You finally met someone you like and the feeling is mutual. Dating turns into a relationship rather quickly — and before you know it, you are spending all your free time together as your emotions grow. But then the other person’s feelings deepen… while your feelings stay stagnant. You continue to move forward as a couple because you still like your significant other, but since you’re not falling in love with the same veracity, you begin to doubt if this is “The One.” As you learn more about each other you start to see flaws where there once was perfection.
You know intrinsically that you should be able to accept these flaws as human and normal, but instead they start to irk at you. And the things you liked before also start to gnaw at you, making you wonder if you can get back to that exciting, lust-filled place — or if the relationship is a ticking time bomb. Unfortunately, once you get to this point, it is likely that you won’t be able to backtrack and that the relationship is indeed doomed.
Don’t try to fight it, this is a course that many relationships take. Be comforted by the fact that you didn’t allow it to go any further, and listened to your heart and mind when it told you that something wasn’t right. Feelings are going to get hurt in this wild ride we call dating; don’t be shocked when you are on the receiving side and don’t feel bad when you are on the distributing side.
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No one wants to get their heart broken, and likewise, no one wants to intentionally break anyone’s heart. That’s why many of us decide that when it’s not quite working with someone, when the stars just aren’t lining up, instead of getting fireworks in our belly, we get indigestion — it’s easy for us to tip toe around the brutally honest truth and try to hide our true feelings behind polite one-liners that we hope will do the dirty work for us:
- It’s not you, it’s me.
- I’m terribly busy and this really isn’t a good time.
- I’ve started really, seriously, seeing someone else.
The only thing worse than throwing one of these sentences onto a person you don’t want to see again is having them not get the hint. There’s no trick when it comes to figuring out if someone is not interested in you, it’s just being able to accept the truth. Follow their words, but ultimately trust your gut.
Do: Follow up with someone you enjoyed going out with on a date. See how they are throughout the week, then ask them if they’d like to go out again. If you are feeling unsure whether or not someone would like to see you again… or you are getting too many wish-washy responses from them, pick up on their signs and swallow their constant “I can’t” as an indication that, unfortunately, they are not feeling this (Don’t fret, there are plenty of other people out there that will have goo goo eyes for you)!
Don’t: Be overly persistent or pushy with your follow-ups. Don’t sign off your text messages or emails with “Please go out with me one more time, I promise you’ll be impressed” or threaten them with a “I won’t give up on asking you out.” If you’re feeling that you are the only one who is excited to see you again, don’t force it. Bow out gracefully and search for someone else who will be your true match.
“How about my place?” always only means one thing – wanna have sex? And if you don’t want to have sex, then don’t accept the offer to go upstairs. It’s a difficult question to answer because you want to spend more time with your date and yeah, you probably do want to make-out a bit, but if you say yes to going home together then you will only have to reject your date later when you’re rounding 1st (or 2nd) base and you suddenly feel uncomfortable.
But rejecting the offer for a nightcap, or even just “hanging out”, doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you. In fact, it probably means your date may just want to hook up and doesn’t see the relationship going anywhere. This isn’t always the case, there are exceptions to everything, but 9 times out of 10 it will only lead one place: sex.
If you want to have sex then great, but if you’re expecting a phone call the next day… don’t hold your breath. And if you reject the offer to go home with your date and are expecting a phone call the next day… don’t hold your breath. Bottom line, this is not the right person for you if you are looking for something serious. Better (and less awkward) to reject the offer to go home together then to have to wait and reject the offer for sex once your shirt is halfway off.
Watching Bachelorette Emily blindside and dump d-bag Arie made it easy to think of the topic for this post. The second Emily said he wasn’t the one, Arie turned cold and harsh. He didn’t want to talk, he wasn’t going to make her feel better and he was done. She thought he may want to ask more or fight for her or say something, but he was done, he didn’t want to draw it out. He gave her a hug, said “Good Luck” and left. Some people felt bad for him, others thought it only solidified his sketchiness. In his defense, he was totally blind-sided and she wasn’t very direct.
So it got me thinking, is there a “right” way to react to an in-person break-up speech? Do you want to be that person who keeps pushing and prodding for an answer that will make you feel better? Because nothing is going to make you feel better. You were just dumped. That sucks. Rejection stings. So are you going to go out with your head held high or are you going to grovel and try to convince the person to change their mind or are you going to get stark, raving mad and start cussing?
Really, at the end of the day, that person doesn’t want to be with you and it doesn’t matter why. You do not want to be with a person who doesn’t want to be with you. So as much as it hurts, thank the person for being honest, wish them luck in finding their Beshert and do so with a smile on your face no matter how forced. It would be okay to ask “Why?” once, but only once. Don’t ask if there’s anyone else, don’t ask if they want to be special friends, don’t ask what advice they have for you for future relationships. Wish them luck, tell them you had a nice time while it lasted, express appreciation for their honesty and go, get off the phone or walk away.
Note: this is advice for relationships that are less than one year old.
I had a magical first date about a week ago. We went to the park and we didn’t even have any of the usual first date questions. It was perfect. He asked me to hang out that next Monday, but cancelled because he was stuck at work. He rescheduled for Tuesday, but cancelled again. He said he would have a better schedule next week. On Thursday he texted to tell me he’d been thinking about our kiss all day and asked if I could come over for a short visit, but I couldn’t.
