This topic contains 73 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Ava 3 months, 4 weeks ago.
November 26, 2016 at 2:17 pm #580805
I’ve been dating a guy for 3-4 months, and recently we’ve hit a bit of a grey area.
Things have been really good, for e.g. he visited me at work & introduced me to his mum, son, cousin & brother. He’s taken me out for meals, dates, we’ve had lovely nights in, he’s talked about meeting my dad & future plans, asked me what I want for xmas, given me lifts to work. We also are very compatible in the bedroom. These are all things I’d think were good signs he’s well invested in me.
However…. we haven’t discussed any exclusivity. Which I think is where recent problems have arisen.
We met over a dating app called Bumble, (if you’re not familiar, its an app where you ‘match’ by liking each others profile, but only the woman can message the guy. If she doesnt, it deletes him after 24 hours).
I was over his house recently, and we were looking at something on his phone. Then a bumble message popped up ‘Message from *girls name*’. I was obviously very surprised. I said to him ‘Was that a bumble message?’ And his response was ‘Ugh, yeah its always on’. I didnt really know how to respond to that!? he didn’t even look guilty or shady. I know its an app where the girls message the guys but still…he either liked a lot of profiles 4 months ago or its from a new match.
After that I just left it, perhaps I should have pressed further but I didn’t even know how to bring it up I was so surprised. Then something else happened…
So things carried on, a week later I was at his again. He was very sweet as usual, ran me a bath, made me dinner, again was chatting about future plans & we were having a lovely evening. He had to leave earlier than me in the morning, so he left me in bed & sent me a lovely text in the morning saying he hoped I’d slept well, hoped I had a good day & to help myself to anything.
I woke up, started to get ready for work. Just as I was about to leave I look down and on his tv stand (which is at the foot of his bed) is the ripped off end of a condom wrapper.
I felt sick, I’m on the pill – so it’s not from us. Further still, he’s only just moved house so I’m scepticle that it’s old.
I don’t know what to say or do, these things do not match his behaviour towards me. I really need some kind advice guys, it’s eating away at me and I’m upset that this has happened after 4 months. I need some answers, but I don’t know the best way to ask for them without creating a s**tstorm.November 26, 2016 at 2:36 pm #580808
Ask lane, she has x ray vision if its an old or new condom ripper. Have you posted this before? It sounds so familiar. But anyway the guy seems serious but if he never asked you yo be exclusive or his gf then its time to have the talk. Good luckNovember 26, 2016 at 2:38 pm #580809
You’re doing the right thing by not reacting right away.
I would cut to the chase and ask him if he’s seeing other people the next time you’re together in person. Bring it up as casually as you can, mention the Bumble message. I know you two haven’t talked about being exclusive, but 4 months dating I think it’s well within your right to figure out whats going on. I also think that if someone is dating/sleeping around that they have an obligation to their sexual partners to be open and honest about it.November 26, 2016 at 2:55 pm #580810
Thanks Selena, I’m a pretty chilled out person & I’ve done enough dating in the past to know reacting to things irrationally straight away is NEVER a good idea. I haven’t posted this before no, haha.
It’s just super disappointing for me being in this position as I was certain it was going really well, so I’m naturally cautious of ruining what we have. But it’s just really bothered me & like you say, 4 months in & I feel like it’s time to establish what we’re doing. Just so we’re on the same page with no confusion, rather than a ‘need’ to be in a relationship.November 26, 2016 at 3:10 pm #580811
same thing happened to me –
i was seeing this guy for 3 months until he told me let’s just be friends — of course, this didn’t work, we ended up having sex a few times and one day i saw an used condom in his garbage. i really didn’t know if it was the time we had sex last week becasue we did use condoms but he did tell me that he would tell me if he was sleeping w someone else. i chose to believe him, but i knew that since we weren’t exclusive, that this would happen a bunch of other damn times.
i didn’t react. because, truth is – i had no right to be mad at him. i was more mad at myself. i completely disliked to feeling of being used …i felt used and disgusted at that moment, because deep in my heart i knew that this would happen 10x over.
