This topic contains 28 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Tallspicy 1 week ago.
March 24, 2020 at 3:11 pm #788235
I have been dating this guy for almost two months now. The first one and a half months were amazing. It was easy to talk to him, we both reciprocated on feelings and effort, albeit, he was a little slower, but I didn’t mind. I was in a healthy mind space where I was able to focus on work, friends and him. I have a history of anxiety and being hyper focused on what causes me anxiety, which is why I mention the healthy mind space.
A couple of weeks ago, I brought up exclusivity. And he said he wasn’t dating anyone (not on purpose but naturally since we had started seeing each other) but he wants to move slower (slower than I preferred). I almost broke it off right there and then because I did not want to waste my time on someone who won’t be available. He told him he needed more time to get to the place I was at and he doesn’t want to promise anything if he can’t live up to it but he sees potential. His last relationship had ended only a few months ago and he doesn’t want to rush into anything because it was a complete mess last time he did that. He told me to sleep on it and decide.
I did, and objectively I figured that people move at different paces which is okay. But I didn’t want to waste my time either. So we spoke about it and I told him that we should take the next few weeks to get to know each other more proactively. If you don’t know after a few months of knowing me, then it’s likely you will never feel what you need to for me and we should let this go. He agreed.
But this spiked my anxiety, and I have now become hyper focused on this. I can’t tell how much contact is appropriate, if I am asking for too much, if he is not giving me enough. Its all a mess in my head.
Then the Coronavirus social distancing went into effect and in the last two weeks we’ve texted a little and spoken on the phone twice. His parents are elderly and he has not been seeing his friends either to be safe. This was a very specific conversation we had and he told me his reasons and all.
What I wanted was to see each other more on a consistent basis and thanks to circumstances, that has not been possible. Its not going as I had expected it to.
I am anxious now. I am playing mind games with myself and him in my head. I don’t like this at all. I want to go back to the healthy mental space I was in. I feel that the momentum we had built has disappeared, there has been less to talk about on both our ends. I always want to reach out but refrain from doing so because if he wanted to speak to me, he would have.
I have always been a believer of talking things out and taking it slow, but when it comes to myself, I can’t put it into practice.
I wanted to ask for advice, where do we go from here? Should I be telling him how I feel? Is there anything I can do to pick up momentum? Should I let this thing go ( :( )? I don’t want to come off clingy and naggy. Also, tips on handling this anxiety would be very much welcome please.March 24, 2020 at 3:51 pm #788236
There’s not a lot you can do…
If you tell him how you feel what good will that do?March 24, 2020 at 4:04 pm #788237
I feel once you had the exclusive talk and maybe even before that that you are pushing for a specific outcome, the outcome you desire and all is focused on that and causing the anxiety. So you are sucking the fun out of this totally yourself. You have to accept you cant control a guy falling or not falling for you. In this case i think you picked the wrong moment to ask for exclusivity. I think he saw it as an ultimatum and so did you because you wanted to quit. But come on, you asked him roughly after a month of dating. He said he wasnt there yet. So sit it out. Social distancing at least makes it possible for him to miss you. And in general, stop trying to control the proces. You dont even know yourself for sure you want this guy. Take careMarch 24, 2020 at 4:11 pm #788238
OK here’s the deal. It is very hard in today’s world to be able to understand what’s going on people are very stressed out and honestly there’s a lot of weird stuff going on. It’s looking like it will probably take another two months in the US assuming that’s where you live before we can get back to any someone’s of a regular life. It also sounds like things were not escalating at the level that you were hoping for. It sounds like you guys agree to something and that was reasonable but then things changed.
So I’m gonna give you advice that I don’t normally give. In my normal world I would say just let it fade out because he’s not interested. But in today’s world we get to have a little bit more freedom in the sense that we need to just give it a little more time. However what that means to me, is that you do zero initiating at all until this is all over. He will a. Step it up, b. Step it down, c. Step out completely. If he steps out completely, you can contact him once when things are back to normal and try to restart it.
You need to remember that men are very logical. And that in this period of time he’s probably getting more logical because things are so stressful. Logically it’s hard to keep a relationship going right now. That’s the reality. It sounds like you have anxious attachment, which means you probably should not be dating at all right now because everything is going to trigger you. So again I just suggest that you just follow his lead which you should be doing anyhow. And any man who does not ask you to be his girlfriend by 8 to 12 weeksNever is going to which I think you already understand.