I tried to arrange a meet up this weekend, but he couldn’t commit. What do you think? I should just write him off, right? I mean if he wanted to hang out with me he would have contacted me to arrange something by now, right?
Dear Am I Getting Blown Off?
It doesn’t sound too promising, but you know that already. In my honest opinion, no one is ever too busy to see someone they like. And asking you to “come over for a short visit” sounds like he was trying to see if you were willing to hook up. He knows you’re interested and you hung around while he stringed you along, so he tried to arrange a hook up and it failed, which is why your attempt at weekend plans failed too.
It’s unfortunate but a lot of people – guys and girls – are smooth talkers and know what to say on a date to lure you in and make you feel like your date was the best.one.ever. I wouldn’t be surprised if other girls experienced the same thrill you did on your date. I remember dates like those where I went home feeling the same way you did – this guy was different and in a really good way… and then I either never heard from him again or on the second date his true colors came through.
Save yourself the grief and move on now before you give this loser any more of your time and energy.
So what happens when you meet someone new that you like and eventually start dating, but you can’t get another prospect out of your head? My friend Jessica is dating Rick and she likes him a lot, he’s awesome in fact. But she can’t get this other Marc out of her head. She went on a couple of dates with Marc but hasn’t heard from him in a few weeks. Yet she can’t get him out of her mind. Maybe it’s because of the rejection – or the lack of rejection – or maybe it’s because she felt really good chemistry with Marc and is now comparing that feeling with everyone else. The problem here is that Jessica doesn’t have a future with Marc. I’m not saying she should settle for Rick but it’s not fair to compare him to someone who isn’t a true contender. When a prospect is gone, forget about him or her and move on, otherwise you’ll just be holding yourself back from possibly meeting someone great!
I want to know definitively and once and for all, should I answer messages if I’m not interested? I get so many different answers from people. My gut tells me yes, it’s only kind and decent. What do I say when I’m not interested but don’t want to hurt feelings?
Dear To Answer Or Not To Answer,
You’re right, it is only kind and decent and you should answer. You don’t absolutely have to, but you should because it’s the Golden Rule or Karma or whatever you want to call it — what goes around comes around and you don’t want to be the one left hanging after you took the chance of writing someone.
As to what you should say, well, try starting with something along these lines: “I’m flattered but…” or “Thanks so much but…” or “I appreciate your interest but…” and then end with something along these lines: “I just met someone” or “I just started dating someone” or “I’m looking for someone/something different” and then say “thank you again though and good luck.” Be nothing but compassionate, polite and respectful.
My boyfriend of three years passed away ten months ago and I’ve just now gotten back into dating. I already met a great guy. We were smitten, he was very into me, loving and affectionate, but after eight weeks I felt a disconnect. He told me in a text that it wasn’t me, but wanted to get out of our relationship before he felt trapped and it would be best not to see each other at least for awhile. It wasn’t me, he said, but after awhile he feels that dating is more work than enjoyment. HUH?? I took his lead with our relationship so what is that all about?
I’ll be blunt — it sounds like he’s not interested in you anymore but is trying to let you down easy. You didn’t do anything wrong; from what you’ve told me, he simply discovered after 8 weeks you’re not his Beshert. At least he figured it out after 2 months and not 2 years. It sucks that this is your first experience after your loss and returning to the dating game but, unfortunately, it sounds like you’ve been initiated back into the club. As a side note: This guy doesn’t sound like he’s going to be getting married anytime soon!
Alright, that’s enough, both sides stop it! Stop it right now before someone really gets hurt!
Guys – if you go out with a woman, and don’t want to see her again, then don’t make ANY indications that you are going to call her. Because when you do that, you lead her on, and that leads to the development of expectations and her eventually being let down.
Ladies – if you go out with a guy, and aren’t interested in going out with him again, then just say so. Please don’t say that you want to go out on another date in order to “spare our feelings,” because we all know you really aren’t doing it for us.
You see all this game playing and posturing is nonsense! Utter nonsense!
How old are we?
At 27 I consider myself to be a “big boy,” and think I am quite capable of handling the rejection that results from being turned down by a woman for a date. However, when I do begin to lose my patience, and act like a baby, is when women tell me they had a great time and want to go out again but never return my calls or texts trying to make plans.
I am fully aware that on the other side of this, women experience the same frustrations when it comes to men saying, at the end of the night, that they’ll call them, but never do; which is why I am calling out both sexes in this piece.
So just stop it. Stop all the game playing and rhetoric because that leads to people being led on, which I promise you hurts them more than if you would have just nicely rejected them in the first place.
I’m shocked about why people don’t get you back to you when you e-mail them. WHY… don’t they complete their profiles if they are here to be serious? You’re here for a reason, so WHY not reply, be polite or at least fill in your profiles?
Dear Why oh WHY?,
I can sense your frustration in your CAPS LOCK, LOL. I’ll say this — if a person isn’t filling out their profile or replying to your email then its not someone you want to date so they’ve made it easy for you. It does suck and I don’t get it either. You’re right, why are these people on JDate if they’re not putting forth the full effort to meet their Beshert? I always recommend that people fill out their profiles fully and at least reply with a polite rejection. Try to keep your sanity by remembering that these people are not your Beshert and move on to the next prospect.