so i didn’t react, and 2 weeks later i told him i was done. i wanted more, and if he wasn’t on the same page, then i’m out. don’t react, you know that it probably wasn’t used with you, and you AREN’T exclusive. THIS exact feeling that you have right now — let that be a driving force for you to say “are you willing to commit to me? if not, i am out.” that’s what you need to do, because trust me ..no one will do or say what you don’t allow them.
you won’t allow him to treat you as disposable trash and expect to sleep with him as well. only you can put an end to that behavior.November 26, 2016 at 3:15 pm #580812
believe me, it is NOT a good feeling to have. it makes you sick to your stomach. for me, i wanted to call him out right then and there, but i decided to take a shower and wait on it.
that was the moment i knew, in my heart, that i couldn’t handle something like this. it was that specific moment (i felt awful, totally used and disposed) that i did NOT want that happening again. in my heart and brain i was done. i told him via text that i need to walk away (of course, politely because for me, I agreed to be friends), and that i wanted more. he couldn;t give that to me, so i am out. THAT is what you need to do.
it’s better to be alone than to feel lonely. it’s the worst feeling. the feeling is 10x better KNOWING you’ve walked away from something that was going to blow over and you feel completely free. don’t look back.
my guy was completely shocked that i simply just texted him to say this fraudulent friendship was over. i blocked his number and on social media. i was DONE. so, until he’s ready to change and SHOW you he’s done with this BS behavior, should you even begin to entertain the idea of having him back in your life.November 26, 2016 at 3:31 pm #580814
i agree to all the posters above.
and also — for your own safety – find out asap because if he is sleeping around, you don’t want to catch any STDs. you should be finding out for YOURSELF asap, don’t be afraid to ask. these are all VERY important things to know. you definitely don’t want to catch anything, and you have every right to know. ESPECIALLY when you’re not exclusive.November 26, 2016 at 3:37 pm #580819
Hi Emily, thank you for your advice & I certainly admire your ability to walk away from it all, that’s ballsy.
However your past situation is very different to mine despite a few similarities. He hasn’t said to me ‘let’s just be friends’ & he has made no indication that’s solely what he wants. Atm unfortunately I don’t know anything for sure, so I can’t make rash decisions based on assumptions. Need to hear it from the horses mouth.November 26, 2016 at 3:37 pm #580820
Never assume a man isn’t dating or having sex with other women unless he tells you, have he talk. Soon!November 26, 2016 at 3:38 pm #580821
Wow girls, you’ve got to start taking some responsibility for getting that far in with a guy without having the exclusivity discussion. If he doesn’t bring it up and it’s not been discussed: YOU ARE NOT EXCLUSIVE, he is not your BF and you don’t have a right to expect monogamy. Also, if a guy tells you he just wants to be friends and you keep sleeping with him, that’s on you too.
You haven’t hit a grey area, you’ve allowed this whole thing with him to be a grey area. This is why it’s said here not to sleep with a guy until you know you’re on the same page.
The real reason we as women don’t push it or don’t raise it is we aren’t valuing ourselves enough. Then we get in it with a guy and we really want to it to work out so we put on the blinders. And then when it doesn’t go our way we get angry with the guy for stringing us along, being a douche, being a jerk, whatever other terms get used here.
Value yourself, don’t get over invested until you see a strong history of matching words and actions and don’t sleep with him until you know you are on the same page. That’s how healthy women get into healthy relationships with healthy men.November 26, 2016 at 3:40 pm #580823
Thanks Trina yeah exactly, that’s the main reason I’m so anxious about it all and feel like it’s not unreasonable to ask. But the asking…I’m terrified you know? Of bursting the bubble.November 26, 2016 at 3:45 pm #580826
My guess is the reason he didn’t get too flustered about the bumble chick popping up on his phone or the condom is because he hasn’t stated you are exclusive.
More times than not if something doesn’t seem right, it isn’t,
This is what happens when you act like a gf without the title. It’s very important to be clear with each other, regardless of all the future talk.