There’s another thing that you could do but I doubt you would do it. Which is to simply put it on hiatus officially for right now. That’s a just say listen it seems like it’s very complex for us to try to keep things going and I don’t want it to be a pressure. I would like for us to explore this but I think we both know that the circumstances are not the best. How about you reach out to me when things are better and we try to reconnect at that point. That put it all in his court, and allows you to relax into an assumption it is over.March 24, 2020 at 4:14 pm #788239
Btw, men who usually rush do not get better at it. The fact he is not communicating that he wants to, but is slowing down is a red flag. People tend to get into relationships as a pattern, and communicate when they are breaking that pattern. I personally think he was not that interested, but wanted to give it one last shot.March 24, 2020 at 4:15 pm #788240
T from NY
I posted this on another thread but the grounding technique of 5,4,3,2,1 is good for flares of anxiety. Meditation. Distract, distract and distract yourself some more! I know that’s harder to do all cooped up – but let’s be real pain and confusion are hard any ole time. Im sorry you’re disappointed in love – and we’ve all been there many times, especially in current dating climate. But it’s evident he is not advancing the relationship – at least – not at your pace. From what you’ve written he does not seem invested and you absolutely should not talk to him again! Men are not dumb. They do not forget emotional talks women put them through and you already expressed your needs. I repeat your best action right now is — NOTHING.
Whenever a man begins to be distant – the best course is always increased self love and doing absolutely NOTHING. See how long it takes for him to reach out. See if he even does. WATCH how he treats you. Is there any enthusiasm? Are there sharing of feelings about the stressful events we are all experiencing. If he does not communicate with you — he is NOT YOUR PERSON no matter what has happened prior.
For example that man I’m dating for last 6 weeks is texting morning, noon and night. He calls me every evening and we play games or just say goodnight. Yes he’s gotten quiet some days and I have a little prick of anxiety – but when I do – I self talk positive things, go exercise, watch a movie, call a girlfriend. If men are interested they show it! There will be no doubt. You are in action mode — want-to-fix-things-mode. That is masculine energy. Feminine energy is receiving. Give to yourself. Develop self esteem where you LOSE interest in men blowing hot and cold and not paying attention to you. Do not make excuses for him not contacting you. Get peaceful with you. It is a skill you have to work on, a daily practice. If this guy doesn’t turn out to be your man – let the universe have him back. Tend to you. Be healthy and soon you’ll feel better.March 24, 2020 at 4:15 pm #788241
Btw, next time don’t reciprocate effort. Until a man is your boyfriend, he makes the effort. Reciprocate by being responsive, receptive and appreciative. Let him lead.March 24, 2020 at 4:28 pm #788243
Thanks all. It seems as though its unanimous that I should let him take the lead. How would I do that? I was thinking about asking him to call tomorrow but that it seems would not be a good idea?
Uncertainty really bothers me and I can’t help but think that this will turn into a slow fade. Slow fades are the worst, I would rather it be a definitive end than something that gets dragged out and take my peace of mind away.
Is there anyway I can encourage him to step up?
I really did like him, there was potential. Its not often that people with potential come by.March 24, 2020 at 4:39 pm #788245
This may sound odd, but I honestly am okay if I know that he doesn’t want to do this. Its the uncertainty that bothers me.
I would rather be broken up with so at least I know that I tried and it was never in my hands if he didn’t want to try.March 24, 2020 at 4:39 pm #788246
I honestly think you should end it with him. You are not in a healthy mindset to be involved with anyone right now. Please go to a therapist to work on attachment trauma and insecure attachment when you can finally go out, or even do therapy virtually.
You do not seem to understand how to let him lead. You let him lead and you respond warmly and positively. That is your best bet under any scenario to encourage him to step up.
If you cannot do that, then just end it. And what you described was not a ton of potential, it sounded a lot like it was fading anyhow. He was not driving this to a relationship any time soon. Men who want to be boyfriends act and talk like boyfriend by 8-12 weeks latest. Sometimes earlier.March 24, 2020 at 4:41 pm #788247
Honey nobody can make you secure even in the most deep relationship. That is on you not on him. I really think you have a lot of self work to do before you can be in a relationship. You will never ever find someone who’s going to make you feel safe all the time because safety comes from you, not from the person. Please end it with him there is no scenario where this is not a very uncertain time and if you can’t deal with it then just break it off for nowMarch 24, 2020 at 4:42 pm #788248
My advice based off RECENT experience. I dated this guy for 2months roughly. We were texting everyday, hours and hours and even spent time together. I’m the type of girl to only reciprocate when he leads so the relationship when how it went due to his reaching out. I’d say around the 2mth mark, things started to drastically slow down. We still made efforts to let each other know how “into one another” we were but I just didn’t see the effort/investment on his part (asking me out, etc). I took a leap and asked to make him dinner one night and he said he was busy, ok fair. But after that, I just decided I’d stop reaching out all together because I didn’t want to get hurt and knew that he knew how to find me if he wanted to.
Two weeks went by no-contact and WHAM! He was back! Telling me he missed me, planned a date and everything. I was nice and agreed to the date (I don’t like to be dramatic), acted like all was cool and normal. Once at his place though I told him I stopped making the effort because I was giving him an exit since I felt like he wasn’t into it. He grabbed me close and said that wasn’t it at all, he just had a lot going on.
