Dear Nice Guy and Fuckboy,
I have been casually dating a guy for three months. He is absolutely the sweetest and we have a great time together. Our first date was 9 hours long and I met all his friends. Every date we go on, he makes it obvious that he's into me.
The only problems? He's an awful texter, and so busy that we never see each other. It's gotten to the point where we speak once a week and see each other maybe once every two weeks.
I really like this guy, and was obviously getting frustrated that whatever was going on between us wasn't going anywhere. I texted him saying, "I like you, but it doesn't seem like you have time for me." I fully expected him to write back agreeing, and then things would be over.
But he didn't. Instead, he wrote back saying that he wanted to see me again and made plans right away.
When we hung out, we talked about the text I sent him and he told me he was sorry and that he was just out of town and didn't even realize how much time had gone by. He told me not to “try to get rid of him again” and “not to worry."
I wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt, and I hoped he realized that he should really put more time and effort into getting to know me and spending time together if he wanted this to go somewhere. But a few weeks have gone by and nothing has changed.
We're still having dumb, unengaging text conversations once a week, and he's still not trying to make any plans.
I feel stupid constantly being the one to initiate conversations, even though he always replies right away. I want to say he was more assertive in the beginning, but if he's lost interest, why did he tell me to not try to get rid of him again? I'm prepared to move on, I just don't get why he kept leading me on if he doesn't want to talk or see me.
I can actually relate to your query, so hopefully this helps. When I met my fiancée, I made a stupid decision to ditch our first date and go see a movie with my buddies. (I lied and told her I misplaced my phone. A VERY juvenile mistake, in hindsight.)
I should add here that our relationship was purely textual at this point and had been going on for a little over a month.
I'll admit, with this terrible excuse, I figured she'd be OK with it and reschedule. Except she wasn't. She was pissed. Too much time had passed since we'd started talking. She was fed up and speculated that I was leading her on.
In turn, she brushed me off and told me if I didn't want to go out with her, then it was my loss. She stood up for herself. She respected herself. She wasn't going to be played.
The real reason I ditched the date was because I was incredibly nervous. I really liked her and I didn't have the balls to go on a date with her in fear of rejection. But when she was done with me after my false and selfish text (when I “finally” got my phone back, which I had all along), I came groveling back to her like some sad, rejected runt.
My point being, it seems like this guy could be doing the same thing (as in, he gets nervous when he sees you). Or, he might not care to invest much in this could-be relationship. If you've been casually dating for three months and you only see each other every two weeks or so, it's evident that he's not investing much in you or this relationship. So, do as my fiancée did: Let him go. Or, at least pretend to.
If he really likes you, he won't be willing to let you go. I wasn't, and now she and I are engaged. By giving me an ultimatum, it made me man-up and do what I was afraid to do: Risk rejection and take her out. Make things official.
If he doesn't come crawling back, then you have your answer. The dude's a jerk and has been giving you a false narrative.
Sure, he's texting you back in a timely manner, but that could be because he likes female attention and knows he can keep you on the line if he sends you the occasional text and sees you twice a month. Not a bad deal, right?
This ultimately comes down to self-respect. If you want something more from him and he's not willing to budge, you're telling him that it's OK. He's just going to keep getting away with as little as he can until he's bored, at which point your conversations will slowly fade into nothingness.
But if you give him an ultimatum, you're telling him that you're not OK with how things are currently going, and if he keeps it up, he's going to lose you. (But actually make sure he "loses" you. That means no communication! No texts!)
You've made your feelings clear, so now it's time for him to do the same. He's got to step up or step off. Hopefully — considering you really like this guy — he steps up and begins making more time for you. But if not, at least you can move on to something more authentic. Something that will actually go somewhere.
Best of luck!
Sweet Julie. You're in luck. You could not have come to a better place to unpack this little conundrum. I do this to every woman I date.
But before I tell you why, let me begin with a story.
In April, I went out with a beautiful woman I'd been texting for maybe a month. We were very different physically, racially and in temperament, so it was interesting. We also lived in different parts of the city and were on different schedules.
It was a Wednesday night. (I'm such a dick, always taking girls out on weeknights — when I don't have to be up for work and she does — and then drinking until the sun comes up.) The next week, we went out on a Wednesday. The next week, Wednesday again. Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday.
It became a routine, like a marked day on the calendar. And once I knew we had a set day, I became an awful texter. I stopped wanting to talk to her on days I knew I wouldn't see her.
Our text convos became trudging bores, until they simply ceased to exist if we weren't making plans. When we saw each other, though, I had a great time for a few hours. I wasn't any less present with her than when I was in the beginning. And I meant what I told her when we were together.
But once the date was over, I went back to my life.
This went on for months. I loved it... until it became an obligation. Like, when I missed a week and she told me I'd "disappeared." There is a huge difference between the comfort of knowing you have someone to go out with consistently, and the actual responsibility of following through.
It sounds like that's what this guy is doing to you.
It isn't wrong or evil of him. You're a girl he probably likes just fine, enjoys… and fits right into his schedule. That might sound bad, but I don't give a fuck. Sometimes, that's the way it is.
We love to avoid saying these things in fear of sounding sexist, but it's true: Guys are better at compartmentalizing. We can go out with you on Wednesday and have such a great time we never want the day to end. Then it does, and we won't think about you on Thursday at all.
So, to me, it sounds like you're his Wednesday girl. He may have a Thursday girl, a Friday girl, and a Saturday girl also, and I'm sure that's what frightens you. But it's more likely that he JUST wants a Wednesday girl.
If he's a careerist, he probably sees commitment as an impediment to his professional aspirations. But he still enjoys dates, women and unwinding when he can. So many men I know love taking women out and being with them, but have other priorities. So they have time and energy for it once a week. They are often vilified for this, and often unfairly.
This is a scenario that rarely gets considered. When a guy isn't "making time for you" or "showing he cares," women always assume he's an asshole, has an ulterior motive, or a second family.
"How dare he not make time for me?" you say. Please. This always sounds very arrogant to me. "How dare anyone I've fucked not consider me the most important thing in their entire lives??"
In the same vein, saying "you're letting him have what he wants," or "if he won't commit, he doesn't deserve you," is immature, self-serving bullshit.
You have to look at these things through slightly more objective lenses.
You're 23, you said? I'm around that age, and I'll assume this guy is too. We want certain things out of life and know that these years are imperative to our chances of getting them. We're trying not to fuck it up before it's too late. And sometimes, that takes precedence over a nice girl you've known for a couple months.
So, yes, some of us only want a Wednesday girl. That's why I do to every woman I meet what he's doing to you now. And that's why he's saying all the right things when you confront him about it.
He's not wrong for not ending it, just like you're not wrong for staying in something you occasionally enjoy. You can't make him out to be the asshole for being the one who ends things AND for being the one who doesn't.
You two are just in the middle. You're alright. You're vanilla frozen yogurt. If you want to be ice cream with sprinkles, you're kidding yourself. At least now.
Try to convince him to commit to you, and he'll run for the hills. If you can't be casual, then you have to go. But either way, get one more fuck out of it at least.
Unfaithfully yours, Treez