Men say lots of things in the moment, talk is cheap when it isn’t backed up with words.
You really ought to find out if you are exclusive, especially since you are having unprotected sex.November 26, 2016 at 3:51 pm #580827
yes, yours and my situation are very different – but same problem of this “grey area.” essentially i was friends with benefits, and we both were lying to ourselves because we aren’t friends. i carried this “let’s be friends” for about a 1.5 months until i completely disliked that awful gut-wrenching feeling of having to deal with these grey area questions 10x over in the future.
essentially, the posters are right, you cannot assume exclusivity. as a matter of fact, assume one thing: if he didn’t bring it up ever, ASSUME AND BELIEVE that he is sleeping with other women. for me, i assumed this – but i couldn’t BELIEVE it when i actually knew that it COULD be true. i didn’t want to. but i accepted the situation for what it was and i took my ass and ran.
it’s not ballsy. i just did what i needed to do to protect myself. the next time you see him, ask him straight out. if it’s not something you want to hear, think about the awful feeling you had when finding this condom. do you want to feel that again, OR you can have a man who is WILLING to give you his time and be committed to you without all this BS? i think you know what the answer is.
i just saw it like this: if i saw this condom and i felt completely terrible – i couldn’t imagine how it’d feel if tomorrow he told me “i have a girlfriend, please don’t contact me anymore.” because i knew it is a very real thing that can happen. it happened to one of my good friends and believe me, it can happen to you, if you don’t find out asap and WALK AWAY if he isn’t willing to be exclusive. stand your ground and stay strong. if i can do it, you can too.November 26, 2016 at 3:54 pm #580829
Yep I agree CarrieAnne, he’s of course under no monogamous obligation if we are not exclusive. It of course works both ways too. I’ve come on this forum for advice on what to do next, not for clarification of my mistakes or of my part in this grey area. It’s fustrating mostly, all I read about is how bad it is to discuss exclusivity head on but how else are things meant to move forward? You have to establish it at some point. It’s gotten my head in a right spin.November 26, 2016 at 4:00 pm #580831
This is really easy Coral. You date and enjoy mens’ company until the right one for you steps up and brings up monogamy. No monogamy, no sex. You’re working too hard to figure this out. If he isn’t asking you for exclusivity after a month or two, you are one in a rotation and at 3 months if he hasn’t asked you tell him that it’s been a slice and I’m moving on. Now also keep in mind you don’t want the psycho who is asking you for exclusivity immediately! I’m having a great time dating. It’s a dance. I’m glad when I have a good date… but then I’m generally happy about my life with or without that guy. that’s the place you have to come from. Just because a guy is taking you out and introducing you to F&F (friends and family) is not a commitment.November 26, 2016 at 4:01 pm #580832
it is your right to know if he is willing to MOVE ALONG the relationship so that YOU KNOW if you are wasting your time or not. if what he wants IS NOT CONGRUENT with what you want, then YOU MOVE ON. are you just going to keep playing this weak ass guessing game? there is NO clarification needed. you simply ask: “So, are you willing to see this going somewhere, do you see yourself getting into a serious relationship with me? So i can act accordingly and DATE someone who is willing to move forward with me.”
state your purpose and your truth. if it’s not congruent you MOVE ON. keep circulating and DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME with these kind of men. more likely than not, if 4 months in and he HASN’T broached the subject one bit, he’s probably intending to keep it casual. the strongest position that you can take (and position of power) is to WALK AWAY when you’re not getting what you want. And don’t look back.November 26, 2016 at 4:03 pm #580833
You gotta let the guy lead and in this case you have gotten ahead of him. If you are having unprotected sex you must for your own good say something at this point. And don’t have unprotected sex if you don’t know for a fact you are exclusive. HPV and herpes and other little ickies that itch down there are epidemic because this has become such a casual hookup culture. The girls are paying the price for that. Not me! And I hope not you either.November 26, 2016 at 4:07 pm #580835
Rachel that is a really confrontational way to go about it. I wouldn’t do it that way, that will push anyone away. Better to say hey, about that Bumble message, I was wondering if you are seeing other women, because I’m looking to be with someone who is interested in being together long term and if you aren’t looking for that, I understand, it’s just that I will need to move on to someone who is on that page too, much as I’ve enjoyed the past few months of dating you. And then you shut your trap and listen carefully. I don’t use the word serious with a guy, it sounds like I’m trying to pour cement on him and lock him into one place, LOL.November 26, 2016 at 4:09 pm #580837
Who ever said not to address exclusivity up front? Of course you do, you absolutely do before you have sex.
