity and offer advice that helps men be a bit more responsible in the decisions they make that affect another human being.

As long as men continue to use and abuse women, this will continue to be a men vs. women thing. We women – yes, I said “we women”, need to stop allowing ourselves to be told how relationships should and shouldn’t be done. If it empowers you, it’s good. If it doesn’t, it’s not. And sorry, Eric, but I will not stop saying what needs to be said.

Reply September 1, 2011, 3:01 pm

Eric Charles

You are on your own trip. Honestly.
.
You’re taking your own bitterness and preaching relationship poison. Blaming, condemning and having an adversarial mindset towards men is the FASTEST way to poison your relationships.
.
It’s not because men are bad. It’s because you have a bad attitude. Period.
.
I’m sure you get along great with other women who resent men in general, but as a message to all other women who want to have a successful relationship: Avoid this mindset like the plague.
.
And again, this isn’t me defending men. I would VERY quickly stop a guy if he was saying this kind of bullshit about women.
.
If you want a good relationship with men, love men. If you want to have tons of conflict, turmoil, heartache and pain… treat men like they are your enemy. Hell… if you want a bad relationship with ANYONE, take on the mindset that they are an enemy and problem.
.
Anyway, that’s my piece… I don’t need conflict in my “living room”. You inspired an e-mail on my newsletter, so thanks for that. But seriously, your mindset is something I absolutely don’t agree with here.
.
Nothing against you personally.

Reply September 1, 2011, 3:52 pm

gbean

Bravo Eric I know a few women that are just men haters. It really is a turn off to me as another woman so I can only imagine how they come across to men. Nobodys perfect and if you think your getting played …..hello … you prob are. Trust your intuition ladies. Lay it on the line, men are blunt no nonsense creatures say… this is what I’m eventually looking for are we in agreement or should we just cut our losses and move on. Look them in the eye when they answer, this is not a text or phone conversation. :)

Reply January 18, 2012, 2:44 pm

Eric Charles

Thanks gbean – I appreciate that.
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And yeah, you get what I’m saying.

Reply January 18, 2012, 6:12 pm

Kat

As much as I agree about your comments on doing what you are comfortable with, often people are comfortable with being taken advantage of and/or refuse to see the signs that the other person is using them.

I also take offense at your comment that the women need to be “a totally positive presence”, really, we women need to stop putting ourselves in the position of having to do this or that in order to string the relationship along. Being up front about where we are in life is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves – please stop being a part of the chorus of people who are giving women false hope that the ‘elusive’ guy will be totally committed one day.

Reply September 1, 2011, 12:42 pm

Eric Charles

I never said “women need to be a positive presence”… like some kind of socio-political statement.
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You’re putting words in my mouth.
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I’m saying that if you want good results, A PERSON (male or female) should be a positive relationship.
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Don’t make this into a man vs. woman thing. Enough with the “we women need to” and all that. If you (or any man or woman), wants a good relationship, you have to give up the mindset of man vs. woman (like some kind of gender war) and start appreciating men for what we are. (And men need to appreciate women as they are too.)
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You can be upfront AND be a positive presence. Don’t let past angers and disappointments seep into your perspective – it will only poison future relationships with men.

Reply September 1, 2011, 2:15 pm

Rachel

-NB, apologies about the poor grammar. ‘His Girlfriend’ -what I meant to say was, he wants to find a girlfriend who will want to move in with him and settle down. He certainly doesnt have a girlfriend already

Reply August 13, 2011, 4:14 am

Rachel

Oh. A similar thing happened to me.
I met this man online while I was abroad, studying for my masters. He spoke to me online for hours and hours and over a period of three weeks, and when I returned home, he collected me from the airport. -Here’s where I made my first mistake: I slept with him straight away. I stayed at his house for two nights after my arrival and thing where pretty intense.
We saw each other a few times again, but he was visibly reserved and cautious. Saying things like, ‘I think you’re amazing, but you need to be spontaneous’. He seems to be interested; far from a back handed alternative to the more obvious: I’M NOT INTERESTED. My life, as a 27 year old, moves quite quickly: I travel, don’t have a set career plan and am not sure where I’ll be from one moment to the next. Its difficult to hold down a relationship in such situations, but this is what I want more than anything, and I suppose my second mistake was to admit to this.
The last time I saw him we slept together, then he ran away. -A horrible move on his part; now I feel used and ridiculous. He apologised about it, and said he couldnt see us going anywhere. His reasons: He wants to settle down and eventually get his gf to move in with him, and he feels adamant that I need to be free. This is EXACTLY what I want too, but it’s far too soon to talk in these terms.
Anyway, it’s a mess. Clearly.