Sometimes distance is good and showing your standards (ex, you have a life) is even better. Give it time. If he really likes he he will find you!March 24, 2020 at 4:45 pm #788249
Alice, is this man committed to you? Because that story to me would be unacceptable and he still is not committed and you went over and rewarded his unexplained disappearance. I am not impressed with that story, not even a little.March 24, 2020 at 4:47 pm #788251
T from NY
You are not reading any of the advice given about working on YOU. Peace of mind is a skill you DEVELOP. A dude doesn’t give it to you.March 24, 2020 at 4:49 pm #788252
You just told him in your actions, disappear and it is totally ok, I will come to your house and be with you even if you give me no explanation. That is not standing in your value. Standing in your value is – please explain what has happened, ok, I appreciate the explanation, I will see you, but if this happens again, I will walk.
Or, he contacts you, you go out and you do not go home with him. The clock starts again on intimacy (and if he was not your boyfriend, not sure why you were sleeping with him at all).March 24, 2020 at 4:57 pm #788253
Sorry, I had a lot going on is a pathetic excuse – any man who cares about you would have communicated what was going on and when you would engageMarch 24, 2020 at 4:57 pm #788254
Yes, we are together now. His mom had a heart attack and he was helping to figure out her care. I didn’t say anything about sleeping with him either. We went to his place to talk and lounge but did not sleep together. He’s actually a really good guy and life happens. I didn’t reward him with anything other than giving him an opportunity to redeem himself and so far so good. He had more than a good reason to become absent all the sudden.March 24, 2020 at 5:46 pm #788255
A lot of good advice has been given already. OP, you said his last relationship only ended a few months ago. And it was a complete mess. For how long was he in that relationship? If it was long term (like a year or more) he probably needs more time to get over the relationship and the awful breakup, in any case.
Under normal circumstances, I would say dating a guy only a few months after a very messy breakup is not a good idea. Aside from all the unprecedented, crazy stuff that’s happening now, dating a guy freshly out of a messy breakup generally doesn’t lead to a relationship.
And him balking when you brought up exclusivity after 2 months isn’t a good sign. By 2 months a guy who’s into you is eager to lock you down and be exclusive. He wouldn’t want to risk another guy having you.March 24, 2020 at 6:31 pm #788258
Alice, glad you had a positive outcome. I hope he explained that to you before you agreed to see him… I actually tend to be a forgiving sort myself, and mom being sick definitely counts as reason to give a second chance!March 24, 2020 at 8:34 pm #788263
If he was into you he would’ve taken you at your first words. Or better off locked you down first.
Start dating other men and stop dragging this one. It will only get worseMarch 25, 2020 at 12:53 am #788266
Asking him to call you is not letting the man take the lead. Letting the man take the lead is not contacting him until he calls you. Understand? That way, you come into his mind. He thinks: “wow… wonder what she is doing? why is she so quiet? she must be doing something fun without me. she must have a life. she must actually have stuff going on besides me and can exist in this life without constantly getting in my business.” that way… you both have happy healthy lives separate of each other. but you hang out with each other because you want to, not because you need to. men find this attractive. they find it sexy. they like mystery.March 25, 2020 at 7:31 am #788274
You are anxious because your gut knows he doesn’t want a relationship. Men takes longer time to move on from a relationship. It’s just 2 months since he’s out of a relationship. Most likely you are just a rebound. I know some men who is out of relationship for a year and they still miss their ex.March 25, 2020 at 8:19 am #788275
Kelly & I are on the same page. She’s right. I don’t actually think the coronavirus situation is the issue here. He’s just not ready for a new relationship. You know he’s only a few months out of his previous relationship (and you’ve been dating 2 months– so when you met him, he was 1-2 months out of that relationship? That’s way too soon to be entering a new relationship). And he demonstrated that he’s not ready with his response when you asked for exclusivity.March 25, 2020 at 9:42 am #788277
When we met, he was 4-5 months out of a relationship. They started strong, lived together and it fell apart in a matter of a few months. He moved out and moved back to his city which is where we met.
I will be backing off from him now. I have tried and attempted to reach out in the last two weeks, I don’t want to try anymore, it feels like crap. He replies in a flakey manner.
Another question for you all, to me it seems like a slow fade out/maybe even faster if I stop initiating. When can I assume that the exclusivity we spoke about and which he agreed to is void?
Do I have some sort of a final conversation?
Thank you, I have started to do 3-5 minutes of breathing exercises to calm down. No person is loosing this much peace over.March 25, 2020 at 10:36 am #788280
If you reached out twice past two weeks and he only responded flaky then i would say he is doing a slow fade already. Because in these days i get way more texts from just about anybody. I dont think there is much you can do or find any closure. After reading some of the responses im inclined to agree with Kelly and liz this was probably a rebound for him. I would wish to hard women would protect their heart more early on. We are so unwise when it comes to that. Doing stuff backwards. Instead of vetting the guy carefully. When it comes to being anxious: just know you will be fine. There are many terrible things that can happen in a life and a lot of people can bounce back from that. So a guy not feeling it for you after knowing him for 2 months is by far not the end of the world