You don’t ask it after one or two dates. That is what we see women doing. That’s silly and unrealistic in most cases. But after 2 or 3 months? Absolutely. And don’t give a man your exclusivity unless he offers up being exclusive himself,November 26, 2016 at 4:13 pm #580839
-I woke up, started to get ready for work. Just as I was about to leave I look down and on his tv stand (which is at the foot of his bed) is the ripped off end of a condom wrapper-
How often do you stay over/see each other?
I’d most certainly be very suspicious BUT it also strikes me as odd the wrapper was left hanging around in such an obvious position, if he had something to hide! On the other hand, perhaps it’s just an oversight……
I think you need to confront him face to face about this. His reaction should tell all you need to know, unless he’s a very accomplished liar!November 26, 2016 at 4:30 pm #580842
We see each other about once a week, we both have very busy work schedules but we see each other twice a week or more sometimes if poss.November 26, 2016 at 4:40 pm #580843
You saw the condom on accident, it wasn’t as if you were snooping thru his personal belongings. It was out in the open, I’m sure his mother would’ve seen something like that. I would question where that condom came from but the other things seem to be pretty normal. I would not get all bent up about the dating app, if he’s making time for you and it’s obvious that you’re a priority then chances are that the other women he’s talking to are to have fun with…I know it sounds immature but who knows. If you have not had the talk of exclusivity then you are technically not exclusive. I know plenty of men who introduce them to family/friends and make future plans but yet don’t want an exclusive relationship only companionship. You’ll have to ask him, if meeting family/friends is important to him. If so, them chances are that he sees you as long term. It’s good to know that before you meet the parents unless it’s out of the blue.November 26, 2016 at 4:54 pm #580845
Another issue with having the exclusive talk.. it’s really a catch 22. I know plenty of partners/couples who “think” they are bf/gf but then the convo is brought up and one person thinks one way. It’s happened to male friends too, they think it’s obvious that they are a couple yet the woman doesn’t they didn’t till someone brings it up. Some men are more inclined to know how a woman operates and is man enough to bring about something to the topic…others are unaware or just not knowing period.
Your timeframe of dating this man of 4 months is about the time when a man wants to further things with you or keep looking. Some men take longer 6 months but it all depends. Has the subject ever came up of what you both are looking for in a relationship at all?November 26, 2016 at 5:05 pm #580849
Not directly no, only sort of hints like him mentioning meeting my dad, visiting my hometown with me etc. All things that I’d consider to point in that direction. Maybe that’s the issue here, we haven’t discussed it. I’m just getting really fustrated and upset over this, I need to talk to him about it.November 26, 2016 at 5:20 pm #580853
I’ve never been in a situation where it hasn’t been clear and a discussion,
I remember dating a man years ago. I was just out of a LTR and just dating for fun. I saw this man for about month or so. We had sex. I turned down a few dates and he asked what was up, as I said I had plans, when he eventually found out I was dating other men he was not happy. He assumed we were exclusive. So, even me n can get caught up in thinking the wrong things, I remember saying to him that we never discussed exclusive. He just assumed in his head because we spent nights together and did things.. go figure.
The point is to have the discussion. Everything might be totally fine! But until you ask you won’t know. It doesn’t have to be a sh@t storm discussion. I like what one poster suggested. Reference back the bumble hit and let him know you never discussed being exclusive, See what he says. If he waffles on this, then bring out the big guns and let him know you saw the condom wrapper too. Have this discussion in person so that you can see his body language along with his words.