Reply August 13, 2011, 4:10 am

Dana

I, too, found your post refreshing, as it also applies to my current situation as well. Ours is just slightly more complicated because we actually started off with DTD on the first date. Yes, I know it was a bad choice, but he also made the choice. It goes both ways. We had talked a little prior to meeting via IM and SMS. We both seem to have a lot in common. But, we have rushed into things in more ways than just one… In the interim between meeting him and starting our “dating” life, I very quickly learned I would have my children 100% of the time. He also had throat surgery only about 2 weeks after our initial meeting. So, now here we are a month later, and he’s suggesting we take it slow. At first, I admit, I was freaked. How, after all, do you back pedal with all that we’ve already gone through? We pretty much lived with him while he was recovering so that we could help him. I admit it was a heck of a lot on both of us WAY TOO SOON in a budding relationship. We finally went out on a date this past Monday, and that’s where things started to get sticky icky. He suggested that he wanted to “sow his oats” and “take things slow.” I am using it as an opportunity to reinvest in myself and my little ones (as I am recently divorced, a long time separated). I do care for this man a great deal. I would not have spent so much time caring for him while he was recuperating if I didn’t. He knows how I feel, so it quite possible I scared him a little. He’s amazing with my kids (my son has made a complete 360 with him around) and he’s been amazing with me. He shows that he is caring and respectful to me and to others. He has hobbies and interests, and we always laugh when we are around each other. I hope that he will eventually find a way in his heart to be with me, but I also understand that for 40 years he was just him, so if backing off is what I have to do, then I get that.

Reply August 4, 2011, 5:03 pm

April

I think this is such a great post, first because it is so applicable to me right now, and secondly because I’ve read this post a few times and can walk away with different details regarding my current dating situation each time. But my favorite thing about this post (and Eric in general) is that he is clear on the fact that when it comes to relationships, it’s really about me, how I feel and what I am comfortable with. So thanks Eric, reading it has helped me to define my approach to my current dating situation where after three dates, the guy made it clear that he was interested, but needed to take it slow. He gave clear reasons – 1) the facts surrounding my current life situation, and 2) the fact that he has rushed in and made bad choices in the past. At first I was disappointed, but when I thought about it I realized that where I am in my life, a slow dating process might be the best thing for me and I decided to give it whirl. I have always rushed into relationships in the past. I would use the term ‘lighting speed’ to describe my average lifetime commitment pace.

I’m pretty sure the disappointment I felt about slow guy had much more to do with my ego than a level of certainty about him. So, I decided to start accepting dates with other guys, and genuinely make an effort to get to know them. When slow guy isn’t in front of me, I don’t think about him or try to be a mind reader and conjure up what is going on with him. If he calls me to get together and I’m free, I accept. If not, I tell him I would love to spend time with him, but unfortunately I have other plans in place. I do not sleep with him, although we have fooled around a little and it got quite intense. During the times he is busy or traveling he has called to tell me so and has made a point to tell me he is thinking about me and processing everything (on our first date we learned that we are both slow at processing our emotions, with me possibly being even slower than him).

I have since met another guy who I also am interested in (and a few who I am not interested in). New guy and I are also moving slowly, which I am feeling very comfortable with. Going through this process (it’s only been a couple of months) I have learned a lot about myself and what I want in a relationship (there’s that CLARITY Eric ;-). And while I am still interested in slow guy, I know for sure that getting clear on what I want and need, then figuring out if either of these guys are capable of delivering that has been rewarding and most importantly FEELS REALLY GOOD, and I believe that if I keep following what I feels good (and not just an ego rush or insecurity compensation) all of this will sort out and I will find myself with a guy who makes me happy and is good for me.

Reply June 10, 2011, 11:57 am

Eric Charles

April, this is the best compliment I’ve ever received. Thank you so much for taking the time to write it.
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I try my best to write clearly and show readers how they really are in control and how they can be happy in their relationship if they don’t try to blame, coerce or dominate the other person. You really got the message I’ve always been trying to send and hearing you talk about it is really refreshing and inspiring.
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Thank you.

Reply June 10, 2011, 4:03 pm

April

Awe…that’s SO cool.

Reply June 13, 2011, 10:40 am

Tina

This is 3 years old, but could nearly be my story… Any update on the slow?

Reply January 15, 2014, 3:01 am

Mills

Hi, I knew this guy from an online chat room. We spoke almost every day for the first week. But we spoke mainly in the wee hours – 1am onwards. Subsequent 2 weeks, we didn’t talk as much and texted each other here and there. Once again, we only spoke in the wee hours.

One morning (5am), it was a spontaneous thing. We decided to meet up for the first time and had fun chit chatting. There was no touching or whatsoever. We had lots of laughter and things were fun.

Yesterday (few days after meeting me), we spoke on the phone (in the wee hours) and he started saying he had feelings for me and wanted to meet me. But he was afraid he might want to kiss me and it will hurt whatever we had. We ended up not meeting. But he kept saying he liked me and respected me. Even so, he sounded confused and kept saying he would have loved me if not for his past experience of being cheated by his ex gf.

Before ending the conversation I blurted out he was annoying me from just now (I traded him to know my friend, somehow he seemed keen. Then I got jealous and blurted out he annoyed me). He was offended n said I wasn’t taking him seriously and I should call 2 days later and thought about what I just said. Cos he said tt I’ve been hurting him every now and then with my insensitive words.

My questions are:
1. We knew each other for few weeks and he has fallen for me? Is he trying to play around?
He claims that any man would be lucky to have me.

2. I admit I can be insensitive cos I fear of getting hurt. But why must he specifically state call him back 2 days later to talk to him. And if I don’t call he will take it as I’m gone for good. What is he trying to do??

3. He is very experenced in bed and I am a virgin. He asked if he could kiss me and stuff and I stood firm. For that he respected me. But is it cos of my virginity he is trying to get me laid or something??

Thank you.

Reply May 3, 2011, 5:37 am

Michelle D

I’m in the same situation! So glad I came across this email before asking my male friend about a more serious relationship. Great food for thought!!! Thank you.

Reply April 5, 2011, 6:11 pm

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